My Values and Priorities
Equity, Diversity and Inclusion – I strongly support the County’s Equity Resolution and serve on the Equity Leadership Council. All Auditor’s Office staff receive racial equity training. On every audit, we work with the Chief Equity Officer to ensure we consider the risks that the program under audit may inequitably affect disadvantaged communities. I am committed to including at least one audit in every annual audit plan focused specifically on issues of equity, diversity and inclusion. We are currently evaluating the effectiveness of the County’s efforts to diversify the membership of its advisory boards and commissions.
Justice for All has been a core value throughout my life. As a law student, I developed policies and procedures for the Campus Judicial System and served as its first adjudicator. As a juvenile justice expert, I examined inequities in juvenile court dispositions and testified to a Presidential Commission on the merits of a Uniform Juvenile Code. In the 1990s I led the effort to reform the County’s justice systems to reduce unnecessary pretrial detention and escalating jail costs. As your County Auditor, I ensured that Justice Court management improved, and I rid the County of a for-profit jail healthcare provider responsible for the death of a young woman in the County Jail. Promoting equity in criminal justice will be a priority in my next term.
Healthcare – I believe access to healthcare is a human right. I exposed the County’s failure to provide adequate healthcare to persons held in the County Jail pending trial, and to hold its ambulance service provider accountable for slow response times. In my next term, I intend to examine the County’s response to the COVID pandemic and its readiness for the next one.
Housing – The Metro region faces a growing crisis of houselessness. I initiated a series of audits to ensure the County meets its commitment to equitable access to affordable housing with culturally specific support services. The safety and adequacy of temporary shelters will be the focus of future audits.
Ethics/Accountability – I uncovered abuses of travel expense policies by elected officials and County managers and pressed County Administration to establish an ethics hotline. In my next term, I will request an independent Ombuds Office to investigate fraud, waste, and abuse and address individual complaints about the administrative functions of County departments.
Sustainability/Climate Change – When I took office in 2011, I acted swiftly to ensure that the County’s nascent sustainability program established meaningful performance targets for recycling and energy reduction, addressed social equity goals in its planning, and reported regularly to the Board on progress toward those goals. Now that the impacts of climate change are evident in our county and across the globe, it is time to assess the County’s preparedness to address the potentially devastating effects of global warming on the economy and livability of the county we call home.
Animal Care – I recommended that the County remodel or replace its outdated animal shelter to ensure impounded animals receive at least the minimum level of care recommended by the Association of Shelter Veterinarians, and I will follow up to ensure those standards are met.
My Five-Year Plan
My five-year strategic plan for the Auditor’s Office emphasizes:
- Assessing the environmental and equity impacts of County programs to catalyze the County’s progress toward its equity and sustainability priorities,
- Seeking community, as well as policymaker, input on programs to be audited,
- Establishing an independent Ombuds Office to investigate reports of fraud, waste, and abuse and address individual complaints regarding the services of County departments,
- Protecting the independence of the Auditor’s Office, and
- Ensuring that audit reports continue to be clear, concise and timely.