A former Binghamton mayoral candidate who may seek the office next year is calling for better oversight of city employees following a series of thefts.

Richard David says it's time for the city to hire an internal auditor to identify deficiencies in systems that are supposed to prevent stealing by government workers.

David said employees in unrelated departments have managed to bypass safeguards and "engage in widespread theft of taxpayer funds or funds appropriated to benefit taxpayers."

David said an internal auditor could help the city protect "every penny of taxpayer funds."

David noted that a former police detective captain, a former treasurer and a former licensing clerk have acknowledged stealing city money in recent years.

David told WNBF News that he hasn't made a decision whether he'll run for mayor next year. He said he's "very interested in" the possibility of seeking the office again. He said he'll announce his decision early next year.

Mayor Matthew Ryan's office issued a statement this afternoon noting those who stole from the city were not successful in bypassing existing safeguards.

The mayor said they were caught because "we had proper controls in place."

Ryan's statement said the city's first-ever "staff accountant" will be hired next year to give the finance department "greater capacity to oversee our budget as responsibly as possible."

The mayor said he's "firmly committed" to protecting taxpayer money.