VICTORIA- British Columbia’s auditor general is defending his criticism of the provincial government over a long-standing difference of opinion about how some public accounting numbers should be crunched. Michael Pickup said Thursday he believed the Finance Ministry should change the way it reports payments from other governments and non-government sources. The ministry, meanwhile, said doing so could mislead the public to believe there’s more money in the coffer than is immediately available. On Wednesday, Pickup’s office said the 2021-22 surplus announced by the government this week should have been billions of dollars higher. “Each year, my office is mandated to report whether government’s financial statements are fairly stated in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles,” Pickup told reporters. “My job is to report what I see, is to report what
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