Candidate criticizes how the state auditor's office operated in recent years

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Jack Jackson, state representative and candidate for auditor, visited Cape County Park Wednesday meeting with approximately 15 supporters in a last push leading up to the Aug. 8 Republican primary.

Jackson said he likes his chances in the race. "We're ahead, the polls are all good," he said.

He faces competition in the primary from three other candidates, including state Sen. John Loudon of Chesterfield, but believes himself to hold a sizable lead.

Jackson said as he travels around the state he hears one question pertaining to the auditor post more than all others.

"They ask, 'What are you doing with all the money we've already sent you in Jefferson City?'" said the retired Marine and former Boeing test pilot.

Jackson said he believes years of "no one minding the store" have made voters skeptical.

He said a large problem is that audits in the state are generally done "after a project is complete, after it is behind schedule and after it is over cost, and that's useless."

To rectify this, Jackson is proposing an "embedding" program that would place an auditor in every large-risk or large-cost project in the state from start to finish. He pointed to the $535 million Interstate 64 renovation underway in St. Louis as one in need of such oversight.

Jackson said this new program would not require the hiring of any new staff, but would only require reassigning those currently working in the state auditor's office.

"I'm going to find out who wants to add numbers and who wants to operate out in the field," he said.

335-6611, extension 245

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