This failure of accounting is a humiliating disaster for California.

It's been 21 months since we asked California to do what 49 other states, the federal government, and hundreds of America's largest cities do: produce a line-by-line state checkbook of its spending.

California Controller Betty Yee denied the request from our auditors at OpenTheBooks.com for its spending records, claiming she could not "locate" the records.

So we sued the State of California to get the records that are legally required to be made available to anyone who requests them.

Our initial request on Aug. 23, 2019 was ignored, and follow-up letters in October and November were finally acknowledged - 11 weeks after the first request, a violation of state open records law.

Our request was later denied, with Yee saying that they were "unable to locate" the evidence of payments that her office made and that it did not track payments that went through other state offices.

In 2018, Yee's office paid 49 million bills totaling $320 billion in payments. While she made the payments, she claims she cannot track the payments.

Somehow I doubt California would be very understanding to a taxpayer who couldn't "locate" any financial records when requested.

This failure of one of the most the basic functions of government is embarrassing beyond words.

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