Yes, that’s essentially what Mayor Sahli-Wells and City Manager John Nachbar told residents this evening at a meeting at the Police Station.
“Immoral?” expostulated one resident.
“Yes, immoral,” the Mayor repeated. With her hand over her heart and her features arranged into an expression of deep compassion, the Mayor told residents it would be immoral to get vagrants out from the area of Venice under the 405-overpass.
Apparently, they can deal drugs, use the neighboring streets as open-air toilets, engage in prostitution, and do drugs on our streets, and it would be immoral to prosecute them.
“What can you do?” residents repeatedly asked. “We’ve heard what you can’t do. But what can you do tomorrow to make us safer?”
“Well,” the City Manager exclaimed, “we can’t tell them to go—!”
“What can you do?” we asked again.
Residents had been invited to meet with city officials and the Chief of Police to figure out solutions to the criminal vagrancy problem that afflicts the borders of Culver City, but it turned out to be a waste of our time.
The Mayor’s heart bleeds for the criminals who do drugs and sell drugs. But not for the tax-paying residents who pay her salary.
According to her, it would be both IMMORAL and UNCONSTITUTIONAL to protect our rights against criminals.
Keeping residents safe and streets clean apparently goes against the constitution. One has to wonder what our founders would have thought of that!
To give him credit, the City Manager did have a solution. It was in the form of an annually recurring $190,000 payment to a Homeless Czar!
One presumes that for that kind of money the appointee in question will have more refined excuses as to why nothing can be done.
At any rate, the solution does several things:
- It enables the city and its council to act upon Rahm Emanuel’s advice to “never let a good crisis go to waste.”
- To throw good money at a crisis and insist to residents that they’re doing something
- And, best of all, it’s a lovely excuse to raise taxes
You see, the city’s declared a state of fiscal emergency. But somehow, despite the shortage, it did manage to find a spare $190,000 lying around. And it’s counting on having that spare cash available every year, with a little change to spare.
After all the Homeless Czar’s salary will need to go up every year. One hundred and ninety thousand dollars won’t go as far in 2021 as it does in 2020. The poor man—or woman—will absolutely need more each passing year to cope with rising costs.
Other than that City Manager John Nachbar was extremely candid in confessing he had No Answers. “I don’t know,” he repeatedly said.
Apparently, it never occurred to him to come prepared to the meeting or to do some research to figure out what our options are.
That would be too much to expect of an overpaid, underworked city official.