Inside Stories

Lowell Delegation Reaction to DiZoglio Audit

Last week’s announcement by State Auditor Diana DiZoglio that she had launched her promised audit of the Massachusetts State Legislature has elicited very little public response from legislative leaders, other than Senate President Karen Spilka’s brief statement indicating the Senate “is required to manage its own business and sets its own rules.”

However, one Beacon Hill insider tells me Tuesday’s announcement was not well received by House or Senate leadership and has been the subject of much internal buzz.

Here in Lowell, the four members of the delegation also were tight-lipped when it came to the audit, other than 17th Middlesex State Representative Vanna Howard.

Howard, a friend of DiZoglio’s and early supporter of her campaign, tells InsideLowell;

“I think generally speaking that accountability, transparency and equity are good, so having a regular audit of the legislature is a good thing for the public. I appreciate Auditor DiZoglio for proposing it.”

Lowell’s other State Reps, Rady Mom and Rodney Elliott declined to comment, as did State Senator Ed Kennedy.

Given the less than warm reception DiZoglio’s effort received during the campaign, and Senate President Spilka’s statement, observers believe the battle lines are set for a legal challenge over the Auditor’s authority to proceed.

DiZoglio’s predecessor in office, Suzanne Bump, was on record as believing she did not have the authority, though supporters and the newly elected Auditor say there is nothing in the Constitution prohibiting it, and also point to a 1922 audit as precedent.

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