The Los Angeles police officers' union isn't happy with the compromise the city struck with the Lakers to share the costs of Wednesday's parade celebrating the team's world championship victory.
Paul M. Weber, president of the Los Angeles Police Protective League, said the city should not be paying for the parade at a time when workers are facing layoffs and forced furloughs.
Both the team and the city will kick in about $1 million each for the festivities, which for the first time includes the significant cost of renting the Coliseum. The Lakers worked with city officials to keep costs down, including ruling out a weekend celebration or a longer parade, according to Tim Harris, the Lakers’ senior vice president for business operations and chief marketing officer.
The city will pay for police, transportation and general staff, said Matt Szabo, spokesman for Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.
[Updated at 1:42 p.m.: Responding to the criticism, Villaragoisa said this afternoon that he is seeking private donations to cover most, if not all, of the city's $1-million contribution. Speaking on KTLA-TV Channel 5, the mayor said he has already raised "several hundred thousand dollars" from private donors whose names he did not provide. "We are going to have a parade," the mayor said.]
"At a time of financial crisis, when the public expects -- and quite frankly should demand -- city leaders to be good stewards of every tax dollar, it is foolish for elected officials to favor spending 1 million tax dollars on a three-hour parade," Weber said in a statement. "We have great hopes that the NBA and the Lakers, which made millions during the playoffs, will step up and help fund this celebratory civic event. Everyone loves a parade, but we feel strongly in this case, the Lakers or other private funds should pay for it."
The mayor said Sunday that to not hold a parade “is untenable,” even as city officials have been meeting behind closed doors to find hundreds of millions of dollars in budget cuts.
Our question to you: Do you think LA should foot half the bill for the Lakers parade?
NOooo freakin' wayyy !
What is $ 1 million in the budget of the Lakers ?? How many people in LA area don't give a damn about basketball and/or are in misery ??
LA county can do a lot with $1 million but not that... NBA is a professional association, not a charity !
I just read about all the street lights left on around the clock in the city.. If LA was more accountable for the little $$ they are blowing down the tubes, this $1m celebration would not be such a big deal.. Also how was the other guy impeached and the governator is still in office playing cat and mouse with the state budget. It is the divisive 2 party system and lots of selfishness, greed and stupidity that is raining on this parade. Its been a long time coming for the Lakers & we know the Clippers couldn't do.. Lets rock out... The rioters & looters should be shot dead and left on display for the other idiots to learn from..
maybe it could cost 1million but a lot of families will go to see the Lakers, Its a parade! is for fun and i think that the government can give the permission and the team spend the money :) supose its not too easy but if there going to be a lakers' parade i will go to spend time with my family even if i like more soccer and don't watch so often the basketball games i don´t have to be a lakers fan to attend.