Oakland officials today said the Occupy Oakland protests have cost the city more than $1 million so far, and business owners say the protests are hurting them financially too.
As of Oct. 28 the city estimates it has spent more than $700,000 in overtime costs alone including $700,000 for police, $28,000 for public works and $9,000 for information technology staff, said City Administrator Karen Boyd.
Other costs include $70,000 for the Police Department, $70,000 for the public works agency, $25,000 to replace glass damaged on Wednesday when a protest became violent, and $100,000 for security enhancements to the Police Department’s web site.
The Chamber of Commerce today also issued a statement indicating that business leaders had met with Mayor Jean Quan, Boyd and Chief of Police Howard Jordan to ask that the encampment be shut down. The group expressed support for the Oakland Police Department and told Quan it would “hold her responsible for the peaceful and successful resolution to this encampment,” said Paul Junge, the group’s public policy director.
The group said that sales have dropped 40 percent at some businesses, and that customers, employees and clients report feeling afraid and harassed downtown.
Sara Gaiser, Bay City News