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L.A. Must Lease 9 Parking Garages to Private Operators or Sack up to 1,000 Employees

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Photo by srqpix via Flickr

Photo by srqpix via Flickr
To lease public parking garages or not? That is the question the Los Angeles City Council will be facing today. Actually, if they do vote on the matter, it will be to solicit bids, and once they are in, they will decide to go through with it. But if they don't, the city stands at greater financial peril, meaning up to 1,000 city worker layoffs and more furlough days for those who are spared.

"Some of the folks (council members) who wanted to avoid furloughs and layoffs need to make sure they make this deal happen," Council President Eric Garcetti said. "You can't have it both ways. You can't kill this deal by a thousand cuts and argue against layoffs and furloughs."

Top budget official Miguel Santana laid it out. Nine parking garages, totaling 8,398 parking spaces could be leased out for $53.2 million, helping the projected $320 million budget shortfall next year. "We shouldn't be in the parking business. It's not our core service. We don't do it well," he said.

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The request for proposals would have private operators share profits with the city. The nine garages are "Pershing Square in downtown Los Angeles; Cherokee, Hollywood & Highland and Cinerama Dome in Hollywood; Broxton in Westwood; Dickens in Sherman Oaks; Friar Street in Van Nuys; Larchmont in Hancock Park, Robertson in West L.A.; and Ventura Boulevard in Studio City."