Why Is LA County Paying $1.9 Million To 'Guide COVID-19 Messaging'?

Back in April, FOX 11 reported that Los Angeles County had awarded no-bid contracts to Mercury Public Affairs and Fraser Communications for $200,000 each... Specifically filed for "COVID-19 Emergency Communications Support". Fast forward to June, and the team at FOX 11 has now obtained exclusive contracts that shows L.A. County is spending more than $1.9 million on public relations in order to shift the conversation about coronavirus.

According to the contracts, Mercury Public Affairs will receive a total of $1.2 million from the county for "communications consulting". Fraser Communications will be paid $700,000, also for their consulting services. Their services include monitoring social media and gauging the communities perception of how L.A. is handling COVID-19.

L.A. County Sheriff Alex Villanueva told FOX 11 that these PR contracts just show how hypocritical the county is when it comes to budgeting...

“When I’m picking and choosing who I’m going to lay off and they’re just throwing money at PR firms, and they’re sitting on 49 public information officers, I mean they have a platoon of people that do this, yet they hire outside, I don’t get it," Villanueva said.

FOX 11's Bill Melugin will join the John and Ken Show on Thursday at 3 p.m. to discuss the county's expensive PR contracts, and why some officials say it's a complete waste of money. Make sure you're listening to KFI AM 640!

”They’re trying to make themselves look better in the eyes of the community, really, it’s not about a message,” Villanueva added.

Read the full report on FOX 11.

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