MINOT, N.D. — During the waning days of the 2019 legislative session the budget for the state auditor’s office was sneakily amended to severely limit the autonomy of that office.
The amendment requires the auditor to go begging to the Legislature for permission to conduct performance audits.
The Legislature, essentially, gave themselves a veto over the auditor’s power to investigate problems in state government.
This was not an idea submitted as a stand alone bill at the beginning of the session and subjected to all of the scrutiny and debate of committee hearings.
This was not an idea even run by current Auditor Josh Gallion before it was passed.
It was put on an existing bill as an amendment as the Legislature closed in on sine die, and passed by bipartisan majorities.