Michael Jackson’s memorial service today will apparently cost Los Angeles taxpayers $3.5 million+ in a time when the state of California is essentially broke. Local law enforcement will be providing security for attendees which include private guests of the Jacksons. E!’s Answer Bitch reports:
“We have city employees getting pink slips because the city dollars are not there,” points out L.A. City Councilman Dennis Zine. But even though city officials have asked AEG to pick up some of the public costs, the company has declined, Zine tells me. AEG did not respond to my requests for comment.
“You would think AEG would say, ‘We’re the ones who did this, we could have had a private ceremony and not a major public memorial.’ AEG is a big entertainment company. They’re going to get international coverage and tons of publicity from this.”
And just what kind of city effort are we talking here?
* At least 1,400 police officers to keep the peace
* Workers from the Department of Transportation to arrange and enforce street closures
* Still more workers from the Department of Public Works to keep the area clean and operating
* Fire and rescue specialists, just in case too many rabid fans moonwalk into one another out in the streets
Okay, while this is probably a horrible use of taxpayer’s money during a fiscal crisis, the important thing to remember is at least nobody’s kids are getting touched. By Michael Jackson anyway. — Wow, I feel better already. They should put that on the programs.