FREDERICTON (GNB) – The auditor general’s followup work on previous performance audit recommendations promotes accountability by giving the legislative assembly, and the public, information about how the government, departments, and agencies have acted on her recommendations. Overall, 81 per cent of performance audit recommendations from 2015 to 2018 were identified as implemented, either by departmental self-reporting or, in the specific cases highlighted below, through Auditor General of New Brunswick followup procedures.

The report tracks self-reported progress on performance audit recommendations from 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018, with auditor general verification performed for three chapters: Private Wood Supply (2015), Silviculture (2015), and Agricultural Fair Associations (2016).

From her review, the auditor general noted that five of 19 recommendations on Private Wood Supply have not been implemented.

“Work remains in the areas of compliance with the Crown Lands and Forests Act regarding equitable sharing among the sources of wood supply (proportional supply) and sustained yield. This includes development of specific goals and objectives to measure the Department of Natural Resources and Energy Development’s success in fulfilling their mandate regarding private woodlots,” said Auditor General Kim Adair-MacPherson.

Fourteen of the 21 recommendations made in the 2015 chapter on Silviculture have been implemented. However, Adair-MacPherson said she is disappointed that clear-cut harvest reduction targets as recommended in 2015 have not been included in the Department of Natural Resources and Energy Development’s approach to managing Crown forests.

Only one of the eight recommendations on Agricultural Fairs remains non-implemented as two others were deemed no longer applicable since the Agricultural Associations Act and its three regulations were repealed. For the outstanding recommendation, work remains to be done with Service New Brunswick to develop and implement a standardized process and procedure to evaluate the eligibility of tax class 50 exemption requests – property tax exemption under section 4 and 7 of the Assessment Act.

The auditor general maintains the goal of 100 per cent implementation of recommendations made to departments, commissions, and crown agencies. Key recommendations have not been implemented.

A complete list of implementation status of recommendations by department and agency is available in the chapter, accessible online.