I couldn't agree more:
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is trying to quell the escalating debate over who should pick up the estimated $1.4 million tab for police, traffic control and other services related to Michael Jackson's memorial service.How much revenue did he generate for the city and state? Probably billions! His income and property taxes. Taxes on show tickets. The jobs he created in the entertainment industry and all of their income taxes. Hell, just the sales taxes collected on the Thriller CDs alone!
Villaraigosa, who was vacationing in South Africa a week ago when more than 17,000 fans flocked to downtown Los Angeles to watch the public memorial, asserted Monday that the city will pay. He said he will not ask the Jackson family or AEG Live, the owner of the Staples Center where the event was held, to help the city recoup its expenses, and he lambasted a city Web site set up to request donations.
"This is a world-class city, and we provide fire and police protection, period," Villaraigosa said during his first public appearance since returning from his weeklong trip. "The idea that we would charge the family for a funeral is nonsensical.