N.S. spending controls improved, but more action needed: AG
Nova Scotia Auditor General Jacques Lapointe discusses his annual report in Halifax on Wednesday, November 21, 2012. (Andrew Vaughan / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
THE CANADIAN PRESS
Published Wednesday, February 6, 2013 10:55AM AST
HALIFAX -- Nova Scotia's auditor general says the legislature has cleaned up poor financial management practices following a political spending scandal that erupted three years ago.
In a report released today, Jacques Lapointe says he found no evidence of misuse of public funds now that most of his 2010 recommendations to tighten spending controls have been implemented.
But Lapointe says weak financial controls in government agencies and boards leave taxpayers money at risk of loss through error and fraud.
He says 51 per cent of accounting, control and other deficiencies reported by external auditors in 2010-2011 remain unaddressed.
Four politicians were charged with fraud following the spending scandal, two of whom have been convicted.
Lapointe's report also raises questions about the province's growing debt levels, saying Nova Scotia's net debt per capita remains one of the highest in the country at $13,960 per person.
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