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Tax Hike to Staff LAPD Not on March Ballot

November 13, 2003|Jessica Garrison | Times Staff Writer

Los Angeles City Council members decided Wednesday not to put on the March ballot a proposal to increase taxes to pay for more police officers.

Council members could still put the matter before voters at a later date. But Wednesday was the deadline for directing the city attorney to put items on the March 4 ballot and, instead of issuing instructions for that, council members voted to send the issue back to a committee.

Council members said they still had work to do on the issue before taking it to voters.

"We can't run willy-nilly and put something on the ballot," Councilwoman Cindy Miscikowski said last week.

But several council members have said that Los Angeles is desperate for more police officers and that they plan to keep studying the tax-increase idea.

An initial proposal called for asking voters to tax themselves -- possibly with a real estate parcel tax -- to bring the LAPD to 10,000 officers.

Council members also decided against putting two other ballot measures before voters in March: a plan to change the City Charter to allow funds from the Port of Los Angeles to be spent on education, recreation, culture and tourism, and repeal of the city's ban on lap-dancing.

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