EXECUTIVE ORDER S-04-09


WHEREAS Congress passed, and on February 17, 2009, President Obama signed, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), a $787 billion plan to create jobs, stimulate the economy and make significant improvements to the nation’s infrastructure; and

WHEREAS a prime focus of my administration has been on economic stimulus, job creation and rebuilding California’s infrastructure to ensure long-term growth and global competitiveness; and

WHEREAS pursuant to ARRA, California will receive as much as $85 billion dollars in new federal funds and tax benefits for education, infrastructure investment, energy efficiency, housing, health and human services, transportation, science and technology, unemployment assistance and various other programs; and

WHEREAS these federal economic stimulus funds will add to the billions of dollars Californians have already committed to rebuilding the State’s infrastructure through their approval of the Strategic Growth Plan and $52 billion in infrastructure bonds in 2006 and 2008; and

WHEREAS it is critical to California’s economic recovery that ARRA is implemented quickly and efficiently and that its funds are deployed on the most meritorious projects to ensure the greatest stimulus effect; and

WHEREAS protecting taxpayer dollars requires a high degree of accountability and transparency and the public should have easy access to information about how their tax dollars are being spent;

WHEREAS my Administration has created the California Federal Economic Stimulus Task Force (California Recovery Task Force) to track the ARRA funding coming into the state; work with President Barack Obama’s administration; help cities, counties, non-profits, and others access the available funding; ensure that the funding funneled through the state is spent efficiently and effectively; and maintain a Web site that is frequently and thoroughly updated for Californians to be able to track the stimulus dollars; and

WHEREAS it is critical that an independent Inspector General be established to conduct reviews and audits to ensure State and local government compliance with the federal requirements of ARRA and applicable state law and to bring maximum public transparency into the oversight of these funds.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER, Governor of the State of California, by virtue of the power and authority vested in me by the Constitution and statutes of the State of California, hereby direct:

1.    The establishment of an Inspector General position that is independent from the California Recovery Task Force.

2.    The Inspector General shall be appointed by the Governor.

3.    The Inspector General shall do the following:

a.    Protect the integrity and accountability of the expenditure of ARRA funds in California by preventing and detecting fraud, waste, and misconduct in the use of those funds.

b.      Conduct periodic reviews and audits to ensure State and local government compliance with the federal requirements of ARRA and applicable state law.

c.    Provide independent and objective reports to me, the Legislature, U.S. General Accountability Office, and the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board on the activities and findings of the reviews and audits, including any identified program and management problems, as it relates to use of the ARRA funds in California, and recommendations to correct them.  These reports shall be posted on the Internet to provide additional accountability and transparency to the public.

d.    Coordinate with the Bureau of State Audits, the State Controller, the Department of Finance, and local auditors and comptrollers to identify and deploy resources in a manner to insure the highest level of review and accountability.

e.    Provide technical and consultative advice to the California Recovery Task Force on an on-going basis.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the agencies and departments under my direct executive authority shall cooperate in the implementation of this Order.

This Order is not intended to, and does not, create any rights or benefits, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity, against the State of California, its agencies, departments, officers, employees, or any other entity or person.

I FURTHER DIRECT that as soon as hereafter possible, this Order be filed in the Office of the Secretary of State and that widespread publicity and notice be given to this Order.