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

Warning issued after several overdoses in Castlegar

Interior Health says the overdoses appear to be the result of cocaine contaminated with fentanyl.

Kootenay-Columbia candidates attend Creston Valley Chamber of Commerce 2019 election forum

About 120 people attended the Creston Valley Chamber of Commerce 2019 election forum on Oct. 16 at the Prince Charles Theatre.

Green and NDP candidates talk strategic voting at Nelson public meeting

Wayne Stetski and Abra Brynne traded ideas but made no concessions for this election

Future arrives at the library

The future has arrived at the Golden public library! Thanks to a… Continue reading

Second young woman dies after rollover crash near Williams Lake

‘Someone’s going to get her heart, which is awesome, because she has the best heart in the world’

Google searches for ‘how to vote’ surge on Election Day

Interest spikes despite social media campaign by Elections Canada

Alberta man pleads guilty, fined for hunting without a licence in North Island

It’s the responsibility of each hunter or angler to know whether they are considered a B.C. Resident.

B.C. mayor apologizes for removal of Queen’s portrait from council chambers

‘I prefer to be inclusive of the many aspects of our history’

Alcohol a possible factor in crash that killed 17-year-old girl near Williams Lake

A pickup truck left the road and rolled over on Highway 20 on the weekend

Rare bird spotted in Victoria draws enthusiasts from across the continent

It’s the first time a yellow-browed warbler has been reported on the mainland of North America

B.C. woman must pay $1,000 after unleashed dog bites another

Owner should never have left Bibi unattended, tribunal member wrote

Climate activist Greta Thunberg’s mural defaced in Edmonton

The eyes on the portrait were blacked out

Most Read