Thursday, July 09, 2009

People of LA less than thrilled at paying for Jackson DVD shoot

I'm sure that when the Jackson memorial winds up on sell-through DVD, it'll be through "public demand" and not, in any way, part of a long-term plan on anyone's part to turn a profit from the event.

Meanwhile, the people of Los Angeles are starting to ask why their cash-strapped city underwrote a large chunk of the costs of staging the event:

“I admit I shed a tear with Mariah, Queen and Paris,” said Jody Greenblatt, a pharmaceutical executive who lives in Los Angeles. “But I cry more at the thought of teachers’ pink slips, forced furloughed days, unemployment rates sky high and a state bankrupt.”

And it's not just voters:
On Tuesday, the city attorney, Carmen Trutanich, took the highly unusual step of appearing during the public comment period of a City Council hearing to announce that his office was investigating how Los Angeles taxpayers came to foot a bill for police protection and other city functions at the service, at a time when the city and state are running out of money.

To make matters worse, it turns out the money that was spent wasn't actually used all that wisely:
On Wednesday, the city controller, Wendy Greuel, sent a stern letter to the Los Angeles emergency management department demanding to know why it had spent $48,826 on sandwiches from a deli 80 miles from Los Angeles to feed police officers. (Sandwiches from Subway would have cost $17,491.25, she pointed out.)

I know "busing-in officers" isn't unheard of; but busing-in sandwiches?