COMPTON, Calif. – The operators of the employee database portal, Transparent California, has filed a lawsuit against the city of Compton for failure to provide records under the public records act.
The writ of mandate dated Nov. 8 states the City has failed to produce documents related to public records requests since 2020.
The Nevada-based nonprofit is seeking the court to declare the City unlawfully delayed and obstructed disclosure of the records request made in 2020 and 2021, enjoin the City from the further delay of producing the requested documents, and order the City to disclose responsive records for 2020 and 2021 immediately.
According to the accompanying attachments, Compton initially provided records that didn’t include the names of employees, so it didn’t satisfy the requestor’s request. The document provided by the City only listed job titles.
Based on what the City provided, the mayor and council receive $7200 annually in regular pay and $7800 in other pay. The mayor also receives nearly $27,000 in health and dental benefits, while the council member’s health and dental benefits range from $3292 to $17,500.
The last request for records was made Aug. 18, 2022.
In a statement, Todd Maddison, Transparent California’s director of research, alleged the California Public Records Act’s lack of teeth enables agencies to ignore the law. At best, a plaintiff in public records lawsuit can hope to get the documents they seek, plus perhaps their attorney’s fees covered.
“There is no consequence to public officials who simply ignore requests under the Public Records Act because such deliberate illegal behavior carries no penalty,” Maddison said. “The rest of us face serious consequences for refusing to comply with state law, but public officials can defy a constitutional mandate with impunity.”
You can view the filing by clicking here.
If the City of Inglewood and City of Compton were compared they’d might be neck and neck for FAILURE to comply with PUNBLIC RECORDS requests. Sadly those who think they are above the law get away with their attitude because of the FAILURE of the PUBLIC INTEGRITY Division of the LOS ANGELES DISTRICT ATTORNEY. Yes people we all have to vote on our behalf rather than for those whose names we have heard or who send the most mailers to our homes. Remember it is the STATE ATTORNEY GENERAL who we must ultimately hold accountable for enforcement of STATE LAWS. And of course we should all vote AGAINST ANY CITY CLERK who does not provided requested documents or the written denial from whichever Department fails to provide. And yes when they refuse it is time to call on every media you can think of.nad let everyone know there are city employees failing to do their job and perhaps many with good reason to not disclose we call that corruption. There is usually a sinister reason for non compliance and lack of full disclosure.
Here’s a test case that we can all watch.
November 17, 2022
City Manager’s Office
205 S. Willowbrook Avenue
Compton, CA 90220
Under the Freedom of Information Act, I am requesting information related to the amount each of these organizations received pursuant to the state of California Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program.
Specifically, the amount each organization received from this fund, the non-profit EIN if the organization is a non-profit pursuant to section 501(c)(3), section 501(c)(6), or section 501(c)(19). I am also requesting the application requesting funds submitted by each of these organizations.
Children Striving Together
Children Striving Together
Citizens Coalition for Change
Citizens Coalition for Change
Clean Compton Initiative vs Healthy Compton Initiative
Community Fitness Challenge
Compton Chamber of Commerce
Compton Coalition for Ethical Alliance (CCEA)
Compton Coalition for Integrity in Governance
Compton Community Development
Compton Empowered Congress
Compton Empowerment Compton Empowered
Compton Farmer’s Market
Compton Freedom School Impact
Compton Live Matter
Compton Pledge Community Advisory Council
Compton, Girl’s Club
Compton’s Girls Club
Concern Citizens of Compton
Corp Circles Compton
D 3 Coalition
Empowerment Justice Strategies
Entrance Youth Empowerment Youth Build
Entrenous Youth Empowerment Youth Build
For the Love of Veterans
Fresh Tracks Leadership Expeditions
Girls Fly 1 Compton
Girls Space Compton
HUB City Radio and TBD Youth Program
Maker’s Hub Adrianne Ferre
My Brother’s Keeper
Nina Child’s Production LLC
Rites of Passage
Screaming Eagles Company
South Los Angeles Economic Development
Straight Up 20 Corp
TBD Trucking Company
TDB Youth Program
The Strategist Company LLC
Unearth and Empower Communities
Urban Lady Foundation
Urban Vision Community Development Corporation
VCS Prosperity Consulting
Vecinos Unidos de Compton
Veterans Stand Down
Vision for Compton
We Run Compton
Willow Walk HOA Officers
Young Ladies Empowerment
Young Men of Compton Mentorship Program
Isaac A. Asberry
Publicizing the information when multiple persons made repeated inquiries about non-profit and COVID recipients back as early as 2020 would have avoided submission of such a long list. We should compare notes again. There’s even more. Good luck, Isaac and Ron, and please copy me on your results.
Refusal to release certain documents in response to certain public inquiries even by certain people is and has been an on-going problem in the City of Compton for years. CBS News had to go through Congresswoman Nanette Barragan’s office one time for information on Measure P to do a news story since the city refused. Residents made requests for four years straight that went denied about how Measure P sales tax funds were being spent the first few years.City had already spent 40 million dollars before a public report became available and before the Taxpayer Committee supposed to watch over spending had ever met. When you point these things out, these discrepancies, then some try to attack not the city and the city clerk but the observer, wronged or denied person like them complaining is the problem. Only in Compton. But independent eyes are upon Compton. State Auditor, regulatory agencies, law enforcement, those with a lawyer can sue. Good. Because otherwise they ignore, run over and resent residents every day. Standard issue. City Clerk Alita Godwin just resigned after 40 years with the city in an office awash in allegations for years. Let’s see if the city has a clean bone in its body to appoint someone wants to instill integrity back into that office. Clock ticking.
The city clerks office can only release what the departments make available to them.
True. I’ve heard that and sometimes it’s true but other times, dependent upon the administration and subject matter they don’t want released, then the city clerk has been complicit and even obstinate towards persons inquiring and pressing an issue. It is not always just a “my hands are tied and I apologize for the other departments” situation. Sometimes it’s a “how dare you ask, you’re not getting nothing about that issue we the administration are hiding” situation. Ask around. Not everyone, meaning residents, have a lawyer, company, or media title to back them up when digging for truth in Compton.