Pa. auditor backs off state Department of Education

    It appears the tensions have subsided, at least for the moment, between the Pennsylvania Department of Education and the commonwealth’s fiscal watchdog.

    Auditor General Eugene DePasquale blasted the agency earlier this month for being uncooperative with a performance review.

    But he said more recently that the department has begun sending timely responses – beginning with one that was due last Tuesday.

    “For the first time in the history of our audit of the Department of Education, they met a deadline of supplying information,” said DePasquale.

    A spokesman for the agency said it had been cooperative with information requests all along. DePasquale’s staff shared a timeline indicated delayed responses.

    The routine audit of the Department of Education was expanded in September to include senior officials. The move came after the resignation of former Education Secretary Ron Tomalis, who stepped down after reports raised questions about how much work he was doing as a special assistant.

    The state auditor general can subpoena agency officials, but DePasquale says the tactic is used only sparingly.

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