City Auditor LaVonne Griffin-Valade released an audit today regarding the BES Columbia Boulevard Wastewater Treatment Plant office building.
It contains a number of serious and troubling findings.
I have directed the City Attorney to begin an outside investigation. The investigation will be conducted by Ed Harnden and Paula Barran, partners at the Barran Liebman law firm. Ed is a past president of the Oregon State Bar and both Ed and Paula are highly respected employment lawyers. They have extensive experience conducting sensitive high level investigations, including those arising in the public sector.
Given the gravity of the issues raised in the audit, I have placed BES Director Dean Marriott on paid administrative leave pending the conclusion of the outside investigation. Jim Hagerman, BES’s Business Services Manager, will serve as acting bureau director.
I expect the investigation to be completed before the end of the year.
Portland City Council will review the auditor’s findings at a work session scheduled for October 28, 2014, 9:30-11:30am. The meeting is open to the public; no testimony is taken during work sessions.