Index
Wednesday
Jan082014

L.A. CITY HALL: Development, Hollywood, earthquake faults: "New Hollywood Fault Map Curbs Development in Hollywood, WeHo, Los Feliz"; also, "Hollywood developments straddle earthquake faults, new maps show"....

State Geologist John Parrish dropped a political bomb today: a "regulatory" map of the Hollywood Earthquake Fault that creates a slender, six-mile-long restricted zone starting at the trendy intersection of La Cienega and Sunset, crossing Hollywood and Los Feliz and even affecting Atwater Village. The new quake danger zone throws into chaos perhaps millions of dollars in proposed developments in L.A. and West Hollywood, cities which under law must  ensure that all projects planned within its boundaries are earthquake-safe.

The map, which will be finalized in July, delivers a big blow to Hollywood developers and their investors: it preliminarily shows that the fault runs right beneath the proposed Millennium twin skyscraper project at Vine and Yucca streets - and cuts directly under Blvd 6200, a nearly-complete living-and-shopping complex at Hollywood Boulevard and Argyle Avenue. L.A. Building and Safety officials had pooh-poohed the idea that Blvd 6200 was close to the active fault..........................

* Los Angeles Times:  "Hollywood developments straddle earthquake faults, new maps show" - From the LAT:

New state geological maps released Wednesday show several major developments planned in Hollywood are much closer to an active earthquake fault than Los Angeles city officials have said. The draft maps chart the course of the Hollywood Fault, which runs from Atwater Village and Los Feliz, through a booming section of central Hollywood and west along the Sunset Strip.

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Developments in the state’s preliminary earthquake fault zone include the proposed Millennium Hollywood skyscraper project, the sprawling Blvd6200 development now under construction, and a planned apartment complex on Yucca Street......................

 

 

Wednesday
Jan082014

POLITICS/LEGAL: Jahi McMath case, fundraising tool, proposed ballot measure to lift pain and suffering cap in medical malpractice cases: "Jahi McMath case used as Consumer Watchdog fundraising tool"....

* San Francisco Chronicle (Matier & Ross):  "Jahi McMath case used as Consumer Watchdog fundraising tool" - From the Chronicle:

The case of Jahi McMath, the 13-year-old girl who was declared brain-dead after a tonsillectomy at Children's Hospital Oakland, is now the centerpiece of a political fundraising effort aimed at lifting California's $250,000 cap for pain and suffering awards in medical malpractice cases.

Consumer Watchdog, a Southern California nonprofit that has teamed up with the state's trial lawyers on a proposed November ballot initiative to lift the limit, just sent out a mailer to supporters saying, "Hospitals like Children's actually have an incentive to let children like Jahi die. If children who are victims of medical negligence live, hospitals are on the hook for medical bills for life, which could be millions," the letter says.

The letter from Consumer Watchdog President Jamie Court asks for "whatever tax-deductible contribution you can make" to help with its "patient safety work" and to qualify the initiative to raise the malpractice limit.

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The group's campaign isn't winning any applause, however, from the attorney who is representing Jahi's family free of charge. Christopher Dolan supports the proposed initiative but said using the girl's case for fundraising is "a bad thing to do." "This case is not about raising money for any type of initiative," he said. "It was about getting (Jahi's mother) the right to make choices over the life-and-death decisions concerning her child."

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Sam Singer, the PR crisis manager hired by Children's Hospital to deal with the Jahi case, called the Court group's fundraising letter "reprehensible."

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Wednesday
Jan082014

L.A. CITY HALL: Los Angeles Fire Department, departure of highest-ranking woman in LAFD history: "LAFD's highest-ranking woman is leaving the force".... 

***Following up on earlier item noted here (first LAFD recruit class if five years, nearly all male, predominantly white)....

* Los Angeles Times:  "LAFD's highest-ranking woman is leaving the force" - "Deputy Chief Roxanne V. Bercik, a 29-year veteran, is the first woman to climb through the ranks of the agency's upper management. She's championed recruiting and promoting women." - From the LAT:

The highest-ranking woman in the history of the Los Angeles Fire Department has announced her retirement, leaving no female officers among the agency's top command staff of deputy and assistant chiefs. The departure of Deputy Chief Roxanne V. Bercik comes as the department is struggling to hire and promote more women after a string of large city payouts for alleged sexual discrimination in the ranks.

Bercik, 55, had been a leading advocate for recruiting and promoting more female firefighters. "I've been the voice at the command level that diversity is important in the organization," said Bercik, a 29-year veteran and the first woman to climb through the upper ranks of the agency.

Details on the department's first class of firefighter recruits in five years were released Monday, prompting a new round of disapproval from Mayor Eric Garcetti, who is in the process of selecting a new fire chief. The class is made up of 69 men and one woman and is more white and less Latino and African American than the city and the department as a whole. Garcetti called the lack of diversity unacceptable.

Bercik said she made her retirement plans known internally at the LAFD late last year. She said her decision was not related to the department's record on recruitment or news about the new class of recruits. For women, she said, "The road has been forged, but it has yet to be paved."

As of last July, the department's four other deputy chiefs and 17 assistant chiefs were all men, city records show. The department has never had a female chief....................

Wednesday
Jan082014

POLITICS (National, State, Local): More info/details, Michelle Obama in California, January 29-31, fundraising events: "First lady to hit S.F. on fundraising swing"....

***Following up on earlier items noted here (January 29 fundraiser in Los Angeles, January 31 event in San Francisco)....

* San Francisco Chronicle (PoliticsBlog):  "First lady to hit S.F. on fundraising swing" - From the Chronicle:

Just two months after President Obama raised millions in San Francisco for his party’s candidates, Michelle Obama will make her own visit to the Democratic ATM for some January fundraisers. The first lady will attend two fundraisers for the Democratic National Committee in the city on Jan. 30, a day after she attends one in Los Angeles.

In addition, she plans to be the “special guest” at a Jan. 31 lunch benefit for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee at the Fairmont Hotel, according to an invitation obtained by The Chronicle. The event will be hosted by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. Tickets for the lunch will range from $500 to $32,400. The priciest tickets allow the holders into a VIP reception and a photo op with the first lady, according to the invite.

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The Democratic National Committee would not release details of the  fundraisers it is planning with the first lady at the end of the month. However, in October, she had scheduled a round table with White House senior adviser Valerie Jarrett at the home of Ali Pincus, co-founder of the upscale Internet shopping site OneKingsLane.

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Michelle Obama had also been scheduled to appear in October at a evening reception at the home of Belvedere attorney Michael Moradzadeh and Noelle Leca, former chairwoman of Northern California Public Broadcasting and a former executive with Commerce One, Sybase and Oracle.

Wednesday
Jan082014

POLITICS/ENVIRONMENT (City of L.A.): Climate change, Los Angeles coastal areas, vulnerability to sea level rise, report, "Sea Level Rise Vulnerability Study": "New study pinpoints vulnerable L.A. coastal areas vulnerable to a sea level rise from climate change"; also, "L.A. storms to grow more destructive as sea level rises, study says"....

* Daily Breeze:  "New study pinpoints vulnerable L.A. coastal areas vulnerable to a sea level rise from climate change" - From the DB:

San Pedro, Wilmington, Venice and other low-lying areas of Los Angeles are vulnerable to future flooding that could damage buildings, erode beaches and impair roadways in the event of a storm like Hurricane Sandy, which devastated parts of the East Coast in 2012, according to a new report by USC researchers.

The report, presented Tuesday at a Los Angeles Regional Collaborative for Climate Action and Sustainability forum in Santa Monica, examines what will happen to the Los Angeles coast if storm surges induced by climate change occur as predicted in the next several decades. The Sea Level Rise Vulnerability Study for the City of Los Angeles pinpoints communities and infrastructure most threatened and calls for further planning to prepare.

Researchers estimate that a large flood would cost Los Angeles more than $240 million in building losses if the sea level rises 1.6 feet, and more than $710 million if it rises by 4.6 feet. “It is unlikely that any storm wave-driven flooding or property damage will occur in the foreseeable future,” the report states. “But if sea level rise takes one of the higher trajectories, problems would become evident around midcentury.”

The study is designed, in part, to position Los Angeles as a leading force in the nation to strategically plan for the impacts of climate change......................

***ALSO:

* Los Angeles Times:  "L.A. storms to grow more destructive as sea level rises, study says" - "The effect of global warming on sea level will worsen coastal flooding and erosion as major storms produce higher tides and bigger waves and storm surges, a city-commissioned study finds."