The city should pay, of course. Sure, there's outrage over the costs of policing and other services, and yes, we are in the grips of the Great Recession that has L.A. running a half-billion dollar deficit. But in the life of a city stuff happens, whether it's the Jackson spectacle or the Lakers parade. Just be glad the thing came off with minimum fuss. Local officials have a fiduciary responsibility to deal with these one-time, extraordinary events, just as a company would deal with unexpected crises that cost money.
Governments at various levels have various bottom-line responsibilities: the feds must keep us safe from foreign enemies, the state must keep the freeways moving, and cities must pay cops overtime when the situation warrants. Whether we're happy about it really doesn't matter. Next week we could be dealing with brush fires - you want to start questioning OT for that? So stop the whining - and will they please drop that embarrassing plan to ask for contributions (think Bloomberg would be doing that in NY?) Let's just borrow a few dollars, pay the bill and move on.