Archived: EDITORIAL: Maywood Disbands City Government: Other Cities Should Heed Their Lesson


The dangers associated with a city being unable to manage its police force, and a city council that allows its meetings to get out of control, all the while failing to get tough and set policies to ensure its own viability, should be viewed as a lesson on how not to conduct city business.

The Maywood City Council on Monday voted to disband its police force and to turn over all its municipal functions to its neighbor, the City of Bell. The Los Angeles County Sheriffs’ Department will patrol the city. It is our understanding, however, that the city will continue to remain an independent city. The question is, should it?

The city of 40,000, mostly Latino residents living in an area that encompasses just over one square-mile tucked not so neatly between the cities of Vernon and Bell, is one of the most densely populated areas of the County.

For years, it has been plagued by allegations of police misbehavior and racism, political fighting and government mismanagement. Those allegations have led to the replacement of council members and a bevy of lawsuits, mostly against the police department.  The lawsuits and the extraordinary risk of liability that comes with them have resulted in the city losing its insurance coverage.

City officials, namely the city council, point to the loss of coverage, and not a budget shortfall, as the reason it was forced to shut down its municipal government, and turn over operation of its services to outside entities.

Whereas virtually every other municipality, from the state right down to the county and a growing number of cities are experiencing significant shortfalls in revenue, some even on the verge of bankruptcy, Maywood’s problems don’t appear to be just a question of a lack of financial resources.

Rather, their greatest shortfall appears to be in electing leaders who can actually lead, and a constituency that will force them, and in some cases allow them, to make hard choices.

Maywood’s situation should serve as a warning to other small cities that they should, at all times, conduct themselves with professional decorum and hire personnel with the proper credentials to control and supervise its affairs.

While the California Joint Powers Insurance Authority says Maywood is the first city to have its general liability and workers compensation terminated, its up to the people to ensure that no other city in Los Angeles County goes down this same road.

Posted - Copyright © 2022 Eastern Group Publications, Inc.

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  1. Rick Bernal on

    I live there myself and if there was any corruption before it is worse now. A lot of these people come from Mexico and Central America very poor. City officials say they see up to four families in a two-bedroom house with one bathroom. It’s the officials I agree too that has a lot to do what is going on. It was a lot better before. But Maywood years ago was segregated in the 40s and earlier now everybody including American/Mexicans left. The people here for the most part just care about a payroll check and their families. They put up everywhere their Mexican flags and the officials you wonder about them. A lot of culture class and lack of assimilation including in the city halls I have heard and been told by city official. These communities went down hill and they do not have the good reputations they once had as a working class neighborhood.
    These people … some have gone back home… for a lack of work. Others move to other places in the states maybe somewhere near you if you don’t live in an upperclass rich town.

  2. Rick Bernal on

    I use to live there myself. Maywood was segregated town before the 50s, but look at it now it’s a sanctuary for the illegals, But everythings changes every generation. South Central changed .. white to black. San Gabriel Valley Changed too as well as Orange County. It’s way too crowded now.
    Maywood is another barrio where the maternity wards are overworked. You should see how many schools are being built in these surrounding communities. These people are afraid to go back to Mexico and further down. What happened in Maywood you blame the third rate city officials and the misfit police officers they hired there with a past criminal record on some of them. If you can’t make it in another police station try Maywood they will hire you. Like being in Tijuana … crooked cops/officials it seems. The regular white/older cops don’t want to be here anymore.
    The gangs have increased…graffiti…. people….truckloads of kids. The city is not held with a good working-class reputation as once was including Huntington Park (next door). They are here and they are going to your neighborhood next unless you live in an upperclass rich city they can’t afford to. Look out!

  3. I live 3 blocks from Maywood for the past 44 years it was never like this.
    It’s the official like what happen in South Gate a few miles down the road.
    Alberto Robles the city treasurer went to prison (was mayor before, I believe).
    There is too much corruption here…officials, I believe, are pocketing money. The latino people do not give a hoot but their payroll checks and family for the most part. They have no respect for this place. They put up their Mexican flag where you go over there they won’t give you a plate of beans to these latino people… they know it. A lack of assimilation and culture class even amony the latino police. This area has gone down hill.
    That is why everybody moved out including American/Mexicans.

  4. It is pretty clear that all the southeast cities should force a joint police force. With a centralize police force for all 7 southeast cities, each city would reduce its overall law enforcement costs. They would have a combines and larger SWAT team, gang unit, etc. instead of having small ones for each. Plus, one police chief for all the cities will reduce thier costs. The money they save can them be use to better parks, streets, etc.

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