BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — The California Department of Justice is investigating Kern County for alleged discrimination and civil rights violations.
23ABC obtained a 5-page memo sent to all Kern County Department heads nearly one week ago. The memo explains how the county was subpoenaed for documents relating to contracting and employment issues.
23ABC did reach out to both the California Attorney General's Office as well as Kern County Counsel about the investigation.
What is the Kern County Counsel:
The County Counsel is the general counsel and risk manager for the County of Kern. Pursuant to California law, the office of the County Counsel is responsible for providing legal services to the County, its officers, employees, boards, commissions, and other agencies. It is also responsible for the County's safety program, insurance coverage, general liability, and workers compensation claims.
To advise, assist and represent our clients as efficiently and economically as possible, in accordance with the highest professional and ethical standards.
Margo Raison, the Kern County Counsel, said in a statement: "Kern County was informed by the California Attorney General that an investigation is occurring into contracting and employment practices of the county. The county is and will fully cooperate with the investigation. We are confident the practices of the county are in keeping with all federal and state laws and regulations and anticipate the investigation will so conclude."
The California Attorney General's Office issued the following statement: "Thanks for reaching out. To protect its integrity, we are unable to comment on, even to confirm or deny, a potential or ongoing investigation."
According to the document the subpoena asks for any documents in connection to the Dolores Huerta Foundation, South Kern Sol, Building Healthy Communities, Adelante, and The Jakara Movement to name a few. 23ABC has reached out to all the non-profits listed for comment but has not heard back as of this time.
FULL MEMO FROM CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE: