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

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Stop checks, searches of Wet’suwet’en pipeline opposers unlawful: Watchdog

Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs, the B.C. Civil Liberties Association, Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs file complaint

Wet’suwet’en pipeline supporters speak up

“Protesters get one side of the story and they stand up with their fists in the air.”

Federal minister pledges to meet Wet’suwet’en chiefs in Smithers over natural gas pipeline

The Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs say they are visiting Mohawk territory

Lake Kathlyn school sold to Wet’suwet’en for new seat of government

The 11.64-acre property was listed in mid-January for an asking price of $1.1 million.

‘Kids saw this as their legacy’: SSS students speak against decision to remove painted ceiling tiles

As of Feb. 20 an online petition against the decision is currently at just under 1,250 signatures

Fashion Fridays: The 8 best quality online stores! Shop the ultimate sales

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Petition slams Victoria councillor who chastised police after Wetsuweten protest

Ben Isitt calls effort to get him suspended is not a ‘reliable barometer of public opinion’

B.C., Ottawa sign sweeping 30-year deal for northern caribou habitat

West Moberly, Saulteau co-manage new protection on two million acres

Suspect at large after stealing seaplane before crashing into another in Vancouver

Police responded to the incident at 3:30 a.m. on Friday at Vancouver Harbour

PHOTOS: 2020 BC Winter Games kick off in Fort St. John

More than 1,000 of B.C.’s best athletes will be competing over the next three days

Shopping cart collector at B.C. Costco awarded $583,000 after getting pinned by car

Kurtis Ryan Burdeniuk, 22, was retrieving carts when a driver backed into him in the parking lot

‘Usain Bolt he was not’: B.C. gang police seize drugs, cash after foot chase

‘The man took off running when he saw our officers approaching,’ CFSEU BC says

Canadians released from coronavirus-ridden cruise ship in Japan fly home

Those who were cleared to travel are to be screened again at Canadian Forces Base Trenton

Health officials confirm sixth COVID-19 case in B.C.

Woman remains in isolation as Fraser Health officials investigate

Most Read