The Role of Internal Audit in Australian Local Government Governance: A Step in The Right Direction
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While the functions of local government are many and varied, the primary role is to provide effective performance which arguably will coincide with good governance for its municipality. Internal audit and relevant controls play a key role in ensuring that good governance. The introduction of accrual accounting in local government certainly has added complexity and additional risks, with cases of fraud, corruption and high risk investments in several Australian local councils being reported periodically by the media. Those cases have been accompanied by proposed governance reforms including the introduction of an internal audit function to address the issues raised. Although seen as an essential part of the governance process, the results here suggest there is still some confusion as to the role of the internal audit and its perceived effectiveness in Australian local government.
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