Premier suggests making B.C.’s auditor general’s an eight-year term

Premier suggests making B.C.'s auditor general's an eight-year term

B.C.’s premier Christy Clark told reporters this morning (Wednesday) it’s time to fix the process for appointing an auditor general for the province.

“The process is profoundly flawed,” Clark said. “When you’re working inside a flawed process, you are likely to get a flawed result. I’m trying to take the politics out of the process and fix it. Not just for the legislature, but for the citizens of B.C. so they know the auditor general’s office will always be above politics.”

When the legislature resumes in spring, the government will introduce legislature to amend the Auditor General Act, Clark said.

The term will be extended from six to eight years and the auditor general will be limited to a single eight-year term.

“By doing this we will give the auditor general appropriate time to be able to pursue matters that he or she believe need to be looked into appropriately and effectively without worrying or not whether they will be rehired, and without perceptions that an election year concerns are playing a role.”

The people of British Columbia need to have confidence that the right person is being selected for the right reasons and that the process is not tainted by political agendas, Clark said.

“We have seen the process called into question this time around and last time around as well when Arn van Iersel was the candidate whose name was before the committee.”

Clark suggested there’s a natural tension that exists, and should exist, between the government and the auditor general’s office in the first place. “That’s why the office was created in the first place.”

The premier said it’s her hope the select standing committee will extend and offer present auditor general John Doyle to complete his work and stay on two more years, making his an eight-year term.

“That decision would require the unanimous consent of the committee and if they decide to extend the offer to Mr. Doyle that he would have to decide to accept it.”

The committee will be meeting at noon today to make a decision, Clark added.