Council seeks rules on preservation of records

LOS ANGELES — The City Council has approved the formation of a working group that will look into creating rules for council transitions, in response to complaints that important records are being destroyed by outgoing council members.

Councilman David Ryu, who took office last summer, said the previous 4th District councilman, Tom LaBonge, left him with no records to follow up on various important issues and constituent cases.

Ryu’s office was able to recover about 35 boxes of records that had initially been sent to be destroyed only because the City Attorney’s Office had tracked those files down for a case it was working on.

The council Feb. 24 approved Ryu’s motion calling for a standardized process and instructed that a working group formulate ideas for transition protocols. City staffers told a council committee last month that there is a protocol, but they are not written down.

Saying Ryu’s experience is “not unique,” Councilman Paul Koretz recounted his experience when he took over from his predecessor, Jack Weiss, who “left me without a single piece of paper or computer record, so we had to start every single constituent case from scratch.”

“So I don’t know how many other folks have experienced this on the council when they started, but I think it’s a process that should end and I strongly support taking a good look at this,” Koretz said.



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