Senator Roth to Investigate Potential Misuse of Funds by Board of Equalization

March 31, 2017

Today, Senator Richard D. Roth (D-Riverside), Chair of Budget Subcommittee #4 on State Administration and General Government, announced the Subcommittee will conduct an investigation into findings made by a recent Department of Finance audit of the Board of Equalization, to determine whether agency officials misused public funds and violated the public trust.

Senator Roth said: “Californians should have confidence that their hard-earned tax dollars are being invested and managed in a responsible and transparent manner. The issues outlined in the DOF’s audit are deeply troubling, especially given the Board of Equalization’s tax collection and oversight role, and deserve a thorough review. I plan to utilize all means at my disposal to ensure the BOE fulfills its fiduciary responsibility and operates in an environment that provides fair, effective and efficient tax administration.”

The Subcommittee oversight process, including a public hearing, will focus on identifying and examining potential steps to improve operations at the BOE, including but not limited to:

  • Improved oversight of the Executive Officer.
  • Requests for the appointment of a “Public Trustee” to oversee and direct daily operations at the BOE.
  • Quarterly reporting of the disposition of all tax appeals before the BOE.
  • An audit by the independent State Auditor of management and administration at the BOE.
  • Safeguards against inappropriate diversion of personnel resources.

Senator Roth continued: “It is critical that public faith in this important body be preserved, and I am confident the hearing will be beneficial to ensuring the BOE fulfills both its mission and responsibility to California’s taxpayers.”

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