....still smells like a turd.
I am currently reading the OIG report on the OIG....so let's do it together....because together we're heavy.
Here is the amount spent on the computers:
I'm no accountant...just ask my wife, but according to my trusty dusty electronic abacus, all computer related expenses add up to $436,188. For 33 employees that comes out to $13,217.82 per employee. But I am assuming that is including centralized servers, networking equipment like secure routers, encryption software, etc. That may be a little high, but I don't think its "extravagant" by any means.
The bigger question is where in the hell did Odom originally come up with the 600k figure? Am I missing something or was he just rounding up to an extra 25%?
The main beef regarding the computer systems doesn't seem to be any collusion with Sparkhound (the Baton Rouge based IT firm who spec'd and built the IG's IT department), it seems to be a lack of competence in purchasing:
• Sparkhound recommended one media license of Microsoft Office Ultimate 2007 but
instead 86 individual licenses were ordered at a cost $575.99 each for a total of
• Sparkhound recommended one media license of Windows Vista Business but instead 86
individual licenses were ordered at a cost of $121.93 each or a total of $10,485.09.
Uhhhhh.....there could be a valid reason for these two desicions. I would want to understand that decision a little more before I pass judgement.
• Sparkhound suggested specific encryption software and the employees ordered the
incorrect encryption software. The software company will not allow the OIG to return the
incorrect software which cost $10,992.00.
oops. bad call. somebody fucked up.
• Sparkhound specified the 2005 SQL Server software and the employees ordered the 2008
SQL Server software at a cost of $3,742.78 which was incompatible with other software
that had been installed.
Common error. I've seen this happen before regarding Microsoft server 2003, 2005, and 2008 and 32bit to 64 bit updates which I suspect is what may have happened here regarding this unnamed software. If the purchaser wasn't aware of the technical issues with software purchases this doesn't surprise me. Ok...so somebody was given a job that was a little over their head. That happens in any start up....and the OIG office is a frikkin' start up.
• The Sparkhound software requirements included the purchase of SNARE; however, the
employees failed to order this critical software in 2008. The software, which cost
$10,620.00, was placed in 2009 after IG Cerasoli had given back the $1.2 million to the
The report keeps simultaneously harping on the fact that Cerasoli gave back the 1.2 million and then rails on him for overspending. Every paragraph ends with the statment "after he gave back the 1.2 million". So I guess I'm a little confused....is the overall allegation that he gave away money which was actually needed or that he spent money unnecessarily? Was he a drunken sailor or a miser? I'm not sure what the point is.
• Sparkhound recommended the purchase of 50 LTO4-120 Back-up Tapes for the Power
Vault TL2000; however, the employees failed to place the order for the back-up tapes.
The back-up tapes were not ordered in 2008. Accordingly, the tapes were purchased in
2009 after IG Cerasoli had given back the $1.2 million to the City.
Ok...do the tapes work now?
• Sparkhound's plan included the purchase of 5 switches. The OIG only ordered 4 and
failed to order the 5th. The 5th switch was ordered on 3/02/09 at a cost of $2,444.15 after
IG Cerasoli had given back the $1.2 million to the City.
• As a result of IG Cerasoli increasing the number of computers ordered from the
recommended 20 laptops to 32 laptops and increasing the number of desktops ordered
from the recommended 12 to 54 desktop computers there is a significant amount of
inventory that remains on the shelf in the evidence room. There is a potential risk that this
equipment will become obsolete.
Well, all computers become obsolete within 2 years. So the question here is why Cerasoli increased the amount of computers by 12? Did he expect the office to grow? If he only ordered the 20 computers and he came up short...would the report still be criticizing him in the same way if he under-ordered computer purchases like the under-ordering of the switch listed above?
• The employees placed an order was for 86 battery back-ups for all laptops and desktops
at a cost of $53.99 each, or $4,643.14. The OIG leases office space in the Federal
Reserve Bank building which has its own back-up generator for the entire building in the
event there is a loss of power. This renders the vast majority of these battery back-ups
unnecessary and they are currently housed and unused on a shelf in the evidence room.
There were issues that arose during the installation phase as a result of the employees' lack of
expertise. A few issues that we discovered are as follows:
eehhhhh....no. Not. The building back up generators don't ensure stable power supplies to the individual computers which may hold some seriously important information. If the electricity in the building goes out, it will only take a fraction of a second to 1. crash the computers and 2. potentially surge the computers and fry the motherboards. This is a very weak argument.
• The original Sparkhound plan was to outfit the entire office with the necessary cable for
internet and phone. At cable installation, an IG employee provided a map to the
electrical subcontractor which reduced the number of workspaces to be wired to only 19.
As the office staff grew, it was necessary to have the electrical subcontractor return on
10 multiple occasions to perform the task of running cable to other workstations thus driving
up the cost of installation. Critical areas such as the Evidence Room and the IG's office
still do not have the necessary cable run to perform the basic functions of phone and
Lack of foresight is the issue?
The PGP encryption software for the desk tops and laptops was ordered on December 18,
2008, and arrived on January 14, 2009; however, Sparkhound was not able to install the
encryption software until July, 2009, because the IG's office was not informed by the
ERB employee that the software had arrived.
Why is that? Sparkhound was too busy for 6 full months to conduct the installation? So the issue here is miscommunication?
Robert Cerasoli personally purchased the domain name NOLAOIG.COM while he was an
employee of the City. It has been alleged that one of IG Cerasoli's hobbies was collecting
domain names. The price to register this domain name is approximately $10 with a $10 annual
His hobby is collecting domain names? Really? Isn't this the same guy who slept on the floor without a TV in his apartment?
IG Cerasoli resigned his position as IG on January 30, 2009. It has been alleged that former IG
Cerasoli initially agreed to sign over the domain name NOLAOIG.COM to the OIG; however,
Former IG Cerasoli subsequently refused to sell the domain name to the OIG and refused to sign
the necessary paperwork to allow the OIG to obtain the certificate for the encryption algorithm.
There is a potential for conflict of interest related to Robert Cerasoli's purchase of the
intellectual property, N0LA0IG.COM, in his personal name as opposed to the name of the
office for which he was in-charge.
Subsequent to the departure of IG Cerasoli, the ERB employee and the OIG employee placed in
charge of the computer system requested Sparkhound set up a stand-up server and several
workstations in order to permit staff to begin working. Sparkhound advised against an early set
up of the computer system and instead recommended waiting for the computer equipment to
arrive to avoid unnecessary problems and costs. The ERB employee and the OIG employee did
not follow the advice of Sparkhound and initiated the early set-up. As part of the early set-up
process, the ERB employee and the OIG employee directed Sparkhound to program the server
with NOLAOIG.COM despite the fact that this domain name was owned personally by former
When the former IG refused to cooperate regarding the transference of the domain name
N0LA0IG.COM all the servers had to be reprogrammed with a different domain name,
NOLAOIG.ORG, which resulted in an additional cost to the OIG of approximately $13,125.
Holy shit! I want that job. 13 grand to change a domain name....fucking eh! Somebody scored on that one. Who did that, Netmethods?
It has come to our attention that as an agency within the City of New Orleans, the OIG and the
ERB are permitted to mail any documents from City Hall for free. The Interim Inspector
General is in the process of returning the leased equipment and obtaining a refund for the unusedpre-paid postage which is in excess of $19,950.
Just out of curiosity...how does that mail process work at City Hall? Do you drop your mail in a huge mail slot and it all goes to the mail room? Just curious? What if the IG did an investigation on the mail room in City Hall and they sent the report out via the mail room in City Hall?
INVESTIGATIVE EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLIES
IG Cerasoli sent a Criminal Investigator from the OIG office to visit the Department of
Investigations for New York City to gain information about ordering investigative supplies and
equipment for the OIG. The Criminal Investigator compiled a list of investigative equipment
and supplies to be ordered based on information gathered during the course of his visit.
It has come to our attention that the First Assistant Inspector General for Criminal Investigations and the First Assistant Inspector General for Audit and Review analyzed the order prior to
placement and recommended that 80% of the order be cancelled as it was promulgated on
information obtained from an agency that is not comparable in size, scope or jurisdiction to the
City of New Orleans OIG. However, IG Cerasoli chose to disregard the recommendations made
by his two First Assistants and IG Cerasoli placed an order for $50,774 of investigative
equipment and $23,314 of investigative supplies. There is a potential risk that much of this
equipment may not be used the Criminal Investigations Division.
So we didn't need 40 pairs of shoe phones? hmmm. This one is impossible to call. If you don't use all that spy schweg, send it to me....I'll use it....I'll go spy on Entergy.
It has come to our attention that IG Cerasoli canceled the purchase of the 3 SUV's in conjunction
with the issuance of his first report related to the management of the City's passenger vehicle
fleet and prior to returning the $1.2 million to the City. As the OIG had an immediate
requirement for vehicles in order to effectively perform its lawful duties and carry out
operational activities, the Interim IG reordered the 3 vehicles. The cost of the vehicles was
$72,853.75 and the Interim IG utilized funds from the 2009 operating budget.
He's guilty of being concerned of a potential conflict of interest. Then he changed his mind and bought them anyway.
Wow....that's it? I think the most egregious offense could be the nepotism charge in hiring one of his former students. But Cannizaro just did the same thing in the D.A.'s office with his daughter and there's not a lot of stink about that. Plus...some other names....Anthony Jones....Kenya Smith.
I think Cerasoli, himself, summed it up best:
"There are all sorts of allegations in the report that don't really hold any water. They had eight months to do reports. They only did one -- on me."
Correction: A man much more vigilant than I pointed out Cannizaro's daughter was already working in the DA's office before he won the position. Thanks, Clay.
By the way..I was by your house today and you have this very awesome spider web outside your door which was spun by one of those really peculiar little fat, round arachnids. You know I have a thing for spiders and snakes...would love it if you took a macro picture of it and posted it so we could search the intertubes and find out what it is. Not that you don't have enough to worry about with the broken ankle...ouch....sorry bro.