What’s Going On: City of Compton


January 19, 2012

In  a recent LA Times article entitled, “Allegations of fraud deepens Compton’s financial troubles“, I wasn’t surprised this was happening.   For many years the Council has repeatedly faced questions regarding the decrease in revenue, in spite of the success of the newly opened Burlington Coat Factory located inside of the Compton Renaissance Center,  Best Buy, Staples, Target & T.G.I. Friday’s, inside the Gateway Towne Center, the city has no clear strategy on what to do to increase revenue to the city.With a looming $41 million dollar deficit and uncertainty in the job stability, the City of Compton appears to be on the brink of disaster.  But alas, the most recent, former City Manager Lamont Ewell, who resigned during the council meeting, was in the process of securing lines of credit through various banking lenders.  With City Mayor Eric Perrodin calling for lie detector tests of top city officials, as well as council members, to gauge/detect their knowledge of improprieties of the cities money and most recently accusing city staff of fraud.  Perrodin has also asked State Controller John Chiang to step in and oversee an audit of the cities financial records as he has done in the past with the cities of Bell and Montebello.  These allegations will further stall efforts to turn this city around.  As a direct result of the financial crisis, Ewell found it necessary to par down the payroll and not pay himself having full knowledge of the cities financial straits, he resigned from the City Manager position.

The job of the City Council is to appoint competent, trust worthy persons to posts that directly oversee the cities interests.  The City of Compton has been through at least four (4) City Managers in the past five (5) years.  Do you feel the Council are not vetting candidates properly for their positions?  Do you feel the City Council are not listening to their City Manager’s?  Should the Council be held accountable for who they appoint to the position?

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