Los Angeles City Council President Nury Martinez has announced that the City Council will hold a vote to override Mayor Eric Garcetti's veto of a spending plan that outlined how to reinvest millions of dollars from the Los Angeles Police Department budget into communities of color.
Martinez, Councilmen Marqueece Harris-Dawson, Curren Price, Mark Ridley-Thomas, Mitch O'Farrell and Kevin de Leon, released a joint statement Friday afternoon that said:
“On Tuesday, the Council will take a vote to override this veto because we made a firm commitment to the people of Los Angeles and we intend to deliver on that promise. We will reinvest this money to reimagine public safety, the homeless crisis, youth development, social programs and other services that more affluent communities take for granted and call basic. Sadly, our communities still have to fight for such services. Therefore, the Council remains focused on prioritizing meaningful investments in disadvantaged communities and communities of color.”
The spending proposal would allocate funds to “highest need census tracts” as identified by the city's Economic Workforce Development Department, according to a Budget and Finance Committee report.
The remaining $88,804,526 of the $150 million the City Council approved to cut from LAPD would be available for city services and beautification, recreation and youth programming, jobs and economic development, and nonprofit community investment in those areas.
Garcetti vetoed the spending plan on Dec. 21, calling it “more business-as-usual” as opposed to the fundamental change that Angelenos are ready for.
“Los Angeles should be leading America by piloting bold ideas like exploring a guaranteed basic income, confronting the stark Black-white disparity among people experiencing homelessness, driving racial reconciliation, protecting jobs held by people of color with new opportunities in the city workforce and working in closer collaboration with our communities on allocation decisions,” Garcetti said in a letter to the City Council.
Garcetti said he would approve a spending plan that would:
- set aside funding for pilot programs with local organizations and other partners that would address community safety, equity, reconciliation and other racial justice and income inequality issues;
- accelerate and expand intervention and prevention work to restore peace in neighborhoods with high levels of violence;
- reimagine public safety, starting with funding a 24-hour, unarmed crisis response pilot program so that mental health workers are dispatched to certain nonviolent 911 calls instead of police officers; and
- protect the most vulnerable city employees from layoffs, particularly those hired through the city's Targeted Local Hire program.
The council members said in their statement Friday that Garcetti's veto caused funding to be delayed to Black and brown communities in need.
“Because of this veto, there has been a delay in reinvesting this money into Black and brown communities that need it the most. Our focus remains on uprooting systemic discrimination and ensuring these communities have the resources they need to succeed. As far as the Council is concerned, the reinvestment that we're making this year is only the beginning. The people of Los Angeles have spoken and we stand ready to protect their interests,” the council members said.
The Los Angeles City Council will vote to override the veto during its Tuesday City Council meeting at 10 a.m. The meeting can be accessed at http://councilvote.lacity.org/.