Los Angeles Mayor James K. Hahn, who faces a reelection vote in less than a year, renewed his pledge to reduce crime and delivered his most forceful defense of his administration’s ethics, the Los Angeles Times reports. Hahn delivered his speech the day before he will unveil a budget that will demand cuts to preserve funding for city services, including police, after-school programs, housing and neighborhood services, such as libraries.
Former police chief and now Councilman Bernard C. Parks is starting an exploratory campaign to unseat Hahn with a series of community meetings he is calling “chats with Bernard.”
Flanked by police officers and firefighters at a firehouse, Hahn used his last State of the City speech before next March’s election to push what promises to be a central theme of his reelection campaign – his work to make Los Angeles the safest big city in America despite the city’s tough financial situation. “It’s time the overwhelming majority of good, hard-working people in our city did not have to live in fear of the criminal few,” he said.
Without naming Parks, the mayor took a swipe at the former police chief as he applauded Chief William J. Bratton for raising morale at the Police Department.