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Letter: San Joaquin County Sheriff's Office may be due for an audit

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Posted: Thursday, April 10, 2014 12:00 am

The race for San Joaquin Sheriff/Coroner has provided a window into the operations of the Sheriff's Department as administered by Sheriff Moore.

On March 26, the San Joaquin Taxpayers Association held a conversational forum in which questions were asked of each candidate. The majority of the questions concerned funding. During this forum, the Sheriff addressed how he administers his department.

In answer to a question concerning how each candidate would handle future budget deficits, Sheriff Moore stated unequivocally that in each year for which he has been Sheriff, the San Joaquin Sheriff's Department has come in on budget or under budget. The sheriff added that in the previous budget period, the Sheriff's Department will have an approximate $8.5 million carry-over. It is with this statement that every county citizen should be asking what services were withheld or not funded that could have been.

In the county with the highest recidivism rate in the state, it is unimaginable that every available penny was not spent toward law enforcement. No one at the forum realized, nor asked the Sheriff, about how the $8.5 million would have made a difference had it been used, or whether it could have been used to fund the jail or Honor Farm enhancements. Bottom line: The Sheriff has $8.5 million which he did not use. Where is that money now?

I am a retired FBI agent, but before being appointed as a special agent I worked as an FBI budget analyst. If the funds were, in fact, present at the end of the fiscal period, why was the Sheriff's Department budget not cut by $8.5 million? In this case, it is my opinion that 2 plus 2 does not equal 4. Why does the county not audit a department's budget that comes in under budget by $8.5 million, instead of turning it around and granting an additional $10 million?

Jeff Rinek

Retired FBI agent

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