State Controller John Chiang said Monday that since 2007, his audit findings through state and local investigations total more than $3 billion.
Chiang’s office is in the process of auditing the City of Hercules. The audit of the city began shortly after Chiang sent a letter to Interim City Manager Liz Warmerdam and city council members on August 18, in which he said a recent review of financial reports had identified several areas that led him to believe “there is reason to believe that the Annual Report of Financial Transactions by the City of Hercules and the Hercules Redevelopment Agency are incomplete and/or inaccurate.”
Chiang’s office is also investigating claims of pension-spiking at the California State Teachers' Retirement System.
"Unchecked spending is an invitation for misspending," said Chiang in his announcement Monday. "My audits offer an inside-look at state and local checkbooks, and show us where fiscal practices need serious improvement. These findings can lead to real taxpayer savings, and every dollar rescued is one that we don’t have to take away from education, public safety, or other essential services." Chiang said the $3 billion in audit findings is more than any other controller in recorded state history.
Other investigations initiated by Controller Chiang include:
- Unlawful spending and illegal property taxes in the City of Bell
- Misspent and poorly-managed bond funds at LA Community College District
- Massive losses from uncollected fines at State agencies
- Inappropriate spending on gifts at the State Lottery
- No-bid contracts and lax spending controls in the City of Montebello
- Millions in overpayments to a State healthcare contractor
Hercules Patch’s coverage of the State Controller’s Hercules audits: