A third party review could assist the City of Vernon in enhancing its internal activities.
B.C.’s auditor general for local government will conduct a performance audit of the city’s operational procurement process.
“They will look at how we purchase goods and services and they will find ways to improve it or how to use our system elsewhere in the province,” said Coun. Bob Spiers.
The audit, which will be done throughout the summer, had been sought by the city.
“There is always value to external audits,” said Spiers, who points out that the process is not binding on the city.
“We will be able to compare our methods against best practices and we can adjust them if necessary.”
Spiers doesn’t believe there is a link between the provincial audit and the city’s recent core services review, which looked for efficiencies.
“It’s an operational audit of a particular area, period,” he said.
Besides Vernon, the procurement process audit will include Delta, Revelstoke, West Vancouver and the Comox Valley and Fraser-Fort George regional districts.
The auditor general for local government will also review other communities for policing costs, assessment management, ensuring clean drinking water and managing the risks of limited human resources in small municipalities.
“These audit topics and the selection of local governments were developed following best efforts for a comprehensive performance audit planning process that began shortly after I began work as AGLG early this year,” said Basia Ruta, the auditor general for local government.
““This process included extensive consultation with local governments and other stakeholders on issues most relevant to them in their efforts to deliver value for the tax dollars they spend.”
Spiers is looking forward to the findings of the review into policing agreements and police budget oversight.
“Vernon will be interested to see if there are best practices to contain policing costs,” he said.
The communities that will be audited for policing costs include Port Alberni, Surrey, Merritt, Williams Lake, Victoria and New Westminster.