Mon, Aug

Inglewood Treasurer, Mayor clash during city council meeting

SOUTH OF THE 10 - Inglewood Mayor James Butts was on the receiving end of some harsh words from a fed up colleague on the Inglewood City Council.

Residents have grown accustomed to audio challenges which interfere with our ability to listen to the members of the city council.  In today’s case, City Clerk Yvonne Horton was unable to be heard throughout today’s meeting.

The REAL explosion came during City Treasurer Wanda Brown’s weekly comments.

Brown explained that she has been inundated with calls and comments, from the public, surrounding her involvement in the city’s housing lottery.

Brown pulled the names then handed them to another city employee she identified as Lori Jones, who was tasked with reading them.

Brown explained that she had NOTHING to do with the program nor was she involved with any “funny business” pertaining to the drawing.  She went further to state that City Manager Artie Fields made the request for her to draw the names at Mayor Butts’ request.

The city has spent $1 million, from city reserves, to purchase two homes for housing winners who placed 1st and 5th on the list. It is unclear why the 2nd person on the list was passed.

Brown also made mention of an article that surfaced on the city’s finances.  According to Brown, an article written on cites with debt management troubles, by Sen. John Moorlach, who accurately predicted Orange County’s bankruptcy, must have been spot on because according to Brown, she took prompt action.

Brown compiled her own article, a nearly eight-page memorandum, in response, to the members of council and the city manager and requested they meet with her.  The only one who came to her with questions was District 4 Councilman Ralph Franklin.

She further explained the difference between the budget and Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) that Certified Public Accountants (CPA) use to express an opinion on the city’s finances, which could jeopardize their licenses if they miss anything.

She mentioned the city’s budget can be amended, the CAFR can NOT. And Moorlach’s report was based on the CAFR which includes “real” numbers.

As you may recall, 2UrbanGirls wrote about the city’s financial audits which do NOT have opinions by city auditors. Ironically, ousted Inglewood Finance & Budget Manager Barbara Ohno made similar claims to the city attempting to tarnish her CPA credentials due to the city’s “fuzzy” numbers with the taxpayer money.

As Brown was perhaps preparing to state that city auditors have failed to express an opinion on city finances, Mayor James Butts promptly cut her off. Then she let him HAVE IT!

“Mayor Butts I am reclaiming my time.  Before you were Mayor I had five minutes to speak and since you have become mayor, I have had that reduced to three.  I have had to cram my entire comments into three minutes and you removed the other three minutes not allowing me to speak at all.”

City Treasurer Wanda Brown

This clearly angered Mayor Butts who continued to interrupt the Treasurer.

“I’m tired of too much control over the meetings.  You are NOT King and I am not one of your subjects.” 

City Treasurer Wanda Brown 

Sounds like that article was spot on regarding our finances and Wanda Brown doesn’t want the public blaming her.

Good thing Mayor Butts has no authority over Brown’s office or she would definitely be reprimanded for her publicly challenging him.


Mayor Butts’ house of cards is on shaky ground.

In typical fashion, the city has yet to upload today’s council meeting to the city’s YouTube page. Will Wanda Brown’s comments be edited out? 


Video is up. Fast forward to the 7:00 minute mark to hear the exchange between the treasurer and mayor. 



(This story was first published in 2UrbanGirls.com.)