City Council Votes to Put Inspector General Proposal on March 2024 Ballot

Published: 8/3/2022



Aug. 3, 2022



Phil Pitchford

Public Information Officer


[email protected]



City Council Votes to Put Inspector General Proposal on March 2024 Ballot

Amendment to City charter would require affirmative vote of electorate

RIVERSIDE, Calif. – The City Council voted 4-3 on Tuesday (8/2) to put before voters in March 2024 the question of whether to amend the City charter to create a new position of an Inspector General.

If approved by voters, the position would be appointed by the Mayor and City Council and create a new layer of oversight in City government. The position was recommended by the city’s Charter Review Committee, which has studied the issue for several months and had originally suggested the position be directly elected by the voters.

The Council initially considered whether to place the question on the Nov. 2022 ballot, but decided on the 2024 date to allow for more time to iron out details,

The proposed ballot question would be: “Shall the measure to amend the Charter of the City of Riverside to include a new Charter officer, the Inspector General, appointed by the City Council, with the powers and duties to investigate fraud, waste, abuse and illegal acts within city government and to provide annual reports on findings and recommendations, with an appropriate budget and with further powers and duties of the Inspector General set by ordinance of the City Council be adopted?”

A staff report estimated that the annual budget for an Office of the Inspector General would be more than $500,000 per year.

A working group of elected officials and Charter Review Committee members agreed the qualifications should include “the available person believed to be best qualified based on executive and administrative qualifications, with special reference to experience in, and knowledge of, accepted practice in respect to the duties of the office as set forth in this Charter.”

The working group also agreed that the position should work independently from the City Council, the Mayor, and the offices of the City Manager, City Clerk and City Attorney. The working group’s proposal called for the Inspector General to “have the power and duty to provide a full-time program of investigation, audits, inspections, and operational performance evaluations in accordance with generally accepted auditing standards to provide increased accountability and oversight of entities of city government, special districts and joint powers authorities of which the City is a member and entities receiving funds through the City, to assist in improving agency operations and in deterring and identifying fraud, waste, abuse, and illegal acts.”

The Inspector General would be authorized to have access to “City records, reports, audits, reviews, plans, projections, documents, files, contracts, memoranda, correspondence, data, or other information, both hard-copy and electronic. Additionally, the Inspector General shall have access to the City Council, the Mayor, offices of the City Manager, City Clerk, and City Attorney, Board Members, Commissioner, and City personnel as appropriate.”

Information about the idea can be found under item #25 at: https://riversideca.legistar.com/View.ashx?M=A&ID=977606&GUID=53F77815-23BB-4E92-91FC-F9D3D1DBD4C2

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