Inspector General FAQ

What type of matters does the OIG handle?

The OIG is responsible for investigating cases involving waste, abuse, fraud and corruption.  Our cases vary greatly.  They cover instances of alleged bribery, theft, misuse of City resources, and many others.  If you feel that you have information concerning wrongdoing on the part of Public Servants, contractors, or others involved with the City of Detroit, please do not hesitate to contact our office.


To whom do the terms “Public Servant” or “Contractor” apply?

The term “Public Servant” refers to the Mayor, members of City Council, the City Clerk, and appointive officers, any member of a board or commission, appointees, employees or individuals who provides services to the City within or outside of its offices or facilities pursuant to a personal services contract.

The term “Contractor” refers to a party who seeks to enter, or enters into a contract with the City of Detroit for the delivery of goods and services.  The term includes subcontractors as well.

What type of matters fall outside of the jurisdiction the OIG (does NOT handle)?

The 2012 Charter of the City of Detroit authorizes this office to investigate allegations of fraud, abuse, waste, and corruption involving City of Detroit employees and contractors who do business with the City.  We do not have jurisdiction over private citizens who commit criminal acts.

The Office of Inspector General does not handle the following:

  • Property Inspections                      
  • Domestic Violence
  • Identity Theft                                  
  • Land-Lord/Tenants issues
  • Parking Issues-Lot or street           
  • Housing Issues
  • Slip & Falls                                         
  • Mail Fraud issues

Here is a list of helpful contacts for concerns we do not  handle
Please see below:

Property Inspections Contact City of Detroit Building and Safety Department (BSEED)at 313-224-2733

Vacant Lot purchasing vacant lot information contact Detroit Land Bank at 313-818-9041.

Land-Lords & Tenants issues contact COD Building & Safety Dept. Land-Lord/Tenants division at 313-224-3949

Identity Theft, Domestic Violence,  Allegations of Illegal and other related crimes. Please contact Detroit Police Department Crime Reporting Unit at 313-267-4600.

Slip & Falls on City of Detroit property contact the COD Law Department at 313-224-4550.

Mail Fraud issues not involving City of Detroit  Departments, Agencies, and Employees contact the United States Post Office at 1-888-767-6424.

Illegal Dumping contact COD Ombudsman Department at 224-6000.

House property tax issues contact Wayne County Treasury at 313-224-5990

Who can file a complaint?

Fighting fraud, abuse, waste and corruption in City government is a responsibility which belongs to all of us.  Therefore, anyone with knowledge of wrongdoing is encouraged to file a complaint.

How do I file a complaint?

The OIG makes it easy to file a complaint.  You can submit a complaint online:

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You can call our



or you can stop by our office and complete a complaint form in person.  We are located at 

Office of Inspector General

615 Griswold , Suite 1230 Detroit, MI 48226
Can I make a complaint anonymously?

Yes.  Should a person making a complaint desire to remain anonymous, the OIG, to the extent permissible under Federal and State law, will comply with that wish and keep that person’s identity confidential.

Who conducts OIG investigations?

The OIG is staffed by experienced and trained attorneys, investigators, and auditors who conduct investigations on behalf of the Inspector General.

Are OIG records confidential?

Yes.  The City of Detroit Charter states "subject to applicable state law, all investigative files of the Office of Inspector General are confidential and shall not be divulged to any person or agency, except to the United States Attorney, the Michigan Attorney General or Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office, or other Charter listed entities."  However, the files of the OIG may be subject to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), subpoena, court order, or any applicable federal or state laws.

What is the OIG’s jurisdiction?

The OIG’s powers and duties cover "any Public Servant and City agency, program or official act, contractors and subcontractors providing goods and services to the City, business entities seeking contracts or certification of eligibility for city contracts and persons seeking certification of eligibility for participation in any city program, either in response to a complaint or on the Inspector General’s own initiative in order to detect and prevent waste, abuse, fraud and corruption."

Who leads the Office of Inspector General?

The OIG is led by the Inspector General.  He or she is appointed by the City Council for a single six-year term.  The Inspector General can be removed by a 2/3 majority for good cause.

To whom does the Inspector General Report?

The 2012 Charter established the OIG as an independent agency.  The Inspector General is required to submit quarterly reports to the City Council and Mayor concerning results of investigations and audits undertaken by the office.  These reports shall be made available to the public.

Does the OIG have arrest authority?

No.  If the Inspector General has probable cause to believe that an illegal act has occurred, he or she must refer the matter to an appropriate prosecuting authority.

Does the OIG have subpoena powers?

Yes.  The OIG may subpoena witnesses, administer oaths, take testimony, require the production of evidence, and enter and inspect premises within the control of any city agency during regular business hours.  The OIG may enforce a subpoena or order for the production of evidence by applying to an appropriate court to impose any penalty prescribed by law for failure to obey a subpoena or order.

As a City of Detroit employee or contractor, do I have to cooperate with an OIG investigation?

All City of Detroit public servants, contractors, subcontractors, licensees, and applicants for certification must cooperate with OIG investigations.  Failure to do so by withholding documentation or testimony may result in forfeiture of office, discipline, debarment or other applicable penalty.

What can city employees expect if interviewed by the OIG?

It is common for the OIG to conduct interviews to develop background, determine facts, or
 confront alleged wrongdoers.  OIG investigations are conducted in accordance with federal, state, and local laws.  Depending on whether the allegations could result in criminal or administrative sanctions, subjects will be advised of certain rights at the start of each interview.  Subjects are entitled to union representation when appropriate.  Interviews are generally conducted at the OIG office.

Can I be retaliated against for assisting the OIG with an investigation?

No.  Anyone who retaliates against or otherwise penalizes or punishes a person for cooperating with the OIG shall be subject to a fine of not less than $300 and not more than $500 for each violation and any other penalties under applicable law.

Are OIG files subject to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)?

Yes.  OIG files are subject to FOIA except to the extent that the records are protected from disclosure by any of the exemptions contained in state law.

What OIG investigations' final report or internal memorandum are published?

Section 75-306 (2) of the 2012 Charter of City of Detroit (the Charter) requires the OIG to “issue quarterly reports to the City Council and Mayor concerning results of investigations and audits
undertaken by the OIG.” It further states “all reports shall be a public record and additionally published electronically on the World Wide Web.”

Therefore, all OIG’s quarterly reports and formal/final reports have been and will continue to be published on-line. In addition, from time to time, we exercise our discretion to publish some of our internal memoranda through the City and the OIG’s website at: or

The purpose of the formal report is to assist public servants, City agencies, contractors and all other bodies that fall under the jurisdiction of the OIG, as well as the public, in preventing waste, abuse, fraud, or corruption by providing a detailed analysis related to the recommendation made in the formal report.
Generally, after an OIG file manager (FM) completes his/her/their investigation or audit, the FM seeks to close the investigation or initiate an action by submitting a memorandum to the Inspector General (IG), or when necessary, to the Deputy IG (DIG). After the IG or the DIG completes the review of the memorandum, the IG or the DIG must review and approve the FM’s Request To Close (RTC) or Request To Initiate (RTI). We typically do not publish our internal memoranda, unless we find that the publication the RTC or the RTI may be of a significant public interest. Here are some of the reasons why we exercise such discretion:

  1. We want to encourage FMs to be candid and frank with their analyses, interpretations, evaluations, assessments of their findings and recommendations, without any external pressure or influence;
  2. Some of the allegations or complaints we investigate sometimes require our Office to seek and confirm certain information that are personal and private to an individual;
  3. Some of the complaints we receive are politically or personally motivated between individuals that lack merit, and cannot be substantiated. However, the allegations by themselves, if published, can be prejudicial or harmful to an individual; and
  4. Sometimes the allegations by themselves can identify the complainant even if the complainant wished to remain anonymous and, as such, publication of such memorandum could have a negative impact on submitting or filing any future complaint.

In order to maintain the integrity and the efficiency of our Office, we must maintain our independence, including our ability to exercise discretionary authority in our operation.