Delaware Public Media

New State Auditor restructures office

Feb 10, 2019

Delaware’s new State Auditor Kathy McGuiness says the office eroded under her predecessor.

Tom Wagner, who served as auditor for nearly three decades, retired last year.

McGuiness said the office has high staff vacancy rates and is continually underfunded by state lawmakers. But the governor’s budget plan recommends $2.7 million for Fiscal Year 2020, a cut in funding.

She said she is reorganizing and restructuring the office.

“That’s why I said we’re not going to Band-aid it," she said. "That’s why we’re auditing the Auditor’s Office. We are peeling it back and pretty much starting anew. A new frame, a new structure.”

Budget officials say the cut in the auditor’s budget reflects the decision to abandon a planned move of the office from its current location.

McGuiness’ budget also includes a $110,000 personnel expense related to a recent decision by the state’s merit employee relations board. The News Journal reported in December former Deputy Auditor Kathleen Davies won an appeal of her 2017 firing to that board.

McGuiness declined to comment on that line item.