Broward’s independent auditor has slammed Port Everglades for poor management that resulted in public health and safety issues and let current and former employees repeatedly use expensive county equipment for personal financial gain.
County Auditor Bob Melton has been conducting a procurement audit at Port Everglades since last June. In a letter to county commissioners on Thursday, Melton said he was releasing a 34-page interim audit report of early findings “because of the immediate need for corrective action.”
About a dozen auditors from Melton’s office are spotlighting the port. In his letter, Melton said his team had substantiated allegations regarding the ‘unauthorized use county-owned backflow testing kits” and the “inadequate certification of backflow assembly devices.”
Backflow assembly devices are installed in residences and businesses to prevent the incorrect flow of contaminants from faulty toilets, industry or other sources of pollutants into the public drinking water supply.
Florida Bulldog first reported the existence of the audit and a concurrent Broward Sheriff’s investigation on Jan. 17. The FBI is also involved. The criminal probe has focused on apparent out-of-control spending by port public works employees using county credit cards, or purchasing cards. Sources have said the spending went on for at least a decade and is believed to have cost the county millions of dollars.