Audits Reveal Mismanagement in Hercules
HOST: Two audits tell more about the deep financial mismanagement in Hercules that led voters to purge the City Council. KQED's Joshua Johnson reports, the audits show the City Manager ran amok for years, in a system with almost no financial controls.
JOSHUA JOHNSON: The audits conclude Hercules's former city manager squandered nearly $50 million redevelopment funds, and that the city should have caught on sooner.
In one case, he steered more than $3 million to a consulting firm his family owned. Hercules sued him last year over that, and passed an anti-nepotism policy.
Current City Manager Steve Duran says the city's new leaders are much more hands-on.
STEVE DURAN: "Your city council isn't just your student council. You have to actually pay attention, you have to ask hard questions, and you have to be diligent."
JOHNSON: Duran says the city's financial documents are finally organized, and Hercules will sell some properties to pay down the redevelopment debt.
I'm Joshua Johnson, KQED News.