Office of Inspector General

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Frequently Asked Questions

What type of matters does the OIG handle?

The OIG is responsible for investigating cases involving waste, abuse, fraud and corruption.  Our cases vary greatly.  They cover instances of alleged bribery, theft, misuse of City resources, and many others.  If you feel that you have information concerning wrongdoing on the part of Public Servants, contractors, or others involved with the City of Detroit, please do not hesitate to contact our office.

To whom do the terms “Public Servant” or “Contractor” apply?

The term “Public Servant” refers to the Mayor, members of City Council, the City Clerk, and appointive officers, any member of a board or commission, appointees, employees or individuals who provides services to the City within or outside of its offices or facilities pursuant to a personal services contract.

The term “Contractor” refers to a party who seeks to enter, or enters into a contract with the City of Detroit for the delivery of goods and services.  The term includes subcontractors as well.

Who can file a complaint?

Fighting fraud, abuse, waste and corruption in City government is a responsibility which belongs to all of us.  Therefore, anyone with knowledge of wrongdoing is encouraged to file a complaint.

How do I file a complaint?

The OIG makes it easy to file a complaint.  You can submit a complaint online: Complaint Form. You can call our 24 hour hotline 313.964.TIPS(8477).  Or, you can stop by our office and complete a complaint form in person.  We are located at 65 Cadillac Square, Suite 3210; Detroit, MI 48226.

Can I make a complaint anonymously?

Yes.  Should a person making a complaint desire to remain anonymous, the OIG will comply with that wish and keep that person’s identity confidential.

Who conducts OIG investigations?

The OIG is staffed by experienced and trained attorneys, investigators, and auditors who conduct investigations on behalf of the Inspector General.

Are OIG records confidential?

Yes.  Subject to applicable state law, all investigative files of the Office of Inspector General are confidential and shall not be divulged to any person or agency, except to the United States Attorney, the Michigan Attorney General or Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office, or other Charter listed entities.

What is the OIG’s jurisdiction?

The OIG’s powers and duties cover “any Public Servant and City agency, program or official act, contractors and subcontractors providing goods and services to the City, business entities seeking contracts or certification of eligibility for city contracts and persons seeking certification of eligibility for participation in any city program, either in response to a complaint or on the Inspector General’s own initiative in order to detect and prevent waste, abuse, fraud and corruption.”

Who leads the Office of Inspector General?

The OIG is led by the Inspector General.  He or she is appointed by the City Council for a single six-year term.  The Inspector General can be removed by a 2/3 majority for good cause.

To whom does the Inspector General Report?

The 2012 Charter established the OIG as an independent agency.  The Inspector General is required to submit quarterly reports to the City Council and Mayor concerning results of investigations and audits undertaken by the office.  These reports shall be made available to the public.

Does the OIG have arrest authority?

No.  If the Inspector General has probable cause to believe that an illegal act has occurred, he or she must refer the matter to an appropriate prosecuting authority.

Does the OIG have subpoena powers?

Yes.  The OIG may subpoena witnesses, administer oaths, take testimony, require the production of evidence, and enter and inspect premises within the control of any city agency during regular business hours.  The OIG may enforce a subpoena or order for the production of evidence by applying to an appropriate court to impose any penalty prescribed by law for failure to obey a subpoena or order.

As a City of Detroit employee or contractor, do I have to cooperate with an OIG investigation?

All City of Detroit public servants, contractors, subcontractors, licensees, and applicants for certification must cooperate with OIG investigations.  Failure to do so by withholding documentation or testimony may result in forfeiture of office, discipline, debarment or other applicable penalty.

What can city employees expect if interviewed by the OIG?

It is common for the OIG to conduct interviews to develop background, determine facts, or
confront alleged wrongdoers.  OIG investigations are conducted in accordance with federal, state, and local laws.  Depending on whether the allegations could result in criminal or administrative sanctions, subjects will be advised of certain rights at the start of each interview.  Subjects are entitled to union representation when appropriate.  Interviews are generally conducted at the OIG office.

Can I be retaliated against for assisting the OIG with an investigation?

No.  Anyone who retaliates against or otherwise penalizes or punishes a person for cooperating with the OIG shall be subject to a fine of not less than $300 and not more than $500 for each violation and any other penalties under applicable law.