Hey Los Angeles, can you spare a dime for Jackson?
Jul 7, 2009, 15:30 GMT
Who will pay for this?? Fans with tickets are allowed beyond a barrier into the Staples Center three-hours before a memorial for pop star Michael Jackson in Los Angeles, California, USA, 07 July 2009. Over one and a half million people registered online for a chance to win a pair of the 17,500 tickets allotted for the memorial. Jackson died of a heart attack at age 50. EPA/SEAN MASTERSON
Los Angeles - Cash-strapped Los Angeles appealed for donations Tuesday from Michael Jackson's millions of fans around the world to help cover the costs associated with the public memorial for the late King of Pop.
Matt Szabo, a spokesman for Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, said the tax-deductible donations by Jackson fans would help pay for 'the public safety resources needed to ensure his memorial remains safe, orderly and respectful.'
The costs of security and logistical support for the massive event have been estimated at between 3 to 4 million dollars. So far there has been no indication that either the Jackson family or his promoter AEG have offered any funds.
'Los Angeles is a world-class city that's used to putting on world class events' but is 'not immune to the recession' Szabo told broadcaster CNN.
'We're asking Michael Jackson fans to help be a part of this event - to contribute online and literally support this great memorial.'
Barriers were erected around much of downtown Los Angeles near the Staples Centre, the venue of the memorial, with access permitted only to ticket holders. Over 1.6 million people applied for the 17,500 tickets available through the online lottery. Tens of thousands of Jackson fans crowded the venue from early Tuesday morning.
Jackson died June 25, aged 50, of cardiac arrest.