SAN DIEGO - Mayor Bob Filner's office ran up more than $11,000 on a city credit card since January, and the account was suspended because only one payment had been made, documents obtained by Team 10 revealed.
An anonymous source provided internal emails that show the balance was $11,005.90 on a US Bank account. Of that amount, $975.08 is listed as going towards the mayor’s personal expenses that must be paid back.
Click here to read the emails (mobile users: http://bit.ly/19vZMrZ)
The personal charges included purchases at Westgate Hotel, Indigo café & catering, United Airlines and Hilton Vela Restaurant.
The most recent memo obtained by Team 10 is dated Monday, August 12. It is from the comptroller’s office to the mayor, and states, “Our records indicate that you have a payment obligation to the city for personal expenses charged to your department’s procurement card.”
From the records, it appeared there was a rush to pay off the $11,005.90. It was not immediately clear what all of the charges were for.
One email from Elena Perez, disbursements manager at the comptroller’s office, is dated August 2. It states the check was cut to cover the account, and mailed as overnight delivery to the bank.
“I have confirmed with the bank …. that the office of the mayor account will not be charged off, which would have adversely affected our relationship and credit with the bank,” wrote Perez.
“Per instruction from Lee Burdick, the mayors p-card was terminated 7/31/13,” Perez said.
The mayor's chief of staff appears to have suspended Filner's account.
“I am hereby directing/authorizing you to terminate the p-card held by the mayor,” Burdick wrote in one email at the end of last month.
Questions about the charges were not immediately answered by the mayor's office.
If the bill had not been paid on time, the city's credit rating could have been affected.
City Councilman Kevin Faulconer issued this statement to Team 10:
"Mayor Filner's continued abuse of power knows no bounds. Based on this new evidence, I am broadening the scope of my Audit Committee hearing to investigate how Mayor Filner was able to circumvent credit card rules and how to prevent negative effects on the City's credit rating as a result of one person's misuse of taxpayer dollars."
Earlier in the day, the city attorney released an opinion on whether the mayor could be removed from office, if Filner allowed unauthorized payments from the city treasury, but it was not clear if that had any relation to how this credit card bill was paid.