“California–you’re supposed to be the out-there, wild ones!” Comedian Eddie Izzard remarked, after the California smoking ban was passed in bars. Once upon a time, all the loose cannons rolled west. I won’t take any responsibility for the Governator–who balks at legalizing pot, which would balance the state budget, but champions the idea of privitizing the state prisons. In Los Angeles, Mayor Villaraigosa can’t possibly cut police and fire services, which I’ve heard, account for 75% of the city budget (that can’t be right). I’m all for firemen–but here in West Hollywood, where both the county police and sheriffs have jurisdiction–I suspect it has more to do with the LAPD lobby than any pretense of public safety.
Who needs parks, or education, or health services? How is it, exactly, that a county which contains the 5th LARGEST ECONOMY IN THE WORLD–can be on the brink of bankruptcy?
LASHP is not alone. 220 of California’s 279 state parks, beaches, and preserves are on a budget-cutting hit list. Here’s a Los Angeles Times summary. Here’s the Downtown News on the local park. Finally, here’s the website of the California State Parks Foundation, a “friends-of” group to the California State Parks Department.
As far as I know–my little slice of the world has yet to play host to even a single crop circle. When he was governor of California, forward-thinking Ronald Reagan proposed turning the Santa Monica mountains into a giant trash dump. Yeah–the out there, wild ones.