George Perez’s career in Cudahy started as a part-time janitor, culminated with a near-decade run as city manager, and may ultimately end in jail.
According to the Los Angeles Times. George Perez’s climb from his 1986 job as a janitor to city council took just eight years. Six years later, without a job, the city council changed city laws and appointed Perez to the position of city manager. From that office, he acted as a Cudahy-style municipal mafia don – directing every aspect of Cudahy life while maintaining a populist persona by meeting with upset residents himself.
But behind the front was the underbelly of the city’s corrupt government where elections were fixed, bribes were the norm, and Perez allegedly dictated the structure of government to fit his needs. When someone ran for a set on the city council without his blessing, they’d lose in epic style. One city official told an FBI informant that they would have non-residents register to vote in the city, and to ensure victory they would open absentee ballots and discard ones that supported the opposing candidates.
Perez was suddenly fired by the city last year, the FBI and City then launched investigations.
From the Los Angeles Times:
George Perez started at the bottom of Cudahy city government, cleaning toilets as a $6.50-an-hour a janitor.
He was ambitious, though, and in eight years was elected to the City Council. Six years later, with no college education or management training, Perez was running the southeast L.A. County town as city manager.
Read the full article here.