How to turn $1,800 in part-time pay into nearly $100,000 a year

Lorenzo Velez
Oscar Hernandez
George Mirabal
Luis Artiga
Teresa Jacobo
Vice Mayor
  • Intro
  • Base Salary
  • Public Finance
  • Surplus Property
  • Housing
  • Planning
  • Redevelopment
  • Waste/Recycling
You Do the Math

The Los Angeles County district attorney's office is investigating how Bell City Council members take home nearly $100,000 a year for part-time elected positions. In most cities the size of Bell elected council members would make about $400 a month. Click the buttons on the left to see how Bell officials pile up pay for sitting on city commissions to reach totals that have their constituents up in arms.


Bell City Council members make an annual base salary of $1,800. But most have earned substantial additional pay serving on boards and city agencies, including the Community Redevelopment Agency, the Community Housing Authority, the Planning Commission and more. Click on the buttons below to see the payments for each entity, many of which do little work throughout the year, records show.


Bell City Council members make $18,895.80 each year for serving on the Public Financing Authority. Records indicate that many meetings of this board, as well as others, took place during regular council meetings.


An additional $18,895.80 was earned each year by most Bell City Council members for serving on the Surplus Property Authority. In some years, records indicate that separate meetings for this and other agencies would sometimes last no more than a minute. On July 31, 2006, four agencies met for one minute each.


For serving on the Bell City Housing Authority, council members took home another $18,895.80 annually.


Council members were paid $18,895.80 each year for serving on the Planning Commission.


Council members were paid $720 for serving on the Community Redevelopment Agency, which falls under state guidelines for member compensation. Records indicate brief meetings. On March 3, 2008, for example, the redevelopment agency meeting was called to order at 7:21 p.m. and adjourned at 7:22 p.m.


Council members got an additional $18,895.80 for serving on the Solid Waste and Recycling Authority. Added together, four of the five elected members of the Bell City Council took home about $97,000 last year. The sole exception was Lorenzo Velez, who made $8,076 in 2009.

Interactive: Anthony Pesce, Ben Welsh | Reporting: Ruben Vives, Jeff Gottlieb
Source: 2009 City of Bell Personnel Action Report