Report 2015-116 Recommendation 9 Responses

Report 2015-116: City of Irvine: Poor Governance of the $1.7 Million Review of the Orange County Great Park Needlessly Compromised the Review's Credibility (Release Date: August 2016)

Recommendation #9 To: Irvine, City of

To maintain appropriate, transparent fiscal accountability, Irvine should amend city contracting and purchasing policies by December 2016 to make certain that all of its contracts and contract amendments with a proposed cost exceeding the threshold requiring city council or other approval receive the appropriate approvals, including approval for sole-source contracts. Further, city policies should require appropriate approvals when increases in spending authority are accomplished through a purchase order or other means.

Annual Follow-Up Agency Response From October 2017

The status of the recommendations the City of Irvine has indicated it will not implement has not changed.

  • Estimated Completion Date:

California State Auditor's Assessment of Annual Follow-Up Status: Will Not Implement

As we stated in our assessment of the city's 60-day response: It is unfortunate that Irvine is choosing to ignore this recommendation. We stand by our recommendation that Irvine needs to amend its policies and explain our rationale on page 68 of the audit report where we respond to the city's concerns. On page 68 we state, in part, that Irvine's policies do not explicitly allow for or prohibit using a purchase order to avoid the need for an amendment. In our judgment this creates an opportunity to circumvent city council approval.


1-Year Agency Response

Please see the City's 60-day response

  • Response Date: August 2017

California State Auditor's Assessment of 1-Year Status: Will Not Implement

As we stated in our assessment of the city's 60-day response:

It is unfortunate that Irvine is choosing to ignore this recommendation. We stand by our recommendation that Irvine needs to amend its policies and explain our rationale on page 68 of the audit report where we respond to the city's concerns. On page 68 we state, in part, that Irvine's policies do not explicitly allow for or prohibit using a purchase order to avoid the need for an amendment. In our judgment this creates an opportunity to circumvent city council approval


6-Month Agency Response

Please see the City's 60-day response.

  • Response Date: February 2017

California State Auditor's Assessment of 6-Month Status: Will Not Implement

As we stated in our assessment of the city's 60-day response:

It is unfortunate that Irvine is choosing to ignore this recommendation. We stand by our recommendation that Irvine needs to amend its policies and explain our rationale on page 68 of the audit report where we respond to the city's concerns. On page 68 we state, in part, that Irvine's policies do not explicitly allow for or prohibit using a purchase order to avoid the need for an amendment. In our judgment this creates an opportunity to circumvent city council approval.


60-Day Agency Response

Irvine agrees that all city contracts and contract amendments should be approved by the appropriate persons or governing bodies. Irvine also agrees that appropriate approvals should be obtained when increases in spending authority are provided through a purchase order or other means. The City's contract management system blocks the issuance of a purchase order where prior approval was not obtained.

Irvine, however, disagrees that the City's contracting or purchasing policies need to be amended to ensure that the requisite approval is acquired. The CSA's audit findings do not indicate any reason to amend the City's contracting or purchasing policies. Note: Listed as Recommendation No. 7 in June 28, 2016 letter.

  • Response Date: October 2016

California State Auditor's Assessment of 60-Day Status: Will Not Implement

It is unfortunate that Irvine is choosing to ignore this recommendation. We stand by our recommendation that Irvine needs to amend its policies and explain our rationale on page 68 of the audit report where we respond to the city's concerns. On page 68 we state, in part, that Irvine's policies do not explicitly allow for or prohibit using a purchase order to avoid the need for an amendment. In our judgment this creates an opportunity to circumvent city council approval.


All Recommendations in 2015-116

Agency responses received are posted verbatim.