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Audit: San Jose Overpaying Contractors Thousands Of Dollars

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San Jose City Hall

San Jose City Hall (City of San Jose)

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SAN JOSE (KCBS) — A new audit finds that the city of San Jose has been overpaying on some of its contracts with outside agencies. Officials say recent staff reductions may have caused some employees to take short cuts, which has cost the city tens of thousands of dollars.

“The purpose of this audit was to assess whether the city’s oversight of consulting agreements was sufficient to ensure the city is getting what it paid for,” said City Auditor Sharon Erickson.

In fact, the audit found that San Jose’s lax oversight caused an internet software company that reports crime to be overpaid by more than $30,000 since 2007 simply because of a one-cent error.

Erickson said other contracts were re-hired without competitive bidding.

“In some cases city staff had not abided by contract terms or had not ensured that contractors abided by contract terms,” she said.

Erickson issued 15 recommendations to the city council, which voted to accept the audit.

City Manager Debora Figone said employees need to follow the rules, even if they are understaffed in lean budget times.

She elaborated they shouldn’t find themselves having to take shortcuts because their staff workload is “very, very heavy”.

City officials said they would follow up to correct overpayments and improve oversight.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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