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A message from the Inspector General

To the citizens of Philadelphia

In December 2007, I left the U.S. Attorney’s Office after 24 years as a prosecutor to become Philadelphia’s Inspector General. I accepted the appointment because I believed that the Inspector General’s office could make a difference in the fight against corruption in City government.

As a federal prosecutor I saw corruption in many City departments. But I also met many, many honest and hardworking City employees who had been victimized by the perception that Philadelphia is corrupt.

As a federal prosecutor, I could only do so much. I could help remove the wrongdoers from the City, but I couldn’t change the system that has allowed the wrongdoing to continue. As Inspector General, with your help, I believe we can make a difference.

The Mayor asks only one thing of me: to work hard to find wrongdoing in the City and to expose it. The Office of the Inspector General exists to uncover corruption, fraud, misconduct and waste among City employees and those who do business with the City.

Corruption and fraud paint an ugly picture of Philadelphia. And I believe that if we work together to root out corruption and fraud, we will show the people of Philadelphia that we can police ourselves. We can improve City government with more honest employees, better City services and more efficient government. Above all, we can instill a sense of pride and trust among the citizens we all serve. And by policing ourselves, we can give confidence to hardworking City employees and to honest businesses that everyone in Philadelphia competes on a level playing field.

To accomplish these goals, I am asking for your help. If you see corruption, if you see fraud, if you see dishonest practices, tell us. Don’t accept it silently as “the way business is done in Philadelphia.” If your colleagues or supervisors are using their positions improperly, they are tarnishing City government and they are tarnishing you. If companies or individuals are attempting to gain an unfair advantage in City business, we all suffer. You have the power to change things. You have the power to make a difference by coming forward with evidence of corruption.

Together, we can make our City government as clean and honest as possible. I embrace this challenge, and I hope you’ll join me.

Amy Kurland
Inspector General