Mission Viejo’s “lock box” left unguarded. $300,000 “floats” down Colorado Blvd.

As we listen to candidates for city council around the state they all list “public safety” as their top priority. One would expect nothing less. That’s a safe statement.  But if you challenge them to justify budgeting $300,000 for a Tournament of Roses Parade you are labeled as an angry man.

OK. You’ve read enough about self-built or self-funded parade floats in prior posts.

Yesterday I spoke with Mary Hoffman, President of TFRA, the volunteer staff tasked with the city of Torrance 2009 float entry entitled “Mad Hatter Tea Party.”

Let’s now engage in an apples-to-apples comparison.

2009 Float builder  Torrance     Fiesta Parade Floats
M.V.       Fiesta Parade Floats
As such that part of the playing field is equal.

Funding.  Torrance         Budget $130,000
Mission Viejo budget $300,000

Float status.   Torrance. They have already passed the first Tournament inspection
M.V.  A design will be reviewed by the council on Sept 2nd

Fundraising  Torrance.  In addition to membership in TRFA, “Other ways to support our group is through the purchase of candy, pins, patches and t-shirts on sale at various City events that the Association participates in during the year.   Come support us at the:·”Fall Boutique” September 13-14, 2008  Torrance Cultural Arts Center·-“Christmas Boutique” December 7, 2008  Wilson Park”
Mission Viejo. We have no organized effort in place for fundraising other than the city’s piggy bank. Take note that Torrance will hold their Fall Boutique in two weeks. That takes advance planning and promotion. They also have T-shirts and other items for sale as stated above.

At no time has our ad-hok team or city council mentioned any comparable fundraising efforts. Why bother. Simply write a check. Based on our CIP track record we excel in that department.

PS: The local OC Register reporter called me on my Rose Parade concerns yesterday but my comments about the vast difference in costs using the same builder, as shown above, were received too late for their story.

Juice readers. You have three choices. 1. Pass, 2. Respond directly at the OC Register, local Mission Viejo story whose headline reads “Officials aim to raise city profile through Rose Parade entry” or 3. reply, as always, on this post.
Thank you for bearing with me on this series that could happen in any of your cities. I will not give up the fight until the last bell rings, which might occur on election day 2008 or 2010.

About Larry Gilbert