Los Angeles Council approves LAPD’s embezzled $ 56.6 million spending plan – Daily News
LOS ANGELES >> Los Angeles City Council on Tuesday May 25 approved plans to spend $ 56.6 million in funds that were diverted from the police department’s budget last year to invest in programs for the benefit of communities of color and to provide alternatives to traditional policing services.
The funds are part of a $ 150 million LAPD embezzlement announced last year following protests after George Floyd’s death and growing calls to reimagine public safety and ‘defund’ services from police.
Earlier this year, city council approved spending plans for $ 32.2 million of embezzled funds. That approval led to a brief standoff with Mayor Eric Garcetti, who vetoed the initial spending proposal, but then approved a revised plan that council approved as he voted to overturn the mayor’s veto.
Mirroring the previous spending plan of $ 32.2 million, the projects approved on Tuesday were spread across the 15 city council districts and included a wide range of programs.
The list included several community improvement programs, youth programs, and homeless outreach and assistance efforts. There are also various allocations for “redesigned public safety” programs throughout the city, millions of dollars for community grant programs and “environmental improvements” and “quality of life services”.
There are also items for projects such as athletic fields in underserved communities, skills training programs, and neighborhood beautification efforts. Hundreds of thousands of dollars have also been allocated to train residents of South Los Angeles to become “community response officers” to monitor parks and conduct patrols.
City finance staff noted in a report to council that much of the money allocated is “one-time” funding.
“To the extent that recommended programs for funding are proposed to be of an ongoing nature, ongoing sources of funding will need to be identified in accordance with city financial policies,” according to a staff report.
The spending plan approved by the council has yet to be approved by the mayor.