Bribery scandal could change how Atlanta City Hall does business - CBS46 News


Bribery scandal could change how Atlanta City Hall does business

Posted: Updated:
(Source: WGCL) (Source: WGCL)

CBS46 Investigates is uncovering how a bribery scandal is changing business at Atlanta City Hall.

City lawmakers are making it quicker and easier for you to know how the city is spending your tax money, which is all because of a bribery scandal that cost one city official his job, and could put two city contractors in prison.

It's a new day at city hall.

In late February Angela Hinton was a city attorney, and now she's running the procurement office.

Hinton replaced chief procurement officer Adam Smith after he was fired when an FBI subpoena demanded his computer and cell phone.

Council president Ceasar Mitchell is responding to what outraged voters want.

"The strongest firewalls possible to fight against the misuse of the process," says Mitchell.

A federal investigation into bribery at city hall has led to all of this change after two contractors admitted to bribing someone at city hall to win expensive city work.

We know that E.R. Mitchell received an emergency contract for ice and snow removal in 2014 and that it cost the city many times the normal price for the gravel and salt.

"The mother who has got two children in the backseat on an icy road with a semi-truck barrelling down at her doesn't care," says Hinton.

On March 1, the committee unanimously recommended that the full council take up the measure next week to require emergency contracts be made public in three days.

But Natalyn Archibong remembers a problem from an earlier so-called emergency.

"We heard about it six months into the emergency," says Archibong. "Just how long is an emergency?"

That's a question the new procurement head promised to study.

 The unanimous votes that came on March 1 paved the way for three ideas for the cull council:

  • Emergency contracts are made public within three business days.
  • Conflicts of interest by contract bidders are revealed to the council instead of only to procurement.
  • All contracts be posted online for all to see.

Copyright 2017 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved. 

Connect with CBS46