Office Depot contracts with Hillsborough County under scrutiny

12/17/08 Mitch E. Perry
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Earlier this month, Hillsborough County auditors began an investigation into Office Depot’s contracts with various county departments amid reports from other counties that the office supply giant may be overcharging for its products.

The investigation began after the county learned that Attorney General Bill McCollum’s office is investigating Office Depot’s contracts with several local governments in the state. Auditors in Lee County say Office Depot overcharged the county $60,000.

Calling it a classic bait and switch, Commissioner Kevin White today asked the County’s auditors do a random sampling review of the largest department to see if it has been overcharged to determine if a larger review is necessary.

Lula Banks, director of procurement services for Hillsborough County, said her department has been looking at Office Depot’s possible transgressions for two years. At one point, she said, the county did receive a check of $9,940 from Office Depot for "adjustments” in pricing, but she emphasized that was not a settlement check of any type.

The Clerk of The Court will now do a random review of purchases by the county’s biggest purchasing department

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