The Gleaner

Franklin audit recommends improving access to information 

The final report on an audit of the municipality of Franklin, which was requested by the Commission municipale du Québec (CMQ) following an investigation, was tabled during the May 6 regular municipal council meeting.

The original investigation expressed concerns about the budgetary process undertaken by the municipality. The final version of the audit report on Franklin’s financial reporting, which focused on activities from 2021 to 2023, was published on April 23.

The audit concluded that “The municipality’s financial reporting does not provide citizens with all of the information they need to fully understand the municipality’s finances.” The audit also found that while the council had access to numerous documents during the budget preparation and adoption process, these documents did not contain all the information required to make informed decisions.

The report, which was produced by the Vice-présidence à la verification, recommended the municipality ensure all the information required for citizens to understand the municipality’s finances are produced and made available in a timely manner. The report also recommended the municipality review and improve the documents presented to the council during the preparation and adoption of the budget, including information on the status of debt and accumulated operating surpluses, and information to help the council understand the choices made and variations in budget forecasts.

The commission has asked the municipality to create an action plan to address the recommendations within three months and will follow up on the recommendations after three years.

In a response included with the final report, the municipality stated that several changes have already been made and that the necessary measures to communicate the municipality’s financial information adequately and effectively will be put in place.

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