Thursday, December 4, 2014

Things Don't Add Up At Fleet Maintenance Division

Minutes from city council meeting on December 16, 1996.  Apparently there were discrepancies in maintaining police cars.

 B.  Requests by Cm. Louis H. Bruni

       1.  Discussion and possible action concerning the results of the
           internal audit conducted at the Fleet Maintenance Division with
           possible Executive Session pursuant to Section 551.074 of the
           Texas Government Code to discuss personnel matters in relation
           to this internal audit.

           Cm. Bruni stated that in January, 1995 he sent a letter to Mr.
           Vargas requesting an audit of the Fleet Maintenance Division,
           the audit was completed in June of 1995.  Recently, a year and a
           half later they got the final
           draft of this internal audit and this report has serious
           accusations and serious problems that he sees.  For instance, in
           the cost and repairs to some of our police cars, when they were
           purchased they spent $11,999.00 and some of our Police
           Department cars have a total investment of over $34,000.00.  He
           said this does not make sense that if you paid $12,000.00 and
           you have $34,000.00 invested in repairs something is wrong.  He
           added there are other vehicles that have repairs in excess of
           50% of the purchase price.  One vehicle had repairs in excess of
           200% of its purchase price.

           The report lists about 15 different vehicles where the fuel tank
           size allows for only 20-gallon capacity, but yet somehow someone
           manage to put 29.8 gallons in it.  He added that vehicle #1291
           has capacity for 25 gallons yet they manage to put 42.2 gallons
           in it.  He said that apparently there is a serious problem on
           how they can get this much gasoline in a gas tank.  He said that
           vehicle #1298 has a 25 gallon gas tank, but they managed to put
           72 gallons in it.

           On November 4, 1994 a vehicle was auctioned, however the
           maintenance records indicate that they have been fixing flat
           tires on it. How do we fix or repair vehicles that we don't own
           anymore?

           On one of the police vehicles, within a year and a half we spent
           $4,485.00 on transmission repairs and we have three different
           transmissions put in.

           Also mechanics spent six hours fixing a siren, why not buy a new
           one and move on.

           He concluded by stating that this report is full of serious
           problems, that it was a waste of taxpayers money and asked staff
           how all these things happened, why it took so long to get this
           report, and what we are going to do to safeguard the taxpayers
           money.

           Florencio Pe¤a, Interim City Manager, stated that he can't
           answer as to why it wasn't provided, anytime prior to July of
           1996 when he came on board.  He added that in the last five
           months they have been looking at this audit and have implemented
           many recommendations, there are still very serious problems, and
           he wants council to consider expanding the audit, the problems
           will be addressed and some changes have already implemented.

           Mayor Ramirez stated that he wants to see the definitive steps
           that have been taken on the part of Mr. Joe Guerra to safeguard
           a lot of these things happening now, and expand the audit to get
           more detail into the audit.  That we proceed to prosecute to the
           full extent of the law because we will not tolerate people
           scheming of any of our operations because it is not conducive to
           good government.  On the third component we should hold our
           comments to generalities and let staff and the internal auditors
           work on the specifics and details and as soon as they are
           prepared to come with us on a thorough report that they do so,
           but whenever they feel they are ready to proceed with filing
           charges at the District Attorney's office, that by consensus at
           this time, they authorize them to proceed in filing those
           charges at the D.A.'s office.

           Cw. Montalvo requested that the Audit Department gives a
           report to council directly instead of the City Manager.

           Mayor Ramirez stated that we should get the reports or whatever
           comes out, when it comes out and that it come to them (Mayor and
           Councilmembers) at the same time.

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