FROM Eduardo Reyes
Is LA Squelching Public Art? On Monday of this week, no less than five skywriting airplanes spelled out the words, "End Mural Moratorium. Art is Not a Crime. Twitter at End Mural Moratorium." Along with the names of several street artists, those words were very clear and visible over City Hall in downtown Los Angeles. It was one of those artists, Saber, who commissioned what might be called airborne graffiti. Meanwhile, in West Hollywood, the new city library is about to open at the intersection of Melrose and San Vicente across from the Pacific Design Center. Its walls are covered with murals by street artists Shepard Fairey , Retna and Kenny Scharf .
Bright Lights, Bickering City The City Council took step today to make downtown's Figueroa Corridor look like Tokyo after dark. The Wilshire Grand project, a 45-story hotel and residence building and a 65-story office complex, will feature lighted advertising that changes every four minutes or every eight seconds depending on which floor it's on. Other floors will have streaming text and the floors in between will feature LED lights built into the buildings' surfaces showing giant flowers and vines. The Council approved the plan today 13 to 1, with Westside member Bill Rosendahl the lone dissenter. Today's City Council action overruled the City Planning Commission, which voted unanimously against the architectural lighting plan. Segment image: Colored "architectural LED lighting" that will rise on the upper part of the Wilshire Grand hotel and office project, courtesy of AC Martin
City of Los Angeles Squares Off against Governor Brown Last Friday, with just 24 hours public notice, the LA Community Redevelopment Agency met to approve a plan negotiated with the City Council. Some $930 million in CRA money will be transferred to the City to protect it from Governor Brown. In Sacramento this afternoon, Governor Brown met with Antonio Villaraigosa and eight other mayors to discuss the issue. Governor Brown addresses League of California Cities on redevelopment funds
Navigating the Los Angeles River Last month, the federal EPA declared the Los Angeles River a " traditional navigable waterway ." That has opened the way to plans for reviving the river that have pending in recent years. The river runs through the district represented by City Councilman Ed Reyes, who has a lot of plans. We hear from the Councilman, WWLA? producer Darrell Satzman and George Wolfe, a man who's kayaked the river from end to end.
LA City Council Takes Up Medical Marijuana Ordinance Since California voters approved Medical Marijuana 13 years ago, the legislature has passed a law intended to lay out a process for distribution. Many cities have limited the number of dispensaries and regulated sales. Not so the City of Los Angeles. Tomorrow the City Council will make another stab at the problem with both the City Attorney and the District Attorney threatening action if the Council gets it wrong.
Proposition R May Have Won, But the Fight's Not Over The campaign for Measure R on this week's Los Angeles City ballot, which said it would limit the influence of lobbyists at City Hall and "set term limits" on the City Council, passed with 59% of the vote. But contrary to the impression given by campaign mailers, it will allow council members to serve three terms instead of just two, meaning they can serve longer. The national group US Term Limits has dropped a lawsuit, saying it respects the will of the voters, but it still complains that the voters were "lied to" and "tricked."
White House budget proposal slashes and burns President Trump's first budget request is considered dead on arrival in Congress — a familiar development in Capitol Hill. We hear what it reveals about the priorities of the new administration. What's likely to die… and what might survive?
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?
Will the Senate write a healthcare bill in secret? While Democrats and Republicans argue White House relations with Russia, another question is being decided behind closed doors: who gets help buying health insurance and who doesn't? We hear how the pros and cons are being shrouded in secrecy.
Is the threat from Russia missing from the Russia meddling probe? There's much being made about the Trump administration's possible ties with Russia. But the bottom line is Russia's effort to influence American democracy. Do the President and his aides care enough to take action before voters go back to the polls?