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Why Bratton's Really Leaving (Among Other Reasons): A Cash-Strapped LAPD

As we reported last week, City Hall is swirling with high-end, believable rumors about why Chief William J. Bratton is really leaving Los Angeles -- having nothing to do with his claim that he's abandoning ship mid-way through a five-year contract merely to go get rich in the private sector.

Today, David Zahniser and Phil Willon discuss in the Los Angeles Times one of the key reasons many people believe Bill is boltin': the ugly cuts that may be on the way in LAPD if a plan founders that was cooked up by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and the City Council to help meet a $530 million budget deficit with "early retirement" buyouts.

It looks like the buyout scheme embraced by City Hall's elected leaders just ain't gonna pencil out, and Villaraigosa and the 15 council members acted before knowing the facts.

If the City Council now decides to bleed LAPD, watch for major blowups

and political finger-pointing inside City Hall about how the

council and mayor never planned for a rainy day, and how little financial

investigation they did before deciding, in a very panicky way, that a big city-employee buyout was the answer.

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