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Advisory Regarding the Department of Assets, Information Services’ Management of Municipal License Plates Registered to City Vehicles

Report Details

Report Description: 
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) writes to bring to your attention to concerns regarding the City of Chicago Department of Assets, Information and Services (AIS) inventory and management of municipal license plates issued and registered to City vehicles. An OIG review found that the municipal license plate inventory AIS manages does not match the Illinois Secretary of State (ILSOS) database of municipal plates issued to the City. Approximately 7,000 municipal license plates issued by ILSOS for City vehicles are unaccounted for at AIS. Without an accurate database and regular audit of the City’s municipal license plates, AIS is unable to account for and track the possession and use of all municipal license plates assigned to the City, resulting in, among other things, a significant risk of abuse and misconduct with municipal plates and vehicles within the City’s fleet. OIG’s review of AIS’ records discovered disjointed datasets and lists and multiple outdated recordkeeping practices. For example, AIS produced multiple Microsoft Excel spreadsheets dating as far back as 1995 that contain separate, unrelated lists of destroyed plates that do not correlate with each other. Some spreadsheets contain no dates or references to when plates were destroyed or which department utilized the destroyed plates. In another instance, a transferred plate list created in 2013 was used to record transfer requests, however, it was abandoned after 2016.
Date Issued: 
Tuesday, June 15, 2021
Agency Reviewed / Investigated: 
Chicago, IL
United States
Type of Report: 
Advisory Reports
Professional Standard: 
GAO's Yellow Book, Generally Accepted Government Auditing Standards (GAGAS)

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