A YouTube video message posted by West Hollywood Mayor Lauren Meister addresses the postponement of the Public Safety Update at the last regular West Hollywood City Council meeting on Monday, March 21, 2022. The City Council tabled Item 4.C., a WeHo Public Safety Update that reports on crime activities in the past six months and provides additional direction on public safety priorities and resources. However, City Staff recommended the item be moved to a future council meeting.
“There is a lot of confusion amongst the community about that item,” said City Manager David Wilson. “That item was received in final update. I think there is confusion on actions being take tonight, or not being taken tonight. Additionally, there is information that needs to be clarified by Staff in the staff report itself in some of the documents that have been provided, so we want to provide those clarifications and more context at a future meeting for further discussion.”
In the video message, Mayor Meister acknowledges the community’s disappointment when council tabled the discussion this past week. She addresses the correspondence the city has received regarding public safety budget and concerns that Public Safety Commission is recommending to defund the West Hollywood Sheriff’s. She also said she agreed with the community that now is is not the time to cut back deputies.
Read or watch her statement below:
“Hello. I’m Lauren Meister, the Mayor of West Hollywood. I’d like to take a few minutes to discuss what happened at our last council meeting, which took place on Monday, March 21st. I know the community was very disappointed that the Public Safety update was tabled. However, the item will be on the agenda in April when we’re actually back in person in the council chambers, so I hope that you and your neighbors can join us.
If you read the public safety update, you’ll see that Part 1 numbers for July in December 2021 are very close to pre-pandemic numbers, however there were increases above normal levels in certain categories. Even if the numbers overall are consistent with pre-pandemic years, any amount of crime should be unacceptable. We should be working with our sheriffs to see how we can improve service and make our city safer.
While the budget for the Sheriffs was not on the item, it is important for the community to be heard. We received a lot of correspondence from the public stating concerns about the city’s Public Safety Commission and their recommendation to council that we decrease sworn sheriffs personnel by 17 percent. I’m with community. This is not the time to cut deputies. Public safety must be our top priority. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for listening. And we’ll see you at our next West Hollywood city council meeting in April.”