"All the events and circumstances contained in the report occurred under the direction of a former Chief Information Officer, who was separated from City government more than eight months ago," the statement said.

The officer, Singleton, resigned in February after an audit in New York detailed ethics violations while he worked in that state's government, including negotiating a job for his girlfriend and soliciting a job for himself with a software vendor that was awarded a major contract.

The new chief information officer, Chris Tonjes, said he plans to work collaboratively with Pratt's office to implement the new phone system. Even so, Tonjes said he believed the Digicon purchases were of high value and saved taxpayers money. In his last job at the D.C. library system, Tonjes said, he paid much more than what Digicon charged for the same equipment.

The mayor's information technology office is "doing everything possible to save taxpayer money over the long run," the statement from the mayor's office says.

Councilman Robert Curran, who was briefed on the report Thursday, said he was disappointed by the apparent conflicts of interest shown in the report.

"Obviously that's improper," he said. Still, Curran said, "the bottom line is nothing was illegally done."

Councilman William H. Cole IV said that "it's clear the administration has to tighten up some things," but he was encouraged to see the report didn't point to any illegality.

"It is refreshing that we have an inspector general that is active, engaged and willing to take on tough issues," he said. "I think steps will be taken to make sure things like this don't happen again."

luke.broadwater@baltsun.com

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