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City Auditor will not run for re-election

In a surprise announcement, Portland City Auditor LaVonne Griffin-Valade said she will not run for re-election next year.

Mary Hull Caballero, a Metro performance auditor, has registered a political action committee to run for the city auditor’s office. The committee has a balance of $2,480.

Griffin-Valade gave no reason for the decision in the statement she released Friday afternoon. It read as follows:

Today City Auditor LaVonne Griffin-Valade announced that she will not run for re-election next year. “I first want to thank my team in the Auditor’s Office. Their professionalism and commitment to the public have made it possible for me to accomplish much of what I set out to achieve here at the City,” Griffin-Valade said. “Our efforts over the last several years improved the system of civilian oversight of police, questioned the appropriate spending of utility ratepayer dollars, and raised significant concerns about the City’s long-term fiscal sustainability. This work has created powerful tools to reform City government and develop policy for the public good.”

“Over the next 16 months, we will continue working full speed on a slate of important accountability initiatives and audit work.” Griffin-Valade said. “We have an ambitious schedule of performance audits to be completed by the end of 2014,” when her term is over. Some upcoming reports include audits of Housing Bureau asset management and loans; City procurement processes; Streetcar governance and operations; garbage collection and composting; and systems development charges.

In addition, Griffin-Valade and managers from the Auditor’s Independent Police Review division will go before City Council to further strengthen their authority to investigate police misconduct. The City Ombudsman in the Auditor’s Office will bring forward a proposed set of whistleblower protections for consideration by Council. Archives & Records Management will lead efforts for full Citywide implementation of the system for managing, retaining, and accessing electronic records and documents. All of these important measures increase oversight, accountability, and transparency at the City.

“I thank Portlanders for their support and appreciation of the role of the independent City Auditor,” Griffin-Valade said. “It’s that independence from Portland politics that makes having an elected auditor critical to achieving responsive and responsible government.”

Griffin-Valade began her career as a government performance auditor in the Multnomah County Auditor’s Office in 1998. She was elected Portland City Auditor in 2009 and served as the elected County Auditor before that. Along with the Audit Services Division, the Independent Police Review division, the Ombudsman, and the Archives & Records Management division, the City Auditor oversees a number of other good government functions: the Hearings Office, Elections, Council Clerk/Contracts, and the Assessments, Finance, and Foreclosure unit.