Gifts to Departments Through Non-City Organizations Lack Transparency and Create “Pay-to-Play” Risk
In this assessment, we focus on San Francisco Parks Alliance and its relationship with San Francisco Public Works because of the criminal investigation of Mr. Nuru, who, as the former Public Works director, allegedly solicited donations from private companies or individuals to the Parks Alliance and allegedly influenced decisions about whom the Parks Alliance would pay.
View the press release: Office of the Controller Press Release_Non-City and Friends of Organizations 9.24.20.pdf
What happens next?
Our Public Integrity Review of inadequate policies and procedures exposed in the Nuru investigation will continue, with future assessments on: ethical practices in contract award decisions at the Airport and other commissions; the design and application of the City’s contractor debarment process; the Department of Building Inspection’s permitting process; and other issues. Those assessments will be released in phases as our work moves ahead in coming months, and additional topics added as the investigation progresses.
Investigators from both the Controller’s Office and City Attorney’s Office work hand-in-hand with the public and City employees to fight abuses to public integrity citywide. To report suspected public integrity abuses regarding this investigation, please contact the Public Integrity Tip Line. You can provide information via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (415) 554-7657. All tips may be submitted anonymously and will remain confidential. Information regarding City payments, searchable by department and vendor, are available on the Controller’s public transparency website at openbook.sfgov.org. As always, any member of the public may file any allegation of improper or illegal public activity with the City’s Whistleblower Program at sfcontroller.org/whistleblower-program. That program, administered by the Controller’s Office, often partners with the City Attorney’s Office on investigations.