Guzzling Taxpayer Money

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, the five oligarchs who administer an annual budget of nearly $20 billion that affects more than 10 million residents, have at their collective disposal a fleet of 64 automobiles. Most of these cars are assigned to their staffers and factotums. Each supervisor, though, has a car paid for by LA property taxes. Some of these cars have a paid chauffeur accompanying it.

The self-anointed “Mayor of Los Angeles County” (no such position actually exists), is a blowhard named Mike Antonovich, who uses taxpayer dollars to print and mail self-congratulatory “newsletters” to his admirers. Supervisor Mike has two cars (and a driver) at his disposal: both are Cadillac Deville luxury sedans. One, his office told the LA Times, is available as “back-up,” in case he other breaks down. It’s also handy when Mrs. Mike needs a ride to her husband’s office.

Supervisor Yvonne Braithwaite just bought a new Chrysler 300; Supervisors Zev Yaroslavsky and Gloria Molina drive Buick Park Avenues; Supervisor Don Knabe navigates the rugged backroads of LA County — you know, the boulder-strewn freeways and palm-lined boulevards — in a Ford Expedition SUV that’s large enough to ferry a platoon of local soldiers, who might be here at home if they weren’t off in the Middle East dying for Iraqi oilfields.

Public transportation? Hah! A small hybrid that gets 45 mpg? Too dangerous. Which is the main reason, according to spokesmen for the County Supervisors, that their bosses need chauffeurs. The Times learned that, apparently, there have been threats against the piglets suckling at the public teat.

One can imagine why.

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