Mayor Breed Points Directive to DBI Amid Misconduct Allegations – CBS San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO (BCN) – The Mayoress of San Francisco, London Breed, said Thursday she was issuing an executive order to prevent misconduct within the city’s building inspectorate after a report by the Controllers Office was released that cited nepotism, nepotism and nepotism Corruption can be alleged.

According to Breed’s policy, DBI officers are now required to more frequently certify and train employees on financial disclosure and conflict of interest forms; Make changes to the department’s approval tracking system to reduce fraud; work closely with the controller’s office; Providing information to staff and the general public about the city’s whistleblower program; and creating a compliance team to identify risks and combat abuse within the building permit and inspection processes.

CONTINUE READING: UPDATE: Penngrove House Fire, point fires included; Evacuations north of Petaluma canceled

The new mandate is intended to increase transparency after a series of misconduct within the DBI last year as part of a federal corruption investigation that began with the arrest of former director of the Ministry of Public Works Mohammed Nuru in January 2020 on suspicion of wire fraud were revealed.

Since then, several other city officials have been linked to the corruption, including former DBI director Tom Hui, who was accused of legal and ethical violations, gave preferential treatment to a permit issuer and project developer, and used his position to get jobs for his son and son his son’s girlfriend within the city departments.

Also, the former president of the building inspectorate that regulates the DBI, Rodrigo Santos, has been charged by federal prosecutors with bank fraud, wire transfer fraud and serious identity theft, while DBI’s senior building inspector, Bernard Curran, is facing wire fraud charges.

In this case, prosecutors allege that Santos tricked $ 775,000 from his co-founded Santos and Urrutia Structural Engineers Inc. customers in return for Curran treating those customers cheaply during the on-site physical inspections and DBI permit approvals .

Breed’s Executive Policy was drawn up in line with the recommendations of Controller Ben Rosenfield in a report published Thursday on the DBI’s approval and inspection processes.

“Every city department must operate with the highest level of integrity and transparency, and all city employees must adhere to the highest ethical standards in their work,” Breed said in a statement.

CONTINUE READING: Fire in the KNP complex: giant forest in Sequoia National Park undamaged

“If this doesn’t happen, it is our responsibility as leaders to understand what went wrong and take steps to prevent future misconduct. The controller’s report released today documents an unacceptable pattern of misconduct and systemic failures under the previous direction of the Department of Building Inspection. It describes a culture that allowed for continued misconduct determined by a “tone at the top” that failed to establish ethical leadership and guidelines. The people of San Francisco deserve better, ”she said.

Rosenfield said, “DBI’s work to ensure that all types of construction projects are designed, tested and built to regulations is critical to the health and safety of our city. The significant process weaknesses that we have uncovered need to be addressed quickly to ensure the health and safety of the San Franciscans. “

Patrick O’Riordan, interim director of DBI, who replaced Hui last year, said, “I am outraged by what has happened at DBI in the past and how former leaders have undermined the good work of our employees and violated public trust every day . It is not right and I am committed to getting us back on track. “

DBI is the municipal department tasked with overseeing and enforcing the city’s construction, housing, plumbing, electrical, and mechanical regulations.

The San Francisco City Prosecutor’s Office took legal action against Santos and his company for the first time in 2018 for alleging misconduct in connection with unauthorized excavations on properties on which the company performed engineering services.

In addition, in a separate case last year, federal prosecutors accused former Santos and Urrutia technician Peter Schurman of postal fraud and identity theft in connection with an alleged plan to produce fraudulent building inspection reports.

“Properly built buildings are a public safety issue, especially here in the earthquake area,” said City Prosecutor Dennis Herrera. “That makes the behavior that we uncovered alongside the controller particularly worrying. There is no place in the city administration for corruption, nepotism or nepotism. If someone plays with the system or abuses public trust, we will get to the bottom of the matter. “

MORE NEWS: Man charged with attempted murder after woman was repeatedly run over by SUV at Millbrae Starbucks

© Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. and Bay City News Service. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button