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City Attorney Suggests Audit Of Filner’s Credit Card Use

New information regarding the use of credit cards in the administration of ex-Mayor Bob Filner has come to light since he resigned, according to a memo from City Attorney Jan Goldsmith.

Special Feature Read the Backstory

All of the accusations, statements and apologies from the key players in the developing story about allegations of sexual harassment in Mayor Bob Filner's office and calls from former mayoral supporters for his resignation.

The memo, dated Thursday, suggests the unspecified new information should be pursued in a proposed audit.

Monday, the City Council's Audit Committee is scheduled to launch an investigation into whether Filner administration officials followed municipal policies on credit cards. Goldsmith and committee Chairman Kevin Faulconer are expected to ask for an audit of city-issued credit cards when Filner was mayor.

While public accusations of sexual harassment by about 20 women dominated the narrative in Filner's last couple of months in office, he also was investigated for whether he misused his city-issued credit card and for allegedly shaking down developers.

In his memo, Goldsmith wrote that evidence was previously uncovered of "misuse of city funds concerning credit cards, travel policies and other matters.'' Investigations were suspended after Filner resigned, pending Monday's Audit Committee meeting, according to Goldsmith.

"Since the suspension of the investigations, we have received additional information that should be pursued,'' the city attorney wrote. He did not say what the information was.

Last week, Interim Chief Operating Officer Walt Ekard said proper procedure was followed when monthly credit card limits were raised before Filner took a trip to Paris in June. The mayor's travel was funded by an Iranian dissident group, but Filner eventually had to pay the money back when it was learned the organization wasn't properly registered in the U.S. as a nonprofit.

The credit limit was raised so one member of Filner's office could pay for airfare by his San Diego police security detail, and was subsequently restored, according to Ekard. The police officers used their own cards to pay for lodging, he said.

The trip cost the city $21,579, Ekard said.

Comments

Avatar for user 'susanmartha'

susanmartha | September 7, 2013 at 6:47 a.m. ― 1 year ago

how about auditing ALL the city-issued credit cards? and then publish the results.

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Avatar for user 'thompsonrichard'

thompsonrichard | September 7, 2013 at 2:06 p.m. ― 1 year ago

O.K., they hate each other. The mayor hijacked Goldsmith’s news conference. Jan said it was illegal for Bob not to sign a decades long tax regime with the hoteliers (which Jerry had neglected to sign, but Jerry's in Oklahoma City saying how much better business is now that Bob has resigned). A judge agreed with Bob.
Jan sought 13 vandalism charges against Jeff Olson. Jan should not have decided to treat a chalk-wielding protester who hadn’t done permanent damage like a defiant graffiti vandal.

A jury found Olson not guilty, accepting his depiction of his protest as an exercise of his First Amendment speech rights. "Unfortunately for the City Attorney’s Office," wrote the U-T editorial board, "the verdict came after the case had gone viral and prompted national ridicule."

However, KPBS quotes the former mayor to the effect that he's so happy that now that Bob is out of office, San Diego is no longer a joke.

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Avatar for user 'MarineRoom'

MarineRoom | September 7, 2013 at 3:11 p.m. ― 1 year ago

Perhaps the City Attorney could now turn his attention to the present, and the actions of the interim mayor. Mr. Goldsmith might even attempt to fulfill his new-found role as elected City Attorney representing the people to keep the temporary mayor in check. Just sayin, now that the thrill of the chase and the limelight has waned, he might recapture it more by doing his job than by haring off on another Filner jag.

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Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | September 7, 2013 at 8:56 p.m. ― 1 year ago

It's too bad Goldsmith stepping down was not also part of the package Filner and the city agreed to.

This guy is motivated by politics, nothing else.

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Avatar for user 'Mmikey'

Mmikey | September 8, 2013 at 9:09 a.m. ― 1 year ago

how many weeks did they give Filner to destroy or fabricate evidence.?

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Avatar for user 'CarlosDangler'

CarlosDangler | September 9, 2013 at 8:10 a.m. ― 1 year ago

I agree 100% with susanmartha. What's good for the goose is good for the gander. Either audit ALL the city-issued credit cards.and then publish the results or NONE. Then publicly lambaste either ALL or NONE.

Filner scandal is over. Why if not for personal or political reasons what you be complaining about such a relatively inconsequential amount of money? You've given him a pension out to the settlement deal for cripes sake and the election will cost roughly $6 million.

We've done the math. This looks motivated Goldsmith. Should have quit while you were ahead.

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Avatar for user 'pferguson'

pferguson | September 9, 2013 at 9:01 a.m. ― 1 year ago

I agree with "susanmartha" why don't they leave the guy alone. When he sign the agreement he is release from all charges. The city is spinning it's wheels and making people think that they have the power to go after him for these things. They are now wasting our tax money by pursuing these issues. They need to do their jobs and quit wasting our time with this non issue. Filner needs to sue the city for continued harassment.

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Avatar for user 'muckapoo1'

muckapoo1 | September 9, 2013 at 9:02 a.m. ― 1 year ago

The Filner supporters just don't quit here. This clown deserves to be audited. There is no evidence the rest have done anything wrong. If Filner is guilty, prosecute him and take away any pension. They do that all the time in business.

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Avatar for user 'CarlosDangler'

CarlosDangler | September 9, 2013 at 10:59 a.m. ― 1 year ago

Muckapoo... I have not supported Mr. Filner throughout the Fiasco.

It sounds like what your saying then is that this was Goldman's/Cities strategy all along to have him sign with the pension as part of the settlement agreement to step down and then go back sue him on credit card stuff to get back his pension? It's less than 25K. Chump change in the scheme of things.

If they do this, then it in the interest of fairness they need to audit usage of all the city-issued credit cards. Equitable prosecution across the board. I don't care if others haven't done wrong. Audits should be routine. And if they are lax on others which I believe they are, then they should let this go. It smacks of weasel. They wouldn't have gone after him for this if Goldman, the city and Filner were arch-friends.

The idea of using the letter of the law rather than the spirit of the law in these cases smells of a bad lawyer joke and makes one wish our representatives came to these decisions made from an ethical place rather then a strategic.place.

I say let it go and close the book. I'm tired of reading about tragedies.

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Avatar for user 'CarlosDangler'

CarlosDangler | September 9, 2013 at 11:21 a.m. ― 1 year ago

Let me restate that last sentence of the second to the last paragraph...

"... from an ethically informed place as well as a strategic.place."

also.. regarding pferguson comment 'Filner needs to sue the city for continued harassment.' .... no pferugson ... wrong. Filner needs to drift silently away into exile and go through his professional therapy. Then he needs to reflect and atone.

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Avatar for user 'DonWood'

DonWood | September 9, 2013 at 4:19 p.m. ― 1 year ago

How about an audit of Jan Goldsmith's credit card records too?

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Avatar for user 'CarlosDangler'

CarlosDangler | September 9, 2013 at 7:59 p.m. ― 1 year ago

DonWood - finally i agree with you on something. WOOHOO !

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Avatar for user 'MarineRoom'

MarineRoom | September 10, 2013 at 9:47 a.m. ― 1 year ago

Carlos and Don: Me three!

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