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There's been oil drilling in Los Angeles for more than 100 years, and some wells are still active. Fracking could make some inactive ones gush again. But the City Council is worried about health risks, earthquakes and the use of water during a drought. We hear the pros and cons of a proposed ban or a moratorium. Also, leaves of absence due to criminal charges have deprived Democrats of their two-thirds majority in the State Senate. Will Republicans now take advantage?

Image-for-WWLA.jpgLater on To the Point, Russian troops have been activated in Crimea — on Ukrainian soil. President Putin has yet to be heard from. President Obama says, if Putin goes any farther, it will cause Russia pain in the economy.

Banner image: Joshua Doubek
Calderon Leaves California Senate amid Corruption Charges 6 MIN, 7 SEC

Last week, LA Democrat Rod Wright was granted a leave of absence from the State Senate. He's been convicted on eight counts of perjury and voter fraud. Yesterday, another LA Democrat, Ron Calderon, took a paid leave.  He's charged with 24 counts of bribery and other crimes. That means the Democrats will no longer have the two-thirds majority needed to pass some bills without support from Republicans. Dan Walters is a syndicated columnist for the Sacramento Bee.

Dan Walters, Sacramento Bee (@WaltersBee)

Main Topic LA City Council Takes Aim at Fracking 14 MIN, 14 SEC

Last Friday, 10 members of the LA City Council asked City Attorney Mike Feuer to draw up a ban on fracking. That's short for hydraulic fracturing, the use of water and some chemicals to extract oil that's otherwise hard to get. Governor Brown signed a state law to regulate fracking last year, but some legislators want to amend it. In the meantime, Los Angeles may take steps of its own.

Bhavna Shamasunder, Occidental College (@UEPI)
Nick Ortiz, Western States Petroleum Association

Hydraulic Fracturing study of the Ingelwood Oil Field
LA City Council file on Hydraulic Fracturing, Prohibition of Well Stimulation Activities
LA Times on reduced ailments, air improvements after Allenco oil field closes
National Academy of Sciences on hydraulic fracturing, earthquakes and wastewater

LAFD Taking Heat for Hiring Practices, Alleged Nepotism 7 MIN, 22 SEC

Historically, in America's eastern cities, jobs in police and fire departments were passed on from father to son. That's not supposed to happen here in Los Angeles, but two top commanders who oversaw hiring and firing have been reassigned. Both had sons in the department. Raphe Sonenshein is Executive Director of the Pat Brown Institute at Cal State LA.

Raphael Sonenshein, California State University, Los Angeles (@SonensheinPBI)

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