Last year, L.A. officials awarded four contracts worth $545,000 to Managed Career Solutions for workforce development services. Backing the company was then-Councilman Eric Garcetti, a longtime supporter.

“There is a great need to support the efforts of Managed Career Solutions Inc.,” Garcetti wrote in a motion to approve one of the contracts, for veterans’ services.

It turns out that the company has also been a longtime supporter of Garcetti and other officials. The company’s principals, employees and their families have contributed at least $44,000 to Garcetti’s campaigns, including his successful bid for mayor last year, campaign finance records show. That’s more than three times the nearly $13,000 those contributors have put into election campaigns for other city races.

Now, a former employee is alleging that MCS’ owner, Philip Starr, coerced employees to donate to political campaigns in an effort to secure contracts, and illegally reimbursed contributions made by employees and their family members to get around contribution limits. The allegations were made in a lawsuit filed by Richard Galope, MCS’ former director of planning and development who is also former executive director of the Los Angeles City College Foundation.

A spokesman for Garcetti said the Mayor’s Office would look into MCS but did not provide a comment.

Read the full story in the July 7 weekly edition of the Business Journal.

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