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What Can We Learn From Government Failure In Bell, California?

(Photo by Stina Sieg - KJZZ News)

Concerns about government corruption aren’t limited to certain cities, states or even countries, but the situation in Bell, California a few years ago sounds like it was pulled from the plot of a TV miniseries or exaggerated film script.

The town, which had fewer than 40,000 residents, had a chief administrative officer making $1.5 million a year in cash and other benefits.

To learn more, we spoke with Morrison Institute Director Thom Reilly, author of the recently-published book The Failure of Governance in Bell, California: Big-Time Corruption in a Small Town.

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Steve Goldstein was a host at KJZZ from 1997 to 2022.