Stephanie DeWolfe, the former Community Development Director for the City of West Hollywood, has been pushed out of her job as South Pasadena’s city manager.
A press release from the City of South Pasadena that was released on Sunday said that DeWolfe had submitted her resignation from the position, which she assumed on Nov. 6, 2017. Before that, DeWolfe had worked for the City of West Hollywood since Dec. 17, 2012, overseeing the city’s planning and development staff. DeWolfe’s resignation took effect on Sept. 12.
According to the South Pasadenan, the newspaper that covers South Pasadena, DeWolfe’s resignation took effect the day before the 4 p.m closed session meeting that the Pasadena City Council had arranged for this past Sunday. “The only agenda item will be a ‘public employment’ matter concerning embattled City Manager Stephanie DeWolfe,” the South Pasadena reported.
The city announced the resignation only a half hour after its closed special meeting and said that Fire Chief Paul Riddle would assume the role of Acting City Manager.
In a series of stories, the South Pasadena has described Wolfe as “having become the focus of a raging controversy over her management of the city and especially its finances.
“During her two-year, 10-month tenure, she replaced over a half dozen department heads and went through five finance directors,” the newspaper reported.
But especially controversial was DeWolfe’s handling of what she had described as “inappropriate accounting practices” by the city’s Finance Department.
DeWolfe hired a consultant to reorganize the Finance Department and hired a new finance director, Karen Aceves. But by then, “the city was already falling behind not only in cleaning up the financial morass, but in the preparation of the city’s annual audit and Comprehensive Annual Financial Report.”
DeWolfe was criticized by former South PasadenaFinance Director Josh Betta, who released a reportsaying the city’s proposed 2020-21 budget figures were “blatantly false.” The South Pasadena reports that finance professionals Stephen and Sheila Rossi said they had identified millions of dollars in discrepanciesbetween the proposed budget Aceves got approved by the city’s finance commission and the one she submitted for approval by the City Council.
Before being named Community Development Director for West Hollywood, DeWolfe had served as deputy director of the Planning & Community Development Department for the City of Pasadena. In that position, she managed the city’s Planning Division, where she oversaw zoning, design and historic preservation, and community planning. She had been on staff at the City of Pasadena since 1990 in various roles including Acting Assistant City Manager, where she worked with the City Manager on policy issues and management of the City Council.