A 2016 audit from the US Housing and Urban Development Dept. fits into a larger pattern of Inglewood’s questionable financial practices

“I am extremely confident and optimistic about the future of our City. Government will be smaller [and] leaner … Our institutions and actions will be more transparent and responsive to the desires of its residents.”

Those were the words of Inglewood Mayor James Butts in his 2011 State of the City address, months after prevailing in a tightly contested mayoral election. Mr. Butts had run on a simple campaign message: this ship is sinking, and I am the one to right it.

Before he emerged victorious, the city’s government faced a massive budget shortfall and was careening toward insolvency.

“The city is in a precarious financial position,” Mr. Butts told the LA Times during his candidacy. “They need someone who has operational, executive and public safety experience … Not just a politician.”

But despite the drastic budget-balancing measures Mr. Butts enacted upon taking office — including reducing city services and significantly shrinking the city workforce’s size and pay — he hasn’t shed the legacy of fraud and fiscal mismanagement dogging Inglewood leadership for decades.

If anything, he’s simply continued the trend.

See the rest of this article published on Knock LA.