You deserve to know where your money is being spent!
For me the most important duty of serving as Auditor will be to serve as the watchdog of the public purse. To intently review all government spending to ensure that the tax payer's dollars are invested as effectively, efficiently and as conservatively as is possible.
I bring no agenda to this office because agendas cost the public money. I will focus the attention of this office on the areas in which I think are the most important to and will have the greatest affect upon the citizens. One such area is education because it is vitally important to our state's future prosperity that we have an educated and not an indoctrinated youth.
While serving as Auditor I will use that position as a bully pulpit to remind the state legislature that we have a solemn duty to serve the citizens that have elected us. That we must be responsible stewards and when their money is spent we must make sure that they will receive the greatest return on their investment that is possible.
NC Govt. spends $43B of taxpayer dollars annually. I am the only candidate w the qualifications/skills/experience/proven record to hold this position.
Perform audits, that meet "quality" standards, that result in "irrefutable" findings that identify Millions of taxpayer dollars wastefully spent. While the Office has the policies/procedures/protocols in place to ensure the integrity of all audits/investigations performed & published, the State Auditor cannot hold any Agency/Organization accountable for wasteful spending NOR can the State Auditor "make" any Agency/Organization fix their issues. So it is critical that this Office's work is irrefutable...in other words, NO ONE can argue with the findings...so that the Governor/Agency Heads & General Assembly can implement laws, process/policy changes &/or staff changes to stop wasteful spending.
Due to limited staff within this Office, make sure that routine/statutorily mandated audits are performed as efficiently as is reasonable (to get the work done & not lose quality) to allow for the most staff/resources to be available to perform discretionary audits that identify wasteful spending.
Perform effective risk assessments to ensure that "the" areas of State Government with the "highest" risk for wasteful spending of taxpayer dollars w/ the highest magnitude, will be identified in order to best use the limited staff in the Agency to identify the maximum amount of wasteful spending.
Use the newly developed Data Analytics Division to identify for audit, more quickly/more precisely, areas of State Government that are at high risk of wasteful spending of significant dollars.
ALL of these responsibilities are of equal priority of this Office; therefore, I have addressed ALL of the responsibilities listed above. All are critical to successfully fulfilling this Office's mission/promises to the citizens of North Carolina.
Myself & Senior management manage a list of discretionary audit topics. The topics are based on risk anlaysis, other audits, data analytics. Priority is based on potential findings & the impact to the citizens of NC.
I and my Executive staff review/track monthly, data that supports whether all four responsibilities, mentioned above, are being met in serving the citizens of North Carolina. Every Audit Division has metrics by which that Division's work is tracked. All 5 Divisions in the Office have an audit plan established each year. The number of audits are based on the number of Agency established chargeable man-hours of the staff assigned to each Division and the size/complexity of the work assigned to each Division.
Within every Division every audit/investigation has a budget and a deadline. Every auditor/supervisor & staff auditor has personal metrics for hours they "must" charge to a productive audit, annually.
Additionally, to maximize the use of staff for work that takes critical thinking & professional judgment, I established a Data Analytics Division, manned by 4 staff in order to use big data to identify high-risk areas for audit, more quickly & to ensure the topics chosen will result in impactful findings.
Under my Administration, for the first time in the history of the Agency, the Agency has implemented the use of budgets/deadlines & chargeable hour metrics for all audits/investigations & staff. This information is tracked monthly to determine adherence to the budgets/ chargeable hours & to ensure all deadlines are met. Staff are accountable for meeting these metrics.
I use/will continue to use this information to demonstrate to General Assembly that this Office is a good steward of the tax dollars I am appropriated to meet the responsibilities of the Office.
Additionally, I have instituted a Quality Assurance program to ensure that all findings in the Office's audits/investigations are above reproach/are irrefutable. All audits/investigations & findings go through an exhaustive vetting protocol/process that ensures that when the Office publishes a report the findings are irrefutable/cannot be argued with. This too, is a demonstration to the Legislature of how the Office is making the best use of our appropriations while providing them & the Governor with reports/findings that they can use to improve/fix how State Government is spending taxpayer dollars.
I will continue to present our reports/findings to the General Assembly, personally. Given my experience in performing the work of this agency/having taught CPAs across the nation how to audit governments/my in-depth knowledge of our work that allows me to present our reports, renews legislators confidence in me.