EDITORIAL—State should look to audit itself first
A northern Wisconsin legislator said he and many of his colleagues “screwed up” during the last legislative session, and small business owners are paying for what he perceives was a mistake.
Republican Adam Jarchow of Balsam Lake said legislators did not fight hard enough to defeat the addition of dozens of new auditors to the Department of Revenue. “As a result of this mistake, a number of Wisconsin’s small businesses have been subjected to audits,” Jarchow said. “For these small businesses, audits are terrifying, time consuming, and expensive. They are also the functional equivalent of a government shakedown. You see, most small businesses operate above-board. They do their best. But no one is perfect. This is particularly true when you have an awful tax code like ours.... Nearly every time a business is audited, it’s no surprise the auditor finds something and when they do, it’s usually after wasting weeks of a small business’ time and resources.”
Instead, Jarchow said legislators should hire new auditors or inspectors general to audit every part of every state agency. “As the DOT audit showed, incompetent agencies are wasting billions of dollars,” he said.
It is refreshing to see such candor. It remains to be seen if the “mistake” will be rectified. —Mark Sherry