Council Approves Hot Line to Cut Losses

The Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to set up a hot line for taxpayers to report city workers whom they believe are stealing or wasting city funds.

Proposed by Councilman Howard Finn, the hot line will be set up on a 18-month trial basis. Callers will leave tips on an answering machine.

The phone number has yet to be determined.

Los Angeles City officials claim to have saved nearly $1 million from a hot line set up about six years to take tips on welfare cheaters.

No one spoke in opposition to the hot line at Tuesday's council meeting, and the measure passed without discussion.

Joe Wetzler, head of the city engineer's union, had complained earlier that the line could lead to harassment of city employees for such actions as taking permitted coffee breaks.

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