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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)



The City is broke, teachers, City employees are losing their jobs - and we're happy to spend OUR taxpayers instead on celebrating multi-millionaires!

Let AEG and the Lakers management pay for the full cost.

The Mayor has proven how misguided he is. To say that not to hold a parade is 'untenable' shows he has no grip on reality. He's a waste of time - and certainly not a contended for Governor of this State!

Hey ! L.A.P.D. already spend the city's taxmonies getting the riotors under control + the L.A. Trash pick-up (a.k.a. L.A.P.D.) took the city's taxmonies to haul away what the cops didn't take away. ENOUGH ! If the Laker4s want a "parade" their business managers can apply for and pay for a parade permit and pay 100% of all other costs of putting it on, including paying the city 100% of the money to cover police, fire, and trash services associated with such a parade. Do remember the Laker's organization paid politicians some $25,000 to get exempt from city taxes.

the good news is the cops will get overtime to work the parade, the bad news is they will have cuts SOONER!

NO public funds should be used, and that is REGARDLESS of the economy. Let the Team cover the costs

The City of Los Angeles is so terribly mismanaged that one million dollars is just a drop in the bucket. Don't be misled about the reasons for our economic problems. It is not because of a parade. If you want to look for places to cut how about the City Council and mayors budget, which are higher than any other major city. Look at the fat contracts awarded to political allies or the excessive regulation that drives business and tax dollars away. The Lakers bring a lot more revenue to the city than they cost even after adding the cost of the parade. I do not blame those who are upset, they are being misled by bad politicians who are trying to cover up their own gross fiscal mismanagement .

Does anyone know how much the Lakers bring into the city in terms of tax money and such intangibles as civic pride? Yes, we have knuckleheads who basically want any excuse to be stupid, but not having a parade for an organization that contributes such excellence to our city? How can you guys even think of not honoring these guys? Why do people always think of money upfront and never realize the true value of an organization like the Lakers to the city of LA?

The spirit of sports brings people together and makes everyone feel good. When people feel good they spend money. The money spent for the parade will be a drop in the bucket compared to the short and long term return that sports enthusiast contribute to the local economy.

Dear Mayor,

I understand that you are in a difficult position in that you have tough decisions to make, but why would you agree to pay $1 million for the Laker parade when we are in such difficult economic times?

I do want to state for the record, I am a HUGE LAKER FAN, but unlike many of your employees who are having their work days reduced, I am fortunate enough to be able to make ends meet, but I do try to keep my thoughts in perspective and have empathy towards my fellow citizens in that many of them are struggling beyond belief, many of them as the result of decisions you have made in reducing the days they work to serve the wonderful City of Los Angeles.

During the times when my husband and I are unable to put money towards "wants" (such as vacations, shopping, etc.), we have to cut back because the "needs" take priority. Why does this not apply to the Laker Victory Parade?

Please have the Laker organization foot the total bill for the event. After all, the parade is a luxury during these tough economic times, not a privilege.


Lena C.

As many others have said, I love my Lakers but if the owners of the Lakers want to celebrate this win in style, THEY should pay for it all and not expect the party cutting jobs to help foot the bill for their fun.

Please realize that the Lakers brand in global and they help generate tons of money for the city of Los Angeles in many ways that a lot of you do not understand based on some of your narrow mind view of your bubble. Support what LA has, a GREAT basketball franchise. If LA had other Great franchises, they should get the same treatment. They help build LA to what it is in a broader sense.

To all of you unbelievable, short sighted, small minded people who don't want the City to spend $1,000,000 on a celebration for our World Champions.

Excuse me, dear idiots, but the City of Los Angeles would be way broker were it not for all the tax revenue generated by the Lakers. Have any of you checked what this franchise is worth, how much merchandise it sells, how many vendors it uses, and how large its payroll is?

Have you pathetic cretins stopped to consider the value of all of the "beauty shots" of the City that America gets to see during nationally televised games. Do you ever think that maybe it helps bring tourism dollars to a city not known for its hospitality?

How about all the televised shots of celebrities who attend the games? Don't you think that the city benefits every time the Lakers host the entertainment elite of the world? It may not be quantifiable, but it adds to the City's value as well.

You will not rain on our parade. We Laker fans will celebrate. The city will survive. And you can go about your daily misery, void of any joy or hope or reason to continue living.

I'm guessing that all you people who are supporing the parade are NOT in jeopardy of losing any pay. Some of you probably still live at home with your parents and probably don't contribute there either.
ALEX - if everyone who worked for the City is a drug addict or criminal is is really wise to advertise your moronocy in a blog? I have worked, and worked hard, at my job and my income goes to support 4 (count them 4) households. I am at work today even though I'm ill. Does that sound like the derelicts you spoke of in your note?
RUBEN- to want to keep food in your kids bellies and a roof over their heads is NOT advancing a political position. You, Cynthia and Simon should probably get jobs, move out of your parents homes and take on some responsibilities.
KAT - however, it is STILL in financial straights. Does it make sense to compound that?

Do two wrongs make a right? Just because the Mayor and City Counsel have mismanaged the budget doesn't mean we should just throw money away for a parade. It's fiscally irresponsible. Let's be realistic, who most working people (those lucky enough to have a job) can't attend. That leaves kids, the under or unemployed and self employeed. While a championship is great for a City, it's NOT the City's responsiblity to throw a parade. I don't recall that being written into the city charter. In these messed up times we all need to re-think our priorities. Unlike Jerry Buss, I not nor will probably ever be a billonaire nor like the players a multi-millonaire. What's the good of keeping up appearances when there's no substance behind it? That's like a homeless person shopping at Nordstrom for new pair of Air Jordan's.

$1million compared to a $10 BILLION speed train???- we should have a LAKER parade every day of the week!!! its 1 day out of the year, get over it kill-joys. . .


I am sure you are recieving some sort of govt benefits by your grammer, so people like you waste way more money than a parade.

Lakers Deserve a Parade! DEAL WITH IT! You dont like it go out and protest that day I'm sure it will be heard over the 3 million SUPPORTERS of the parade!

How much Money and Joy have the Lakers brought to this city? WAY MORE THAN 1 MILLION!!!!

I think the city should CHARGE a hefty fee to the multi-millionaire players and owners to have a parade.

It’s always amazing to see what people can say out of anger. I’m an avid Lakers fan and I do understand both sides of the argument. What I don’t understand is how the opposition is labeling Lakers fans as unemployed individuals who live in their parents basement. I’m sorry to say that you’ve been misinformed. Lakers fans contribute fiscally, one way or the other. Whether through the purchase of goods advertised during the games, or purchasing game tickets, or contributing like yourself.

The games generate so much revenue for the city. Do your homework. Whenever there’s a large gathering of the masses in good faith, the city is the beneficiary. Look at the $1,000,000 as an investment. All the local businesses will see a drastic increase in revenue that day. The city will make more than what it put in and continue to generate revenues far beyond the parade day.

The parade is for the benefit of the citizens of the city of Los Angeles not for the benefit of the Lakers organization or it’s players. The team will continue to prosper and will not lose any fans if the city decides not to sponsor the parade. The only looser will be Los Angeles. Those who are suggesting that the Lakers sponsor the event are not being realistic. When was the last time your boss who’s making a six figure income decided to take a pay cut just to supplement your low income? That doesn’t happen in the real world. The organization is being very generous by contributing half the cost.

That is a lot of money to throw a parade for a bunch of violent idiotic thug "fans" who don't have day jobs.


Im sure this will cost Villa some votes.

i dont see why the city should pay for the parade, the laker organization should pay for it, they make alots of money from the fans.. im upset to hear that the la city 911 operators are getting 2 extra days off a month, meaning less operators to answer our emergency calls, but the city is willing to pay half the cost of the parade..im confused??? where is my tax money really going?

That $1,000,000.00 the city wants to blow on the parade (spend a million to wave at multi-millionaires as they drive past you) could save jobs. How would you feel if it were your job that could be saved?

All these pro-parade posts prove just how dumb, ignorant and uneducated Lakers fans are!

Get a freakin' life. You're not Kobe or Shack and you're never going to be. This is reckless use of tax payer money. Why did we agree to an increase in sales tax? So we could pay for a parade?

So the next time you idiots buy your $8 coke at the Staples Center, you can thank the Mayor for the nearly 10% sales tax you paid for it and think fondly on the parade YOU PAID for!

Bunch of idiots!

Okay the LAKERS are the only people being money right now into the city!!!

All the people leaving messages saying this parade shouldn't happen should just pipe down because we are the ones who are funding your sorry butts because the LAKER FANS being money into the city!!!!!!!!!!

OK, not that this will matter much, since the ranters who have posted will most likely not look at this again. BUT. Do you people realize how much money the Lakers bring to the city? MILLIONS upon millions of dollars. Further, do you not understand what a celebration parade does for the image of a city?

I moved, sadly, from Los Angeles nearly a year ago, but LA is always in my heart. It is sickening to read such comments about "jobless... ghetto" Lakers fans. The Lakers are a city tradition, and one that should be praised.

Why don't all of the whining suburban folk (the majority posting here) stop the wining for a moment. Go INTO the city and enjoy something. A free concert. A parade. A celebration. See what it means to live in a city, and enjoy it. It takes money to make money...

And to the "gentleman" whining about having to PAY $40,000 in taxes... Gosh, sir... I only wish I was in such an unfortunate spot as you.... poor, poor man...

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