Vernon is an industrial hub with twice as many city employees as residents.
Controller John Chiang's office has been publishing the payrolls of cities, counties, school districts, special districts and public colleges since 2010.
It was a response to the scandal in Bell, where secretive city managers hid their outsized pay from the public for years. Chiang says the website has received more than 7 million hits.
"People really, really care about this issue, especially when you witness what happened in the past in good communities like Bell," Chiang said. "They can review the salaries in their local community versus what others are paid in neighboring communities."
Vernon, an industrial hub with just 121 residents, has had its own share of trouble over big city salaries. Former city manager Bruce Malkenhorst earned more than $900,000 in his final year of employment. He was later convicted of misappropriation of public funds.
The U.S. Census Bureau has introduced a new searchable program that provides demographic information on neighborhoods based on census tracts.
To give it a try, type in your home address and the site zooms in on a color-coded map showing the median household income of your census tract and those nearby. They've got other stats: over-65 population, foreign born, high school graduates, bachelor's degree or higher education levels, working population, and homes that are owner-occupied.
The site displays data for counties and states, but not cities. That's because the site is based on census tracts, which are neatly contained within counties and states, but sometimes chopped up by city boundaries, said Census spokeswoman Stacy Vidal.
If you prefer to look up data on a mobile device, the Census Bureau's mobile app, Dwellr, provides statistics on your current location. You can also match your preferences for a place to work, visit or live, and you get suggested places to consider.
Mayor Eric Garcetti wants an outside consulting firm to review the DWP's labor costs and practices.
Mayor Eric Garcetti is calling for a review of the Department of Water and Power's labor costs and practices at the same time the city controller says he's been stonewalled as he tries to audit two nonprofits funded by the utility.
The mayor sent a letter Tuesday to the president of the Board of Water and Power Commissioners asking that an outside consulting firm be hired to examine how the DWP manages its employees. The request came just one day after Garcetti signed off on a new agreement between the DWP and its union, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 18.
"I am directing the department to engage a qualified outside consulting firm to conduct a benchmarking study, including but not limited to, comparison of labor costs and work practices at the Department of Water and Power to other municipal and investor-owned utility companies across the United States," Garcetti wrote in his letter to Commission president Mel Levine, one of the mayor's appointees.
State Sen. Kevin De Leon filed a response with the Fair Political Practices Commission after it raised questions about $25,000 the Latino Caucus gave to a nonprofit run by Tom Calderon.
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Today is Tuesday, Dec. 17, and here is what's happening in Southern California politics:
State Sen. Kevin De Leon has formally denied any role in moving $25,000 from the state's Latino Caucus to a nonprofit run by Tom Calderon, reports the Los Angeles Times. The state's Fair Political Practices Commission has been looking into the payment ever since it was revealed in a FBI affidavit outlining part of the case against state Sen. Ron Calderon.
KPCC sat down with Brian Ludmer, the teacher who was shot when a gunman opened fire at LAX Nov. 1. "I’ve never been that scared in my life. The whole recollection of it is just pure panic and being terrified," he says.
Assemblyman Mike Gatto
Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Los Angeles) wants the public to draft a law about the probate process using a new wiki-style site on the Internet.
Assemblyman Mike Gatto has promised to introduce in the California State Legislature whatever bill the public collectively drafts using a wiki — an editing platform that allows people to contribute and edit content in a shared online space.
Gatto says it'll be the nation's first crowd-sourced bill-by-wiki, using the same interface that built Wikipedia, the popular online knowledge repository. The public can submit the text of a proposed law, others in the public can augment it, and fact-check it online.
To keep the ideas focused on something that could eventually become law, Gatto's limiting the topic to changes in probate law. He said most people who have had a death in the family and gone through the probate process would have the most constructive ideas for improvement.
Gatto's staff decided on the probate topic months before his father's recent death by shooting in what appeared to be a home invasion. "It's a very unfortunate coincidence," Gatto said.