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What’s an Audit Department Do and Why Do We Need One?

First step in restoring trust in county government.

In general terms, an audit department should look at the things commissioners and department heads prefer to be left unknown.  Some examples might have included reviewing the spending habits of the Board of Commissioners relating to park land purchases, the cost to construct Coolray Field to determine if the price Gwinnett paid was reasonable, or to ensure contacts are impartially awarded to the lowest bidder.  An audit department could review the relationship of Partnership Gwinnett and the Chamber of Commerce to assess the value the county gets for the $500,000 contribution we make every year.  

Gwinnett needs an audit department, and citizens need to know the department is independent.  Gwinnett’s new audit department should report to an appointed citizens group made up of experienced financial and audit professionals residing in the county.  The new audit department needs a charter granting the audit function independence and authority to perform meaningful audits to safe guard taxpayers’ interests. 

If the BOC is serious about restoring trust in government, re-establishing an independent audit department is a good first step. 

If you share our concern and would like to express your opinion directly to the Board of Commissioners please sign our petition, it will automatically generate an email to each commissioner.

http://www.change.org/petitions/gwinnett-county-board-of-commissioners-establish-an-independent-audit-department

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Jimmy Orr November 30, 2012 at 06:49 PM
Jim's recommendation not only has meirt, it needs to be implemented. I did not realize that the Gwinnett County Internal Audit Dept. had been abolished. Same needs to be reinstated so as county goverment will have an independent entity watching the "cookie jar" so as to audit (keep track) of the cookies incoming (revenues) and the cookies outgoing (expenditures) on a continuing basis. The only question I have is: "Who should the Internal Audit Dept. report to so as to ensure same acts without influence from within county government?"
Jim Regan November 30, 2012 at 07:00 PM
Jimmy I recommend the audit committee report to a five person citizens committee made up of financal and audit professionals living in Gwinnett. Members should have professional credentials (CPA, CIA, CISA, etc) and be active in the profession. Open meetings,a strong department charter, full disclosure of audit findings, and independent committee members hopefully will remove any politics.

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