Governor Signs Lara’s Local Government Transparency and Oversight Measure

September 07, 2012

AB 1345 provides safeguards to protect taxpayers from waste, fraud and abuse

SACRAMENTO – Today Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 1345, a taxpayer protection measure that strengthens the current independent audit process of local governments. The measure by Assembly Member Ricardo Lara (D- Bell Gardens) will identify and correct financial mismanagement at the local government level in a timely manner by requiring local governments to submit their annual financial audits to the State Controller and by requiring local governments to rotate audit partners every six years. The audit partner rotation ensures independent auditors contracted by the local governments truly maintain their independence.  In addition, the law will require the Controller to refer any unprofessional conduct uncovered in a quality control review to the California Board of Accountancy.

“AB 1345 is a good government measure that will ensure the integrity of the audit process and discourage complacency among local governments and longtime auditors,” said Lara.

Audits conducted by the State Controller this year, found that millions of state, federal and local funds have been misspent by various cities throughout the state. According to the Controller, the misuse of funds could be attributed to a lack of adequate checks and balances. AB 1345 will provide the appropriate checks and balances that will ensure proper reporting in local governments.