Reports

Please contact us at seattle.auditor@seattle.gov for assistance accessing these reports, or to request a report published before 2013.

Status Report on Implementation of Office of City Auditor Recommendations as of December 2019

Published April 21, 2020

This report shows the implementation status, as of December 2019, of 708 recommendations from 64 audit reports issued by our office from January 2007 through December 2019. As of December 31, 2019, 72 percent of the recommendations (508 out of 708) were implemented, 18 percent (129 out of 708) were pending, and 10 percent (71 out of 708) were categorized as no further follow-up planned.  

Homeless Contracts Management Audit

Published April 16, 2020

We conducted this audit in response to Seattle City Council President Lorena González's request to review the Human Service Department's (HSD) management of the City's homeless services contracts. We examined: 1) HSD's contract procurement, award and approval processes, 2) HSD's contract administration and monitoring processes, 3) policies and program design for each type of homeless service, and 4) service provider compliance with contract terms and program requirements. The report includes eighteen recommendations for improving HSD's management of homeless services contracts, homeless policy and program design, and service provider performance and contract compliance.

The Evaluation of Seattle's Sweetened Beverage Tax 12 Month Report: Store Audits & Child Cohort

The Evaluation of Seattle's Sweetened Beverage Tax Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Published April 15, 2020

Ordinance 125324, referred to as the Seattle Sweetened Beverage Tax, passed by the Seattle City Council in June 2017, required the Office of City Auditor to contract with academic researchers to conduct a series of evaluations of the tax's effect on health and economic outcomes. We contracted with Public Health - Seattle and King County (Public Health) to lead the evaluations. Public Health contracted with the University of Washington and Seattle Children's Research Institute to conduct certain parts of the evaluation. This report summarizes findings from data collected 12 months after implementation of the Seattle Sweetened Beverage Tax on the price of beverages in stores and the beverage consumption of a cohort of lower-income children and parents living in Seattle and the South King County area.

Seattle City Light Customer Care and Billing Audit

Published April 3, 2020

We conducted this audit in response to Seattle City Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda's request to review Seattle City Light's billing and customer services practices. We examined how City Light: 1) prevents erroneous and/or unexpected high bills, 2) communicates with customers about unexpected high bills, 3) resolves customer complaints and appeals, 4) provides payment options, and 5) reimburses customers who have been overcharged. The report includes 16 recommendations for improving Seattle City Light's customer service and billing.

Seattle Office of City Auditor 2019 Annual Report

Published March 27, 2020

Five Steps the City of Seattle Should Take to Reduce Trash Around Unsanctioned Encampments

Pubished February 24, 2020

This audit focuses specifically on Checkpoint 2.3: Assessment of Strategies to Prevent Trash Accumulation from our November 2017 Navigation Team Reporting Plan. Seattle City Councilmember Lisa Herbold requested the Reporting Plan and our subsequent reports. These reports promote continuous improvement in the City of Seattle's approach to addressing unsanctioned encampments.

Annual Surveillance Usage Review for 2018

Published January 27, 2020

Ordinance 125679 requires our office and the Seattle Office of Inspector General of Public Safety to annually review the City of Seattle's use of surveillance technology and the extent to which departments are in compliance with City requirements. The Ordinance required a review of surveillance technologies approved in 2018 to be published by January 2020; however, there were no City Council-approved surveillance technologies in 2018 to review. The letter above communicates this status to Seattle City Councilmembers. We will continue to monitor the approvals of surveillance technologies and conduct reviews as required.

The Evaluation of Seattle's Secure Scheduling Ordinance: Year 1 Findings

Published December 20, 2019

Seattle's Secure Scheduling Ordinance went into effect on July 1, 2017. The law regulates workers' schedule predictability and covers hourly workers at retail and food service establishments with 500 or more employees worldwide and at full-service restaurants with at least 500 employees worldwide and at least 40 locations. The Ordinance called for an evaluation of the law's impacts in the first and second years after passage. This Year 1 evaluation consists of two complementary parts:

  • A Worker Impact Study evaluates the impacts of the Secure Scheduling Ordinance on the work schedules reported by Seattle covered workers.
  • An Employer Implementation Study examines the implementation of the Secure Scheduling Ordinance as reported by frontline managers responsible for scheduling workers in covered worksites. 

Seattle Minimum Wage Enforcement Audit

Published December 16, 2019

This audit was conducted in response to City Council Resolution 31524, which called for a review of formal complaints about non-compliance with the Minimum Wage Ordinance. The objective of this audit was to assess the effectiveness of the Seattle Office of Labor Standards' enforcement of the Minimum Wage Ordinance and, when relevant, other labor standards ordinances.

Gun Safe Storage Ordinance: Baseline Statistical Report 

Published October 2, 2019

Ordinance 125620 directs the City Auditor to work with Public Health - Seattle & King County (PHSKC) and the Chief of the Seattle Police Department (SPD) to produce a series of reports over a five-year period containing descriptive statistics on 1) Firearm-related hospitalizations and deaths in Seattle for the overall population and among youth, and 2) Guns reported to or recorded by SPD as stolen in Seattle. This first report provides baseline information (i.e., before the ordinance took effect) from 2017 on those two topics.     

Seattle Fire Department - Special Event Cost Recovery

Published July 24, 2019

This audit, requested by City Councilmember Lorena González, examined the Seattle Fire Department's (SFD) cost recovery rates for staffing at billable special events (e.g., professional sports events) and its process for determining whether an event is billable or nonbillable.

   

Status Report on Implementation of Office of City Auditor Recommendations as of December 2018

Published May 15, 2019

This report shows the implementation status, as of December 2018, of 657 recommendations from audit reports issued by our office from January 2007 through December 2018.  

City of Seattle Financial Condition 2017

Published May 13, 2019

This report provides members of the public and public officials with information on the City of Seattle's (City) financial condition. The report uses information from the City's Comprehensive Annual Financial Reports (CAFR) and Adopted Budgets, among other sources, and compiles the information for a broad audience. The report also provides ten years of data for most of the financial and economic indicators analyzed, allowing public officials to see historical trends and identify areas that may need attention.

Review of Hate Crime Prevention, Response, and Reporting in Seattle - Phase 2 Report

Published May 9, 2019  

Seattle City Councilmember Lisa Herbold asked our office to audit the City of Seattle's (City) handling of hate crimes. Our office completed a first phase report focused on practices and processes the Seattle Police Department (SPD) follows to identify, respond to, and prevent hate crimes. This second phase report examines prosecuted hate crimes, identifies areas where hate crimes are concentrated, and uses community feedback and best practices to offer ways to strengthen efforts to prevent and respond to hate crimes.  

Seattle Office of City Auditor 2018 Annual Report

Published April 1, 2019

Seattle Public Utilities New Taps Billing and Controls Review

Published March 29, 2019

This report describes the results of our audit of Seattle Public Utilities' (SPU) recalculations of new taps charges billed by SPU between January 1, 2015 and April 5, 2018. New taps are newly installed water services for SPU's residential, commercial, and industrial customers. SPU initiated their audit test work to recalculate new taps billings for this period after discovering that some customers had been overcharged for new taps installations.   

Public Health - Seattle King County (PHSKC) and University of Washington (UW) Report on Healthy Food Availability and Food Bank Network

Seattle City Council Finance and Neighborhoods Committee 2/27/19 Presentation Slides on PHSKC/UW Report on Healthy Food Availability and Food Bank Network

Published February 25, 2019

Ordinance 125324, referred to as the Sweetened Beverage Tax, passed by the Seattle City Council in June 2017, required the City Auditor to contract with academic researchers to conduct a series of evaluations, including one on food deserts in Seattle and an assessment of Seattle's food bank network. We contracted with Public Health - Seattle and King County (Public Health) to lead the evaluations. Public Health worked with the University of Washington to conduct the food desert and food bank evaluation.    

Review of Navigation Team 2018 Quarter 2 Report

Published February 7, 2019

This report, requested by Seattle City Councilmember Lisa Herbold, is part of a series of reports intended to promote continuous improvement in the City of Seattle's Navigation Team approach, which is part of the City of Seattle's strategy for addressing the issue of people living unsheltered in Seattle.  

Public Health - Seattle and King County's (PHSKC) Report on the 6-Month Store Beverage Prices Audit

City Council Finance and Neighborhoods Committee 1/9/19 Presentation Slides on PHSKC's 6-Month Store Beverage Prices Audit

Frequently Asked Questions Document on PHSKC's 6-Month Store Beverage Prices Audit

Published January 7, 2019

Ordinance 125324, passed by the Seattle City Council in June 2017, required the City Auditor to contract with academic researchers to conduct a multi-year evaluation of the behavioral, health, and economic impacts of the sweetened beverage tax. We contracted with Public Health - Seattle and King County (Public Health) to lead the evaluation. Public Health contracted with the University of Washington and Seattle Children's Health to help it conduct the evaluation. This report provides information collected by a University of Washington research team on the prices of taxed and nontaxed beverages before the tax took effect and 6 months after the start of the tax.

Review of Navigation Team 2018 Quarter 1 Report

Published October 2, 2018

This report is the second in a series that our office will be producing at the request of Seattle City Councilmember Lisa Herbold regarding the City of Seattle's Navigation Team, which provides outreach to people living unsheltered in Seattle. This report assesses the Executive's Quarter 1 response to the Navigation Team reporting plan, a plan with 14 reporting checkpoints designed to help inform the City Council on the Navigation Team approach.   

Public Health - Seattle and King County's Baseline Report on Seattle's Sweetened Beverage Tax 

Published August 8, 2018

Ordinance 125324, passed by the Seattle City Council in June 2017, required the City Auditor to contract with academic researchers to conduct a multi-year evaluation of the behavioral, health, and economic impacts of the sweetened beverage tax. We contracted with Public Health - Seattle and King County (Public Health) to lead the evaluation. Public Health contracted with the University of Washington and Seattle Children's Health to help it conduct the evaluation. This baseline report provides information on conditions before the implementation of the tax in Seattle. 

University of Washington (UW) Seattle Rental Housing Study - Final Report

UW Seattle Rental Housing Study - Appendix A Focus Groups and Interviews

UW Seattle Rental Housing Study - Appendix B Landlord Survey

UW Seattle Rental Housing Study - Appendix C Data Scraping Tools  

Published July 20, 2018  

The Seattle Rental Housing Study focuses on the experiences of renters and landlords operating in the Seattle market as well as the distribution, condition, cost and change in rental housing in the Seattle area from August 2017 through April 2018. The project's goal was to better understand the practices and experiences of landlords and renters within the Seattle market and develop strategies to compile timely, accurate information about housing conditions and cost to supplement the City's current data-analysis efforts.

Status Report on Implementation of Office of City Auditor Recommendations as of December 2017  

Published April 17, 2018  

This report shows the implementation status, as of December 2017, of 595 recommendations from audit reports issued by our office from January 2007 through December 2017.

The Evaluation of Seattle's Secure Scheduling Ordinance: Baseline Report and Considerations for the Year 1 Evaluation  

The Evaluation of Seattle's Secure Scheduling Ordinance: Data Collection Instruments for Baseline Report  

Published April 2, 2018  

Seattle Public Utilities Wholesale Water Sales  

Published March 15, 2018  

We performed this audit to help ensure that wholesale customers are paying for their water supply in accordance with formal agreements with Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) and at rates approved by the Seattle City Council. Our objectives for this audit were to (1) determine whether billings to wholesale customers and related payments were accurate, timely, and complete; and (2) determine whether internal controls over the wholesale billing and payment related processes are adequate.   

Seattle Office of City Auditor 2017 Annual Report 

Published March 8, 2018

Special Events - Police Staffing and Cost Recovery

Published December 13, 2017  

Ordinance 124860, passed by the Seattle City Council in September 2015, revised the Seattle Municipal Code's provisions covering permitted special events and directed our office to conduct this audit.  We reviewed the Seattle Police Department's (SPD) processes for staffing permitted and non-permitted events, and we reviewed internal controls over permitting administration functions. We examined the City's cost recovery rates for the different types of special events. In 2016, SPD spent 150,748 hours and $10.3 million in wages staffing 724 special events. Our audit scope did not include evaluating the policing strategies or tactics SPD employs at special events.  

Reporting Plan for Navigation Team  

Published November 7, 2017  

Seattle City Councilmember Lisa Herbold asked our office to review the Theory of Change for the City's Navigation Team and to identify additional information that the City Council may want to gather. The Navigation Team is an approach developed by former Mayor Murray's administration for addressing the issue of people living unsheltered in Seattle. It is important for the City to ensure that the Navigation Team is an approach that is appropriate and humane as well as efficient and effective.  



Assessment of the Seattle Municipal Court Resource Center  

Published October 12, 2017  

City Councilmember M. Lorena González requested that we assess the Seattle Municipal Court Resource Center (CRC). The CRC provides on-site social services and resources to Court clients who are in the different stages of the criminal justice system. During the period covered by our audit (January 2015-Febuary 2017), the CRC had approximately 10,000 visits. The CRC sees an average of 18 visitors daily, over 80 percent of whom have a current or past Court case and about a third of whom have housing instability issues.  

Five Recommendations for Evaluating Seattle's New Police Oversight System  

Published October 6, 2017  

Ordinance 125315, adopted on June 1, 2017, established a new police oversight structure for the City of Seattle. Seattle City Councilmember Tim Burgess asked our office to provide information to the City Council about the issues involved in evaluating the new police oversight system over time.  

City of Seattle Financial Condition 2012-2016  

Published October 3, 2017  

This report provides members of the public and public officials with information on the City of Seattle's (City) financial condition. The report uses information from the City's Comprehensive Annual Financial Reports (CAFR) and Adopted Budgets, among other sources, and compiles the information for a broad audience. The report also provides five years of data for several of the financial and economic indicators analyzed, allowing public officials to see historical trends and identify areas that may need attention.  

Review of Hate Crime Prevention, Response, and Reporting in Seattle - Phase 1 Report  

Published September 20, 2017  

City Councilmember Lisa Herbold asked our office to audit the City of Seattle's (City) handling of hate crimes. We are completing this audit in two phases, with this first report focusing on how the Seattle Police Department (SPD) uses hate crime data and the practices and processes the City follows to identify, respond to, and prevent hate crimes. The second phase report will address how the City can improve its use of hate crime data and will provide an analysis of the extent to which reported hate crimes have resulted in prosecution.  

Status Report on Implementation of Office of City Auditor Recommendations as of December 2016  

Published June 23, 2017  

This report shows the implementation status as of December 2016, of 526 recommendations contained in 51 audit reports issued from January 2007 through December 2016.    

Audit of Seattle's Incentive Zoning for Affordable Housing  

Published April 13, 2017  

City Councilmember Mike O'Brien requested that we review development projects that participated in Seattle's Incentive Zoning program to gain extra floor area in exchange for providing an affordable housing public benefit. Our objectives were to: 1) report the number and location of projects since 2006 that participated in incentive zoning for affordable housing, 2) whether the projects' affordable housing contributions were accurately calculated, and 3) whether and when affordable housing contributions were secured.  

Summary of Emerging and Best Practices in Public Sector IT Project Management  

Published April 10, 2017  

To inform our work on the Audit of New Customer Information System (NCIS) Implementation, with the assistance of the City's Chief Technology Officer, we selected Gartner, Inc. to write a best practices report, based on their experience working with public agencies, on ways to manage information technology projects effectively.  

Audit of New Customer Information System (NCIS) Implementation  

Published April 10, 2017  

At the request of City Councilmember Tim Burgess, we audited Seattle City Light's (SCL) and Seattle Public Utilities' (SPU) implementation of their new billing system, NCIS. The City Council had learned that the project was a year late and approximately $34 million over budget, and some members were concerned about whether the Council was receiving timely and accurate information about the project's status.

Seattle Office of City Auditor 2016 Annual Report  

Published March 28, 2017

Seattle City Light Billable Services Audit

Published August 10, 2016

The objectives for our audit of City Light service connections and related services were to: (1) Determine whether internal controls over the billing and revenue collection process were designed properly and operating effectively, including controls to help ensure the accuracy, completeness, and timeliness of billing, and to ensure that all funds collected were deposited into the City Treasury; (2) Identify control weaknesses in the billing and revenue collection process and make recommendations for strengthening controls; (3) Determine through sampling of billing transactions whether the customer was billed accurately, completely, and timely, and whether all revenues were collected timely and appropriately deposited.  

Ten Things the City of Seattle Should Consider When Evaluating a Pilot Implementation of an Acoustic Gunshot Locator System  

Published August 3, 2016  

The City of Seattle is considering implementing an acoustic gunshot locator system as a pilot project, and the City Council requested short summary of the current literature on acoustic gunshot locator systems and the essential factors for conducting an evaluation. This Research Brief identifies ten things that the City should consider in advance of implementing the system to enable a rigorous evaluation of the pilot project to ensure that the system is producing the desired outcomes for Seattle.  

Audit of Services the Metropolitan Improvement District Provides in Belltown  

Published June 8, 2016  

When the Seattle City Council approved the reauthorization of the Metropolitan Improvement District (MID) and its expansion into Belltown in May 2013, they included a performance audit requirement in the authorizing legislation, Ordinance 124175. As specified in this ordinance, the audit's primary purpose was to assess whether, three years after implementation, Belltown has received the general types and levels of services described in the MID Business Plan.  

Status Report on Implementation of Office of City Auditor Recommendations as of December 2015  

Published June 2, 2016

This report shows the implementation status as of December 2015 of 453 recommendations from audit reports issued by our office from January 2007 - December 2015.  

Prescription Drug Disposal: Opportunities for the City of Seattle  

Published April 28, 2016  

This research brief addresses one component of a comprehensive public health approach to addressing drug abuse -- the safe disposal of unused prescription drugs. Safe disposal of unused prescription drugs, especially opioid pain relievers, reduces the risk of nonmedical use that might lead to drug abuse, including heroin addiction. On April 4, 2016, the Seattle City Council unanimously passed Resolution 31654 expressing the City's support for an effective, countywide safe prescription drug disposal program, including controlled substances, and requesting local pharmacies and the Seattle Police Department to install drug disposal drop-boxes across the city.  

University of Washington Report on Seattle's Minimum Wage Ordinance: Baseline Employer Survey and Worker Interviews  

Published April 18, 2016  

This document is the first in an anticipated series of reports regarding "The Seattle Minimum Wage Study" (SMWS). The Seattle City Council commissioned the study as part of Council Resolution #31524, adopted by unanimous vote on June 2, 2014. The resolution called for the City of Seattle to contract with a group of academic researchers to conduct a rigorous and comprehensive evaluation of the City's minimum wage ordinance, passed by the Council that day. In December 2014, the City executed a contract with the University of Washington (UW) to conduct this evaluation. Seven UW faculty, in collaboration with two economists from the State of Washington's Employment Security Department, comprise the SMWS investigator team. This report summarizes the findings from the baseline data collection from employers, workers, and area prices. The findings reported here are descriptive and do not examine the short- or long-run impacts of Seattle's minimum wage ordinance on businesses, workers, or the local economy.  

Seattle Police Department Overtime Controls Audit

Published April 11, 2016  

Seattle Police Chief Kathleen O'Toole asked us to conduct an audit of the Seattle Police Department's (SPD) overtime controls. Specifically, we were asked to review whether there was adequate leadership, management oversight, and supervisory control to manage SPD's overtime spending. Over the past ten years SPD's overtime expenditures have almost doubled and have significantly exceeded SPD's overtime budget. In 2015, SPD spent $24.2 million on overtime. SPD's overtime expenditure trend has caused concerns for the City Council and the City Budget Office, as well as for SPD management.  

Seattle Office of City Auditor 2015 Annual Report   

Published April 1, 2016

Department of Parks and Recreation's Oversight of Lease and Concession Agreements

Published December 10, 2015  

Seattle City Councilmember Jean Godden asked us to review the Department of Parks and Recreation's (Parks) oversight of its lease and concession agreements. Specifically, we were asked to review whether Parks is collecting the money and public benefits they are supposed to receive under current contracts, and has proper control for the handling of lease and concession revenues.  

Seattle Youth Violence Prevention Initiative: Two Key Conclusions  

Published October 14, 2015  

In 2013, the Seattle City Council asked our office to develop an overall evaluation plan for the Seattle Youth Violence Prevention Initiative (SYVPI) and to evaluate two of its components.    

Process Evaluation of Seattle's School Emphasis Officer Program  

Published October 14, 2015  

The Seattle City Council requested that we evaluate the School Emphasis Officers component of the Seattle Youth Violence Prevention Initiative.   

The City of Seattle Could Reduce Violent Crime and Victimization by Strengthening Its Approach to Street Outreach  

Published October 14, 2015  

The Seattle City Council requested that we evaluate the Seattle Youth Violence Prevention Initiative's Street Outreach component.   

Consultant Report on Seattle Mortgage Documents Review  

Published September 23, 2015  

The purpose of the consultant review was to determine whether MERS contributed to residential foreclosures by reviewing a random sample of mortgage-related records associated with MERS from the five zip codes in Seattle with the highest foreclosure rates in early 2013.  

Status Report on Implementation of Office of City Auditor Recommendations as of December 2014  

Published June 30, 2015  

To report on the implementation status as of December 2014 of 414 recommendations from audit reports issued by our office from January 2007 through December 2014.   



Evaluation of Career Bridge Program  

Published June 16, 2015  

At the request of the City Council Budget Committee, we selected MEF Associates to conduct an evaluation of Career Bridge, a program designed to assist low-income men of color with multiple barriers to employment by providing them with educational and social services.  

Juvenile Domestic Violence in Seattle: Understanding the Problem and How Best to Address It

Published April 29, 2015

Seattle Office of City Auditor 2014 Annual Report  

Published April 1, 2015    

Audit of the Seattle Police Department's Public Disclosure Process  

Published March 18, 2015  

This audit examined the Seattle Police Department's processes and systems for handling public records requests. We evaluated whether current processes and systems include sufficient controls and oversight to: (1) ensure responses to requests are accurate, consistent, and timely; (2) provide reasonable assurance of compliance with legal requirements; and (3) and promote transparency and public trust.

Seattle Department of Transportation Bonds Management Audit

Published December 22, 2014  

This audit was conducted in response to concerns expressed by the City Council and the City Budget Office in early 2013 about the Seattle Department of Transportation's (SDOT) large cumulative unspent bond proceeds from bond issuances dating back to 2008 (e.g., $113.8 million unspent by the end of 2011). The City Council was also interested in whether SDOT's unspent bond balances could be readily shifted to fund transportation projects to help reduce the City's transportation maintenance backlog.        

What Works in Policing? A Review of the Research Evidence and Seattle Police Department Case Study  

Published November 10, 2014  

This interactive web tool describes the current research on what is effective in policing, provides a baseline measure (as of March 2014) for how the Seattle Police Department (SPD) is incorporating this research in its practices, and includes brief descriptions of SPD's work in each of the research areas. This web tool was developed through a collaboration of our office with SPD and researchers from George Mason University and Arizona State University. We hope this web tool will be useful to SPD, its stakeholders, and other governmental agencies in thinking about how best to incorporate findings from rigorous research into public safety practices.  

Supporting a Future Evaluation of the Seattle Youth Violence Prevention Initiative (SYVPI)  

Published October 24, 2014  

At the request of the Seattle City Council, our office contracted with the evaluation firm, MEF Associates, to conduct an evaluability assessment of the Seattle Youth Violence Prevention Initiative (SYVPI) to determine whether it is ready for an evaluation of its effectiveness.  

Seattle's Paid Sick and Safe Time Ordinance Enforcement Audit  

Published October 17, 2014  

This audit was conducted in response to the Paid Sick and Safe Leave Ordinance (123698), which called for our office to audit the Seattle Office for Civil Rights' (SOCR) enforcement of the Ordinance.      

Seattle City Light Salvage Unit Fraud Risk Audit  

Published June 6, 2014  

The Seattle City Council requested this audit because of an alleged employee theft of over $1 million of customer payments from a secondary revenue stream at Seattle Public Utilities. The City Council wanted to ensure that appropriate controls were also in place over the secondary revenue streams at Seattle City Light (SCL), because these types of revenues have generally received less attention and scrutiny than the two utilities' primary revenue streams. Through a risk assessment process, we determined that SCL's Salvage Unit should be chosen as a secondary revenue stream for audit. We hired the firm Francis and Company to perform most of the audit work, with our office performing additional work. The audit's primary objectives were to 1) establish through testing of transactions whether (a) past surplus sales were made in accordance with established policies and procedures, (b) sales were appropriately priced, (c) receipts were deposited in a timely manner, and (d) any assets were misappropriated; and 2) identify any weaknesses in the current internal control structure and make recommendations for improvement.  

Union Waivers of Seattle's Paid Sick and Safe Time Regulations  

Published May 28, 2014  

This audit was conducted to determine in what ways unions representing employees working in Seattle responded to the opportunity to waive the City's Paid Sick and Safe Time regulations through collective bargaining.  

Research on Police Chief Search and Selection Process  

Published May 22, 2014  

The purpose of this report was to identify: 1) practices related to police chief selection, confirmation, employment contracts, and re-confirmation in cities similar to Seattle; and 2) any recommended best practices in these areas from academics or professional organizations with expertise in policing and police accountability and professionalism.  

City of Seattle RFP Process for Vehicle Impound Management Services  

Published May 20, 2014

This audit was to determine whether: 1) the recent bid process for police impound services complied with State of Washington and City of Seattle laws; 2) the City obtained the technologies it desired; 3) opportunities for women and minority owned businesses (WMBE) increased or decreased under the new contract; and 4) retrieval storage lots meet requirements for location and accessibility.  

Status Report on Implementation of Office of City Auditor Recommendations as of December 2013

Published April 30, 2014

This report shows the implementation status as of December 2013 of 350 recommendations from audit reports issued by our office from January 2007 through December 2013.   

Assessment of Consolidated Customer Service System (CCSS) Transaction Controls Policies and Procedures  

Published April 29, 2014  

We conducted an audit of the internal controls over customer account transactions for Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) and Seattle City Light (SCL). We reviewed the applicable policies and procedures to determine if the internal controls in place were adequate to prevent and/or detect inappropriate utility account transactions. We also conducted data mining to review utility account transactions.    

Implementation and Early Outcomes of the City of Seattle Paid Sick and Safe Time Ordinance  

Published April 22, 2014  

We contracted with the University of Washington to conduct an evaluation of the impacts of the City's Paid Sick and Safe Leave Ordinance on employers and employees.   

Research on How Similar Cities Operate Their District Election Systems  

Published April 8, 2014  

The purpose of this report was to conduct research on six cities that elect some or all councilmembers by district, in preparation for Seattle to transition to a district election system. We contacted each of the six cities and asked them 16 questions developed by the interdepartmental team for district elections.  

Operational, Management and Efficiency Analysis of the Seattle Transportation Department - Recommendations for Phase II  

Published April 2, 2014

The Seattle City Council adopted a resolution (31393) in July 2012 directing an interdepartmental team, that included a representative from the Office of City Auditor, to hire a consultant to assess the Seattle Department of Transportation's (SDOT) organizational structure and operations. The consultant's September 3, 2013 report represented the completion of Phase I of this project. The City Council resolution also called for a Phase II to follow up on areas identified in Phase I for further analysis.  

2013 Seattle Office of City Auditor Annual Report   

Published March 31, 2014

Review of City of Seattle's Civil Rights Enforcement and Outreach

Report Highlights  

Published November 20, 2013  

In a Statement of Legislative Intent, the Seattle City Council requested that we review the effectiveness of the Seattle Office for City Rights' (SOCR) enforcement and outreach efforts and compare Seattle's enforcement process with other jurisdictions.    

Evaluation of Career Bridge: Evaluation Plan   

Executive Response to Career Bridge Evaluation Plan  

Published September 30, 2013  

This report presents an evaluation plan for the Career Bridge program.    

Seattle Public Utilities: New Water Services (Taps): Internal Controls Review and Fraud Risk Audit  

Report Highlights  

Published September 24, 2013  

We were asked to conduct this audit by City Councilmember Jean Godden, Chair of the City Council's Libraries, Utilities, and Center Committee, due to the alleged theft of over $1 million of customer payments from Seattle Public Utilities' (SPU) water main extension and new taps services. The audit's primary objectives were to 1) determine if any theft of customer payments occurred, in addition to the amounts already identified during the City's criminal investigation of the alleged fraud, and 2) review the design of recently revised internal controls implemented by the SPU Customer Service Branch over new water services (taps) business processes and determine whether they are adequate to provide reasonable assurance that a similar theft will not occur in the future. We focused our work primarily on financial controls.  

City of Seattle Paid Sick and Safe Time Ordinance Evaluation Project: Initial Findings from the Employer Interviews  

Published September 20, 2013  

We contracted with the University of Washington to evaluate the impacts of the Paid Sick and Safe Time regulations (Ordinance 123698, Seattle Municipal Code 14.16) on employers and employees. This is the second of five reports that will be produced on the impact of the regulations, and describes findings from interviews conducted with 24 Seattle employers in the ten months after the Paid Sick and Safe Time Ordinance went into effect. Subsequent reports will cover impacts at several points during the first year after implementation.    

Seattle Department of Transportation Operational, Management, and Efficiency Analysis Phase I  

Published September 3, 2013  

The purpose of this report was to: 1) conduct an initial assessment of SDOT's management, 2) conduct a benchmarking of SDOT's performance against industry standards, peer organizations, and best practices, 3) identify SDOT's current performance measures, and 4) make recommendations for areas that should be examined further in Phase II.    

Seattle City Employees' Retirement System (SCERS) Retirement Benefit Calculations  

Published August 8, 2013  

The purpose of this report was to determine whether the Seattle City Employees' Retirement System (SCERS) is accurately calculating retirement benefits and to evaluate whether internal controls and oversight over calculation processes are sufficient.    

Evaluation of Career Bridge, Preliminary Report  

Executive Response to the Preliminary Evaluation of Career Bridge  

Published August 1, 2013  

This report provides a preliminary analysis of the implementation of the Career Bridge program, participant characteristics and outcomes, and the estimated costs associated with operating the program. In addition, the report discusses challenges in the current program operations as well as additional potential challenges should Career Bridge be expanded. The program is designed to provide skill-building assistance and connections to resources to move disadvantaged individuals facing multiple barriers toward longer-term employment and/or degrees and credentials. The program focuses on jobless or underemployed adults, who may be low income men of color, may have been formerly incarcerated, or may have limited English skills.    

City of Seattle Paid Sick and Safe Time Ordinance Evaluation Project Findings from the Initial Employer Survey  

Published July 8, 2013  

We contracted with the University of Washington to evaluate the impacts of the Paid Sick and Safe Time regulations (Ordinance 123698, Seattle Municipal Code 14.16) on employers and employees. This report covers baseline conditions at the time the ordinance went into effect. Subsequent reports will cover impacts at several points during the first year after implementation.    

Seattle Department of Transportation Issue Identification Paper  

Published May 30, 2013  

City Councilmembers Tom Rasmussen and Tim Burgess requested that our office review the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) to identify any short-term efficiency measures that could result in General Fund savings, and identify issues that should be included in the SDOT operations management and efficiencies analysis that began in October 2012 and is currently being conducted by a consultant.    

Centralized Grants Management  

Published April 19, 2013  

Seattle City Councilmember Tim Burgess, Chair, Government Accountability and Finance Committee, requested a summary of the experience of jurisdictions that use a centralized grants management system.  

Update of our Review of the Seattle Youth Violence Prevention Initiative (SYVPI) Logic Model  

Published March 22, 2013  

City Councilmember Bruce Harrell, Chair of the City Council's Public Safety, Civil Rights and Technology Committee, requested that our office comment on the Seattle Youth Violence Prevention Initiative (SYVPI) logic model submitted to the Committee on February 27, 2013 by the City of Seattle's Office of Education.    

Status Report on Implementation of Office of City Auditor Recommendations as of October 2012  

Published February 7, 2013  

This report shows the implementation status as of October 2012 of recommendations from audit reports issued by our office from January 2007 through September 2012.  

Logic Model and Evaluation Strategy for the Seattle Youth Violence Prevention Initiative  

Published January 31, 2013  

The City Council requested that our office develop a logic model and evaluation strategy for the Seattle Youth Violence Prevention Initiative (SYVPI).