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County launches educational campaign, poster contest to fight ocean pollution – Daily Breeze
Heal the Bay and Los Angeles County are hoping to tap into children’s creative juices to get them excited about keeping the county’s beaches clean. First, children can watch “Clean and Blue,” an educational video that teaches children how pollution makes its way to the ocean and what can be done to prevent it. After watching the video, third-, fourth-, and fifth-graders who live in the county are encouraged to share what they learned by drawing pictures that illustrate ways to keep the oceans clean. The drawings can be submitted to the “Can the Trash!” poster contest for a chance to have their designs posted on trash cans around Los Angeles County beaches. Five winners from each grade will be selected to have their artwork featured. [Article]
by , Daily Breeze. 2018-09-18
 
Report shows outstanding growth in L.A. film/digital media industry – Daily News
Los Angeles County’s media industry is on a roll, according to a study released Monday by Beacon Economics. Commissioned by the Los Angeles County Chief Executive Office, Beacon’s exhaustive, 206-page “Film and Digital Media Industry Los Angeles County Perspective” report noted that job growth in movies, television and the ever-expanding universe of online content delivery here outpaced anywhere else in the nation from 2011 to 2016. Direct jobs in those fields grew by 23 percent over that period, from 215,800 to 265,200 around here. That beat the national average for the industry of 15 percent and L.A.’s closest competitor for such work, New York’s 12 percent. About nine percent of FDMI employment is now based in L.A. County and generates 6.1 percent of total county jobs. [Article]
by , Los Angeles Daily News. 2018-09-18
 
L.A. Outpacing New York in Film and Digital Media Employment, Study Finds | Hollywood Reporter
The industry in Southern California is also becoming increasingly diverse, but has not welcomed more women into its ranks, authors concluded. Despite attractive tax incentives in other states and changing consumer behaviors, the film and digital media workforce in Los Angeles County is growing faster than in the New York metro area and is becoming increasingly more diverse, a new study has found. That study, commissioned by the Los Angeles County Chief Executive Office, surveys film and digital media industries as an integrated "cluster" (acronym: FDMI). As streaming and digital video blur the lines between film and television and digital media, the authors argue, the two sectors are increasingly collaborating and integrating. Undertaken by the independent research and consulting firm Beacon Economics, the report provides a generally positive overview of L.A.'s role in the shifting media landscape. (Read the full study here.) Still, its authors also single out housing affordability and cost of living as remaining issues for the industry, and provide policy recommendations to strengthen its position. [Article]
by , . 2018-09-18
 
Tracking initiative unveiled for "at risk" wanderers – Santa Clarita Valley Signal
With more than a dozen people reported missing in the Santa Clarita Valley these past couple of years including a handful of those suffering from dementia and Alzheimer’s, searchers now report having a tool that promises to stem the tide of people wandering off. This month, county civic leaders announced the launch of an initiative called L.A. Found and, with it, the use of a tracking bracelet that would let others know where the bracelet wearer is at all times. Officials with Los Angeles County and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department expressed excitement over the new tracking technology that promises to help them find those suffering from autism, Alzheimer’s or dementia. [Article]
by , . 2018-09-18
 
It's been an especially bad summer for mosquitoes. These fish can help
Outfitted in chest-high camouflage waders and tall rubber boots, Ryan Amick stepped cautiously into a murky artificial pond in South Los Angeles. Ducks preened themselves on a small island and half a dozen turtles slid gently through the green water. Amick ignored them. He was there for the fish. It was his second such excursion in a week, made necessary by the explosion of particularly aggressive mosquitoes throughout Los Angeles County. Itchy residents placed nearly twice as many calls to the county’s bug police last month than they did the previous August, and it’s looking like the trend will continue through September. So Amick and his colleagues at the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District are fighting back — with mosquitofish. The small, silvery creatures will be delivered to backyard fountains and ornamental ponds throughout the region to help limit the number of mosquito larvae that grow up to be flying, biting, disease-carrying adults. [Article]
by , Los Angeles Times. 2018-09-18
 
Three homeless men in critical condition after baseball bat attacks in downtown L.A.
Three homeless men were brutally beaten with a baseball bat while they slept on downtown Los Angeles streets early Sunday morning, and authorities were warning people in homeless encampments to be on alert for a possible predator. The attacks left all three men in critical condition at a hospital. None had regained consciousness as of Monday afternoon, said Capt. Billy Hayes of the Los Angeles Police Department’s Robbery-Homicide Division. In the first incident, the attacker, who is also believed to be homeless, smashed the bat across the head and shoulders of a homeless man in his late 50s who was sleeping near 5th and Flower streets around 4 a.m., said Hayes. About 30 minutes later, two homeless men sleeping near Flower Street and Wilshire Boulevard were beaten in the same manner, Hayes said. The assailant rummaged through the victims’ pockets after the attacks, which were believed to be motivated by robbery, Hayes said. “Anytime that there’s a predator walking around preying on innocent people like this we want to get them as soon as possible,” Hayes said during a news conference at the LAPD’s headquarters Monday afternoon. [Article]
by , Los Angeles Times. 2018-09-18
 
Anger in California's carpool lanes as more than 200,000 drivers are set to lose decals
For some California commuters, cutting down on carbon emissions isn’t a sexy enough reason to buy an electric car. But the ability to bypass freeway traffic without having to carpool — that’s another story. So there is grumbling in high-occupancy-vehicle lanes across California these days. On Jan. 1, the owners of as many as 220,000 low- and zero-emission vehicles stand to lose the white and green clean-air decals that allow them to drive solo in the diamond lanes. The decal program was designed to get more clean-air vehicles on state roadways. But it also clogged the lanes, sometimes to the point of gridlock. So the state Legislature passed a measure last year that significantly limits the number of people eligible for these decals. As of New Year’s Day, drivers who received their clean-air stickers before 2017 will have to buy new vehicles to qualify for the program, or purchase used cars that have never had a decal but would have qualified for one in 2017 or 2018. And some who earn above a certain amount won’t be eligible for the stickers at all. Clean-air advocates say that the new policy unfairly punishes early adopters of electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids, and will discourage drivers who can’t afford to buy a newer zero-emission vehicle — but may have purchased a used one to secure the carpool benefit — from entering the electric vehicle market. “There need to be continued incentives to get people to drive electric,” said Katherine Stainken, policy director for Plug in America, a Los Angeles electric vehicle advocacy group. “And we’re not making it easy for someone to make that choice.” [Article]
by , Los Angeles Times. 2018-09-18
 
Tenants got a rare chance to come back after being evicted — but most didn't
Two years ago, when she was booted from her airy apartment on Franklin Avenue, Sylvie Shain was packing up until nearly midnight. Now she and her friends were lugging it all back up to her door at the Villa Carlotta: a vintage stove in a sherbet shade of mint, a velvety couch said to have once graced the Chateau Marmont, boxes heavy with knickknacks she never had the heart to cull when she was evicted. Back then, “I was the little guy and there was no way I was going to win,” Shain recalled one afternoon. “Me going back is like the little guy winning.” Shain and other renters lost their apartments after a new owner announced plans to turn the Villa Carlotta into a boutique hotel. When those plans fell apart, tenants got a rare chance to come back. That right to return is a safeguard for renters displaced under the Ellis Act, a state law that allows landlords to evict tenants from rent-controlled units if they are tearing down a building or getting out of the rental business. Under L.A. city rules, if the landlord promptly backs out of those plans and leases the apartments again, former tenants are allowed to return at roughly the same rents. But tenant activists say it rarely works out that way. [Article]
by , Los Angeles Times. 2018-09-18
 
As opioid death toll worsens, California doctors will soon be required to perform database checks
By the time the 59-year-old woman overdosed in the late summer of 2013, she’d been given 75 prescriptions by three primary care doctors, a psychiatrist and a pain specialist in one year. Her deadly cocktail: an opioid painkiller, a sleeping aid and anti-anxiety medication. Had any of the five physicians treating her been aware she’d been “shopping” around for prescriptions? Had they warned her of the dangerous combinations? Had anyone tried to intervene? For decades, California has kept a prescription history database for doctors and pharmacies to consult, but many healthcare providers have ignored it — and the potential life-saving clues it provides. Beginning Oct. 2, a new law makes consulting that database mandatory. By logging into a web-based program, prescribing physicians should be able to easily spot signs of a “doctor shopper” — someone who sees multiple doctors to load up on prescription drugs — or indications of dangerous medication combinations. Armed with that information, physicians can provide drug safety warnings, deny the patient’s request for prescriptions, and even offer help when drug abuse is suspected. “California created the first system to track prescriptions of the strongest painkillers, but our state fell behind as the opioid crisis grew,” said state Sen. Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens), who drafted the legislation in 2015. “I wrote SB 482 to require that doctors and others consult the CURES system before prescribing these powerful and addictive drugs. This tool will help limit doctor shopping, break the cycle of addiction and prevent prescriptions from ever again fueling an epidemic that claims thousands of lives.” [Article]
by , Los Angeles Times. 2018-09-18
 
Police chiefs warn of increased crime if California allows pot deliveries statewide
The prospect of vans loaded with pot delivering to homes in quiet Morgan Hill makes Police Chief David Swing uneasy. Like most cities in the state, the upscale San Jose suburb has banned pot shops. But now, as California considers a proposal to allow marijuana businesses to send home-delivery vans into communities where retail stores are prohibited, Swing and others in law enforcement say they are preparing for the worst. “This will make it easier and more lucrative to rob a delivery person than a liquor store,” said Swing, who is president of the California Police Chiefs Assn. He notes drivers would be allowed to carry up to $10,000 in cash. “Robberies are the tip of the iceberg. They can lead to other crimes, including aggravated assaults and homicides.” Law enforcement leaders and city officials statewide have lined up to oppose the delivery proposal currently under consideration by California Bureau of Cannabis Control chief Lori Ajax. They were among the thousands of people who packed three public hearings recently held by the bureau on new marijuana regulations. The League of California Cities, which represents the state’s 482 municipalities, has also joined with the California Police Chiefs Assn. in a campaign to kill the delivery proposal. [Article]
by , Los Angeles Times. 2018-09-18
 
California plans to show the world how to meet the Paris climate target | Dana Nuccitelli | Environment | The Guardian
Last week, California Governor Jerry Brown signed State Senator and US Senate candidate Kevin de León’s SB 100, which mandates that the state obtain all of its electricity from zero-carbon sources by 2045. That in itself was a big deal, but Brown didn’t stop there; he also issued an executive order calling for the entire California economy to become carbon-neutral by 2045. That’s a huge deal. In order to stay below the Paris climate threshold of 2°C global warming above pre-industrial temperatures, humanity must become carbon-neutral by around 2060 or 2070. If California can meet Brown’s target, it will be providing the rest of the world a blueprint for meeting the Paris target. As the world’s fifth-largest economy, California can provide a powerful roadmap for others to follow. [Article]
by , . 2018-09-18
 
Let Me Count the Ways - This American Life
Yes, youʼve heard about the family separations. Youʼve heard about the travel ban. But there are dozens of ways the Trump administration is cracking down on immigration across many agencies, sometimes in ways so small and technical it doesnʼt make headlines. This week, the quiet bureaucratic war that’s even targeting legal immigrants. [Article]
by , . 2018-09-18
 
From Syria To Southern California: Refugees Seek Care For Wounds Of War | California Healthline
EL CAJON, Calif. — In his native Syria, Mahmoud spent months in captivity in a crowded room three floors underground, never seeing the sun. Disease spread quickly among the prisoners, he said. Food was scarce, often spoiled. Mahmoud said his captors, foot soldiers of Syrian President Bashar Assad, tortured him and shot him in the leg. “I was in jail for seven months. They let me go, but I was physically sick, and tired,” the 29-year-old refugee said, speaking inside a cheerful, modern medical clinic here with signs posted in English and Arabic. “I had infections, inflammation. I’m still trying to get treated for it all.” Mahmoud, tall and friendly, agreed to be interviewed on the condition that only his first name be used for fear of retaliation against family back home. He settled in one of the largest Syrian refugee communities in the United States — a midsize California town near San Diego. And by virtue of this influx of refugees, it has become a health care hub for a traumatized and physically ailing population. [Article]
by , California Healthline. 2018-09-18
 
With Declining Ridership, North County Transit District Looks At Increasing Fares | KPBS
Between its trains and buses, the North County Transit District said this June compared to last June, overall ridership is down 5 percent. That’s equal to more than 46,000 trips. The NCTD said customer revenue has declined due to the loss in ridership. On Thursday, the transit board will hear a presentation about fares increasing for buses and trains. The proposed increase for Breeze buses is 75 cents per ride. Sprinter trains would go up 50 cents per ticket while Coaster rates would increase a dollar. Regional day passes and monthly fares would also go up under the current proposal. The NCTD said the proposed rate hike would bring in more than $1 million in additional revenue. A report said rates have not risen since 2007 and were decreased in 2011. Diesel fuel prices are also being considered for the rate increase. The transit district said diesel has gone up 47 percent from $1.42 per gallon in January 2011 to $2.10 per gallon in January 2018. [Article]
by , KPBS - San Diego. 2018-09-18
 
El Cajon looking to find balance with dockless bicycles - The San Diego Union-Tribune
Like other communities in San Diego County, El Cajon is exploring its options as it tries to get a handle on the increasing number of dockless bicycles in the city. El Cajon City Manager Graham Mitchell shared a report with the City Council last week looking at the different options the city could take to regulate the bikes that are growing in popularity. Bike-sharing programs take cars off the road, reduce pollution and greenhouse gases, and encourage people to get out of their vehicles and exercise. Since May, El Cajon residents have reported bikes haphazardly strewn about the city and have expressed concern about safety issues related to the abundance of the yellow Ofo brand of bikes and green LimeBike bicycles in the city. The station-free ridesharing bikes with GPS tracking can either be electric or non-electric. Both involve downloading an app to your phone, creating an account and linking a credit card to it, scanning a code, riding at a set price per half hour, then parking the bike and locking it when finished. Timers on a bike reset after they are locked. Electric bicycles are not allowed on sidewalks by law. In El Cajon, sidewalk cycling is also illegal. [Article]
by , San Diego Union-Tribune. 2018-09-18
 
Sales declines signal housing market shift, Realtor economist says – Orange County Register
Southern California house sales slipped below year-ago levels in August for a fourth straight month, even though prices continued to climb, the California Association of Realtors reported Monday, Sept. 17. Regionwide, sales fell 7.5 percent year over year, Realtor figures show. It was the biggest sales drop among California metro areas. Sales were down in all four counties covered by the Southern California News Group, dropping 8.9 percent in Los Angeles County, 9.7 percent in Orange County, 6.6 percent in Riverside County and 4.3 percent in San Bernardino County. The trend matches what’s been happening statewide, as the cost of buying outstrips the capacity of more and more home shoppers. [Article]
by , Orange County Register. 2018-09-18
 
Election 2018: Proposition 5 Property Tax Break | Forum | Forum | KQED
As part of our Election 2018 coverage, we’ll take a look at Proposition 5, which would give a property tax break to homeowners age 55 and above who buy and move into more expensive homes. Proponents say the measure would free up housing stock by incentivizing seniors to sell their homes. But opponents cite a report from the Legislative Analyst’s Office that found local governments could miss out on as much as $1 billion in revenue a year. We discuss the pros and cons of prop 5. What questions do you have about the measure? Guests: Graham Knaus, executive director, California State Association of Counties Scott Shafer, senior editor, KQED’s California Politics and Government desk Steve White, president, California Association of Realtors [Article]
by , . 2018-09-18
 
Mountain lion attacks are rare, with California’s last fatality in Orange County 14 years ago – San Bernardino Sun
Mountain lions may be “perfect killing machines” — as described by wildlife biologist and author Jim Williams — but they usually don’t have much interest in taking down people. “Statistically speaking, a person is one thousand times more likely to be struck by lightning than attacked by a mountain lion,” according to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife website. There have been four attacks in Orange County since 1986, one of them fatal. In that time period, there was a single non-fatal attack in Los Angeles County and none in the Inland Empire. Statewide since 1986, there were 14 verified attacks, and three of them fatal, according to the Department of Fish and Wildlife, which has no record of any attacks since 2014. Over the same 28-year span, the state saw three fatal snake bites and seven fatal shark attacks. [Article]
by , San Bernardino County Sun. 2018-09-18
 
County could cut short contracts with Hall, Liberty ambulance companies in certain parts of Kern following lawsuit | News | bakersfield.com
Kern County Supervisors are set to approve amendments to the contracts of Hall Ambulance and Liberty Ambulance, which would allow the county to request competitive bids for ambulance services in the areas of Wasco, Ridgecrest, California City and Mojave. If the bid process reveals alternative companies that could provide cheaper or better service in those areas, the contracts for those two companies would be cut short before their scheduled end, said Kern Public Health Director Matt Constantine. The move stems from a state lawsuit that alleged Kern County Public Health Services improperly granted exclusive contracts to ambulance services in parts of Kern County. In May, Administrative Law Judge Samuel D. Reyes found that the county had inappropriately awarded contracts to Hall Ambulance Service Inc. and Liberty Ambulance Service in three of 10 regions across the county. [Article]
by , Bakersfield Californian. 2018-09-18
 
CASA of Kern County celebrates 25 years giving foster kids a voice
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - CASA of Kern County is celebrating its 25th anniversary Saturday. CASA, or Court Appointed Special Advocate, is a national organization that started in 1977 with the goal of helping every abused or neglected child in the United States find a safe, permanent home so they are given the opportunity to thrive. The program helps provide children in foster care with caring and consistent adults while their cases move through the justice system. Over the last 25 years, CASA of Kern County has served nearly 3,000 foster children.  "We're a different voice and we are actually the voice with the most experience with the child and the child's file," CASA of Kern County director Colleen McGauley said. [Article]
by , . 2018-09-18
 
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