By Mike Archer. Other than leaving an unjustified negative impression with voters, it is hard to figure out exactly what was accomplished by auditing the expenses of Fraser Valley Regional District (FVRD) Area B director Dennis Adamson and Area C director Wendy Bales.
What we have apparently learned is that the two directors who have the largest rural constituencies and the most miles to travel doing their jobs spend more money on travel expenses than directors who represent urban areas.
A more question to ask might be, “why did we give taxpayer funds to accounting firm KPMG in order to confirm the obvious?”
The whole episode smacks of a particularly nasty smear job given that, with no wrong doing either alleged nor proven, the water is still left murky by seemingly deliberate statements such as those in the Chilliwack Progress story on the audits.
Chief Administrative Officer Paul Gipps is described as being, “adamant that such a high amount of unsupported expenses is not likely to happen again,” and “The likelihood of this happening again, near impossible. That’s our commitment. We have to look at how we got here, why we got here, and figure out how that can’t happen again.”
The FVRD paid the accounting firm KPMG $6,100 to perform this ludicrous audit.
According to The Progress, “The final balance of unsupported expenses for Adamson is $1,453 for 2011 and $92 for 2012.
Let’s hope Gipps succeeds in ensuring this “can’t happen again.” We just spent $6,100 finding $1,545 and all we know about the $1,45 is there are no receipts for it – not that anything improper or untoward was done with the money.
Unless someone is prepared to stand up and call Area B director Dennis Adamson a liar, then somebody should apologize to both Adamson and Bales for dragging their names through the mud and leaving the distinct impression, even after the audit cleared them of any wrong doing, that something fishy happened.
The only thing that seems the least bit fishy in all of this is that the two most vocal critics of much that the FVRD does, were put through a very public audit only to find that, as they both insisted before their names were dragged through the mus, they did nothing wrong.
FVRD Chair Sharon Gaetz should not only apologize to Adamson and Bales, she should assure the public the FVRD will engage on no more witch hunts during the rest of her tenure.