MADISON, WI – Kevin J. Kennedy, director and general counsel of the Government Accountability Board, issued the following statement in response to the report released today by the Legislative Audit Bureau.
“From the outset of the audit process, the agency has welcomed the opportunity for an outside evaluation of its performance in delivering services to Wisconsin residents, voters, candidates for public office, local election officials, state public officials and lobbyists.”
“LAB found no problems with the G.A.B.’s financial accounting or spending, and called for no significant changes regarding the core duties and performance of the Board or its staff. Given the broad scope of the audit we are pleased with the limited exceptions noted in the report. We look forward to implementing the LAB recommendations to improve the agency’s effectiveness.”
“The LAB’s report recognizes the extraordinary demands placed on the G.A.B. in the last several years. In many ways we are still recovering and catching up with tasks that had to be relegated to the back burner so we could concentrate on our top priorities – preparing for and overseeing elections along with promoting accountability and transparency in government through campaign finance, ethics and lobbying disclosure and enforcement.”
“One delayed task LAB identified was promulgating, amending or removing several administrative rules. Clearing this backlog will be one of our top priorities in 2015.”
“Another is the need for a more comprehensive complaint tracking system and better reports to the Board. My staff has been working on this for several months and will have new procedures in place in 2015.”
“The remaining issues LAB identified can be readily addressed. We are committed to implementing LAB’s recommendations to bring the agency into full compliance with statutory requirements and further improve its operations.”
“By every objective measure that has been published since the Board’s inception, Wisconsin is a national leader in clean, fair and open elections, ethics, campaign finances and lobbying. This is no accident. It is a Wisconsin tradition: the result of decades of hard and thoughtful work by citizens, lawmakers and state and local election officials.”
“The LAB’s review of the last four years provides even more objective evidence of that success and the Board’s role in continuing that tradition.”
For our detailed responses to specific LAB recommendations, please see the attached letter.
For more information, contact
Reid Magney, Public Information Officer, 608-267-7887, firstname.lastname@example.org