Contact for OIG Bulletin, February 2021: Letter from Inspector General Glenn Cunha

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Keeping Government Accountable During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Greetings,

Welcome to the first OIG Bulletin of 2021. Over the last twelve months, cities, towns, school districts and other public entities have pulled together during the COVID-19 pandemic to carry out their missions. I want to thank the public employees who have risen to the occasion and continued to serve the public. Your work is essential to preventing and detecting fraud, waste and abuse in the expenditure of public funds.

As you continue this work into the new year, remember that the OIG is here to help. This spring, through our Massachusetts Certified Public Purchasing Official (MCPPO) program, we will offer online classes such as Running a Successful Procurement Office, Cybersecurity 101 and Diversity and Inclusion in Procurement

We also operate a hotline to answer your questions about how to procure supplies and services under M.G.L. c. 30B (Chapter 30B). We operate a second hotline dedicated to your complaints about fraud, waste and abuse in Massachusetts government — whether state, county or local. Your calls, which may lead to investigations as demonstrated in this issue, help keep our government accountable.

Since the publication of the last OIG Bulletin, the OIG addressed leadership failures by the city of Methuen that led to excessive salaries in the Methuen Police Department, self-dealing and pay discrepancies by the former director of the Hingham Housing Authority, and oversight issues in the town of Eastham that resulted in contractor overpayment. Additionally, prosecuting agencies resolved several cases investigated by the OIG. Please see Recent OIG Investigations in this issue for more information about these matters.

The fight to keep government accountable, however, starts long before fraudulent activity occurs. In this issue, you will find an article that describes how internal policies governing the acceptable use of public resources can help deter the misuse of office equipment. This issue also includes an article that reminds members of public boards and commissions that they have a vital role in overseeing public resources, and that failure to meet their duties will lead to opportunities for fraud, waste and abuse.

As always, thank you for your time and consideration in reading this issue of the OIG Bulletin. This issue includes content from several of our divisions as described above, plus an article that the Office of the Attorney General contributed. This issue also provides answers to some frequently asked questions about Chapter 30B procurement and information about the MCPPO program, including our current course schedule, details about changes to MCPPO designations and a list of our newest designees. Congratulations to everyone who demonstrated the knowledge and experience necessary to earn their designations!

Thank you again for your ongoing commitment to integrity in government. Do not hesitate to contact us if you need assistance.

Massachusetts Inspector General Glenn Cunha's signature

 

 

 

Glenn A. Cunha

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Contact for OIG Bulletin, February 2021: Letter from Inspector General Glenn Cunha

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