Public records, you may have noticed, are essential to the work I do here on MK.Org. Without them it’s hard for me to find subjects without turning to unsubstantiated mouth-off-shooting.1 And local agencies including pretty much every department of the City of Los Angeles have always been very bad about producing records. They stall, they temporize, they lie, they go silent, and use a tediously unvaried set of ridiculous excuses to explain their noncompliance with the law.
And to that list of standardized and implausible excuses they’ve added the COVID-19 pandemic.2 About which they’re almost certainly mostly lying, but I still don’t feel right hassling actual individual City employees about my requests because who knows what unimaginable personal tragedies they might be dealing with? It occurred to me pretty recently that if the City’s going to fail to produce records for me to write about I could write about their failures to produce.
It’s an inexhaustible source of topics, and I’m kicking things off with a post about City Council District 13, an inexhaustible source all on its own.3 This ill-fated district is infamously repped by the widely despised Mitch O’Farrell, who along with his frontman and loyal minion Dan Halden, manages to violate the CPRA in any number of egregious but interesting ways, some of them unique in my experience to his office alone. Today we’re talking about just one of them, which is delay of production.4 Continue reading Mitch O’Farrell And The California Public Records Act — His Office Violates It So Egregiously That — Comparisons Fail Me — Here’s The Story Of One Request — From May 2019 — That It Took Loyal O’Farrell Flunky Dan Halden Eleven Months To Complete — Along The Way He Lied And Lied And Lied — Obviously At O’Farrell’s Bidding — For Instance In June 2019 He Said It Would Take Six Months Of Work To Finish — And When He Finally Got Around To It He Did The Whole Damn Job In Essentially One Week — Which Would Have Been Great If That Week Hadn’t Started On April 14, 2020 — This Is The Same O’Farrell Who Voted Against An Eviction Moratorium Because He Said It Would Be Illegal For The City Council To Pass It — He Called It A “Pretend Measure Which We Could Never Enforce” — Which Is Apparently How He Sees The Public Records Act As Well — This Is Part One In An Endless Series By The Way — The Next Installment Is About O’Farrell’s Redaction Policies — Which Are More Illegal — And More Weird — Than You Can Probably Imagine — Hinted At Briefly In The Cartoon!