The Los Angeles City Council defied Police Chief William Bratton and voted yesterday to delay spending for additional police officers and a host of other items until the city’s financial picture becomes clearer, says the Los Angeles Times. A compromise remains possible.
The 11-4 vote is enough to override a veto threatened by Mayor James K. Hahn, who has taken to the airwaves with Bratton to accuse the council of risking the city’s public safety. A majority of council members say the city cannot afford to commit $19 million for 320 new officers, as well as $4.2 million to reorganize the department and $8 million for new police cars. They want to deciding on expenditures in four to six months
Councilman Nick Pacheco, chairman of the Budget and Finance Committee, said, “We didn’t say no; we said, ‘Wait and see.’ ” The mayor plans to meet with council members to urge an eleventh hour compromise to pay for the LAPD expansion. The council won’t take its final vote on the budget until Friday at the earliest.