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We start today with a look at a new report from the city’s administrative officer, which says that L.A. spends $100 million a year on its homeless population. Where does the money go, and why is homelessness on the rise? Next, on the 40th anniversary of the Khmer Rouge takeover of Cambodia, we hear from a Cambodian refugee who came to Southern California as a child and lives in Long Beach. Then, an interview with a filmmaker who has a new documentary that revives the lost history of Cambodian pop music. And finally, in our Friday film segment, Star Wars, Paul Blart, and more.

Banner Image: Buddhist monk visiting the holy sites around Angkor Wat, Cambodia; Credit: Eric Weinke

LA Puts a Price Tag on Homelessness: $100 Million a Year 10 MIN, 50 SEC

This week, for the first time ever, Los Angeles put a dollar amount on its homeless problem: $100 million. That’s what the city spends every year on the city’s 23,000 homeless people, according to a new report from City Administrative Officer Miguel Santana. He also found that the money doesn’t go where you might think. Most of it is spent on law enforcement, not housing, food, or social services. We get the details of the study and take a look at where we are in building new housing for the homeless.

Gale Holland, Los Angeles Times (@geholland)
Mollie Lowery, Housing Works (@housingworksca)

The Story of a Cambodian Refugee in Southern California 10 MIN, 52 SEC

Forty years ago today, Pol Pot and his Khmer Rouge took over Cambodia. They quickly turned the country into what was essentially one large prison camp. Cities were emptied, anyone suspected of being educated was killed, and nearly every Cambodian was forced into grueling manual labor. Two million Cambodians died in four years. In 1979, the Vietnamese successfully invaded Cambodia and the Khmer Rouge fled. So did tens of thousands of Cambodians, many of whom ultimately made their way to the U.S., and Southern California in particular. We speak to one of the refugees who ended up here about his family history and current work with the local Cambodian-American community.

Phatry Derek Pan, Khmerican (@phatryderekpan)

Cambodia's Lost Rock and Roll 14 MIN, 2 SEC

Among the 2 million Cambodians who died in the genocide of the 1970s were many intellectuals and artists, including musicians. The pop and rock music scene in the capital, Phnom Penh, had been flourishing until then. The music was inspired by Western rock and soul, but had a distinctly Eastern sound. After the Khmer Rouge took over, they destroyed it. We hear from a filmmaker who set out to piece Cambodia’s pop music history back together.

John Pirozzi, director, 'Don't Think I've Forgotten'

Friday Film: 'Star Wars' and a Forgettable Family Comedy 13 MIN, 2 SEC

The trailer for the new Star Wars movie dropped yesterday. Though our film reviewers in this week’s Friday film segment could easily talk exclusively about that, we’re also going to take a look at movies that are actually coming out this weekend. We’ve got funny man Jonah Hill in another dramatic role, more Mall Cop, and the latest Disney Nature flick in the lineup.

Alonso Duralde, Film Critic (@ADuralde)
Dave White, Film Critic (@dlelandwhite)

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