Minnesotans work too hard to have their tax dollars wasted or stolen. We've seen historic levels of fraud and waste over the last couple of years, from day care fraud, to light rail cost overruns, and the more recent Feeding Our Future scandal.

Minnesotans deserve a state auditor who will fight waste, fraud and abuse — an auditor willing to use the tools of the office to help communities address their unique local challenges by providing them with the data they need. As state auditor, I will work to get Minnesota back on track and restore trust in government institutions.

I'm a lifelong Minnesotan. I founded a Minnesota-based company that specialized in auditing clinical trials for medical device companies. I grew the company into a global leader in its field. I received my undergraduate, MBA and law degrees from Minnesota schools. My wife and I are raising our five children in Maple Grove. I coach Little League Baseball and I'm an active member of my community. I've been appointed as a planning commissioner and have served as a board member on several nonprofits that serve young people.

Minnesotans want to see their hard-earned tax dollars improve their communities and serve the neediest among us. These same Minnesotans want — and deserve — to have confidence that their tax dollars are making it to the programs those dollars are intended to support.

Since entering this race, I've announced two major plans and several policy changes that I will implement on day one when I'm state auditor. These plans will bring transparency to where our tax dollars are going, empower our local decisionmakers to make the best choices for their communities and make it harder for fraudsters to steal from those who need it most.

My Support Our Schools plan will help communities better understand where education dollars are being spent. This plan will provide local communities with the information they need to help craft solutions to support our teachers and classrooms so we can start to turn around our falling test scores and help our students overcome pandemic-related learning loss.

My plan to oversee nonprofits and other entities that receive government funding — i.e. Minnesotans' tax dollars — will ensure money is being used for intended programs and not wasted or stolen, and that suspected fraud by nonprofits is swiftly referred to the Office of the Attorney General.

These plans are also focused on ensuring our local decisionmakers are empowered with better data and best practices to share with each other so that we can reduce the likelihood for waste and fraud with your tax dollars.

My opponent has stated on numerous occasions that she is happy to bring her partisan politics to the office. Several times she's said she's glad that there is a progressive in the office, and has boasted about using her platform as auditor to advocate for her positions on policy issues that are legislative in nature. I don't share her opinion because math isn't partisan. Math is just math.

I see the state auditor's role as an umpire, calling balls and strikes no matter who's up to bat. I will be an engaged auditor, one who addresses issues when they are small so they don't grow into big issues. Minnesota has a history of auditors who were present, stood up and spoke out to protect taxpayer dollars. I will return the role of state auditor to the watchdog status that's been missing under my opponent's tenure.

Minnesotans deserve an auditor they can trust, who will always bring clear information, who will look out for their needs without politicizing the office, who will not be afraid to ask the tough questions that governments are sometimes unwilling to answer, and who will get the answers Minnesotans are demanding.

I will fight for Minnesotans every day by working hard for you, I will actively fight waste, fraud and abuse, and I would appreciate your vote.

Ryan Wilson is the Republican candidate for state auditor.