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5th District Council Race

June 04, 1995

* Concerning "Connections Seen as Key in 5th District Fund Raising" (May 28), it is interesting to note that Barbara Yaroslavsky has amassed almost twice as much as Michael Feuer without city matching funds, which are given on a basis of one dollar for every two collected, up to a maximum amount.

City matching funds were approved by the voters to help level the playing field in contested city offices where powerful (especially incumbent) candidates representing special interests, PACs, etc., could easily win an election/reelection. An ethics commission was formed to try to balance this situation and promote better, honest government.

The 5th District race is a good example of the benefits of this law. By accepting city funds, Feuer has been able to almost balance the books (still behind almost $100,000) and put on a credible campaign against another candidate who, although not an incumbent herself, has the inherited constituency of an incumbent. Barbara Yaroslavsky also could have accepted city funds, but would have to accept a total-amount limitation, which she declined to do because of her known fund-raising advantage.

Barbara Yaroslavsky says the money spent by the city could have been put to better use. I can think of no better use than good, clean, honest government.



* Regarding your endorsement of Feuer for the 5th District City Council seat (May 24):

I disagree with The Times' assessment that Feuer has his "finger on the pulse of the 5th District" and is therefore the best candidate for this City Council seat. Having heard him speak on a number of occasions now, I believe that Feuer, the candidate, needs re-examination.

Feuer has latched on to the Christopher Commission idea of local police substations as his own plan. It's a reasonable idea in theory, but as the recent murders at City Walk demonstrate, it will not reduce crime on the streets. As The Times reported (May 24), the City Walk murders took place within a few hundred feet of a police substation. Perhaps more officers patrolling the beat would better serve our crime-fighting needs and possibly have prevented these murders.

Also, Feuer's plan to have private businesses underwrite the cost of these substations is unrealistic and unfair. Why should property or business owners donate their services to a city that is already unfriendly to their needs or to a council candidate who has already promised them tougher times ahead?


Sherman Oaks

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