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No Shortage of Views on Myers and the Homeless

February 09, 1992

We witnessed another Santa Monica City Council circus on Jan. 21.

Always allied with City Atty. Robert Myers, the council suddenly cares how the citizens of Santa Monica feel about the homeless. After Myers announced that he and his staff would not write an ordinance that is not to his liking, the Santa Monicans for Renters Rights-affiliated council members decided to hire an independent attorney to write the ordinance they need to pacify the uproar over the homeless takeover.

No one mentioned firing Myers for insubordination. Instead the SMRR council members praised him for standing by his ethics. The council does not have the guts to fire Myers. If Myers has so much integrity and ethics, he should resign.

Now, to understand the council, it must be realized that they are working on this homeless ordinance, not because they believe or want it, but because there is an election looming and they are fearful that SMRR may lose control of the city. For over 10 years the SMRR council members' sentiments have been at one with Myers. Such a council cannot be trusted to carry forth on a homeless ordinance that satisfies the citizens of the city.

Suppose the City Council passes an ordinance. What next? Enforcement lies with the Police Department, but prosecution lies with Myers. Is Myers going to switch sides now that he has again shown the City Council his ethical immunity from direction-taking? Will he let his 50 employees participate in the prosecution of this ordinance? Don't forget the vigorous defense of Myers by council members Zane, Genser, Olsen, Vasquez and Abdo. Will the SMRR council take the steps necessary to bring Myers under control? I believe the answer is a resounding no.

If the SMRR council members are reelected in November and are no longer worried about their jobs, Santa Monica will drift back to the personal policies of Myers and the SMRR council members who have let Myers run the city for the past 11 years.

Myers and the SMRR council members have many supporters who have been rewarded by lucrative city jobs and grants. Many city jobs are held by SMRR supporters, including an enormous retinue of social service providers and neighborhood groups. These people support Myers and the SMRR majority out of selfishness--after all, their jobs depend on keeping in favor.


Santa Monica

Editor's note: Hoover was mayor of Santa Monica from 1961 to 1975.

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