One day after outgoing Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums issued a report about all the great things that happened during his term, City Auditor Courtney Ruby has issued a report that says the City of Oakland improperly accounted for $14MM that appeared to be owed for loans–but wasn’t actual due the city.

Ruby’s audit of the Community and Economic Redevelopment Agency shows that City government basically lost track of $14 million dollars in loan receivables and deferred revenues and  failed to properly record loans that had been authorized to be converted to grants more than 10 years ago. At the same time, says Ruby, the City operated a system to record homebuyer loans that was also broken.
“It’s only because of this audit that we now know $14 million in loan receivables and its deferred revenue will never be realized and must now be written off,  Ruby said in a statement. “The greater issue is what else is the Administration unaware of on the City’s books.”

In a written response, Dan Lindheim, Oakland’s city administrator, said most of the report’s findings and recommendations were based on a few loans from the 1980s and early 1990s and that earlier loan practices were different from those currently in use. Lindheim said the audit was misleading,  He lamed Ruby for exaggerating the problems.

Ruby’s last words?

“In a time when we are laying off personnel and cutting back on valuable residential services, how can $14 million be irrelevant? The greater issue is what else is the Administration unaware of on the City’s books.”

Ceda Loans Receivables

About The Author

Susan Mernit is editor & publisher of Oakland Local (oaklandlocal.com) a news & community hub for Oakland, CA. A former VP at AOL & Netscape, & former! Yahoo Senior Director, Mernit was consulting program manager for The Knight News Challenge, 2008-09; was a 2012 Stanford Carlos McClatchy Fellow; and is a board adviser to The Center for Health Reporting at USC, Annenberg School of Journalism. She has consulted with many non-profit organizations on strategy, product development and social media/engagement, including Salon.com, TechSoup Global, Public Radio International and the Institute for Policy Studies/Economic Hardship Reporting Project, led by Barbara Ehrenreich.