24/7 Fraud, Waste, & Abuse Hotline
Independent Office of the Inspector General
The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) for the San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District (BART) was authorized in Bay Area Regional Measure 3 (RM 3), which voters approved on June 5, 2018. The measure was on the ballot for voters in the City and County of San Francisco and Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma Counties. RM 3 provided an annual allocation of $1 million in toll revenue to establish the independent OIG for the purpose of identifying opportunities to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of BART operations and delivery of capital projects, including toll-funded projects, and to ensure compliance with applicable federal and state laws. BART has the authority to increase the amount of funding provided for the OIG. Measure RM 3 included two provisions to ensure the Inspector General’s (IG) independence:
- The IG is to be appointed by the Governor of California to an initial four-year term, based on the recommendation of three candidates from the BART board of directors.
- The IG may be removed from office, subject to approval of the Governor, only if 1) a two-thirds majority of the board members votes for removal or 2) the IG violates a federal or state law or regulation, a local ordinance, or a District policy or practice relative to ethical practices, such as accepting gifts or contributions.
Duties and Responsibilities
Responsibilities of the OIG are codified in California Public Utilities Code Section 28840-28845. They include, but are not limited to, requiring the IG to:
- Examine BART’s operating practices to identify fraud, waste, and opportunities for efficiencies in administration of its programs and operations.
- Ensure the BART administration, the board of directors, and the public are fully informed of the IG’s findings and recommendations.
- Identify opportunities to improve data used to determine project resource allocations.
- Conduct, supervise, and coordinate audits and investigations relating to BART’s programs and operations, including, but not limited to, toll-funded programs.
- Identify best practices for delivering capital projects and recommend policies to enable BART to adopt these practices when practicable.
- Recommend policies that promote efficiency in the administration of programs and operations.
- Review and recommend best practices that BART should follow to maintain positive and productive relations with its employees and the collective bargaining units representing those employees.
- Provide a report, at least annually, to the Board of Directors and the California Legislature that summarizes significant problems identified in audits and investigations and whether BART has implemented the resulting recommendations.
Inspector General Contact Information
California Governor Gavin Newsom appointed Harriet Richardson to be BART’s first Inspector General. Richardson brings almost 30 years of experience conducting independent management reviews and audits. She has received six audit awards from the Association of Local Government Auditors and her work has led to many significant reforms during her career here, in the Bay Area, and Washington state. Most recently, Richardson worked as the City Auditor for the City of Palo Alto. She has also served as the Audit Director for the City of San Francisco and the Audit Manager/Deputy Director of the City of Berkeley’s Auditor’s Office among other positions.
Office of the Inspector General
300 Lakeside Drive, 18th Floor
Oakland, CA 94612
Performance audits contribute to public accountability and transparency by providing independent and objective analysis of the efficiency and effectiveness of government programs, operations, and activities. They provide findings, conclusions, and recommendations to assist management and those charged with governance and oversight with improving performance and operations, reducing costs, and making sound decisions.
Fraud, Waste, and Abuse Investigations
The OIG investigates situations where fraud, waste, or abuse may have occurred regarding BART’s programs and operations, including contracted activities. The legislative intent is to encourage employees and citizens to report their observations of suspected fraud, waste, or abuse to the OIG.
View completed reports (audit, investigation, quarterly and annual) here.
Inspector General Resources
Oversight.Gov – A compilation of all federal Inspector General reports on one website