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The City of Portland, Oregon

Audit Services

Audits City bureaus and programs for efficiency, effectiveness and equity

1221 SW 4th Avenue, Suite 310, Portland, OR 97204


Browse our audit reports about finance topics. This includes audits about the City's budget, taxes, fees, other revenues, the City Budget Office and the Bureau of Revenue and Financial Services. The City's financial statement audits are here.  

Recreational Cannabis Tax: Greater transparency and accountability needed

Portland voters approved a tax on recreational cannabis sales in 2016. Since that time, most of the taxes collected have been used for police and transportation programs. While the uses are allowed under the ballot measure, community members, cannabis businesses, or others impacted by past cannabis policies have not been involved in the overall budget decisions, and the City has not reported on how it’s used the tax revenues.

Highlights  |  Report  |  May 2019

Utility Payment Assistance: Program improvements would enable City to assist more customers

The Water Bureau has not used customer data to design their payment assistance program. Without data, it is unable to identify disparities, tailor assistance to meet customer needs, focus outreach or measure the impact of assistance. Payment assistance is not available to residents of multifamily housing since most residents of multifamily pay for their water, sewer and stormwater as part of their rent rather than directly to the Water Bureau. We recommend the Water Bureau strengthen payment assistance by collecting and using customer data and improving outreach and training.

Highlights |  Report  |  October 2017

Portland's Financial Condition: Funding infrastructure should be high priority

The financial condition report focuses on the City’s financial trends over five years.  The report helps decision makers to visualize the City’s course, to consider options, and make adjustments to improve the City’s long-term financial health.  The audit found that Portland’s financial condition is currently stable, but there are long-term challenges to address, such as increased pension liabilities and some assets losing value faster than the City can make repairs.

Highlights  |  Report  |  April 2017

City Transaction Testing: Continuous monitoring revealed few issues

We reviewed procurement card transactions to look for prohibited or risky transactions. We did not find anything to indicate fraud, misuse or a general lack of oversight.

Report  |  August 2016

Further audits about City Finances

Presidential Campaign Visits: The City should follow policy and charge for services (Report 489) - 5/31/16

Payment Card Data Security: Consumer information is safer (Report 486) - 5/11/16

Arts Tax: Promises to voters only partly fulfilled - HIGHLIGHTS - (Report 472) - 7/28/15

Arts Tax: Promises to voters only partly fulfilled - FULL REPORT - (Report 472) - 7/28/15

Portland's Fiscal Sustainability and Financial Condition: Maintenance needs and pension costs challenge long-term position (Report 470) - 6/29/15

City Procurement: Contracting process needs Council intervention (Report 446A) - 6/24/15

Portland Children's Levy: Funds benefit children but goals and structure should be clarified (Report 468) - 2/24/15

City Budget Process: Timing, roles, and decision-making need improvement (Report 455) - 2/11/15

Bureau of Technology Services: City fails to comply with payment card industry standard (Report 460A) - 11/18/14

Housing Loan Program: Funding supports goals, but low repayment may jeopardize long-term success (Report 449) - 3/24/14

Portland's Fiscal Sustainability and Financial Condition: Long-term financial position needs attention (Report 443) - 6/19/13

City Financial Transactions: Issues warrant management attention (Report 406A) - 9/26/12

Debt Reserves: Legal reserves meet requirements, but internal reserves need more accountability (Report 425) - 8/28/12

A report to our community (Report 431) - 7/25/12

PDC Economic Development Loans: Loan programs improved, but tracking major borrowers limited (Report 419) - 3/14/12

Portland Development Commission: Financial transaction review reveals areas warranting management attention ( Report 406B) - 2/16/12

Portland's Fiscal Sustainability and Financial Condition: Actions now can reduce risk of future problems (Report 399) - 7/28/11

Fire and Police Disability and Retirement: Improvements resulted from 2006 Charter reforms, but significant fiscal challenges remain (Report 408) - 6/22/11