Los Angeles Police Department officers voted down their union’s plan to raise $10 million to fight department layoffs and support and oppose 2022 political candidates, a union official said Tuesday.
The special assessment would have taken about $22 out of each paycheck over 48 pay periods, according to Tom Saggau of the Los Angeles Police Protective League, which represents LAPD officers. Special assessments are the only way unions can raise money aside from increasing dues, Saggau said.
According to Saggau, the vote received extremely low turnout because the education process was disrupted by COVID-19. He said the union had to explain the plan impersonally over Zoom to officers.
The union could not release the vote results or the number of officers who voted. The dates that members voted also was not immediately available, but Saggau said people were able to cast their votes over about a two-week period.
“Input from the membership during the assessment process underscored the strong desire to continue amplifying our efforts to protect our profession and public safety in Los Angeles in a manner that is more comprehensive than what was originally planned,” the LAPPL Board of Directors said in a statement Tuesday. “As such, the Board of Directors is reviewing additional options to ensure the interests of our membership and the public are fully protected at the local, state, and federal level.”
Saggau could not elaborate on the efforts that the union will pursue next, but he said the union last month put up billboards in five city council districts demanding a plan from city leaders to keep residents safe.
It’s also leveraging two domain names, whereistheoutragela.com and whereistheplan.com, which both link to the union’s crime dashboard showing crime statistics in Los Angeles.
City officials said in December that LAPD layoffs were on the table as the coronavirus pandemic continues to ravage the economy and take its toll on government coffers. Mayor Eric Garcetti said he hopes laying off city employees will be a last-resort measure.
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