Friday, July 2, 2010

Maywood, California

Maywood, California

Do you believe that a city was bankrupt in America, once the land of honey and milk, the dream land for people all over the world. Many still flowing to the country despite the financial crisis faced by the nation. The Hollywood movie continue to portrait the land as land of riches....yet there are many homeless people around Los Angeles downtown. High unemployment in many cities, with high cost of living...the life of ordinary people is tough. Now even a city is bankrupt and no longer able to provide basic services for its people....

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It is 8 miles (13 km) southeast from Downtown Los Angeles Financial District and only 2 miles (3.2 km) miles east of the Los Angeles city limit on Slauson Ave and Alamada St in the Central-Alameda neighborhood. Maywood is part of the Gateway Cities region of southeastern Los Angeles County area. Maywood is bordered by the city of Bell on the south, Vernon on the north and west, Huntington Park on the southwest, and Commerce on the east.

Maywood is a city in Los Angeles County, California, United States. At 1.4 square miles, Maywood is the third-smallest incorporated city in Los Angeles County.The population was about 30,034 on January 1, 2010, according to the California Department of Finance. Various news accounts have said its official population reaches about 45,000 when illegal immigrants are counted. 96% of population is Latino, and more than half are foreign-born, became a sanctuary city for undocumented workers.

In an unprecedented move among California cities, on July 1, 2010, the city laid off all its employees, including its entire Police Department. With a large budget deficit, and no longer able to obtain insurance, the Maywood City Council stated it was left with no other option but to adopt this plan. The City of Maywood will lose its workers compensation and commercial insurance due to its claims history over the last five years as reflected in 2005-2010 Loss Summary Statements. As a result, the City of Maywood will be unable to administer a traditional staff. From now on, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department will patrol the streets, while the neighboring city of Bell, CA will cover other city functions, such as staffing City Hall.


The article below is from cnnmoney, by Tami Luhby, senior writer, On Thursday July 1, 2010, 8:00 am EDT

Maywood, California, lays off all employees

Tiny Maywood, Calif., laid off every single one of its city employees on Wednesday.

But that doesn't mean the city is closing up shop. City Hall will still be open, as will Maywood's park and recreation center. Police will continue to patrol the streets.

They just won't be staffed by Maywood employees. The city can't have any staff because it can't get liability or worker's compensation insurance for them. Maywood's carrier, the California Joint Powers Insurance Authority, dropped it earlier this month in part because of several police-related claims.

Instead of declaring bankruptcy, Maywood officials decided to outsource all city functions. The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department will patrol the streets, while the neighboring city of Bell will cover other city functions, such as staffing City Hall.

Maywood already relies on contract workers and outsources many city services. The director of parks and recreation, for instance, is a contractor, and the city's lights, landscaping and street sweeping are handled by private companies. Los Angeles County maintains the library and fire department.

Some of Maywood's 96 employees -- which include 41 police officers -- will also continue as contract workers. Elected officials, such as the city council and the city clerk, will remain on the job in the 1.5-square-mile municipality, which has about 45,000 residents.

"Odds are residents will see the same faces as in years past, just under a different administrative process," said Magdalena Prado, the city's community relations director, who is a contract worker and is keeping her post.

Maywood is billing itself as the first American city to outsource all of its city services. In an odd twist, officials say it can provide even better services because the shift will help it save money and close a $450,000 shortfall in its $10 million general fund budget.

For instance, the contract with the sheriff's department costs about half of the more than $7 million spent annually to maintain the Maywood police department, Prado said. And patrols will be increased.

"Our community will continue to receive quality services," Mayor Ana Rosa Riso said in a statement. "Maywood's streets will continue to be swept, our summer park programs will continue to operate and our waste will be collected and hauled as scheduled."

Stressed cities

A growing number of cities are looking to contract out or share services regionally as the economic downturn takes its toll on municipal budgets.

"Everything is on the table," said Chris Hoene, research director at the National League of Cities. "The fiscal stress cities are feeling mean they are looking for alternative options to deliver services that cost less money."

Some 7 in 10 city officials said they are cutting personnel to balances their budgets, while another 68% are holding off on capital projects, according to a survey the league did in May. More than half of respondents say they will make to further slash city services next year if taxes or fees are not raised.

Not everyone is distressed by Maywood's unusual plan for providing city services. While Jesus Padilla feels sorry for the workers being affected, he thinks things might improve. He's made lots of calls to the county sheriff's department when he worked as a security guard and said officers always responded promptly.

"The council made the best decision it could," said Padilla, a local activist who has lived in Maywood for more than 30 years. "It's going to be good for the city and the citizens."


if a city cannot survive, can an ordinary people survive? it a forewarn sign? .....that bad things are coming???? for California, for USA, for even other part of the world, the good time is over ????......

Today is Maywood, tomorrow may be your city....

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