Grocery workers struggling to put food on own table

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rationing food to avoid having to go hungry. The study was done by University of California researchers and funded by the United Food and Commercial Workers Western States Council labor union. It says average wages for the state’s unionized grocery workers dropped from $19.38 per hour in 2000 to $15.17 an hour by 2012. Non-union stores typically pay less. The report says most grocery workers no longer earn enough to qualify for the middle class.

smcshootingA moment of silence will be observed at noon today at Santa Monica College to honor victims of a deadly shooting that took place a year ago. That’s when a 23-year-old man dressed in military clothing and firing an assault rifle killed three people at SMC before being shot to death by police. John Zawahri had started his rampage at a home nearby, killing his father and brother. The victims at Santa Monica College were Carlos Navarro Franco, a college groundskeeper, his daughter, Marcela, and Margarita Gomez, who was collecting recycling on the campus when she crossed paths with Zawahri.

It could be some time before we know the outcome of the election for state Controller. Nearly a week after the vote, a pair of Democrats are locked in a battle for second place and a spot in the November run-off. But there are still a lot of votes left to count. The latest tally shows Ashley Swearengin, the Republican mayor of Fresno, leading the controller’s race with just under 25 percent of the vote. Right behind are two Democrats: Former Assembly Speaker John Perez is currently ahead of State Board of Equalization member Betty Yee by fewer than 2,000 votes. State officials say there are still more 900,000 ballots left to count.

adam-silverNBA Commissioner Adam Silver says Donald Sterling’s attempts to block the sale of the L.A. Clippers won’t succeed. Silver says the terms of the sale to former Microsoft Executive exec Steve Ballmer indemnify the league from any lawsuits filed by Sterling. Instead, the Sterling Trust, which owns the team, would have to pay any legal judgments: meaning in essence that Sterling would be suing himself. Sterling has waffled in recent days over whether he’s willing to sign off on the deal. He wants the NBA to rescind the lifetime ban it slapped on him as a result of his offensive comments about African Americans. He also wants the league to drop its $2.5 million fine. Silver says the league has no intention of doing either of those things.

greatwhiteAt least seven people reported seeing a great white shark at a Santa Barbara Beach, leading to officials to post warning signs and chase people out of the water. KEYT-TV says Leadbetter Beach was shut down for at least 24 hours after the shark was spotted inside the swimming buoys this weekend. The Harbor Patrol says officers interviewed two of the witnesses – a surfer and fisherman – and then decided to close the beach. This isn’t a first. There were about a dozen credible shark sightings last year in the two-mile stretch from Leadbetter Beach to East Beach.