PULLMAN, Wash. — Washington State Auditor, Brian Sonntag, will visit the Washington State University campus Sept. 7 for a public forum on the new government accountability law that will require independent performance audits of all state agencies and operations.

The forum will be from 5:30-7:30 p.m. in Todd Hall, Room 276, on the Pullman campus. The auditor’s visit is hosted by the Department of Accounting in the College of Business and Economics. The public is welcome to attend.

The bipartisan legislation was passed in April and signed into law in May by Gov. Christine Gregoire. Long a goal of watchdogs, this new law gives the state auditor and a citizen oversight board the power to study agencies and programs to see if their supporting tax dollars are effectively achieving goals. Previously, the auditor could only look at whether finances were properly spent and accounted for.

The actual audits will be contracted out to the private sector. Upon completion of the audits, state agencies would take corrective actions or follow up on any findings or recommendations.

“This legislation represents the best action the Legislature has taken to advance accountability in state government,” Sonntag said in April, as posted on the Web site of Rep. Mark Miloscia (D-Federal Way), sponsor of the legislation (HB 1064).

The forum at WSU is the first in a series to be scheduled by the auditor’s office with chapters of the League of Women Voters from across the state.