California voters took a whack at man not entirely made of straw on Tuesday and changed the state constitution to require local governments to comply with two state laws that local governments are already required to follow.
Assemblyman Reggie Jones-Sawyer has a bill in the works, approved by Assembly Local Government Committee on a five-to-one vote, that would make the state's "open meeting" law just two words shorter and a lot easier to get around.
Downtown L.A. was used to being kicked around. But like a wimpy kid who grows up to be an All American, downtown has beefed up. What downtown doesn't have is enough hotel rooms to justify a bigger and better convention center.
Mayor Garcetti's first months in office have been more about process than setting an agenda for Los Angeles. Some critics are wondering when the mayor's vision for the city will come into better focus.
The investigation is widening to include grand jury testimony by several state legislators. More records of contractors have been subpoenaed. Behind the corruption probe are the ties between small time politicians and big city political operatives.
Termed-out state legislators fill city council seats that would have been filled in the past by crusaders, activists, and community organizers. Conflict is muted in a body that has begun to look like an adjunct to Sacramento. And that's not a good thing.
According to Rick Cole, "Simply speeding up the dysfunctional (development approval) process is clearly not the solution." And Ron Kaye says the result will be "a revolutionary change that allows every project to be put up for sale to fund political corruption."
CEQA - the state's increasingly beleaguered environmental review process - empowers neighborhood residents to question development plans. Will a question of parking put new teeth in the law at the expense of streamlining the process?
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