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Politics

City of Vernon, Targeted For Extinction by State Leader John Perez, Spent $5,900 Per Resident on Lobbying So Far This Year

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Thu, May 19, 2011 at 12:04 PM

click to enlarge A collector's item? - ZORCA
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Updated at the bottom of the next page with Vernon's response.

You might not even know you're in Vernon, the tiny industrial town just southeast of downtown L.A., as you're driving through.

But apparently the city, which the state assembly recently voted to dissolve, carries a big stick in Sacramento -- bigger that a little burgh called L.A.

In fact, reports Capitol Weekly, Vernon outspent L.A. in lobbying during the first three months of this year -- $566,884 to $343,441,

The publication crunches the numbers and finds that, in a city with 96 residents (really), Vernon spent $5,900 per citizen in lobbying in Sacramento during the first quarter of 2011.

Yeah, this little inbred municipality is fighting tooth-and-nail not to be dissolved and become an unincorporated part of L.A.

Already city officials have said paperwork requested by state assembly Speaker John Perez would cost us -- the taxpayers of California -- $3 million to produce.

Thanks for giving us the finger, Vernon. It really makes us support your cause.

(No, seriously, we can't wait to say good riddance. This place makes Bell look like Santa Monica).

Update: Fred MacFarlane, spokesman for the city of Vernon, sent us this response Friday afternoon:

If there were no AB 46 there would be no Vernon spending to defend itself against municipal execution by the State legislature. No spending. Not one dime. Vernon has a right to defend itself and uphold our state's constitution. Any other charter city in the state would do likewise if it were facing the same unprecedented threat of impending demise. AB 46 is now probably the most expensive piece of legislation ever introduced in the state legislature. What's the Speaker spending to pass this bill? You might ask him for an accounting of what it's cost the people of the State of California since December 2010 to have his army of staff aides, legislative consultants and legislative counsels toiling away on this one bill (that will likely be overturned by the state courts). Should the people of California have to foot the bill for this quixotic political gambit?

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