Auditor says Alberta fails to monitor film, TV grants - 660 NEWS
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Auditor says Alberta fails to monitor film, TV grants

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The Auditor General says Alberta’s multimillion-dollar grant program for film and TV productions has been abused because of loose rules and poor oversight.

Merwan Saher says grant recipients have been breaking the rules by hiring people and buying services from out of province and he says one person claimed salary expenses on the set for three different jobs.

The $43-million Alberta Production Grant disallowed out-of-province spending, but Saher says the Tourism Department told him their rules on ineligible spending were so loose, they couldn’t enforce them.

Saher says the department changed the rules last year, but never put them in place.

He says the government still gave money to movie and TV producers who were believed to be abusing the grant system.

Tourism Minister Ricardo Miranda has yet to address the auditor’s concerns, but says a new grant program announced last week has stricter financial controls.