I am intrigued by this latest suggestion to add an anonymous phone number for whistleblowers to use for City concerns. The Council will be considering it on Tuesday night (Monday is MLK Day). Here is a part of the staff report:
Staff recommends the City Council provide direction on whether it wishes to establish a
During the future agenda portion of a City Council meeting in late 2014, then-Vice Mayor Terry
Nagel asked that the City consider establishing a whistleblower hotline. Vice Mayor Nagel noted
that she had been approached by several residents who had concerns about the City but were
uncomfortable reporting those concerns to staff. For that reason, Vice Mayor Nagel suggested
that the City consider establishing some type of whistleblower hotline to enable residents to report
any concerns they may anonymously.
The City already provides a number of mechanisms for making whistleblower-type complaints.
The online Citizen Connect, system, for example, enables people with complaints about the City,
City staff, or elected or appointed officials to register their concerns either anonymously or by
providing an email address or phone number. Those who lodge their complaints anonymously
receive responses to their messages, but the identity of the complainant remains masked.
In addition, more than a year ago, the City established an email address (firstname.lastname@example.org)
that is available for anyone wishing to register a complaint or concern. In order to remain
anonymous, one could set up an email address using an alias on one of the many free email
The two things that intrigue me the most are: "What have we already received in the past?" I have to assume we got something from someone. Is there a report somewhere? Also "What will be the transparency of the new hotline?" That is to say, will we be adding a recurring agenda item to the Council agenda to disclose what the whistleblowers have reported? I have sent this whole post to the email@example.com address just in case no one from the City is reading the Voice (LOL). We'll see what comes back.