LACCD fights to get things done.

The Los Angeles Community College District (LACCD) had trouble
staying on topic Wednesday as they responded to accusations made by the State
Controllers office that the district misspent millions of dollars during the
Build program.

During the bi-weekly meting, hosted Wednesday on the Pierce Campus
in the Great Hall, the board of trustees voted on issues facing many of the
nine colleges they serve including the approval of funds needed to repair the
Allied Health Building at Los Angeles Valley College.

“We need to focus on the future,” said Tina Park board
of trustee Vice President. “We can’t change the past but we can be
diligent and not make the same mistakes in the future.”

The board also addressed the issue of possibly canceling car
allowances for newly hired Presidents of the campuses. Board Member Scott J.
Svonkin suggested the motion stating that “allowances were not in the publics
best interest”.

The board argued that it wouldn’t be fair unless they considered
removing all car allowances. The motion was left undecided to be discussed in
further detail at a later date.

“We should look at the whole picture,” said Board
President Miguel Santiago. “We have to take everything into consideration
before we make a move from the floor.”

The board also addressed issues brought up in a “special”
meeting hosted on Aug. 25 raised by state controller John Chiang’s office.

The ad hoc committee continued its work, considering changes to
district policies and procedures to reform the Building program. While the
Board of Trustee denies any wrongdoing, citing a variety of reasons, they have
agreed to eight of the State Controller’s recommendations.

One issue in particular that was focused on was that
the inspector general (IG) Christine E. Marez was hired with “possible

In response the LACCD board has requested to
have city controller Wendy Greuel review issues about the selection process.

“We need to increase our transparency,” said
Santiago. “And we need to make better us of the taxpayer’s money.”