Unanimously Approved Audit Plan Has Major Flaws
Comprehensive performance plan carelessly tossed aside
Milwaukee – Milwaukee County Supervisor Deanna Alexander presented a plan Thursday calling for a performance audit of the County Board and County Executive departments, but critics bashed and abandoned it before debate even began.
Alexander has been making waves for speaking out about government reform and had requested a 3rd party audit of the County Board. While the Board surprised onlookers by agreeing to debate the topic, Supervisors Lipscomb and Cullen quickly distributed their own plan, with no prior notice to Alexander or other Supervisors.
Alexander, who has experience in governmental auditing, was shocked that her plan was not even discussed. “I worked hand-in-hand with corporate counsel to ensure that the audit would provide a detailed look at performance efficiency and effectiveness without any embedded conflicts of interest,” Alexander said. “Unfortunately, the Board tossed aside a well-defined plan in favor of something with no details—no objective or scope,” she continued.
“The Lipscomb-Cullen plan has another major flaw: it puts power directly in the hands of the head of the department being audited,” said Alexander. “Now the County Board Chairwoman gets to pick the auditor and what the audit will cover.”
The board voted against Alexander’s attempts to amend the opposition’s audit plan, and verbal insults against her ensued. But Alexander thought it better to accept the supplemented plan, than to have no opportunity for an audit at all.
“At the end of the day, we needed this discussion to continue, and that’s why I gave it my support,” said Alexander. “Now the key is ensuring that the Chairwoman, who has grabbed the reigns of this project, gives auditors unbiased direction so that the public can truly see what is going on.”
“The people of Milwaukee County made great strides today because the entire County Board is finally discussing government reform, but the people must not retreat; the battle is not yet won,” she said.