On Friday, July 15, 2011, the City of Chicago Office of Inspector General (OIG) transmitted its second quarter 2011 report to City officials and residents.
The report summarizes OIG activities over the last quarter, which includes the transition period between the Daley and Emanuel administrations. Specifically, it includes narrative summaries of OIG investigations and policy recommendations, synopses of audits and special reports (and the City’s response where one has been made), updates on OIG investigations that have led to criminal prosecutions, and reviews Hiring Compliance actions.
Some highlights in the report include:
- OIG recommended to the Department of Procurement Services that a former, long-time City employee now working at as a high-ranking official of an active City vendor be found ineligible to do business with the City. OIG based its recommendation on its review of the former City employee’s testimony in a federal criminal trial in which he/she admitted to having participated in a long-running scheme to rig the City’s hiring and promotion process for Shakman-covered positions in favor of political allies. As part of the scheme, the former City employee falsified interview ratings forms and requests to hire, and repeatedly stated that hiring and promotion decisions were based on merit, when in fact he knew they were based on political considerations.
- An OIG investigation found that a Deputy Commissioner with the Department of Streets and Sanitation regularly had City employees run personal errands for him while the employees were on City time. The errands included picking up cigars, refilling the Deputy Commissioner’s car with gas, and driving his vehicle from City Hall to a DSS facility. OIG also found that the Deputy Commissioner arranged for two DSS employees to be chauffeured to work by other City employees on City time.
- On June 7, 2011, OIG released an updated Report of its May 2010 Review of the City’s Minority & Women Owned Business Enterprise (MWBE) program. The updated Report showed that City leadership largely ignored OIG recommendations made in the May 2010 review. It also found that despite the best efforts of Office of Compliance employees, the MWBE program is still rife with widespread fraud, abuse, and mismanagement.
- An OIG investigation determined that a high level manager with the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) refused to answer questions posed to him/her as part of an OIG investigation relating to an inquiry into a serious crime, despite repeated advisements that, as a City employee, he/she had a duty to cooperate with the OIG. The DCASE manager resigned his/her City position approximately two weeks following his/her interview with OIG and days ahead of OIG’s summary report to DCASE. If the DCASE manager had not resigned, OIG would have recommended that he/she be terminated. Since he/she is no longer a City employee, OIG recommended that he/she be placed on the City’s ineligible for hire list.