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$3 Million for the Occupy LA Encampment: ‘Who’s Going to Pay for This?’

As silent as the sound of one hand clapping on the subject since the Occupy L.A.evictions from City Hall, Ex-President of the Council Eric Garcetti — the wannabe high priest in what he calls “this Temple of Democracy” — wants to duck all responsibility for  multi-million-dollar costs associated with the protesters he told “to stay as long as your need to.”

Never one to lag on the scales of hypocrisy, the mayor sent ponchos in the rain to the Occupy L.A. protesters and offered no objection to the City Council’s blanket endorsement of their protest — but then ordered them evicted when popular sentiment turned against them, estimating the costs at a “couple of hundred thousand dollar” or maybe a “few hundred thousand.”
Not one to be outdone for double-talking and duplicity, Councilman Dennis Zine — the traffic cop who presumptuously thinks he should be the watchdog on finances as the City Controller — voted for the Oct. 12 resolution in support of the Occupy movement, even joining the protesters and heaping praise on them but now is outraged that the 60-day encampment cost $2.3 million without even counting the bills for the damage to City Hall Park.

“We’re $70 million in debt,” he blusters one minute. “This is just money we don’t have that’s being expended because of
what Occupy LA has done. What they’ve basically done is cheated taxpayers out
of services. I don’t know who wins.”

And then blows more hot air the next minute, saying, “They are suing us, so I think we should look at filing a
suit to try to recover whatever we can. W
e had a lot of officers, police and General Services, who
were watching the occupation. Most of them were on
overtime and those costs add up quick.”

But a rising star among the posers and phonies on the Council horseshoe, Mitch Englander takes the dis-honors as the king of hypocrites on the Occupy L.A. issue.

Englander was present and accounted for at the opening of the Oct. 12 meeting at which the resolution in support of Occupy L.A. was set for debate. 

One hour into the meeting after the consent calendar was approved and general public comment was over, the Council took up the motion and suddenly Englander disappeared, allowing it to be approved unanimously. He was listed as absent.

With the occupiers safely removed from City Hall to city jails, Englander self-righteously demanded to know exactly how much  it cost the taxpayers. When the report came in last week putting the total at $2.3 million and likely to exceed $3 million, the Council’s newest member was so flabbergasted and angry, he was absent no more, sending out press releases, holding press conferences, visiting TV stations, calling John & Ken on KFI.

“This is a direct hit to all residents throughout Los
Angeles,” he told one reporter. “I’m disappointed that a few people who
wanted to make a statement ended up costing taxpayers so much money at a time
when L.A. doesn’t have the cash. Hopefully, now some of the council members who
supported these efforts will realize there’s a cost to residents before they
make these decisions in the future.”

Conan Nolan on Channel 4 asked Englander point blank if he objected in public or private about occupation and all he got was a mumbled and dissembling answer.


At another point, Englander asks, “Who’s going to pay for this?”

At this point, it’s the public in lost services and wasted money. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

The mayor could foot the whole bill just by eliminating 10 percent of his staff — roughly 20 people with pay and benefits included — or it could be shared among the Council members who could dump just one of the 20 staffers they each have to cover the whole bill.

Better yet, they could hold a public hearing to apportion responsibility with discussion of how much Garcetti owes, and how much each of them owes for their degree of support and what the penalty is for those who took a walk on the issue when it was voted on — Englander, Krekorian and Reyes — and how much more is owed by those who would exploit the issue after the fact.

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22 Responses to $3 Million for the Occupy LA Encampment: ‘Who’s Going to Pay for This?’

  1. Scott says:

    I’d like to see the details on this repair. Knowing first hand that the city is used to paying $80,000 for a 40 foot length of cement curbing (approximately $200 of materials and 3 days of labor by 4 men) to which our organization was able to do for less then $6,000 (still too much), I doubt highly that this figure is anywhere near a true market value.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I find it rather ironic that Englander and other members of Council unanimously have voted to approve one Community Redevelopment Agency gift after another to wealthy real estate developers totaling hundreds of millions of dollars. These actions are precisely just one way the system is rigged by the Los Angeles City Council to reward wealthy campaign contributors with yet more money from the taxpayers. Is there one peep of discontent or alarm at the City Council over these giveaways to the billionaires like Eli Broad who got $50 million from the City for his ego-palace art museum? (Sound of crickets plays here.)
    But when the nascent Occupy LA movement conducts a massive free speech action on the City’s public square, these absolute slimeball City Council hypocrites jump before the cameras demanding repayment of $1 or $2 million of trumped up “costs.”
    Why isn’t Englander and the other opportunists instead demanding that Eli Broad return his ill-gotten $50 million to the public treasury in order to cover the Occupy LA “costs” of free speech?
    The only way to change LA is to get rid of the current City Council and Mayor and recruit articulate grass roots and smart Occupy LA leaders to run for City offices. The status quo whores must be swept from office and replaced with those who commit to kill the CRA and other massive corrupt corporate and union welfare pimp programs that drain the City’s general fund.

  3. Anonymous says:

    “The only way to change LA is to get rid of the current City Council and Mayor and recruit articulate grass roots and smart Occupy LA leaders to run for City offices. The status quo whores must be swept from office and replaced with those who commit to kill the CRA and other massive corrupt corporate and union welfare pimp programs that drain the City’s general fund.”
    A BIG AMEN – LET’S GET TOGETHER ON THIS.
    THE TAXPAYERS SHOULD VOTE UNANIMOUSLY ON THIS
    NEXT ELECTION.

  4. Anonymous says:

    I have the easy solution to all of this bullshit mess the council and Mayor made. First Chief Beck lied and said the Overtime for cops was being paid by AEG’s money from Michael Jackson funeral. Bullshit!!! That money was spent two years ago. So, the simple solution would be for all 15 city council members to pitch in $$$ from their million $$$ discretionary funds. They opened their big mouths and gave Occupy LA an open invitation as did the gangster Mayor. The Mayor made us taxpayers spend $300,000 to have 7 members of his staff, his security detail all go to Asia with him. The Mayor should also pitch in since he has money from all his good buddies like Eli Broad who gets millions of our tax payer dollars. There!!! Problem Solved and services shouldn’t be cut.

  5. Ms.Anonymous says:

    Fine with me if the mayor and council get rid of excess baggage staffers to pay for the mess they made, but they CANNOT send them over to the DWP. They must be fired!
    And yes, each councilmember and the mayor have office slush funds that could be used.
    But I’d like to know what the occupiers did to the lawns and sprinklers to cause more than a million dollars worth of damage. Did they dig up all the pipes? Punch a zillion holes in them with their tent poles? Steal them? Destroy the automated sprinkler controls? Make pot pipes out of all the sprinkler heads?
    A million plus to resod lawn and fix sprinklers? I don’t think so!

  6. Anonymous says:

    “A million plus to resod lawn and fix sprinklers? I don’t think so!
    That is really big lie!!! A way to charge us
    to pay off cronies and supporters?????

  7. Anonymous says:

    The Mayor will find a way to steal all of it from the charter-mandated funding for Rec and Parks, of course.
    What a piece of sh*t Villaraigosa is.

  8. Not much bang for the buck says:

    The sad part is that we didn’t get much bang for our buck from the occupy folks who thought Garcetti, the bankers best friend, was heir hero.
    I support free speech even when it costs the tax payers $$$, and I support right to assembly and right to petition. Constitutional rights to freedom are not FREE — that is life. I don’t mind paying for our FREEDOMS. Thank goodness we do not have to pay with ur lives in L.A. like Syrians.
    The $2.3 to $3 Million figure is probably a fraud like everythinga t City Hall, but my point is simple. These Occupiers were ignorant of everything about Los Angeles and did nothing to improve anything. They didn’t even have the brains to know what to protest.

  9. jack kennedy's ghost says:

    Mitch Englander – A profile in courage he’s not…
    What else would one expect from someone who switched parties to take the job with Greig Smith, after being “active” in the Young Dems and every other front group that Harvey could get him involved with, back when they thought he was going to the Legislature.

  10. Helen Gahagan Douglas' ghost says:

    It is even funnier when you realize he has sided with Brad Sherman against Howard Berman, who has been endorsed and supported by Harvey.

  11. Helen Gahagan Douglas' ghost says:

    It is even funnier when you realize he has sided with Brad Sherman against Howard Berman, who has been endorsed and supported by Harvey.

  12. Anonymous says:

    The real sad part is that the Mayor and Council act like they have no responsibility with the mess they created.
    The Mayor and all Council members should take funds out of their own budgets to pay for the problems that they caused!
    But they won’t……. they will go to the General Funded departments and suck the life out of the services each one of us tax payers pays for.
    EXAMPLE: They keep cutting the funds for Building and Safety Code Enforcement that actually makes a difference deterring and removing blight in communities… also we will have to trip over the broken sidewalks, take the alignment out of whack on our cars due to hitting potholes….. and so on, and so on!!!!!

  13. anonymous says:

    Hey-The Council probably felt like it was okay to allocate our tax and rate dollars to the OLA mess because they helped to deflect the blame off of them.
    Whether OLA or the City pays the price, the precedence has been set. In the spirit of equal protection, I expect Council to provide the same privileges to any other group that wishes to set up shop at City Hall–be it the American Quilter’s Society or the KKK.

  14. anonymous says:

    “The only way to change LA is to get rid of the current City Council and Mayor and recruit articulate grass roots and smart Occupy LA leaders to run for City offices.”
    Don’t you get it? OLA is also bought off by corporate interests—the unions. And, please, do not think that the unions represent the working class anymore.
    Until politicians can no longer be purchased, no one is free from corruption. That does not just include direct contributions, it also includes bought and paid for ads by “outside” parties–or any party for that matter. No ads, no mailers and no contributions-that is the only road out of this mess. Sadly, it’s the only road no one will travel.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Yes, the exemption of political campaign contributions from the First Amendment should be the highest priority. The U.S. Supreme Court is an instrument of the monied interests.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Yes, the exemption of political campaign contributions from the First Amendment should be the highest priority. The U.S. Supreme Court is an instrument of the monied interests.

  17. anonymous says:

    Dear December 28, 2011 1:17 AM–
    I love you!!!
    Sincerely,
    December 28, 2011 12:50 AM

  18. Anonymous says:

    KFI John and Ken had the solution. You don’t hire anyone from the outside but use the same damn employees already on the City payroll to fix the lawn and other damages Beck said OT for officers was paid so that’s not an issue so what else is the Mayor saying the $2 million is for?

  19. Anonymous says:

    This is just a ploy to reduce services or increase fees or both. But then again you were complacent and let Villar to get re-elected and same for garcetti. It would be very nice if every poster adds at the end of his/her post how did they vote in 2009 or whether they bothered to vote at all.

  20. Anonymous says:

    I AM PROUD TO SAY I CAMPAIGNED AND VOTED FOR MAYOR HAHN. I was yelled at, threatened, called a racist for not voting for the 1st Latino Mayor because I’m Latino. I told everyone I knew NOT to vote for the Gangster Mayor and look at the destruction he has made in our City. I can hold my head high and say “I told you so”

  21. Anonymous says:

    At last!!!

  22. Anonymous says:

    Even as the city wants to ripoff Occupy LA, here is a reminder of the LAPD HQ lawn ruined by the LAPD Union’s fundraiser. Interesting, that the price to repair the lawn was only $12,000 in 2010 and $2 million a year later. Depends on who does the damage. Cannot trust anyone in cityhall. THUGS!
    “The Los Angeles Times wades into the story about the great brown lawn at the LAPD headquarters, reporting that there’s bickering about how the the lawn, which was damaged during a November fund-raising event, should be paid for. While the police foundation–the group that held the ball–admits they are responsible for turning the damage around, now there’s a “dispute between insurance companies over who should pay for the $12,000 replanting,” according to Thom Brennan, commanding officer of the LAPD’s Facilities Management Division”.

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