In its desperation to keep on living high in the Second Great Depression, L.A. City Council — in its abominable ignorance — doubled the charges on parking meters everywhere and expanded the hours you have to pump quarters into them or face much high fines.
And now people all over town are going around asking the same question: Can anybody spare a roll of quarters?
A policy enacted by the council as part of the budget for the sole purpose of covering up the fact they have bankrupted the city — revenue is up a third under Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s tax-and-squander leadership — is hurting businesses struggling to survive and made life almost impossible for the North Hollywood little theater community.
It’s yet another example like the $42 million elephant exhibit and the nightmare of digital billboards where the council excuses its incompetence with the usual if-I-knew-then-what-I-know-now-I-wouldn’t-have-done-anything-so-stupid.
Who they kidding?
They knew then that a lot of people hated keeping elephants in cages and they knew everybody but their benefactors in the billboard companies hated giant electronic screens flashing new messages for hyper-consumerism every few seconds, 24-7.
And they knew when they approved the budget exactly what the consequences were because the Department of Transportation told them so.
But they didn’t care; they never care, until the public is in an uproar over the loss of business and the need to carry around a pocketful of quarters.
Ed Reyes does care. The councilman cares so much he actually had the audacity to criticize city budget and transportation officials and demand they go around and determine the impact of high parking charges on every business in the city — a city that can’t pay its bills so its slashing public services, a city that is overrun by gangs and doesn’t have enough cops, a city turning “pay-to-play” political corruption into a way of life.
“I think we need to see if the increase in parking
meters is having an impact on sales tax revenue,” Reyes was quoted as saying in the Daily News. “Perhaps
it is not the wisest move to raise rates in some parts of the city
where we will be forcing people to go to other areas.”
By “some parts of the city,” class warrior Reyes means what he always means: The “rich” people who live in the other 14 council districts should subsidize every aspect of life in his neighborhoods.
Of course, nobody’s rich right now except the truly rich and those on
the city payroll (most of whom don’t even live in L.A.) who are protected from the impact of the collapse in
the economy because they keep people like Reyes in $180,000 a year jobs
they could never otherwise get.
These are people who approved the nation’s largest solar energy plan in just three weeks without even knowing the first thing about what they were doing, without considering the intended or unintended consequences.
They don’t give a damn. All they know is that there will be billions and billions of dollars they can channel to their friends and contributors and when the electricity rates soar and too little solar power is generated, they will call the bureaucrats on the carpet and demand to know why they aren’t doing their jobs