Transparency and ethics reforms? The OC Board of Supervisors says no.


Board rejects transparency in contracting initiative: CRONEY

County workers have repeatedly called for ethics and lobby reform in Orange County. Most recently, workers proposed a program that would shine a light on how lobbyists influence members of the Board of Supervisors before they vote to spend taxpayer money. The program also would call for an independent economic analysis of contracts to ensure change orders and other unforeseen costs are understood before Supervisors lock in taxpayers to spending our valuable resources. The program is called “Civic Reporting Openness in Negotiations Efficiency” (CRONEY).

The Board of Supervisors not only reject this proposal, they have refused our public request to place it on an agenda for public debate.

Read about it: Labor aims to flip COIN in its favor with new transparency initiative

Read the CRONEY Proposal


Board rejects ethics commission

The Orange County Grand Jury in 2013 called the County a “hotbed of corruption,” and recommended establishing a local ethics commission. The Board of Supervisors rejected that recommendation. Then a second Grand Jury recommended the ethics commission again, and the Board rejected it again.

Read about it: Board of Supervisors rejects ethics oversight proposal again


Read the Grand Jury reports:

Ethics and campaign reporting: Why and how to implement stronger oversight, transparency and enforcement
Board of Supervisors response: REJECTED

A call for ethical standards: Corruption in Orange County
Board of Supervisors response: REJECTED

Board refuses to address ballooning IT contract

Last year, the Board of Supervisors awarded the largest information technology contract in the County’s history to Xerox Corp. despite warnings from their workers that the contract contained horrifying errors that could potentially cost taxpayers millions of dollars and compromise County operations. After the County first negotiated the contract, Xerox came back with a change order of $11 million before the final agreement was approved totaling $133 million.

Read about it: Xerox IT contract approved despite $11 million price hike

At the time, the Board had accepted approximately $180,000 in campaign contributions from Xerox and its affiliates.

Now our predictions are unfortunately coming true. In its most recent IT update, the County describes a project that faces high risks with regard to staying within budget, delivering the quality that was promised, completing the project on time, and keeping the project within its original scope.

Members of the Orange County Employees Association have also identified a number of other costs the County is not accounting for in this contract. We requested the County compile those costs and tell the public who would be paying them (Xerox or taxpayers).

The Board of Supervisors still hasn’t responded.