North Dakota State Auditor
The current officeholder is Robert Peterson. He was first elected in 1996, succeeding his father in the office. His current term expires in 2012.
The qualified electors of the state at the times and places of choosing members of the legislative assembly shall choose a governor, lieutenant governor, agriculture commissioner, attorney general, auditor, insurance commissioner, three public service commissioners, secretary of state, superintendent of public instruction, tax commissioner, and treasurer. ...
Article V, Section 4 of the North Dakota Constitution establishes the qualifications to hold the office of auditor:
|To be eligible to hold an elective office established by this article, a person must be a qualified elector of this state, must be at least twenty-five years of age on the day of the election, and must have been a resident of this state for the five years preceding election to office. To be eligible to hold the office of governor or lieutenant governor, a person must be at least thirty years old on the day of the election. The attorney general must be licensed to practice law in this state.|
- qualified North Dakota voter
- at least 25 years old
- a resident of North Dakota for at least the five preceding years
The auditor in North Dakota is popularly elected every four years, in Presidential election years. For North Dakota, 2012, 2016, and 2020 are all auditor election years. The term of office is four years.
Article V, Section 8 addresses vacancies in state executive offices. In the event of a vacancy, the governor nominates a successor who must be confirmed by the state senate. Once confirmed, the individual serves the remainder of the unexpired term.
As the chief watchdog for the state, the auditor is responsible for providing independent evaluations of the state government, state agencies, and local governments. Chapter 54-10 of the North Dakota Century Code outlines the specific duties of the office:
- audit all financial transactions of the state government
- perform performance audits of state agencies when deemed appropriate
- audit the following political subdivisions once every two years, or by order of the governor of legislative audit committee: counties, cities, park districts, school districts, firefighters relief associations, airport authorities, public libraries, water resource districts, the Garrison Diversion Conservancy District, rural fire protection districts, special education districts, area career and technology centers, correction centers, recreation service districts, weed boards, irrigation districts, rural ambulance service districts, southwest water authority, soil conservation districts, and housing authorities (if the housing authorities are not subject to federal audits)
The auditor also has the authority to determine whether or not to audit the international peace garden, at the request of its board of directors.
There office of the auditor in North Dakota has three operational divisions:
- The Division of State Audit, the office's largest division, is responsible for conducting financial, compliance, performance, and information system audits of all state agencies, including the university system.
- The Division of Local Government Audit performs financial, compliance, performance, and information system audits of counties, cities, school districts, and other political subdivisions across the state.
- The Division of Royal Audit audits the federal royalty payments from oil, gas, and coal leases.
Office of the State Auditor
600 East Boulevard - 3rd Floor
Bismarck, ND 58505-0060