Todd Spitzer Unloads on L.A.’s Mayor, Says His Homeless Policies ‘Put Lives at Risk’

Orange County Supervisor and District Attorney-Elect Todd Spitzer opened a rare war of words with Los Angeles Mayor Garcetti last week with a scathing op-ed that blames the mayor and other city officials for some of California’s recent wildfires.

At issue are Garcetti’s actions toward homeless encampments where dangerous outdoor cooking and heating equipment is often used. A cooking fire at one of these sites was responsible for the Skirball blaze that engulfed the Bel Air hillsides last year.

“...Los Angeles city officials have condoned campfires by homeless individuals in the extremely dry, mountainous brush areas. The Los Angeles mayor said the vagrants could not be arrested because the city does not have ‘No Trespassing’ signs posted in the area,” Spitzer wrote. “Instead, he dispatched a team of counselors with no law enforcement authority to roust the homeless. This was met with limited success.”

In Orange County “we do not allow the lives and well-being of our residents to be placed at risk by the homeless population,” he added. “I led efforts with my Board colleagues to clear homeless encampments from three miles along the Santa Ana River and place the individuals in shelters."

Mayor Garcetti did not directly responded to Spitzer’s comments.