Advisory committee widens representation

Dec 9, 2020

Beginning in 2021, a committee that advises the Office of the Washington State Auditor will be more representative of government types across the state.

The Local Government Advisory Committee (LGAC), created more than 30 years ago, takes a broad view of changes at the federal or state level that could affect how governments in Washington account for public funds. The committee meets twice a year and helps standardize and apply statewide financial transparency policies, including accounting, budgeting, and financial reporting.

“This committee is an example of Washington's innovative and progressive history in accountability,” Auditor Pat McCarthy told the group December 9, after it voted to expand its membership representation. “It has a significant role in weighing in on SAO's accounting and reporting prescription responsibilities, which impact governments statewide, large and small. It gives those governments a seat at the table.”

Most of the committee's 21 members had previously been drawn from professional associations that emphasized cities and counties – two of the most familiar and common government types in the state. However, after discussing government diversity with members of the committee, SAO and the membership agreed LGAC should consider the perspective of other, specialized government types.

On December 9, the committee voted to change the representative mix. It now includes ports, utility districts, water and sewer districts, hospitals, fire districts, housing authorities, transit districts, and educational service districts. It also will meet three times a year, instead of two.

“I want to keep our Office on the path of innovation and partnership,” McCarthy said.