Historic Olvera Street Church Will Protest City’s Plan To Charge Rent

LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Members of a historic church on Olvera Street are planning a protest after the city moved to charge rent.

Officials and supporters of La Plaza Methodist Church will march to City Hall at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday to ask city council for a more reasonable lease agreement.

Church employees say the city wants to charge them $232 a month, plus a complicated fee structure for special events, such as weddings and baptisms. They say those events could cost the church thousands of dollars in fees.

The church used to pay the city $1 a year, but that 50-year agreement ended a few years ago. After the city paid for expensive renovations to bring the church up to code, it tried to raise the rent, citing the separation between church and state.

The church contends that it is a non-profit that helps the community, namely the poor and homeless.

After the march, church officials are expected to address the city council.

Comments

One Comment

  1. Efrain says:

    We baptized our son there. I don’t remember how much the fee was, but there’s hundreds of baptisms, weddings, first communions, etc. every weekend. You’re going to tell me they can’t pay $232/month? 50 years is a ridiculous contract. Be happy it’s only $232 per month.

    1. G Ramirez says:

      I’m appalled that many of you do not seem to understand the real situation! You rant about it being ok to charge market rent to a church when you do not understand that the current congregation, which founded the church over 111 years ago, was forced almost at gunpoint to hand over the church to the State under threat of eminent domain in the 1950′s! The state wanted to make Olvera Street into a historical park but promised the Church that it would always have a place on the Plaza, hence the 50 year lease for $1 a year. Just remember that scenario, the next time a City agency comes knocking at your place of worship’s door, talking about eminent domain and handing over your “blighted” church to a nice friendly developer! If it happened at this historic and prominent church (the congregation did found the Goodwill Industries, for Pete’s sake!), then it can happen in your neck of the woods! And then we can ask who will sympathize with you when you had very little for this Church!!!

    2. Styker 21 says:

      Pay up or go some where else. Maybe Boyle Heights, housing, food and free money also known as welfare. Pay just like any other establishment. Stop bouncing little boys on your laps and pay your bill.

  2. Astonished says:

    Gee, I wish the City would upgrade my 81-year old home and then reduce my mortgage to $232.00 a month. I’d be singing my thank-yous every month!

  3. Nicolas Cruz says:

    Yes! Charge! They should be rated as a Hotel and taxed so! If you want me to collect I will do so ! I’m glad that child molester protecter Ma phony is gone ! GOD BLESS THAT SOMEONE IS THINKING ! Run LA AS A BUSINESS NOT MINORITY WELFARE!

  4. Hilda Gonzalez says:

    I thought it was a catholic church not Methodist, So Queen of Angels is not named that but instead La Plaza Methodist, where exactly is this church at? I only remember seeing just one and that’s the Queen of Angels, La Reina de Los Angeles.

    1. Connie says:

      It’s the church next to the Mexican Consulate office, not Queen of Angels, which is across the street.

  5. Sheila says:

    I never even noticed this church there, The Queen of Angeles is always busy this other one in within the plaza…232.00 for prime real estate? I think it should be a flat fee, market rent, no more than a 5 year lease. Let them keep their “event” money. Other churches would be interested I’m sure..

  6. Joe says:

    The church employees are outraged over a $232 monthly rent? That’s ONLY $7.73 per day! That is the same cost as a one large fancy burrito with a large coke with chips and salsa. What are these people complaining about? I am sure there are more than 232 parishioners attending that church. All they need to do is collect $1 per parishioner and they got the month’s rent!

    People across America should stop being free loaders! They want everything free or almost free! Start paying your share to the government because the government is not a fat milking cow that gives out free milk.

  7. Confused! says:

    I don’t get their beef….I noticed last Summer when I was in Olvera St. that the building was being refurbished. Obviously, it’s worth refurbishing since it’s a historical site. Any occupier that doesn’t own it should most definitely pay rent. $232. is dirt cheap! Especially a Church. In this country there is separation of Church and State! Tax payer’s dollars should never be given to any Church.

  8. Wedding Reception Hall Rental in Los Angeles says:

    Hey that’s really a great post and a wonderful description out here, I really like the way things are being executed and discussed here.

  9. G Ramirez says:

    I’m appalled that many of you do not seem to understand the real situation! You rant about it being ok to charge market rent to a church when you do not understand that the current congregation, which founded the church over 111 years ago, was forced almost at gunpoint to hand over the church to the State under threat of eminent domain in the 1950’s! The state wanted to make Olvera Street into a historical park but promised the Church that it would always have a place on the Plaza, hence the 50 year lease for $1 a year. Just remember that scenario, the next time a City agency comes knocking at your place of worship’s door, talking about eminent domain and handing over your “blighted” church to a nice friendly developer! If it happened at this historic and prominent church (the congregation did found the Goodwill Industries, for Pete’s sake!), then it can happen in your neck of the woods! And then we can ask who will sympathize with you when you had very little for this Church!!!

  10. PL says:

    Pay your share
    Our taxes cannot support you anymore

  11. G Ramirez says:

    You rant about it being ok to charge market rent to a church when you do not understand that the current congregation, which founded the church over 111 years ago, was forced almost at gunpoint to hand over the church to the State under threat of eminent domain in the 1950′s! The state wanted to make Olvera Street into a historical park but promised the Church that it would always have a place on the Plaza, hence the 50 year lease for $1 a year. Just remember that scenario, the next time a City agency comes knocking at your place of worship’s door, talking about eminent domain and handing over your “blighted” church to a nice friendly developer! If it happened at this historic and prominent church (the congregation did found the Goodwill Industries, for Pete’s sake!), then it can happen in your neck of the woods! And then we can ask who will sympathize with you when you had very little for this Church!!!

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