Mayor Erickson wants WeHo to pay for trip to Paris this summer

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Less than a year after West Hollywood footed the bill for John M. Erickson to visit Vatican City, taxpayers might soon be funding the mayor’s upcoming trip to Paris.

Erickson has asked his colleagues to authorize payment for his travel to the French capital this summer, where he will officially accept the handoff of a ceremonial torch for Pride House, an LGBTQ organization operating in tandem with the coming Olympic Games.

Should Council approve the item at their meeting Monday, it would mark a significant departure from the plan they approved two weeks ago, which ordered the assembly of a delegation to the Pride House event that specifically excluded councilmembers from attending.

Pride House is an organization that advocates for inclusivity and acceptance of LGBTQ+ people during major international sporting events. WeHo wants to host Pride House during the 2026 World Cup and the 2028 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, which would position West Hollywood as a central hub for LGBTQ+ visitors.

The council’s directive comes on the heels of the March 18 decision to send a delegation of city leaders and staff to explore the operations and best practices of Pride House during the 2024 Paris Olympics.

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During the two weeks following that meeting, Mayor Erickson received an invitation to personally accept the Pride House torch, a gesture symbolizing the transition of hosting duties from Paris to West Hollywood.

Mayor Erickson’s trip would cost taxpayers between $5,000 and $6,000, a total which would include airfare and accommodations for a five-day visit between July 26 and August 11. This expenditure would be integrated into the City Council’s travel budget.

The topic of paying for councilmembers’ international travel came up on the agenda in February, when Council mandated that any foreign trip would need their direct approval on a case-by-case basis. The five councilmembers share a $50,000 budget they are supposed to split evenly for travel expenses, although in 2023, 80% of that budget was consumed by just two councilmembers — Erickson and Vice Mayor Chelsea Lee Byers.

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Keoni Tyler
Keoni Tyler
23 days ago

This is a general comment and no slight against Mayor Erickson – and caveat: I don’t have all the facts… but as someone who has worked closely on the Big-O and FIFA broadcasts, I would think that doing anything this Summer is really taking the luster and bang out too soon, (though that would be Pride House’s itinerary). This summer will easily be forgotten a year from now – much less in 2026 and 2028 – when The Games return to LA for the first time since Lionel Richie closed the ceremony on ABC in 1984. (2028 is also the… Read more »

Johnny
Johnny
23 days ago

If he can’t pay for it himself them
no. It’s a tax deduction for him but it’s an unnecessary cost to tax payers. These trips plus the use of local hotels for meetings etc by the City is a rip off. No. If he can’t afford to pay and doesn’t have the money he needs to get a better paying job, use his miles and stay at a hostel.

Morty
Morty
24 days ago

The reporting is wrong. His trip would cost tax payers $5000-6000 per person???? How many people is he planning on bringing with him? I can guarantee you that during the summer Olympics there is no way his airfare and hotel for 1 week will only cost $5-6K. Count on double or triple that amount. Is this really necessary travel? It seems like more government waste. West Hollywood isn’t even part of the LA Olympics. He sure loves to travel the globe at our expense.

Alan Strasburg
Alan Strasburg
25 days ago

How do people keep a straight face while telling shameless lies in the narrative surrounding this fleecing of the public dime? This debacle is a clear violation of the intent of council’s last action on the Pride House delegation and merely a sneaky attempt at a workaround to the prohibition on council members attending the event. The letter could not be more clear in its invitation (clearly manufactured at WeHo city hall) for Erickson to be part of the delegation. Erickson is letting this titular role as meeting chair develop into a grandiosity with gaudy embellishments we haven’t even seen… Read more »

Carleton cro9nin
26 days ago
  • It seems to me that WEHO has all the necessary answers to hosting Pride House,,etc. This city could probably teach the rest of the world how to host visiting LGBTQ+ people. The only positive thing I see from a WEHO delegation’s trip to Paris is the refinement of properly dipping one’s croissant in one’s
  • s coffee cup.
Mikie Friedman
Mikie Friedman
25 days ago

Carl, you are wonderful!! That was the most perfect laugh-out-loud comment!!

Tom
Tom
26 days ago

I’m sure we could come to an almost unanimous approval of this expense if the ticket is one-way.

WokeSucks
WokeSucks
26 days ago
Reply to  Tom

Exactly. No return ticket for this gastly political hack he/him Erickson.
.

Joan Henehan
Joan Henehan
26 days ago

Pay his way to Paris? Ridiculous. Out of the question. The next elections can’t come soon enough.

Outraged
Outraged
26 days ago

While he’s there, can they reenact the Marie Antoinette scene? He’s a bigger out of touch privileged dismissive queen than even she was. It might be 300 years old, but does the guillotine still work? Great engineering is a terrible thing to waste. Meanwhile, we will all be back here eating cake.

Had Enough
Had Enough
26 days ago

This is The City. The entitlement and greed are out of control. And, sadly, the rudeness, arrogance and dismissiveness has finally encompassed Anwar.

Kevin
Kevin
26 days ago

This is why they have a travel budget and this seems like a very valid business trip given the city is hosting multiple pride events at upcoming regional events, the World Cup and Olympics. I want to know how they can do it for 5-6k, they should promote that travel agent!

WehoQueen
WehoQueen
26 days ago

Well done on the graphic, showing the Air France ticket. Personally, I think he’s way too delicate for economy 10 across travel.

WehoQueen
WehoQueen
26 days ago

It takes a lot of nerve for this selfish hypocrite to beg the taxpayers to fund his pleasure travel. If he has so much free time, why doesn’t he go out and help fix some potholes in the streets. $6,000 represents a lot of cocktails the bars would have to sell to get tax revenue to send this hypocrite on a pleasure trip. If he wants to go so bad, he should pay for it himself, and the 3 minutes of the actual (alleged) torch handoff, the city could prorate back to him for 3 minutes of pretend “work”. He’s… Read more »

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