FROM Paul Pringle
L.A.'s Questionable County Fair The Los Angeles County Fair debuted in 1922, and was once the biggest agricultural fair in the country. Because it’s held on county grounds, the nonprofit behind the fair pays no property taxes, and is also exempt from most income taxes. Yet despite this, the fair association lost more than $6 million from 2010 to 2013, while also paying its CEO more than triple the salary of other fairs’ executives.
LA County Fire Department Attempts to Fix Hiring Scandal LA County Supervisors have adopted standardized, digital testing for hiring across all its departments. The idea is to provide security and make it harder to cheat. Last month, the LA Times reported evidence of nepotism in the County Fire Department, including the sharing of test materials by employees, including a battalion chief and 10 captains. Paul Pringle co-wrote the story.
Son of an LA Firefighter? You’ve Got a Better Chance to Be Hired The LA County Fire Department says it’s drafting a nepotism policy after an investigation by the LA Times. It turns out that 13% of the firefighters hired in the past few years are the sons, brothers, nephews and other relatives of veterans already serving. Paul Pringle did the research and wrote the story, published in the Times.
LA Coliseum Panel Close to Deal with USC The LA Coliseum is a public facility on public land, but the Coliseum Commission is getting ready to turn it over to the University of Southern California, a private university. Top former Commission staff members are under indictment for bribery, kickbacks, embezzlement and conflicts of interest. Maybe that's why Commission members — and current staff -- aren't talking out loud. Meantime, the Los Angeles Times has managed to get a copy of the draft agreement. Paul Pringle is co-writing the story.
Bell's Former Police Chief Found Lucrative Loophole Randy Adams was hired as Police Chief for the City of Bell after he declared himself disabled, which means unable to perform his duties. But Bell’s former city manager Robert Rizzo hired him anyway, and Adams could get millions in tax-free pension income when he retires. Paul Pringle is reporting that story for the Los Angeles Times .
Janesville and the American Dream Janesville, Wisconsin is the hometown of Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan. But he couldn’t prevent the closing of the General Motors factory after 100 years. On this Memorial Day rebroadcast of To the Point, we hear what’s happened to what once was a model of American middle-class unity.
Ex-FBI Director Comey tells his side of the story Today, former FBI Director James Comey came close to calling the President who fired him a liar. The White House denied the claim and called it insulting, but Republican Senators did not challenge Comey’s truthfulness. Many questions remain: did the President try to obstruct a federal investigation? Later, we’ll go behind the “velvet rope” for a look at 5-Star health care for the richest Americans.
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.
Venezuela spirals into economic and political chaos Venezuela, a country whose potential for prosperity is unmatched, finds itself on the verge of civil war. What sustains the repressive government? With time running out, guest host León Krauze looks at what the international community can do to pull the country from the edge of collapse.