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HomeNewsIsland & CoastBC government finance reporting could be misleading MLAs, auditor says

BC government finance reporting could be misleading MLAs, auditor says

The province is understating its revenues by nearly $7 billion, and underestimating future expenses by $5 billion, says a new audit.

BC’s independent auditor-general published a report this week on BC’s financial statements, and concluded MLAs are not getting the full picture about the province’s financial situation. The report says the province is not following Canadian Public Sector Accounting Standards.

The auditor-general has been raising the same concerns for the past 16 years and says MLAs should ask the government why it is willing to continue accepting financial statements that don’t meet national standards.

The audit also found an additional $134 million that had been overlooked because of accounting errors, and reported the discrepancy to the comptroller general.

In a response included with the audit, Comptroller General Carl Fischer said BC’s financial statements meet the standards of the provincial Budget Transparency and Accountability Act. He added that changing the way finances are reported would hamper government spending “during economic downturns when services are most urgently needed.”

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