By conducting performance audits, the AGLG aims to provide local governments with objective information and advice to assist them in being accountable to their communities. Performance audits also help us identify best practices so we can highlight them for the benefit of all local governments.
The role of the AGLG is advisory, not supervisory. We do not comment on the policy decisions of locally elected officials, impose requirements or duplicate existing financial accountability mechanisms.
Performance audits are not the same as traditional financial audits. The audits undertaken by the AGLG focus on value-for-money, as described in the Auditor General for Local Government Act in section 3(2) as including:
- A review of the operations of a local government to evaluate the extent to which:
- The operations are undertaken economically, efficiently and effectively;
- Financial, human and other resources are used with due regard to economy and efficiency;
- The operations are effective in achieving their results;
- Procedures established by the local government to monitor the economy, efficiency and effectiveness of their operations are sufficient
- Recommendations to the local government arising from this review.
In conducting performance audits, the AGLG adheres to the Chartered Accountants of Canada's Generally Accepted Auditing Standards (GAAS) and the International Standards of Supreme Audit Institutions (ISSAI).
Role of Local Governments in Performance Audits
A local government whose operation is the subject of a performance audit plays a role in the process:
- The local government may review the AGLG's draft report.
- The local government may discuss the draft report's findings at a meeting closed to the public.
- The local government may provide comments to the AGLG on the draft report and a summary of those comments must be included in the final audit report.
- When the AGLG's final report is published, the local government may comment on it publically.
- The local government may choose to adopt one or all of the recommendations made in an AGLG report, but is not obligated to act on the recommendations.