Mayor ends Occupy Houston squatting; Cost to taxpayers exceeds $300k

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Occupy Houston Effort Ends to Allow Work on Downtown Park – Office of Mayor Annise Parker

Providing a police presence at the park for the last four months has cost the Houston Police Department a total of $54,917.68 and $287,268.00 in overtime and regular salaries, respectively. The end to the encampment will free those officers for assignment elsewhere.

The Houston Parks Department estimates it will cost more than $13,000 to clean up and lay new sod in the park.

A more accurate headline would have been something like “Mayor orders HPD to end Occupy Houston squatting in Downtown Park.”

In any case, that sure was a waste of a lot of money. About the best thing that can be said about the Houston squatting is that far less violent crime seems to have been reported here than in other Occupy encampments.

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Kevin Whited is co-founder and publisher of blogHOUSTON. Follow him on twitter: @PubliusTX