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Lakers, city will split costs of victory parade

Neither the Orlando Magic nor a disintegrating city budget managed to forestall the Lakers’ victory parade, which is scheduled to follow a two-mile route from Staples Center to the Coliseum on Wednesday. 

The Lakers defeated the Magic on Sunday night, 99-86, to win the NBA championship, but their resounding win did little to quell the griping about who should pay for the celebration.

The growing public debate about the cost of the traditional parade took place against a backdrop of city workers facing layoffs and mandatory furloughs, while fervent basketball fans demanded an opportunity to salute their hometown heroes.


In the end, everybody won and everybody pays. 

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. 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. (Note: An earlier version of this post referred to the mayor's spokesman as Mark Szabo.)

-- Julie Cart
Comments () | Archives (98)

I find it absurd. I'm on the cutting block for the city to be one of the 1200 schedueld layoffs, but yet, $1 million dollars comes out from thin air to place people who earn six figures and then some to sit in cars to waive to people? This city makes me sick and the mayor definitely has no balls when it comes to maintaining a budget.

It's great that the Lakers won, but I would have thought that they made enough money on tickets to support their fans and pay for the parade themselves. We all need to pull together. Maybe the players could donate some of their mult-million dollar salaries to pay for it (and then the city could give them that donation as a tax write-off). It would be a win-win situation.

Great. More taxpayer money wasted on a victory parade for a fanbase that would rather loot and riot than actually celebrate a championship. Everyone certainly doesn't win in this case. How about "if you want to go to the parade, you pay $5 to join in on the parade festivities?" That should certainly help diffuse the unnecessary cost of screwing the taxpayers out of more money for a stupid basketball team.

Yikes. People are losing their jobs and the city votes to have a parade for millionaires? That makes no sense.

YYEEAAHHH!! thats right!! I will be there suckaz!!! LAKERS WORLD CHAMPS!!

Holding a parade is untenable, Mark Szabo. Unless we will make this money back on restaurant or hotel receipts, then there is no way the city should be paying $1,000,000 for celebrating a private business. Fans have paid a pretty penny to see the games, let them chip in $5 if they want to see a parade.

How much is being spent right now outside Stapes Center for the LAPD to keep the crowd under control? There's your parade right there.

There we go!

The City of Los Angeles does NOT have $1 million to cover half the cost of this parade. The Lakers should just pay for all of it.

no parade with the economy is this bad. The city can find 1 million for this???

If the Mayor has ONE MILLION dollars to throw around, why is he cutting city services to the bone?

Specifically, why not give the $$$ to the Animal Services Department, which is severely underfunded, and has had it's budget cut at least two years in a row.

Lets save the lives of thousands of cats and dogs instead of paying for a party that the Lakers could afford to pay for themselves (that's champagne money to them).

And, aren't we supposed to be in a financial emergengy, with the City facing BANKRUPTCY because of underfunded pensions?

This smacks of political pandering rather than responsible governing!

Well from the looks of it tonight, a parade will be even worse...The city should not have to spend a dime on this crap...the idiots tonight ruined it for the others that respect the law and know how to celebrate without violence.....but these fools tonight just prove how dumb people are getting....Its pretty stupid of these idiots, they should all be in jail.

Oh please...it's like you all are poor and don't go out to eat every once in a while...please... parade is a MUST. fuddy duddys.

@ Melaine Samson - Please get a clue, the parade is for Los Angeles Laker fans. The parade features the Laker team.

i'm giving up 10 percent of my pay, due to mandatory work furloughs, and the city is going to pay 1 million for a parade. this is infuriating. while i am happy that our home team has won, i do not think the city should fund the parade. the laker organization should step up and pay the bill for the fans who have supported the team.

The Mayor and City Council who support paying for the parade even a dollar are shameless with their lies on insolvency, layoff, furlough, closing libraries & parks and various severe service cuts.

Even though I'm not a basketball fan, I understand that the Laker victory is a huge deal, and I respect that. But, as a city employee who just found out his paycheck is being slashed by 10%, I don't think this is the right time for the city to be shelling out any money to honor a bunch of multimillionaires, no matter how deserving. The Lakers should pay for this themselves.

The city should not pay a dime. I was at Staples the other day and saw a season ticket spot on the sidelines for the CLIPPERS selling for $48,400. Imagine what a Lakers seat would go for?

Some of the cars the players drive are stunning and stunningly expensive, but hey, they and their organization can afford it. Especially when they fob off their expenses on the city.

If they want to turn over 6,000 seats to city residents at random next year, maybe. But otherwise, I don't ask them to pay for my parade, and they shouldn't expect me to pay for theirs.

Untill this Prarade & Celebration is finaly held on a Weekend, you won't find responsible Working people like me attending any Parade.
To hear a Laker Or City official state that there can't be a Weekend Parade, just sickens me.

That's the only time a Parade & Celebration should be taking place.

Peace, Love & Respect.

How much money is the city spending tonight just to corral these slimebags and stop them from destroying more gas stations, shoe stores, trees, cop cars, etc.?

It's a crying shame the LAPD can't shoot these miscreants first, and ask questions later.


Why don't you all stop whining? The Lakers are gonna pay for it so sit back enjoy the parade and shut the hell up!

Wait, the city is looking to cut hundreds of millions of dollars and they can't put out one million to put on a parade? And it's not like this is money that they're just spending, it's reinvesting into the city, like renting the Coliseum. This city isn't in financial straits because of a parade, it's in financial straits because of the mismanagement of the "mayor" and city managers (and yes, for Villaraigosa I put the word "mayor" in quotes).

City is obligated to have parade.Lakers should have told the city they will not pay a dime for it and to deal with it. Parade will happen regardless if city got the money or not.

You must be kidding...

The Lakers should pay for all the costs of the parade. The city of Los Angeles doesn't have the funds to pay for it. So ridiculous about fans rioting, what is wrong with these people. The city is going to have to pay for the damage done tonight as well.

everyone here talking about not having a parade are stupid and just laker haters! Have some fun and celebrate. Try having some fun once in awhile it is ok. :)

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