Public Contracts (Mendocino County Board Of Supervisors)

Dan Rubins filed this request with the Mendocino County Board Of Supervisors of Ukiah, CA.

It is a clone of this request.

Tracking #


Multi Request Public Contracts
Est. Completion None
Fix Required


From: Dan Rubins

To Whom It May Concern:

I. Background Information

Contract administration is frequently a source of concerning behavior in the public sector. For example:
- In the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, a company with only two employees (Whitefish Energy) was hired hired by PREPA, Puerto Rico's public utility company, to restore power to the island at a cost of $300M. The contract had audit-proofing clauses and left little recourse for PREPA due to nonperformance. After 8 months, Puerto Rico did not have power fully restored and now Congressional and FBI investigations are pending.
- During an internal audit of the City of San Diego's contracting practices, the contract with office products supplier Staples was found to exceed the City Council's approved $2M annual threshold by a full $1M. Auditors found found insufficient financial controls and produced a further 60 pages of recommendations.
- The US Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA) found sustained exceptions for incurred costs audits 28.6% of the time in its 2017 Report to Congress.
- From 2010 to 2013, a Maryland Transit Authority employee allegedly used poor contracting oversight to siphon $6.3M from the state coffers.
- The City of Vallejo, CA was recently the victim of an alleged contracting kickback scheme run by the city's landscape maintenance manager, only uncovered in an FBI investigation. The kickback scheme occurred only a few years after the city was in Chapter 9 bankruptcy because of ballooning contractual obligations.
- In recent years, officials in the southern California cities of Bell, Irwindale, La Puente, Monterey Park, Pico Rivera, Temple City, and Vernon have been brought up on various public corruption charges.

While the vast majority of public contracting is done with integrity, bad actors and a lack of public knowledge have a disproportionate effect on the fiscal wellbeing and public trust of every level of government.

II. Requested Records

Pursuant to the California Public Records Act, I hereby request the following records:

1. Any and all executed contracts, memorandums of understanding (MOUs), and other equivalent agreements that are currently active, or were active within the last two years, other than standard employee agreements. Please provide a copy of the executed document as well as any addenda, amendments, attachments, exhibits, materials, and schedules.

2. Any and all contract template documents, for example, employee agreements, vendor agreements, master services agreements, nondisclosure agreements, or interagency cooperation contracts.

3. General policies and procedures for contract administration, including training materials and records used to instruct members of your agency in contract administration.

4. Any available process narratives, audit reports, or findings regarding contract administration covering the last two years.

I am happy to discuss any issues or suggestions to make fulfillment more manageable for your office.

III. Fees

If there are any fees for searching or copying these records, please inform me in advance of fulfilling the request.

I would also like to request a waiver of all fees in that the disclosure of the requested information is in the public interest and will contribute significantly to the public's understanding of how governments manage public money and the obligations to which they are entrusted.

Neither I, nor my company (Legal Robot), has any commercial interest in obtaining the requested information. Rather, we intend to use software to analyze and disseminate the requested information free of charge so that the public may identify patterns of bad behavior that, when eliminated, will benefit governments and the public alike.

We plan to enrich and cross-link the information we receive from multiple jurisdictions, and provide an exploratory interface for the public on the internet, for free. Because we consider this work to be Data Journalism, and we further expect to provide our analysis to other media organizations for additional print and online publication, I ask to be categorized as a representative of the news media. Upon request, I am happy to provide our analysis and any articles we write based on our analysis in advance of publication, though I cannot speak for other media outlets.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 10 calendar days, as the statute requires.


Dan Rubins

From: Mendocino County Board Of Supervisors

Your first Mendocino County record request (request number 18-290) has been submitted. It is currently unpublished and is not available for the general public to view.

From: Mendocino County Board Of Supervisors

Department assignment for records request 18-290 has changed: Added: Executive Office .

From: Mendocino County Board Of Supervisors

Pursuant to Government Code section 6253(c)(1) and (2), the County is extending the time limit established in section 6253(c) for fourteen (14) days.

From: Mendocino County Board Of Supervisors

[Document Released to Requester] Mendocino County public records request 18-290

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Mendocino County Public Records (

A document has been released to you for record request #18-290:
* 01Purchasing-1.pdf

View Request #18-290 (

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From: Mendocino County Board Of Supervisors

The County of Mendocino has reviewed your request and determined that it seeks some disclosable public records. The County is providing responsive general policy and template documents through the NextRequest software. The County, however, is withholding specific drafts, attorney-client communication, and attorney work product pursuant to Government Code sections 6254(a), 6254(k), and 6255.
Insofar as your request seeks all contracts, MOUs, or similar agreements, the County has determined that it cannot reasonably comply with the request at this time, given the extreme breadth of the request. Specifically, the very large number of contracts entered into by multiple County departments makes manual compilation over the requested time period infeasible. While the County does maintain electronic records of these files, the County has determined that the software in which the agreements are stored does not allow for them to be exported in mass.
It may be possible to compile the records that you are seeking through the creation of appropriate software or other data compilation techniques. Under Government Code section 6253.9(b), however, the requester bears the cost of programming or other computer services necessary for this type of data extraction. If you are interest in doing so, please contact the Mendocino County Executive Office at 707-463-4441 to obtain a cost estimate and make the appropriate arrangements. Alternatively, if there are specific, individual contracts that you desire, you may obtain them through a more limited request. Copies of individual contracts approved by the Board of Supervisors are available as part of the published agenda packets, located at: (

From: Mendocino County Board Of Supervisors

Your request has been closed.