Message from the Inspector General

The unprecedented global disruption caused by the pandemic impacted all of us. The crisis forced the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) to adapt to keep our employees safe and continue the OIG’s mission. With thanks to my talented and hardworking team, I am pleased to present the Fiscal Year 2021 Annual Report. The OIG was busy and productive during FY 2021. City employees and citizens made over 700 calls to the OIG Hotline and the Investigations team delivered 36 reports. The Ethics team, in its first year within the OIG, fielded over 1,400 requests related to ethics guidance and received just under 3,000 financial disclosure statements through a new online site viewable by the public. Ethics training was overhauled, and many new outreach materials were delivered to City officials and employees. Strengthening and implementing the existing Whistleblower law remains a core focus for the upcoming year. Teamwork with other government and law enforcement agencies continues to play an important role in the OIG’s effectiveness.

The OIG’s joint investigation with the Baltimore County Inspector General’s Office regarding water billing was a historic partnership. We also appreciate our partnerships with the Maryland Inspector General for Education, the US Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the US Department of Labor, the Office of the State Prosecutor, and many more Baltimore agencies.

As the Inspector General, I would like to reflect on the progress over the past three years. Symbolized by the picture on the front, the OIG managed to shine a light on many issues. The OIG completed over 100 reports and identified more than $11 million in savings or waste. In all its activities, this office has remained steadfast to the professional standards established by the Association of Inspectors General (AIG), including independence, highly qualified staff, confidentiality, evidence-based investigations, and effective reporting. Maintaining these standards and demonstrating best practices for the City of Baltimore remains the cornerstone of our mission and fosters the trust of City citizens and employees.

The OIG is proud to announce it will receive its first Peer Review by the AIG in the upcoming year. The OIG continues to work diligently to earn the title of the “People’s Investigator.” This year alone, the OIG has issued thirty-six reports and documented $7 million in savings or waste. I pledge that the OIG will continue to work tirelessly to improve the Baltimore we share by providing residents and employees with an efficient and effective mechanism for reporting financial fraud, waste, and abuse. 

With sincere gratitude,

Isabel Mercedes Cumming

Inspector General 2021 picture