State auditors review various financial aspects of government agencies, legislative decisions and local government offices. Their analysis is compiled into reports, which are then sent to elements of state government and, in many cases, made available to the public. In state government, the role auditor is akin to a classroom tattletale.
A tattletale can’t actually send anyone to detention or make a group of cheating students retake a test; instead, they report wrongdoing to a teacher or principal and hope that it does some good. In the same way, state auditors gather information and report what they find. But when states choose not to act on auditors’ findings and recommendations, the position of auditor is weakened, and the citizens of the state are the ones getting cheated.
Recent cases in Georgia offer an illustration of the sometimes frustrating role of the auditor. Since 1999, Russell Hinton (pictured, right) has held the job of Georgia State Auditor -- an appointed position not subject to reelection -- and has overseen an aggressive pursuit of waste and fraud.
Corruption news for Georgia, from the Courthouse News Service:
The former director of the Georgia National Guard says he was fired after blowing the whistle on "highly disturbing ethical issues and misconduct" of the Adjutant General and the Commander of the state Guard. Brig. Gen Larry Dudney (pictured, right) also claims that Gov. Nathan Deal's office simultaneously announced the "unscheduled" retirement of both Dudney and the man he criticized, in order to halt any investigation.
Dudney believes retaliation and a cover-up to squelch investigation of his complaints are the real reasons he was fired.
Read the rest of the story at the Courthouse News Service.
Corruption news for Georgia, from This American Life:
Many listeners have written to us since our episode about Georgia Judge Amanda Williams, asking what ever happened to her. Did she face any consequences for the things we documented on our program?
Yesterday, Georgia's Judicial Qualifications Commission filed formal charges against her. The twelve counts include a number of things reported in our episode: sending away inmates for indefinite detention, jailing Charlie McCullough for 14 days for exercising his right to contest a drug screen, and using "rude, abusive, or insulting language" with individuals appearing before her.
Read the rest of the story at This American Life.