Today’s News: Sequester brings flight delays to LAX; Garcetti jumps ahead in mayor’s race; Trutanich lags

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Slow going. Passengers headed to Southland airports today could be in for major delays. The Federal Aviation Administration says dozens of flights at LAX  were delayed on average by more than three hours yesterday, and today could be worse. Air-traffic controllers have started taking unpaid furlough days as a result of the federal budget cuts known as the sequester – meaning that fewer controllers are in the tower at any given time. The FAA says planes will have to take off and land less frequently to avoid overloading the remaining controllers. Some flights could also be canceled to clear backlogs. KCBS

Fire threat. A blaze that forced the evacuation of 300 homes in Monrovia is nearly surrounded this morning. but fire officials say it could just be the opening salvo in a difficult fire season. The 125-acre fire was 85 percent contained at last tally, and everyone who was evacuated has been allowed to return home. Fire officials say that one of the driest winters in a century is creating conditions for a potentially catastrophic fire season. L.A. has had only five inches of rain since last July, about one-third of the seasonal average. San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Garcetti leads. City Controller Wendy Greuel says she’s not overly concerned with a new poll showing her trailing City Councilman Eric Garcetti in the mayor’s race. With a month to go, the L.A. Times-USC poll finds that Gafcetti is favored by 50 percent of likely voters, compared to 40 percent for Greuel. The poll shows Garcetti ahead of Greuel with women, men, Latinos and younger voters. Greuel is the more popular choice among African American voters L.A. Times

Trutanich trails. The Times-USC poll also finds that challenger Mike Feuer is leading incumbent Carmen Trutanich by a sizable margin in the City Attorney’s race. But many voters sill haven’t made up their minds. The poll shows Feuer 11 points ahead of Trutanich. Feuer has the support of about 37 percent voters, with Trutanich just under 26 percent. Nearly 40 percent of likely voters haven’t settled on a candidate. L.A. Times

Pedal power. Some L.A. streets had a different look yesterday. An estimated 150-thousand bicyclists along with an odd number of skateboarders, scooter riders and others took to the streets for L.A.’s sixth Ciclavia. A pathway from downtown to Venice Beach was closed to traffic for the event, which was the biggest yet for L.A. The large crowds led to jammed conditions in some areas, and street closures were not popular among drivers. But city officials called the event a success. The next Ciclavia is scheduled for June 23rd, when Wilshire Boulevard will be closed between downtown and Fairfax Ave. L.A. Observed