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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Lingle wants Hawaii auditor's office investigated after 'shoddy' draft audit

Advertiser Staff

Gov. Linda Lingle today called on the Legislature to investigate state Auditor Marion Higa after Higa’s office produced a draft audit of the Department of Budget and Finance that Lingle said is “lacking in objectivity … and just downright shoddy.”

Lingle blasted some of the conclusions in Higa’s report as “unfounded, false and defamatory” and “little more than unfounded political attacks.”

The draft audit does not reconcile with the opinions of the state Attorney General and three national accounting firms, Lingle said.
“This reports if full of false allegations,” Lingle said.

Budget and Finance Director Georgina Kawamura said the draft report accuses her and her staff of violating state law over the issue of “auction rate securities.”

When she was first elected governor, Lingle said she respected Higa’s work and implemented many of her recommendations from Higa’s audits.

But Lingle had concerns about Higa’s office after a draft audit called for the removal of the director of the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism late last year.