The city’s high-profile and controversial forensic audit of the Great Park was plagued by poor governance, a lack of auditing standards, and a compromised bidding process, according to a scathing report released by the State Auditor’s office Tuesday.
Irvine ranked eighth out of 100 big cities nationwide for the quality of its parkland, according to a study by The Trust for Public Land. Meanwhile, Anaheim and Santa Ana ranked 65th and 83rd, respectively.
Councilwoman Christina Shea has built her political career on rooting out corruption surrounding the Great Park. But what she’s doing behind the scenes for a consulting client is also crossing ethical lines, a government ethics expert says.
ByLing Ling Chang, Young Kim, Don Wagner, Travis Allen, Bill Brough, Matt Harper, Bob Huff, Janet Nguyen, Pat Bates, John Moorlach |
Orange County’s Republican delegation to Sacramento on Monday called on Assemblyman Mike Gibson, who chairs the Joint Legislative Audit Committee, to reject requests to audit the City of Irvine’s current Great Park audit efforts.
Given the years-long controversy over stalled construction, it might seem like a specious claim. But a representative from developer FivePoint Communities says they are going to start building substantial portions of the park “over a year early.”
Lost amid the attention grabbing findings of a scathing Great Park audit report was the fact that some of the most sensational earlier findings were officially withdrawn or replaced. A state investigation into the firm’s actions remains ongoing.