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Mayor Villaraigosa's Gang Program Has Spent Half Million Evaluating Itself -- To No Avail

An audit by Los Angeles City Controller Wendy Greuel scheduled to be released Tuesday found that Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's $26-million-a-year Gang Reduction and Youth Development office has, along with the nonprofit Urban Institute, spent more than a half million dollars to evaluate itself but so far has nothing to show for it.

"It is impossible to measure the overall success of the Mayors offices efforts because they - and their contractor, the Urban Institute - have been unable to provide evaluation of GRYD's overall efforts. GRYD and the Urban Institute have spent nearly a year and $525,000 in taxpayer funds trying to evaluate the effectiveness of GRYD's work yet have no measurable outcomes," reads a statement from Greuel's office.

That appears to be the worst mark on Greuel's report card for the gang programs. It states that after all city gang-reduction programs were consolidated under the mayor's office in 2008 that bureaucracy has been fairly efficient, meeting many of the recommendations set forth in a former audit.

According to her statement:

Overall the audit found that 52% of the original 109 audit recommendations have either been implemented or are no longer relevant. Additionally 47% of the recommendations have been partially implemented or are still in-progress. Only 1 recommendation has not been implemented. The audit found that GRYD has made substantial progress in implementing the original audit's recommendations in laying a strong foundation for a comprehensive anti-gang strategy.