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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)

Response to the Mayor's comments on the Tuesday, June 15, 2009 1 p.m. broadcast on KTLA 5:

Thank you Mayor Villaraigosa for your response to the entry that I posted earlier. I have to say that I know your intentions to raise money from the private sector to cover the cost of the parade are well-intended, but it is insufficient to say that you "hope there will be enough money donated" to off-set the $1 million the city is putting towards the parade. Due to the state of the economy, you need to be 100% certain that no money will be drawn from public funds. Even if you raise $900,000 and have to use public funds to make up the $100,000 that remains, that is $100,000 that could go towards helping pay the salaries for city employees who may be losing their homes, unable to pay for necessary medical care, or put food on the table so their children will not go hungry. As a Laker fan and spectator to this situation, you are not effectively prioritizing what is taking place and this scares me as well as makes me question your decision-making process. For all of the citizens who will have to continue to struggle making ends meet after the three-hour parade is over, please convince the Laker organization to pay the total cost for the parade so that people who truly need financial help will continue to look up to you as a reputable leader and politician.

Thank You,
Lena C.

Incredible misuse of tax money.

Shows lack of leadership and guts from our officials.

They should have said no way to paying any of it.

The City of LA should not spend a single dime on this parade. If anyone thinks differently, I'll like to see their face when confronting a "closed" sign when trying to get a permit or go to a library. How about waiting a longer time for a 9-1-1 operator because several dispatchers are on furlough. Or thie kid is in a class with 59 other kids. We're talking about millionaire athletes. If they want a celebration, they should get their boss to pay for it or give up the money themsleves. The only reason Mayor V wants the parade is so that he can ride in the lead car and smile that swarmy smile, while he's stabbing his workforce in the back.
As for seeking donations, I have a feeling it'll come back to the City putting up $. And if there is money available, why not help out the schools instead?

The way the fans acted outside Staples Sunday night is why I hope the Lakers never win another championship. You people just don't know how to behave. You act like animals....no animals are better behaved.

so not only are we spending money on something that has no meaning but there also encouraging people to go out and destroy our city... Didnt Villaraigosa and the Police Chief see how all those stupid dumb ignorant people where destroying our city.... hello SPEND that money towards SCHOOL!!! JOBS!!!!
something PRODUCTIVE

Let the Lakers pay for their own parade.

This is a PRIVATE organization, out for PRIVATE GAIN. The players themselves are making MUCH MORE every year than the cost of this parade.

Meanwhile, many of the fools who idolize these players are out of jobs or will soon be looking for jobs, or are still figuring out how to pay for their season tickets.

These fools should take a long look at themselves and the situation and realize, hey, this is just a game. That fact that the Lakers can now call themselves "world champions" means nothing; this series, which was purely for entertainment, was played only in the U.S. after all. And even if it was a true global championship -- like the World Cup -- it still wouldn't matter.

Get real lunkheads. And get smart with your tax dollars. Help yourselves before you help stroke the egos of millionaires.

Of course the messages on this board have split into two distinct camps. Those who have a brain who are opposed to spending public money that isn't available, and those who are so oblivious to reality that they would support a tax funded parade when our state is bankrupt and our city is in third world status. Shame on Villagarosa, I guess if he does run for governor, this will give Jerry Brown and Gavin Newsome a leg up when the candidates are trying to show the voters who has the STATE'S best interests in mind. I hope the mongrols who show up to support the magalomaniacs this afternoon have a good time, because those of us with real lives and a sense of responsibility will be at work, helping to fund this charade.

If each of us City of LA takes 4 hours of unpaid time. No jobs will be saved because this money is going to the parade and all those pendejos rioting the city. Good Job Mr. Mayor!

Here's the scenario tomorrow...............

gather all of the criminals from the city of Angels together: give them a million dollar parade (on us taxpayers) give them beer (at the Coliseum) and them let them go "a celebrating" (i.e. destroying and burning public and private property).

then in a day or so, talk about how much Los Angeles is in a hole financially, all the while paying for all of the vandalism and overtime for the riot police from all of the "celebrating".


Thanks God I Live in San Diego.... I am sorry LA Residents

The Mayor thinks is is "untenable" to not have the parade. I think it's "untenable" to even consider him to be the next governor. This is just another example of a string of poor decisions.

Let me try and figure this out. We have a multi-million dollar Laker organization willing to pay $1 million to help the City have a parade. On the team we have multi-million dollar tatooed cry-babies seeking adulation of thousands of fans yelling the players accomplishments as the fans demolish hard working small business property because they want to do damage to someones property. We have a mayor beaming at a gay parade seeking any vote he can get, a de-fanged police department standing by as fans destroy property and generally run wild. The City is near bankruptcy and they will pony up another million dollars to let the crowd miss work in a bad economy and who knows how much damage they will do, fortunately it isn't at night and damage may be limited since cowards only destroy in the dark of night.

Thank God I don't live in that mis-guided City run by an idiot.

Wow, first of all congratulations to the Lakers, they fought hard and had a great season. They've earned the championship.

Secondly-we are in worse shape than I thought. I thought a parade would've been a nice way to focus on a little positive energy during these difficult times, if even for a little while. This comment section brings me back to reality, what a sad place LA has become.

I can't wait for the parade tomorrow!!!! it's going to be a beautiful day and to all the people that complain about the mayor spending 1 million get over its already done and their is nothing you can do anymore you know what bothers me the most is most of the idiots that complain are probably the ones that voted for bush to begin with the one person to blame for the crappy economy he left us with so get over it. Don't be angry and show up to the parade have fun be around people that are actually happy and not mad or bitter at this situation come on enjoy yourselves!!!!!!!!

NO parade this is silly in light of our budget situation!!!
I like the lakers but the lakers and Dr buss pay BYNUM - 23 yr old wurderkind 20 million or something, they can afford to foot the bill for the whole thinkg

Let's see - the people who are working and paying taxes will foot the bill for the unemployed or nutty (those who think it is worth taking the day off to stand for hours in the sun)? The people facing pay cuts or work furloughs should voice their opposition...

I just emailed the govenor about this.A parade isnt going to get my spirits up.It makes me angry.I am one of the peole who got laid off her job again.I worked at my company for 4 yrs.Anybody who had to deal with unemployment knows how bad it is.For those of you who think we need a parade for some reason ,think about this.We asked for a federal bailout.ITs like the car companies that asked for a bailout and showed up in the private jets.The govenor wants to cut the welfare program.So everyone who is collectiing welfare and wants the parade,just think,its coming out of your program.
Go to the parade and afterward when you cant go to school anymore and all of your healthcare has gone at least you have the memory of a sports parade.
If you dont get it,you probably dont pay taxes and still live at home.
You ruined the city the other night,you do NOT deserve a parade. Is our mayor at the IVY again.He thinks he is the mayor of hollywood. I still do not know how to pronounce his name.I might know it if he was seen more often.He does not deserve to be mayor.Bottom line.The city has no money.period. and no one can sit here and justify this.

Wake up an Realize who is running our County! Nazi's

I am sick and tired of people whining about the cost of the Laker celebration parade. People, our sports teams bring millions of dollars into this city. They deserve a parade. They are the winning team. This resentment towards the parade is EMBARRASSING to our city. If you all, who are against the celebration must be angry,be angry at the "City Fathers" who created this mess and who are still getting their FAT SALARIES even as many of you lose yours.
Also their is such a thing as off duty deputies,police and private security donating their services for two hours. Parade crowds could be asked to help clean up after wards. There are many fans who would do this for OUR L.A. LAKERS.


To ALL the people Anti-Parade. sucks to be you.

i do very well at my job. i made sure Prior to a tough economy i joined a line of work that would always be needed and omg.. what perfect scenario. i have a job i'm going to the parade and i'm going to enjoy myself. an employed individual.

that was very mean wasn't it? i just thought after reading ALL LAKER FANS ARE IGNORANT. it had to be done.

oh yeah to people like sophia and others who are disgusted by the parade and spending of tax money. leave. no ones forcing you to live in LA or California for that matter.

and most importantly leaving california would probably save you a lot more money considering you could buy a mansion in a no where state for the price of a 2 bedroom house in a decent area. so. . . Leave.

What a complete joke--CA and the state with double digit unemployment, millions losing homes, and state bankrupt is throwing a multi-million dollar "parade" for a bunch of imbecilies who play with balls into a net?!?! What redeeming value to society does this have? during a severe recession. All those state employees and the armies of police and fire are going have to actually work in the private sector and compete. Imagine that, no more benies, pensions, OT, multiple paid days off, automatic pay raises, tenure. Who cares about "sports" during a severe recession. Get rid of this fraudulent, cheating 'mayor'.

How about the Lakers franchise and each of the players foot the entire bill as a thank you to their loyal LA fans? If I were a highly paid athlete, I'd be embarrassed to participate in a costly parade being put on in a city that is in such terrible fiscal shape. Even the business community - bless them - shouldn't have to step up to the net on this one. Lakers - do the right thing, this year and every year hereafter. Your fans help make you the success you are and you should thank them for their support.

My grammer is correct. Go back to school. Oh, that's right - you can't because there won't be any teachers. Sorry, you lose. DEAL WITH IT!

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