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Anderton's U-Turn on Public Audit Bill

Max Bradford
National Member of Parliament

18 December 2000
Anderton's U-Turn on Public Audit Bill

Opposition parties, led by National, have forced the Government to abandon its plans to allow the Auditor General to have powers over community trusts.

"The Minister in charge of the Audit Department, Jim Anderton, has had to do a rapid U-Turn," National's Economic development spokesman Max Bradford said today.

"Mr Anderton wanted community trusts to be subject to control by the Auditor-General, arguing that funds held by community trusts are essentially public monies.

"As recently as 31 October, Mr Anderton wrote to the chair of the ASB Bank community trust, saying that the trust would be included in the coverage of the Public Audit Bill.

"This would have seen community trusts effectively controlled by central government. Community trusts throughout New Zealand were understandably concerned, especially since the Government also plans to encourage community trusts to use their funds for regional development.

"The Finance and Expenditure Select Committee considered this matter and has decided to recommend to Parliament that Mr Anderton's proposal be dropped.

"I now call on Mr Anderton to stop the Ministry of Economic Development 's enquiries on how community trust money may be used for his regional development purposes," Max Bradford said.

Ends


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