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Friday Mixer: Battling for endorsements, Hollywood development, LA 2020

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In this week’s Friday Mixer, we ask, who has the mayoral race endorsement edge? Eric Garcetti received the backing of city councilwoman and former mayoral candidate Jan Perry, while Wendy Greuel got a high-five from former LA Laker – and current part-owner of the LA Dodgers – Magic Johnson.
Could Garcetti’s vocal opposition to the Hollywood Millennium  development project end up helping him if he …

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L.A. Candidate Forum on the Environment, Transportation and the Economy

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The May 21 runoff election is just about 7 weeks away and candidates for higher office in the city of Los Angeles are holding court in a series of Q&As before voters.
It’s being called the L.A. Candidate Forum on the Environment, Transportation, and the Economy.
The daylong event was organized by the L.A. League of Conservation Voters, Climate Resolve and Green L.A., along with other …

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Los Angeles school kids make fine art – with socks

A student named Sidney (foreground) chooses materials as the group prepares to work on their group sculpture at the gallery at Charles White Elementary.

In an era of diminishing budgets, arts education in Los Angeles holds a precarious position. According to one estimate, more than half of all students in the L.A. Unified School District will not receive arts instruction in elementary school.
In the past five years, state funding for elementary arts education has dropped by 60 million dollars. Some schools have made up for the shortfall with …

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New Dodgers regime goes for broke

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Baseball fans will get their first look at Dodger Stadium’s $100-million makeover this evening, when the team faces off against the Angels at Chavez Ravine as part of the Freeway Series.
One-hundred million dollars is a lot of money, to be sure, but it’s just a fraction of the billions lavished on the Dodgers since Guggenheim Group bought the club last year from Frank McCourt. …

Environment, Issues, Politics, Today's News »

Today’s News: Hollywood towers clear hurdle; Meager snowpack; Mapping L.A.’s energy use

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Tall order. The L.A. City Planning Commission has signed off on the controversial Millenium Project in Hollywood. That’s despite opposition from two city councilmembers, including Eric Garcetti, a candidate for mayor of L.A. The $664 million project calls for a pair of 55-story skyscrapers flanking the Tower Record building. The buildings would be more than twice as high as the next tallest structure in …

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Dodgers reboot: New owners, record payroll and a renovated stadium

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The Major League Baseball season begins on Monday and the first exhibition game in newly renovated Dodger Stadium is getting under way tonight. We get a preview of the upcoming season and the new look at Dodger Stadium, renovated to emphasize fan comfort, Dodger Blue and Restroom Green.

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Photos: Big changes at Dodger Stadium

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When Dodger Stadium opened in 1962, it was gem of modern architecture, capturing in steel and concrete the cool, Kennedyesque spirit of the time. You can just imagine the cast of “Mad Men” cheering in the stands, or better yet, having a gin and tonic in the Clubhouse. The ballpark was also notable for its setting, perched on an Elysian Park hilltop with  commanding …

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Today’s News: Perry gives support to Garcetti; New gig for Fabian Nunez; Heat is on fire rings

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Perry’s pick. Jan Perry is expected to announce today that she’s endorsing Eric Garcetti for mayor. The two have been colleagues on the city council for a dozen years. Perry finished fourth in the March 5th mayoral primary election, drawing about 16 percent of the vote. She was the overwhelming favorite in the city’s predominantly African-American neighborhoods. L.A. Times
Budget bunch. Former U.S. Commerce Secretary …

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In the city of Compton, is it incompetence or corruption?

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Council members in the City of Bell were recently convicted of crimes for inflating their salaries by taking money for work on city commissions that hardly ever met. Next door in the City of Compton, something similar has been going on. That’s according to a report tonight on KCET’s SoCal Connected.

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Tripping out: Author Tom Folsom re-constructs rebel Dennis Hopper’s wild life

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Counterculture actor/director Dennis Hopper, who died three years ago after a struggle with cancer, spent decades trying to write the story of his life.  He was likely too busy living it to finish.
Biographer Tom Folsom’s done the job in three years.
Folsom stopped by KCRW to talk about his newly released book, Hopper: Chasing the American Dream.  (With him was his wife, Lily Koppel, who’ll …

Arts & Culture, Environment, Headline, Issues, Today's News »

Today’s News: Supreme Court weighs DOMA; Toxic legacy; Boothless Golden Gate bridge

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DOMA debate. The Supreme Court today turned from California’s Proposition 8 to the question of whether the federal government can deny benefits to those already married. At issue is the Defense of Marriage Act, a 1996 law passed by Congress and signed by President Clinton that defines marriage as between a man and a woman. DOMA as it’s known, affects some 18,000 legally married …

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California’s Prop 8 at the Supreme Court

Anti-Proposition 8 protesters wave a rainbow flag in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, March 26, 2013. Two members of the U.S. Supreme Court, both viewed as potential swing votes on the right of gay couples to marry, raised doubts about California's gay marriage ban on Tuesday as they questioned a lawyer defending the ban. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Five years ago, voters passed Proposition 8, banning same-sex marriage in California.  A federal judge in San Francisco declared it unconstitutional, and his decision was upheld by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Tomorrow, the issue will be argued before US Supreme Court in Washington. We hear from an opponent and a gay male wife with two children. (We also hear from other supporters of same-sex …

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Will California’s Proposition 8 survive the US Supreme Court?

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Much has changed since Proposition 8 passed in 2008 and polls show that if it were on the California ballot now, it would be likely to fail. Today, at the US Supreme Court, Justice Anthony Kennedy, often the decider between his four liberal and four conservative colleagues, acknowledged that Prop 8 has taken the court into “uncharted waters.” Liberal Justice Sonya Sotomayor posed the question, …

Arts & Culture, economy, Environment, Interviews, Today's News »

Today’s News: National spotlight on Prop. 8; MOCA raises millions; State parks in peril

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Prop. 8 debate. An historic morning at the U.S. Supreme Court as justices heard arguments from lawyers on both sides of the gay marriage debate. At issue is the legality of Proposition 8, California’s voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage. But the case is also delving into the very meaning of marriage. Several justices posed questions to the lawyers, including Justice Anthony Kennedy, who is …

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LA Observed: Clinton endorses Greuel

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With the Los Angeles mayoral runoff weeks away, there’s another player in the campaign throwing his support for City Controller Wendy Greuel.
It’s not a union chief or some high-ranking city official. It’s former President Bill Clinton, who’s email was shared with donors and voters today.
KCRW’s Steve Chiotakis spoke with Kevin Roderick from LA Observed about the latest news from the mayor’s race.

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OC Line: The Orange County tourists don’t see

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Late last year, the Anaheim/Orange County Visitor & Convention Bureau hired a new tourism chief. Jay Burress was brought in from Texas, of all places, to attract more visitors to Orange County.
Now how hard could that be? With beautiful beaches, Disneyland, and exclusive resorts, it can’t be too difficult.
But we wanted to go beyond the obvious attractions. And to do that we’ve brought in …

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Prop 8 and the same-sex marriage ban at the Supreme Court

Anti-Proposition 8 protesters wave a rainbow flag in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, March 26, 2013. Two members of the U.S. Supreme Court, both viewed as potential swing votes on the right of gay couples to marry, raised doubts about California's gay marriage ban on Tuesday as they questioned a lawyer defending the ban. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Tuesday 7:30 p.m. Which Way, LA? asks if Prop. 8 will survive the Supreme Court
Warren talked to a group of activists and lawyers to try to answer Justice Sotomayor’s question, “If the issue is letting the States experiment and letting the society have more time to figure out its direction, why is taking a case now the answer?” The full show is below:

Tuesday 3:15 p.m. …

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Today’s News: Dorner reward, Prop 8 heads to Supreme Court

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Immigration reform. Only 19 percent of California voters say people who are in the country illegally should have to leave, according to a new USC Dornsife/LA Times poll. 72 percent of voters polled said they support comprehensive reform that includes a path to citizenship. USC Dornslife / LA Times
Stockton’s bankruptcy trial begins. After years of financial trouble, Stockton declared Chapter 9 bankruptcy last year. Now …

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Friday Mixer: A delicate labor dance and insiders joke

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Wendy Greuel and Eric Garcetti, two long-time pro-labor Democrats, are suddenly competing over which of them will stand up to city-employee union demands. That’s one of the stories in the L.A. mayor’s race we talk about on tonight’s Friday Mixer. Joining Steve Choitakis are Gene Maddaus of the LA Weekly and Jim Rainey from the L.A. Times.
They discussed how both Greuel and Garcetti are …

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Silverblatt, silver screen: Bookworm goes to the movies

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Fans of KCRW’s Bookworm host Michael Silverblatt will be excited to learn that now they can see him talk about books as well as hear him. Silverblatt plays a bit part in “Bob’s New Suit,” a film that opens in the LA area tonight.
The sympathetic role of the “Reader” was written just for Silverblatt by writer/director Alan Howard.
Howard is making his directorial debut at …

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