The Inglewood Police Department is requesting the city council amend the FY 2021-2022 budget to allocate money for additional police radios. Chief Mark Fronterotta is requesting $331,155 from the city’s reserves despite a council approved July 2020 staff report requiring departments have funds in their department budgets before requesting use of the purchase orders.
The Nov. 23 staff report attached a quote for the purchase of sixty (60) toughbook 14″ laptops costing $186,000 plus equipment for an additional $90,000.
A staff report dated July 28, 2020, from the Information Technology department, requested $1.2 million, from “various” funds, to pay for equipment. The city cited the blanket purchase orders, approved in their master agreement with Dell and Computer Discount Warehouse, would be useful in “streamlining” purchases especially those on “back order” because of the pandemic.
Councilman Eloy Morales made the motion to pass the 2020 agenda item, which was seconded by former Councilman Ralph Franklin.
“The departments will be required to have funds available in their budgets to utilize these purchase orders,” wrote Matthew Chambers, ITC director.
The issue is the staff reports don’t appear to go through the appropriate review before coming before council for vote.
The legal department is supposed to review and sign off the document meets legal muster, budget and finance review are to be performed to ensure the department has the appropriate funding on the line item they seek to charge against.
The staff reports continue to be signed off by the same person, every week.
Yulanda Pearson is an employee in the city managers office, and despite having an advanced college degree, she is neither a member of the legal, budget and/or finance departments.
Why aren’t the departments adhering to and following the council’s direction?
The city continues to use the reserve account to fund police services that residents feel are for the primary benefit of events at the Forum and SoFi Stadium and not providing services to the taxpayers.
The have used $14 million from the reserves, for services from California Highway Patrol, Hawthorne Police Department, and the Los Angeles County Sheriff.
Inglewood residents rejected a city sponsored ballot measure to increase certain taxes to maintain public safety. Measure I was narrowly defeated Nov. 2 as residents grow tired of paying additional taxes to a city they believe is shortchanging them on the services currently being provided.
“My taxes have already increased by more than $400 per year, which may not seem like a lot, but it is if you’re on a fixed income,” said Pearson Lynell.
Others say the city isn’t safe so why the continued increase of cost to live here?
“They want to create all these fees and squeeze money out of people for what,” asked Ana Brown. “For my car to be stolen? My house to be broken into? City of Champions, huh?”
If the council requires departments to have money in their budgets, before requesting use of city purchase orders, why are these items on the council agenda for vote?