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Sources: Analysis of Upper Darby Parking Department shows "incompetence" within government

Analysis of Upper Darby Parking Department shows "incompetence" within government, sources say
Analysis of Upper Darby Parking Department shows "incompetence" within government, sources say 03:28

UPPER DARBY, Pa. (CBS) -- Upper Darby Township officials believe nearly 1.5 million in parking ticket revenue was never collected. That's your money. 

A CBS News Philadelphia investigation continues to get to the bottom of how that happened.

An internal audit we fought to get our hands on shows layers of alleged incompetence.

Add to that a major development for the first time, the district attorney confirmed a number of investigations are underway probing the operations of the Upper Darby Township government.

As multiple sources have put it, this internal audit's findings aren't a good look for the township.

The multiple-page report had been kept under wraps for months until last week when we started asking why wasn't the taxpayer-funded report made public.


Sources at the county and township both immediately provided the document to us.

From the start, the analysis alleges a lack of communication at the township, a lack of oversight and a lack of internal controls and procedures.

The township council ordered the analysis back in February, a day after a CBS News Philadelphia investigation aired finding more than 18,000 parking citations were never sent to local courts for adjudication in almost a two-year period.

The internal audit found when new software for parking meters went live in 2020, the program lacked a direct encrypted electronic connection to the state court system.

That would appear to be the first breakdown of several, according to the internal audit.

The analysis then alleges the township's former chief administrative officer restricted workers from having direct contact with IT experts for help unless granted authorization.

According to the report, one IT consultant told investigators: "If I did anything other than the Director of Administrative Service's assignment, I would not be paid."

The internal audit alleged the final straw was when a township worker became so frustrated trying to get IT assistance to transmit the tickets to the courts, that the worker stopped trying to send them altogether.


Delaware County District Attorney Jack Stollsteimer confirmed his office has launched an investigation.

"As you know from your reporting, there has been a series of disputes related to the parking situation in Upper Darby Township," Stollsteimer said, "whether or not parking violations were being reported to district courts or whether if they were being adjudicated in some other way. That has come to our attention."

That internal audit concluded within the parking department there "appears to have been no centralized decision making" and alleges that to this day the "internal controls of the parking department are unsatisfactory to safeguard Township assets."

Stollsteimer says law enforcement resources have been allocated to figure out what happened in Upper Darby.

"We take all of these allegations seriously," Stollsteimer said. "We are going to do investigations and if we, if charges are meant to be brought, we will bring them."

CBS News Philadelphia spoke to Mayor Barbarann Keffer by phone.

When it comes to this internal audit, she said, some of its recommendations have already been implemented but, she wouldn't talk specifics. As far as the DA's investigation, she said it would be inappropriate for her to comment.

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