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Still more cash for long-term community plans

John Carter MP
National Party Local Government Spokesman

13 July 2006

Still more cash for long-term community plans

Taxpayer money is being added to the pile of cash being wasted on the auditing of long-term council community plans, says National’s Local Government spokesman, John Carter.

Under the Local Government Act 2002, all councils are required to produce a plan outlining work programmes for the next 10 years to promote the social, economic, environmental and cultural wellbeing of their communities.

"It now turns out that the difference between what auditors were quoting councils for the audits and what councils are actually being billed will be funded by central government,” says Mr Carter.

"The Auditor-General made the decision to open taxpayers’ wallets and pour even more money down the drain on these senseless audits.”

The Auditor-General's office has the job, under law, of auditing the plans. It has contracted out this work to outside auditors - including some from the United Kingdom.

"But the auditors have come back and billed councils for far more - in some cases double what they first quoted,” says Mr Carter.

"That means long-suffering taxpayers will pick up the tab.

"The auditing exercise has been a waste of $3-4 million of ratepayers’ money now we find another $3-4 million bill to taxpayers.”

ENDS

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