The Tongva Native American tribe has sued the Los Angeles County Supervisors, the Catholic Archdiocese, Governor Brown and others over the bones of 100 people discovered near Olvera Street in downtown LA. They were found two weeks ago during construction of a garden that's part of a new Mexican-American cultural center. We get the latest on a dispute over preservation of LA's heritage. Also, State Treasurer Bill Lockyer on reports that states might file bankruptcy. On our rebroadcast of today's To the Point, California's not the only state with a budget gap so large that cuts alone could seriously damage healthcare, public education and infrastructure. Antipathy to raising taxes is so strong that, in Washington, there's the even talk about states going bankrupt. We hear about financial decisions that could change the face of America.
FROM THIS EPISODE
It took 15 years to resolve the conflict over remains of a thousand Native Americans discovered during construction of the massive Playa Vista development on LA's Westside. They were stored in cardboard boxes in a trailer parked on the site, until 2007, when they were removed, covered with white seashells and buried again during a sacred ceremony. Two and a half weeks ago, the remains of a hundred people stopped construction of a Mexican-American cultural center in downtown Los Angeles. The downtown site isn't the only ancient cemetery that's aroused local passions and possible legal action. The City of LA has designated as "extremely historic" land in Santa Monica Canyon surrounding the Marquez Family Cemetery, which holds the remains dating back to the early 1900's.
There have been rumors in Washington that some states, including California, are in such bad shape they should be allowed to declare bankruptcy. In a national telephone conference call with reporters today, Bill Lockyer, the State Treasure of California, called that a "cynical proposal designed to incite a panic in response to a phony crisis."
Bill Lockyer, California State Treasurer
The federal deficit is disturbing, but Washington can print money. The states have to balance their budgets, and the total of shortfalls around the country is at $82 billion. Nobody wants to raise taxes, and even massive cuts aren't likely to make up the differences. As we've just heard, bankruptcy has been suggested.
Matthew Murray, Professor of Economics, University of Tennessee
Bruce Cain, University of California Washington Center
Ray Long, Illinois Statehouse Reporter, Chicago Tribune
Emily Ramshaw, Assistant Managing Editor, Texas Tribune
John Weingart, Associate Director, Rutgers University's Eagleton Institute of Politics