Report 2011-131 Recommendation 17 Responses

Report 2011-131: City of Vernon: Although Reform Is Ongoing, Past Poor Decision Making Threatens Its Financial Stability (Release Date: June 2012)

Recommendation #17 To: Vernon, City of

To better control contract expenditures and ensure that it receives the best value for the services it purchases, the city should ensure that contracts include language requiring contractors to provide invoices with sufficient detail so that contract managers can determine whether the services provided are consistent with the scope of work.

1-Year Agency Response

On February 25, 2013, the City Council adopted Resolution No. 2013-23, approving the general forms of personal service contract, types of insurance and indemnity, purchase order contracts, requests for proposals, and attorney services contracts. All forms of contract contain the recommended good governance provisions, including specific requirements respecting invoice detail, supporting documentation, and methods of billing. The appropriate form of contract is attached as an exhibit to the RFP and, ultimately, the RFP and selected proposal are attached in their entirety as exhibits to the final contract. Since the adoption of the Competitive Bidding and Purchasing Ordinance (Ordinance No. 1200) in December 2013, ten RFPs have been issued. On June 25, 2013, the Finance Department issued the City of Vernon Purchasing Manual to all City departments, as adopted by the City Administrator pursuant to the City's Competitive Bidding and Purchasing Ordinance (Ordinance No. 1200). The Purchasing Manual was prepared by the Finance Department, with significant input from the City Attorney's Office and all City departments. The Purchasing Manual sets forth all of the requirements of the Purchasing Ordinance as they apply in a practical manner to the day to day operation of the purchasing system. It requires invoices to be measured against the scope of work and deliverables in the respective contract.

  • Completion Date: February 2013
  • Response Date: July 2013

California State Auditor's Assessment of 1-Year Status: Fully Implemented

The city council approved resolution 2013-23 which includes contract templates for personal services and legal services. The templates include language requiring sufficent detail for invoices that allow contract managers to evaluate services provided against the scope of work in the contracts.

6-Month Agency Response

In December 2012 the city council adopted a competitive bidding and purchasing ordinance. By the end of June 2013, the city expects to adopt a purchasing manual, which will set forth requirements of the ordinance and will include approval forms for contracts that include respective provisions as required by city policy and applicable law.

  • Response Date: January 2013

California State Auditor's Assessment of 6-Month Status: Partially Implemented

60-Day Agency Response

The city states that a top priority for its recently appointed city attorney will be to develop a comprehensive contracting policy resolution for city council approval, but it did not give a time frame for completion. (See 2013-406, p. 193)

  • Response Date: August 2012

California State Auditor's Assessment of 60-Day Status: Pending

All Recommendations in 2011-131

Agency responses received after June 2013 are posted verbatim.