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Auditor Report on Happy Trails Safety Campaign

Auditor Report on Happy Trails Safety Campaign

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Published by: The Dallas Morning News on Jun 07, 2012
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06/07/2012

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Memorandum
CITYOFDALLAS
DATE
:
May
9,2012
TO:
HonorableMayorMichaelS.RawlingsHonorableJerryAllen,Chairman-Budget,Finance
&
AuditCommitteeThomasP.Perkins,Jr.,CityAttorney
SUBJECT:
Fraud,Waste,andAbuseAllegations: DepartmentofParkandRecreationTrailSafetyAdvertisingCampaignProcurementProcessCouncilResolution90-4027requirestheOfficeoftheCityAuditor(Office)toreporttotheMayor,theChairoftheCityCouncilBudget,Finance
&
AuditCommittee,andtheCityAttorneyanyapparentviolationsoflaw,apparentinstancesofmisfeasance,ornonfeasancebyCityofDallas(City)employees.ThismemorandumsummarizestheresultsofaninvestigationofallegationsconcerningtheprocurementprocessusedbytheDepartmentofParkandRecreation(PKR)todevelopatrailsafetyadvertisingcampaign.ThisisprovidedinaccordancewiththeCouncilResolutionforanyactionsthatyoumaydeemappropriate.
The
procurementapproachfortheadvertisingcampaignappearstohavebeenproblematicfromthestart.Onevendorwassolicitedtoprovidepro-bono(withoutfee)advertisingservices;however,theprojectwasinitiatedwithoutawrittenagreementoftheservicestobeprovidedpro-bonoversusthosethatwouldbeprovided
for
afee.PKRmanagementapprovedtheadvertisingdesignconcepts(thepro-bonoservicesprovidedbythevendor)andwasthenfacedwiththedilemmaofhowtotimelyproducetheadvertisingcampaignwhilenavigatingtheCityprocurementrequirementsandcontinuingtoworkwiththeselectedvendor.
The
investigativeresultsindicate:1.
The
City'spurchasingpoliciesandprocedures,asdefinedinAdministrativeDirective(AD)4-5,ContractingPolicy,appeartohavebeencircumvented because:PKRmanagementobtainedneitherformalcompetitiveproposalsnortimelyinformalbidsforservicesprovided.
"Dallas,TheCityThatWorks:Diverse,Vibrant,andProgressive."
 
Fraud,Waste,andAbuseAllegations:DepartmentofParkandRecreationTrailSafetyAdvertisingCampaignProcurementProcessMay9,2012Page2of3
Requirementsforsolicitationofservicesfromhistoricallyunderutilizedbusinesseswerenotmet.2.PKRmanagementappearstohaveviolatedStatelawssinceAD4-5isbasedonStatepurchasinglawsasdefinedinTexasLocalGovernmentCodeChapter252.TheOfficediscussedtheresultsofthisinvestigationwithprosecutorswithintheDallasCountyDistrictAttorney'sOffice(DAOffice).WhiletheDAOfficeindicatedtheremaybeenoughmerittowarrantinvestigationintopossiblecriminalviolations,therewereseriousconcernsaboutwhetherthiscouldresultinasuccessfulcriminalprosecution.Asaresult,theDAOfficewasnotinclinedtopursuethismatter.3.PKRmanagement'sactionsraiseconcernsaboutadherencetotheStatementofPurposeandPrinciplesofConductincludedintheCity'sCodeofEthicsandtheRulesofConductincludedintheCity'sPersonnelRules.Additionalconcernsidentifiedduringthisinvestigationincluded:PKRmanagementdidnotpursuetheacquisitionoftheintellectualpropertyrightsresultingfromthetrailsafetycampaign,insteadoptingtodirectthevendortosecuretheserights.Aformalagreementforpotentialrevenuesharingopportunitiesarisingfromthecampaignwasdiscussedwiththevendor,butwasneverfinalized."Off-books"arrangementsweremadeforthedevelopmentandsaleofmerchandiserelatedtotheadvertisingcampaign.ThedetailedresultsofthisinvestigationwerediscussedwiththePresidentandrepresentativesoftheParkandRecreationBoard.ThePresidentoftheParkandRecreationBoardrespondedtothedraftinvestigativereportbyindicatingaplanhasbeendevelopedforclarificationandimprovementoftheprocurementprocess(seeAttachmentI).Theplanprovidesfor:SeekingassistancefromtheCityAttorney'sOfficeandtheDepartmentofBusinessDevelopmentandProcurement(BOPS)inclarificationandpossiblere-draftingofAD4-5regardingemergencyprocurementguidelines,procurementofprofessionalservicesandcommodities,anddefiningandestablishingpro-bonoservicesandprocesses
"Dallas,TheCityThatWorks:Diverse,Vibrant,andProgressive."
 
Fraud,Waste,andAbuseAllegations:Departmentof
Pari<
andRecreationTrailSafetyAdvertisingCampaignProcurementProcessMay
9,2012
Page3of3
SeekingtrainingprovidedbytheCityAttorney'sOfficeandBOPSonallaspectsofprocurementformanagementstaffImplementinganinternaldepartmentalprocessformonitoringcontractsandAdministrativeActionsforcompliancewithAD4-5Ifyouhaveanyquestionsorwouldliketobebriefedregardingthismatter,pleasecontactmeat214-670-3222orGaryLewis,AssistantCityAuditor,at214-6705347.Sincerely,CraigD.KintonCityAuditorAttachmentC:MaryK.Suhm,CityManagerJoanWalne,President-ParkandRecreationBoard
"Dallas,TheCityThatWorks:Diverse,Vibrant,andProgressive."

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