At their Tuesday morning meeting, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors discussed a number of important issues facing the county, including prison and law enforcement accountability, adequate legal representation for low-income juvenile offenders and the possibility of bringing the 2024 Olympic games to the city of Los Angeles, among other things.
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Supervisors Mark Ridley-Thomas and Gloria Molina recommended that the board vote to appoint a Citizen’s Oversight Commission for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
The recommendation comes in the midst of an investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice as to whether deputies have abused inmates in county jails, according to a press release issued by Ridley-Thomas.
“The seriousness of this new investigation and the allegations of abuse that prompted it cannot be ignored,” Ridley-Thomas said in a statement. “The Sheriff’s Department has long required a level of scrutiny that has been missing, and although the board only controls it’s budget, the department is there to serve the citizens of L.A. County, and that’s who should have greater oversight.”
A decision on the motion was postponed for two more weeks, until the Oct. 8 meeting.
If the recommendation is passed, each of the five supervisors would appoint one commission member by Oct. 15, and the board would provide funds for office space and equipment.
Ridley-Thomas also asked the board to look into reforming the process for assigning legal defense to indigent defendants who are minors, another decision that was postponed until Oct. 8.
The contract for current juvenile indigent defense attorneys expires on Oct. 31.
Ridley-Thomas believes that paying a flat fee to these attorneys does not ensure adequate and competent legal counsel, and suggested that the board ask the CEO to determine what the costs of reform would be.
Ridley-Thomas described the issue as a “constitutional and moral imperative,” in the motion.
The board also voted unanimously to consider the possibility of Los Angeles County hosting the 2024 Olympic Games.
The board will sign and send a letter to the United States Olympic Committee, expressing their desire to host the games, according to the meeting agenda. The county will also give it’s full cooperation to the Southern California Committee for the Olympic Games in their bid to host.
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors’ next meeting begins at 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 24 and is streamed on their website. Click here to view.
For a copy of Tuesday’s full agenda and related documents, click here.
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Source: Santa Clarita News