Court will decide whether auditor general can access disputed documents in LU insolvency audit

A court will determine whether Ontario's auditor general will gain access to documents covered by "privilege or court-ordered confidentiality" as she investigates the cause of Laurentian University's insolvency.

Ernst & Young, the firm monitoring the process under the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA), said in its eighth report that LU had provided all documents requested by AG Bonnie Lysyk, except those with restrictions.

Lysyk made headlines when her 2017 audit of the Fair Hydro Plan by the former Liberal government uncovered billions in extra fees aimed at removing the cost of the plan from the deficit. She began her LU inquiry in April, following LU's CCAA filing in February.

"The monitor notes that given the extensive nature of the information requests and LU’s limited resources, the process of responding to the information requests has taken a considerable amount of time and effort," the report said.

"The AGO has met with a number of LU employees and directors. A team from the AGO visited the campus on more than one occasion and spent several days on site."

Lawyers for Laurentian helped review documents that Lysyk wanted to see, "to ensure that disclosure of information does not breach any orders issued by the court in this proceeding."

While the AG's office contends it is entitled to see all documents, Laurentian disagrees. Both sides agreed to appeal to the courts for a ruling, with a date of Dec. 6 set aside to hear arguments.

Read the full report here.