D.C. Council Questions Officials Over Security Lapses In Tax Office | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

D.C. Council Questions Officials Over Security Lapses In Tax Office

Play associated audio
The former inspector general for the CFO's office of internal audit testified at the Wilson Building on Wednesday.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/lops/872182000/
The former inspector general for the CFO's office of internal audit testified at the Wilson Building on Wednesday.

D.C. Council Members are asking why internal audits that show major security lapses at the D.C. Office of Tax and Revenue lingered years after a mid-level manager was caught embezzling tens of millions of dollars.

William DiVello, the former inspector general for the Chief Financial Officer's internal affairs unit, says he felt pressured to keep the audits in draft form — which meant the reports were not circulated to the public.

But DiVello, who resigned last week and testified before the D.C. Council Wednesday, also testified that no changes were ever made to any of the audits.

According to reports obtained by The Washington Post, auditors have repeatedly warned CFO Natwar Gandhi about weak controls and oversight at the tax office.

In 2007, manager Harriette Walters was caught stealing $48 million through fake property tax refunds — the incident prompted major reforms for the tax office.

Council Member Jack Evans says he called the hearing because of a recent string of reports questioning oversight at the office.

"There are too many incidents that require explanation, the safeguarding of taxpayer funds especially in this period when more people need resources than there are resources to provide is paramount."

In his testimony to the council, Gandhi disputed claims there may have been improper tax assessments that cost the city tens of millions of dollars and says sometimes audits are not made public because they would give a road-map to those interested in exploiting the office.

NPR

Former Basketball Player Scores As A Filmmaker

While Deon Taylor was playing professional basketball in Germany, he had an epiphany: he wanted to make movies. The self-taught director's latest film, Supremacy, was released this Friday.
NPR

Surströmming Revisited: Eating Sweden's Famously Stinky Fish

Sweden has the distinction of producing surströmming, one of the foulest-smelling foods in the world. More than a decade ago, NPR's Ari Shapiro tried eating it and failed. It's time for a rematch.
NPR

What Romney's Retreat Means For GOP Hopefuls

NPR's Scott Simon speaks with senior Washington editor Ron Elving about the narrowing Republican presidential field for 2016 and what we've seen so far in the first month of the new Congress.
NPR

The Infinite Whiteness Of Public Radio Voices

The hashtag #publicradiovoices, about the "whiteness" of public radio, trended on Twitter this week. NPR's Scott Simon speaks with Gene Demby of NPR's Code Switch team about the conversation.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.