B.C. Auditor General Carol Bellringer. (Office of the Auditor General)

B.C.’s auditor general to resign for ‘personal reasons’

Carol Bellringer’s news comes just days after she released legislature spending scandal report

B.C.’s auditor general says she is resigning for personal reasons, days after releasing her report into the spending scandal at the Legislature.

“I have been honoured to serve as B.C.’s auditor general since 2014 and would like to assure all members of the legislative assembly and the public that I will be available to assist with the transition until Dec. 31 and afterwards,” Carol Bellringer said in a statement on Wednesday. Her term will end on Dec. 31.

“The Office of the Auditor General has a strong workforce in place to support changes and its highly professional, skilled staff will ensure that the important work of the office continues as outlined in the operational, service and coverage plans.”

The statement said Bellringer will not be doing interviews.

Premier John Horgan said in a statement just hours after the resignation announcement that he’s very grateful for Bellringer’s years of service and hard work.

“Her diligent work has informed improvements in the way our government is run and in the way programs and services are delivered to the people of this province,” he said.

“I am pleased that she will be staying on through the end of the year and to assist with the transition to a successor.”

Last Thursday, Bellringer released her findings following an investigation into claims of improper expenses by now-former legislature clerk Craig James and Sergeant-at-arms Gary Lenz between April 2016 and December 2018.

The two administrative officers were unexpectedly escorted out of the legislature and suspended last November, and later accused by Speaker of the House Darrly Plecas of spending thousands of taxpayer dollars on souvenirs, designer suits, magazine subscriptions, personal vacations, and even a wood splitter.

In May, James reached a “non-financial settlement” and retired with pension and retirement allowance, after a former chief justice of the Supreme Court of Canada found he improperly claimed benefits and used legislature property for personal reasons.

Lenz is on paid leave as authorities continue to investigate.

READ MORE: B.C. legislature clerk in spending scandal retires after wrongdoing found

Bellringer reported last week that James charged $108,656 in travel costs for 14 out-of-province trips in that time period, while Lenz made two of 15 out-of-province trips, claiming $59,269 in expenses.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Man and woman in their 60s identified by RCMP as bodies in Anglemont residence

Police investigation continues, say no suspects are being sought at this time

UPDATE: Power back on for much of the Shuswap

Outages due to downed wires and a transmission circuit failure

Salmon Arm’s Shoemaker Hill closed for winter

Snowfall prompts quick closure of steep and winding stretch of road

Letter: Air quality monitoring suggested for Highway 1 in Salmon Arm

Writer highlights health impacts from motor-vehicle traffic exhaust

Secwepemc Lakes Tourism projects look to support Indigenous youth, entrepreneurs

Collaboration includes Neskonlith, Adams Lake, Splatsin and Little Shuswap Lake bands

‘We love you, Alex!’: Trebek gets choked up by ‘Jeopardy!’ contestant’s answer

The emotional moment came in Monday’s episode when Trebek read Dhruv Gaur’s final answer

Birthday boy: Pettersson nets 2 as Canucks beat Predators

Vancouver ends four-game winless skid with 5-3 victory over Nashville

‘Homes not shelters’: Those living on Kelowna streets rally for rights

On Tuesday, Leon Avenue residents came together to demand change

North Okanagan councillor pitches homeless camp at city hall

805 bylaw calls in 10 months were for inappropriately set-up camps

Vernon car fire deemed suspicious

SUV found fully engulfed with nobody around at 4 a.m. Tuesday on Commonage Road

Judge rejects Terrace man’s claim that someone else downloaded child porn on his phone

Marcus John Paquette argued that other people had used his phone, including his ex-wife

Police surround Peachland neighbourhood

The incident in Peachland is now over

Penticton arts, culture and sports programs get boost of over $500,000 thanks to provincial grant

The B.C. Community Gaming Grants program will be distributing $505,900 to 18 local groups

Okanagan school districts reach agreement with CUPE Local 523

The union represents members who provide a variety of services to support students

Most Read