FROM Steve Lopez
Officials tackle suicides at Pasadena's Colorado Street bridge On the east side of the Colorado Street bridge in Pasadena, there’s a sign that says “There is hope,” along with a crisis hotline number. So far this year, police have been called to the bridge on 21 “mental health” calls. Six of those were suicides. Work crews have put up temporary barriers to stop jumpers.
A sneak peek at LAX’s new luxurious terminal for the wealthy Flying is often stressful for travelers. But at Los Angeles International Airport , if you can pay $7500 a year -- plus a couple extra thousand per visit -- you can get private TSA security lines, a full bar, and a chauffeured BMW directly to your airplane.
Why is California's Coastal Commission Under Threat? In 1972 California voters got on board with Proposition 20, which created the California Coastal Commission. The Coastal Commission's primary duty is to control construction and development along the coast. Now that legacy is under threat all up and down the state coastline.
Tracking the Wet Prince of Bel Air There is someone in Bel Air using 1,300 gallons of water an hour. Los Angeles Times columnist Steve Lopez is on the case . He comes armed with a posse of drought shamers with too much time on their hands, Google Earth and a Prius, all in an effort to expose the person some are calling the Wet Prince of Bel Air.
Undercover Uber If you rode in an Uber last Wednesday, you might’ve seen your name in the Los Angeles Times over the weekend. Times columnist Steve Lopez spent a day as an Uber driver and wrote about it in his latest piece .
Los Angeles DWP Drama And, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power has been in hot water recently. It’s had massive billing errors. A union official blocked access to financial records of non-profits he controls. And meanwhile, now it’s asking for a rate increase.
Is LA Criminalizing Homelessness? The Los Angeles City Council this week gave the city more power to dismantle homeless encampments. That’s despite the loud objections of homeless advocates. About a dozen protesters disrupted Tuesday’s City Council meeting, calling the rules “criminal” until security officers escorted them out.
LA DWP Proposes Rate Hike amid Billing Issues In the next five years Los Angeles will have to start repairing its crumbling infrastructure by raising utility rates. The DWP has a history of reckless spending and customer billing scandals. Can ratepayers trust it to do the billion-dollar-plus job? How much would you pay to improve LA's aging infrastructure?
Jaywalking Outrage It’s not only hard to find a parking spot in Downtown L.A. It’s also becoming hard for pedestrians crossing the street. Police there have been cracking down on jaywalkers. If the light isn’t green, you can get a nearly $200 dollar ticket, even if you cross while the red hand is flashing. This has provoked outrage among residents, and now city council members and one state legislator are considering an intervention. We hear from Steve Lopez, who’s been covering story.
The High Price of Fines in Los Angeles Yesterday, LA Times columnist Steve Lopez wrote about the devastating effects of traffic fines — including jay-walking — on low-income people. He suggested there might be a "sliding scale based on ability to pay."
Skid Row Millionaire Despite the new crime statistics, there’s also good news from Skid Row today. About 30 organizations in the area found out they will each be receiving $100,000 from one generous donor. It’s not Oprah. It’s not David Geffen. It’s a previously unheard-of recluse named Delmer Clarence Kallberg. We learn more about Kallberg, his life, and why he made this gift.
Would Black Gold Tarnish a Local Beach Town? In less than two months, Hermosa Beach will hold an election that could lead to big change on the shores of Santa Monica Bay. Voters can decide to pay an oil company $17 million. The option is approving 34 new oil wells to be drilled close to surf shops and other local business -- and 98 steps from the home of one lifelong resident. That's according to Sunday's column by Steve Lopez in the LA Times .
Deasy Resigns from LA Unified In today’s letter of resignation as Superintendent of LA Schools, John Deasy says, “I am overwhelmed with pride in what this administration has accomplished for the youth of Los Angeles.” In announcing Deasy’s departure, the elected school board said “academic achievement rose substantially despite severe economic hardships” during Deasy’s tenure. Deasy’s resignation was accepted by a vote of 6 to 1, with Monica Ratliff voting no. The vote for Ramon Cortines as his interim replacement was unanimous.
How Did Donald Sterling Last So Long? There seems to be a consensus in Los Angeles that Clippers owner Donald Sterling is finally getting what he richly deserves: a ban from association with his own professional basketball team, and fellow team owners may demand that he sell. LA Times columnist Steve Lopez calls the city's unified condemnation of racism a "bright moment" after a long time of darkness.
Nathaniel Ayers and the Issue of Forced Medication Nathaniel Ayers is the brilliant, mentally ill musician who was living on the streets in L.A. for many years. L.A. Times columnist Steve Lopez has been writing about him for years, including in his book The Soloist , which was turned into a movie starring Jamie Foxx as Ayers. For Ayers, there was a once promising career as a classical musician, then came a diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenia, then electro-shock therapy. He eventually ended up on Skid Row, and now there’s a new development in Ayers’ story.
State of the Garcetti Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti will give his "State of the City" address tonight. Before he does that, we're going to offer a "State of the Garcetti" segment. We take a look at the mayor's first nine months in office. What's he's accomplished, what he hasn't, and what's on his agenda going forward.
Securing Public Spaces, Super Wealthy Asians Vehicles are increasingly being used as weapons, as seen in the London Bridge attack over the weekend and in New York’s Times Square last month. The Compton-based company Calpipe is designing security bollards to help make public spaces safer. And novelist Kevin Kwan satirizes the “crazy rich” Asian jet set and their luxurious tastes in his latest book, “Rich People Problems.”
Why did Jared Kushner want a back channel with Russians? News broke Friday that President Trump’s son-in-law and senior advisor, Jared Kushner, tried setting up a back channel between the Trump transition team and the Russian government. What are the consequences for Kushner, President Trump, and the investigation into Russian meddling?
Shaking up the USDA, 'The Beef Cookbook' and 'Tartine All Day' Peggy Lowe explains why Trump’s pick for USDA Secretary is rattling rural America. Dario Cecchini talks future plans for Chianti ramen, and Richard Turner shares cuts from “PRIME: The Beef Cookbook.” Writer Matthew Sedacca looks at the controversy behind liquid smoke. Jonathan Gold tries Chengdu-style dishes, and Elisabeth Prueitt of Tartine fills us in on the latest. Plus, chef Michael Beckman shares a recipe for cactus confit.