Port: North Dakota needs an honest auditor


MINOT, N.D. — State lawmakers have passed some significant new policies addressing deep-seated problems in the state auditor’s office.

Auditor Josh Gallion and his office will be going through an exacting performance audit, one that it is hoped will be executed without the sort of egotistic media-hounding and political intrigues that have plagued the auditor’s office under Gallion’s leadership.

Gallion will also have to report quarterly to lawmakers about his audits, including how much he’s billing for them. Costs for audits have soared under Gallion, hitting local taxpayers hard and creating tension with the government entities under review, and lawmakers want regular opportunities for oversight.

These are good things, though I’d point out that they would have been unnecessary under previous auditors who could do their jobs professionally and diligently without needing legislative babysitters.

I don’t believe the problems plaguing the auditor’s office can be solved with policy. It’s a personnel problem. To truly fix the auditor’s office, we need someone better than Gallion running it.

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