Laurentian College withholding paperwork for monetary audit, Ontario auditor common says |

Laurentian University withholding documents for financial audit, Ontario auditor general says  |

2021-12-02 04:07:32

TORONTO — Laurentian College is refusing to offer paperwork for an audit into its funds, prompting Ontario’s auditor common to go to court docket to request the knowledge.

Bonnie Lysyk gave an replace Wednesday on her audit of the bancrupt Sudbury, Ont., college that filed for creditor safety this yr amid monetary challenges.

The probe into the publicly funded college’s governance, operations and monetary choices was launched within the spring, however the auditor stated the college has refused to offer unfettered and well timed entry to info.

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“Sadly, our workplace has been denied entry by Laurentian to info we take into account completely crucial for the conduct of our audit work,” Lysyk’s report stated. “Such a pervasive restriction of our audit work is unprecedented.”

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Lysyk stated Laurentian has refused to share info deemed privileged by its authorized counsel, and in addition gained’t share non-privileged info as a result of it will take too lengthy to vet it.

Protocols put in place by the college have discouraged workers from talking freely or sharing info and have “created a tradition of worry surrounding interactions with our workplace,” Lysyk’s replace stated.

Lysyk filed an software in Ontario Superior Courtroom of Justice in September asking a decide to declare the auditor common’s legislated proper to privileged info and paperwork — the primary time her workplace has needed to take that step, she instructed reporters on Wednesday.

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“I filed the appliance to make clear the definition of ‘privileged,”’ she stated. “It grew to become apparent that even our entry to show non privileged info was being impacted, in addition to our conversations with individuals.”

Some materials has began to stream in, following letters from a authorities committee on public accounts, however Lysyk’s replace on the probe stated it’s unclear if all paperwork might be turned over.

The Ministry of Schools and Universities has additionally “strongly inspired” Laurentian to co-operate with the particular audit, Lysyk’s report stated.

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Laurentian College stated in an announcement that it has been co-operating with the audit, and has “licensed and inspired all workers to take part in interviews.” The emailed assertion stated Lysyk has been granted entry to the college’s enrolment system, monetary database and non-privileged paperwork, with a court docket listening to on the matter of entry to privileged paperwork scheduled for subsequent week.

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In a written Sept. 30 assertion revealed on the college’s web site, Laurentian president Robert Hache stated the college would anticipate the ruling on whether or not privileged info between attorneys and shoppers should be shared.

“We stay dedicated to turning into a totally restructured, financially viable, and renewed Laurentian College,” Hache stated.

Dozens of educational packages and a few varsity sports activities groups have been reduce this yr because the northern college contends with insolvency.

Laurentian grew to become the primary publicly funded college to file for creditor protected in February. Hache introduced the information saying the college grew to become bancrupt after a decade of monetary pressure.

© 2021 The Canadian Press

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