Dear Friends and Neighbors,

As we wrap up October and head further into the darker days of fall and winter, I feel very grateful for the recent rain. But I know that even as the rain provides healthier air, it can cause hardship for those in our community experiencing houselessness. By benefiting some and burdening others, the rain can be an apt metaphor for public policies and government approaches.

Policies and approaches have historically resulted in unintended negative impacts for communities of color, which means it’s essential that we evaluate government systems and point to areas for improvement that will result in greater benefits and fewer burdens for everyone, particularly our community members who are Black, Indigenous, or other people of color. Ultimately, thoughtful government auditing helps pave the way for a more just, equitable, and transparent county government. 

If this work sounds aligned with how you want to contribute professionally to our community, I encourage you to apply to our opening for a Management Auditor. You can apply through November 10.

And if you’d like to get a sense of how we focus our work, you can learn about one of our audits that has entered its fieldwork phase. Fieldwork is the portion of the audit where the team takes all of the general information they learned through the initial phase (called survey) and dives into specific objectives. You can read about the objectives and scope of work for the Library work environment audit here.

Amidst our work conducting audits and responding to reports to the Good Government Hotline, my team and I have been engaged in educational activities - from attending the Northwest Public Employees Diversity Conference to teaching each other new skills through in-house trainings. Generally accepted government auditing standards require us to earn 80 hours of continuing education every two years. This is really important so we keep deepening our skills and learning new ways to support government accountability and equity.

At the beginning of this month, many of us attended a regional training of the Association of Local Government Auditors. Principal Auditor Caroline Zavitkovski was a part of the group that organized the training. Along with Management Auditors Dorian Pacheco and Mandi Hood, Caroline provided training on trauma-informed approaches to auditing. Mandi and Principal Auditor Nicole Dewees were part of a two-hour training on auditing housing and homelessness services. And I was part of a panel on auditor independence and annual audit planning. 

All of the knowledge and skills we develop we put to use to serve you and keep you informed about how your county government is working. It’s an honor to do this work on your behalf!

Thank you,

Jennifer McGuirk
Multnomah County Auditor

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Remember to vote!

November 8 is the last day to vote in the general election. Make sure your voice is heard by turning in your ballot! 

Remember to mail your ballot back on or before November 8 or return it to an official ballot drop site by 8:00 p.m. on November 8. Ballots mailed back must be postmarked on or before November 8.  

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Community engagement update

Constituent Relations Specialist Raymond De Silva and I started the month by virtually attending Noche Bella, a celebration of the Latino Network and all it does to serve Multnomah County’s Latinx community. 

I was honored to participate in the Mt. Scott Arleta Neighborhood Association’s monthly meeting. I talked with association members about my office’s accountability work related to health, safety, and homelessness. If you would like to invite me or one of my staff to one of your organization’s upcoming meetings, please fill out this form.