Lara Continues Fight for Transparency in Local Government

October 04, 2011

AB 187 will allow the State Auditor to examine local governments at risk for waste, fraud and abuse

SACRAMENTO – Today, Governor Brown signed AB 187 by Assembly Member Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) which will strengthen the State Auditor’s assessments of state agencies and programs to include local governments in order to identify and prevent fraud, waste and mismanagement at the local level.

“AB 187 brings us one step closer to preventing abuse by local officials and will help restore the public’s trust in those who hold public office.  It provides the State Auditor with the capacity to examine high risk situations before they become explosive and taxpayers are left holding the bag.” said Lara.

The State Auditor is responsible for providing nonpartisan financial and performance audits of state government to ensure the efficient management of public funds.  Existing law authorizes the State Auditor to establish a high-risk government agency audit program.  Every two-years, the State Auditor produces a ‘high-risk’ report which identifies agencies and programs that may be at risk for abuse.  The high-risk program can also identify major challenges and impediments associated with government efficiency.  AB 187 comes as a result of the Assembly Member’s work with the city of Bell and the findings of his Joint Legislative Audit Committee.

AB 187 will increase oversight in all levels of government.  This bill does not require the State Auditor to include a review of local governments in her high-risk reports, but does give the Auditor that authority in the case that an issue arises that warrants review by the Bureau of State Audits.