Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa wants Occupy L.A. to decamp by next Monday, according to notes of a meeting between the mayor's office and Occupy protesters.
The mayor's office and the protesters are trying to work out an agreement. But those negotiations took a big step backward today, following disclosure of City Hall's offer of office space at last night's General Assembly.
That offer is now off the table, and most of the Occupy protesters have dismissed it anyway.
The notes of today's meeting are pretty fascinating…
… because it seems that the mayor's staff and the Occupy delegation fundamentally misunderstand each other.
The mayor's office can't quite grasp why the Occupy folks need unanimous consent to approve an agreement. For their part, the Occupy folks don't seem to have a complete grasp of the political cross-currents affecting the mayor.
To make a deal, the Occupy folks need to negotiate in public, and their General Assembly meetings. But the mayor has to worry about council members and department heads, and so his office has to negotiate in secret. That's a pretty fundamental conflict. Doesn't seem like there's much room there to make a deal.
Where does that leave it? Villaraigosa seems insistent on getting a deal by next week. If there's no deal, he wants a Nov. 28 “evacuation date.” The Occupy negotiators are pleading for more time, so they can leave with a flourish.
Also of note from today's meeting: Seems Villaraigosa is OK with renaming City Hall park as “Liberty Park,” provided the City Council agrees.