Two government audits show Ottawa is earmarking about a billion dollars a year to build and repair First Nations infrastructure, but its myriad of officials are not keeping proper tabs on how the money is spent.
Even as Prime Minister Stephen Harper accuses the Attawapiskat First Nations of mismanaging federal funds, the internal audits posted recently suggest the criticism could apply to the federal bureaucracy as well.
The audits say there are "significant gaps" in how the on-reserve infrastructure funding is controlled, and that the financial reporting system is riddled with inconsistencies.
The audit of on-reserve community infrastructure says targets, standards and compliance systems are often ignored or inconsistently applied, leaving the government with an unclear picture of how well its money is working.
You may be tired of reading this here and God knows I'm tired of writing it but I'll write it again anyway: competence at fiscal management in particular is what the current governing party is supposed to bring to the table.
It's entirely possible that the Liberals, to use the obvious example, wouldn't have done any better in this area. But the endorsements that Liberals get don't usually promote their skill in managing money to deflect from criticism in other areas. The endorsements that right wing parties get typically do and I continue to search for evidence that this reputation for getting the best bang for the buck is deserved.
Maybe someone at the Globe and Mail or the National Post can help me out here.