Protests cost San Luis Obispo at least $250,000

June 24, 2020

By KAREN VELIE

The city of San Luis Obispo tallied some of the taxpayer costs related to a handful of recent protests. Those expenses come to $253,238, and do not include all the costs.

One of the primary goals of the protests is to shift a portion of police department funding to social services. However, officer overtime costs related to five days of protests has exceeded $176,000 at a time the city is facing budget shortfalls related to the coronavirus.

In response to a records request, the city provided partial costs for the five protests that occurred from May 31 through June 5. The costs include officer hours, management hours, barrier material, and food and drinks.

On June 1, protesters blocked traffic on Highway 101, and later engaged in a standoff with officers near the police station. During the protests that followed, officers guarded on-ramps and off-ramps to keep the protesters off Highway 101.

While the number of protests has slowed, protests are continuing, with another protest planned for Thursday at 7:45 p.m.


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TiaMiaOhMy

So BERT, disregarding the “bad cops” — how much is YOUR life worth? Like everything else within the scope of governmental agencies, I’m SURE that there are some changes that can be made…but to DEFUND the police is a RADICAL nonsensical idea!! I know I don’t want a bunch of “vigilantes” enforcing even the simplest of laws!! And if you think police are too expensive then wait until a “mobster” mafia type protection has to be paid by folks! I say — support our officers, put more money into hiring MORE officers to rid our streets of the thugs that are parading, destroying property and our economy.


commonsenseguy

It would only be fair, because of her “white privilege quilt”, for the balance of Mayor Harmon’s salary for the rest of the year, go to paying the cost of all law enforcement agencies. If it takes some of her salary going into 2021 to cover the balance, so be it. After all, it would the “woke” thing to do since you care so much about promoting SLO City as being a community of color. Put your money where your bloviating mouth is. By the way, what is her yearly salary with benefits? Can you please let us all know CCN? I can promise you, she has not earned it.


hotdog

One reason for the high costs was that the cops way overdid their show of force. Instead of standing around like a bunch of storm troopers a small cadre could have controlled things, especially if they marched with us. The large gangs of thugs they presented before the peaceful protestors could have been kept out of sight to reduce any tensions.


shelworth

If only a few Police Officers tried to stop them they would have been ignored, or attacked. The way it was done saved Police lives and protester lives.


Boldguy

My understanding is that you need to get a permit for any type of large assembly, the permit costs are supposed to cover the costs of municipal services.

As well as facilitating the crowd with bathrooms(port a potties) trash disposal, traffic control etc.

Why this group not cited for having an assembly without a permit?

Since the elected officials allowed this illegal assembly, it should come out of their stipends!!!

Of course Heidi should contribute double her share since she was marching with the protesters:)

Maybe these protesters that want to defund the police, are causing that to happen, one costly to the city, protest at a time:(


Vic Lamborghini

For what it’s worth, the rally in front of the courthouse was permitted. I suspect if CCN looks into what the NAACP/RACE Matters/blm paid for their permit, versus what other organization have paid, discrepancies would be found.


The protest march following the rally was not permitted. The NAACP/RACE Matters/blm said they would not march, but everyone knew they would, and they did, and the SLOPD was geared up ($$$) for it.


It’s almost as if the SLO Politicians and SLOPD feel residents are two slow to figure things out.


shelworth

I figure if we start charging the protesters 250 bucks a pop we could at least break even…


giblets56

What exactly is the point of these malcontents’ protests? It’s just an excuse to act out and trash our community. Grow up and do something REAL for humanity!


mkaney

I am the CFO of a large manufacturing corporation. I am a law abiding citizen and a taxpayer. I am a libertarian who strongly believes in the Constitution. I am a CAPITALIST. And I am absolutely disgusted by the authoritarianism and militarisim that is taking root in this country. I am deeply disturbed by the impact public safety is putting on our budgets. I am DEEPLY bothered by the power and incestuous political relationships of police unions. I support the rights of these protesters. I support the Constitutional rights of citizens which police are ROUTINELY violating.


And I have been at many of these protests. I was ALSO at the protests against the lockdowns, because I consistently support Constitutional rights, even if I don’t always agree with how people want to use them.


Maybe you need to take a look at police pay in California.


https://transparentcalifornia.com/salaries/search/?q=police&s=-gross


Vic Lamborghini

Your family’s food service organization is NOT a “large manufacturing corporation.”


mkaney

My family does not own a food service organization anymore. I work for a manufacturing company that operates in over 120 different countries.


commonsenseguy

I didn’t know McDonald’s was into manufacturing. Maybe heart attacks.


Noodly Appendages

Police in SLO County are nearly exclusively called to minor occurrences like fender benders to take reports. That is a good thing. Excessive force is not a good thing. Pulling your gun out to blast a dog should never be part of the job (but two different cops have done it within recent memory). Today’s militarized ‘forces’ are here to force YOU into a tighter and tighter space and step all over citizen’s rights. No! You may not handcuff me in public for ‘officer safety’ (but they did). Since when do these people count as more valuable than non LEO citizens? I’ll never forget how they cowered outside Denny’s in Pismo long after the shooter inside had been tackled and killed by a veteran – who also died-while all the innocents inside bled to death. Weak sissy move for sure. If the police want all this gear that’s even better than an actual Marine or Soldier gets, then let em get paid like a soldier. Incidentally, soldiers work as much as they are told with no overtime. Actual combat troops get paid around half of these local police. I’m sick of all these cop worshippers around here. There are better men fighting an actual WAR for less money with less equipment. Roofing houses is statistically far more dangerous. Police is actually way down the list of most dangerous jobs. It’s literally sickening the $$$ the ‘force’ costs us. All you cop worshippers will squeal and bleat in the comments section, but just wonder a minute if you still be cheerleading for LEOs when it’s your mentally ill relative or friend executed with no trial. The Paso shooter was hunted down with the end outcome an execution. We have trials in this democracy-even for people we KNOW are guilty. If you could see from my perspective you would realize the cop worshippers are falling into a 1938 German world view.


derasmus

I get your point(s), and some of it I agree with, some maybe not.


I too get really tired of the constant comparison of police to the military. As a veteran, US Army, I can tell you that police in California at least make a heck of a lot more money and have far better benefits. The other thing to remember is the military is governed by what is called the uniform code of military justice (UCMJ), meaning among other things you can’t just quit your job when you want. On the other hand, LEO’s are not covered by the UCMJ and can walk off the job, legally, anytime they want. Ironically I understand that has been happening a lot very lately in various places across the US. This anti police fervor is causing some to leave the profession.


I can also tell you that statistically being a police officer is not the most dangerous job in California or the United States for that matter. In fact, being a highway worker is far more dangerous than being a police officer in the United States.


However, police are ultimately just people like you and me, trying to make a living, and trying to do a decent job for a decent days pay, at least most of them are I presume. I choose to give the vast majority of peace officers the benefit of the doubt on that.


Police are there to enforce laws in a real time, to investigate crime, and to make arrests. They are not to administer justice, and they are not our masters. In this country we are citizens, not subjects. But, a little more MUTUAL respect would go a long way in my opinion to patch a lot of this up.


Just my thoughts.


Bert

The protesters showed up for free. The officers showed up for a quarter of a million dollars. The problem is that the police are too expensive. And you and I are paying for it.


JThomas

If you’re ever in trouble and need help please save the taxpayers money and just call the protesters!


SLOGROWN

Bert. Perhaps they showed up at the behest of the George Soros foundation. Perhaps.


Taxes are taxes. I hate paying my taxes for things I do not agree with, abortion, life sentences for murderers, welfare for those who don’t want to work or who are illegally here in our Country, free healthcare, blah, blah, blah.


The area where I don’t mind paying taxes is where LE is concerned. I can take care of myself if I’m attacked by the anarchists, but I sleep well knowing that I have those who have trained and are well versed in keeping the peace. As in the general society, there are good and bad. Perhaps we should get rid of the bad in society first, as the left is calling for getting rid of the “bad” in LE? Or defunding altogether?


The left, given their position over the last several years vilified “Vigilantism”. Only because they associated that with being white. No LE means Vigilantism. Skin color exempt. So the question is; is Vigilantism Ok if the left carries it out as seen at ‘CHOP’ in Seattle? Or will the left apply their so called “outrage” for such against all who will practice it?


Here’s a thought: Move to China or Venezuela. You might find the living conditions you long for in either of those 2 Countries….


Mitch C

Actually the “protesters” were not peaceful they were a angry mob that violated some citizens private property by breaking windows and looting businesses. Blocking the freeway is not only dangerous but it is stupid.


mkaney

Mitch C Thee was not looting and the broken windows of the business was COMPLETELY unrelated.


STOP LYING. Tired of the lack of integrity by people who purport to be championing personal responsibility and integrity.


mtasseff

If you are so concerned about the cost Bert why don’t you show up tomorrow and take care of the situation for free. Remember you get no pay and no back up.


horse_soldier

So the protester party is over, time to pay the bills!

No doubt Heidi Harmon has a good plan for how to do so. After all, she was chief cheerleader for how to do more damage to downtown businesses.


hotdog

What damage was done to businesses? Are you playing that discredited song that the protestors broke windows? You must read this site, it was widely reported that a couple teenage burglars did the damage, nothing to do with BLM. How about not spreading lies?


shishkabob141

Spreading lies? Nice try. How about not jumping to your whack job conclusions?

Down town business are damaged each and every day they are not allowed to conduct BUSINESS, it’s just that simple.

No need to mention looters, burglars, BLM or any other such thing. Really, about the only thing you forgot was to call me a racist.