LOS ANGELES-Groups supporting the secession of the San Fernando Valley, Hollywood and San Pedro from the City of Los Angeles will have to disclose the names of their contributors under a bill signed into law by California Gov. Gray Davis.

The bill was pushed through the state Legislature by Assembly Speaker Bob Hertzberg (D, Sherman Oaks), who says voters have a right to know who’s behind efforts to break up the city. “It is always in the public interest to understand what forces are behind whatever political efforts are out there,” Hertzberg said after Davis signed the bill.

Residents of the three communities have long complained that LA–with a population now approaching 4 million–is simply too big and diverse to be governed by a single mayor and City Council. They also say that too much of their tax money is funneled into other areas of the city by lawmakers who, in some cases, don’t even know the area codes of the people they purport to represent.

A majority of the City Council opposes the breakaway efforts, claiming that splitting the city up would only lead to the creation of new layers of bureaucracy and worsen racial tensions. While the majority of the sprawling San Fernando Valley is white, the population of the city’s urban core is African-American and Latino.

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