Politics, government and public life for Southern California

Maven's Morning Coffee: DWP lawsuit dismissed, Daily News endorsements, councilman's cancer in remission

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Omar Omar/Flickr

A federal court dismissed a lawsuit from the Department of Water and Power that contested what it needed to mitigate in the Owen's Lake.

Good morning, readers. Welcome to the Maven's Morning Coffee -- a listing of the important headlines, news conferences, public meetings and announcements you need to know to fuel up and tackle your day.

The Maven's Morning Coffee is also available as a daily email. Click here to subscribe.

Today is Friday, May 3, and here is what's happening in Los Angeles:

Headlines

A federal court dismissed the Department of Water and Power's lawsuit against a regulatory agency tasked with controlling dust on the Owens Lake, reports the Los Angeles Times. The lawsuit was prompted by the Great Basin Unified Air Pollution Control District's " 2011 order that the city control dust on an additional 2.9 square miles of lake bed, a job that could cost ratepayers another $400 million," per The Times.

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UPDATE: State files court-ordered plan to reduce prison population

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

California filed a plan late Thursday detailing how it will reduce its prison population by year's end. A federal court ordered the reduction in order to improve medical and mental health care in the lockups.

California will seek to reduce inmates' sentences while increasing its use of private prisons to meet a court-ordered population cap by the end of the year, under a plan Gov. Jerry Brown filed late Thursday.

The plan calls for increasing early release credits for inmates and freeing elderly and incapacitated prisoners, while slowing the return of thousands of inmates who are being held in private prisons in other states.

The Democratic governor intends to seek a delay of those steps while he appeals the ruling on overcrowding, which already has been upheld once by the U.S. Supreme Court.

He filed the plan after federal judges last month threatened to cite him for contempt it they find he is not following their previous order to cut the number of inmates.

The state already is sentencing thousands of lower-level offenders to county jails instead of prison, and Brown argues that he can't do more without endangering public safety.

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Bill Rosendahl announces cancer in remission 10 months after diagnosis

City Councilman Bill Rosendahl

Andres Aguila/KPCC

L.A. City Councilman Bill Rosendahl announced Thursday that his cancer is in remission. When he was diagnosed last summer, he was given just months to live.

Westside Councilman Bill Rosendahl was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer last summer but now he is officially in remission, he announced Thursday in a YouTube clip. 

Last August, Rosendahl announced he was suffering from cancer of the ureter, which is a tube that connects the kidney and bladder. In this latest video, Rosendahl said he was given just months to live.

"Frankly I was given a death sentence," he said. "The diagnosis said I was Stage 4 and I wouldn't be around by the November election."

Rosendahl did not seek a third term of office — a decision he now credits for his good health. His chief of staff, Mike Bonin, won the March primary and will be sworn in on July 1. The councilman also attributed his good health to medical marijuana. 

"Without it, I would not be alive today," he said. 

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Maven's Morning Coffee: DWP union blocks release of salaries, Villaraigosa leaves money for raises, gloves come off in CD 13 race

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nixhorizon/Flickr cc

The average salary for a DWP employee in 2011 was $100,000, according to analysis by the Los Angeles Times. The utility's main union is blocking the release of more current numbers.

Good morning, readers. Welcome to the Maven's Morning Coffee -- a listing of the important headlines, news conferences, public meetings and announcements you need to know to fuel up and tackle your day.

The Maven's Morning Coffee is also available as a daily email. Click here to subscribe.

Today is Thursday, May 2, and here is what's happening in Los Angeles:

Headlines

The Los Angeles Times does a deep dive on the salaries of Department of Water and Power employees and finds folks there make an average of $100,000 in 2011. DWP workers make significantly more than staff at a dozen comparable utilities. The Times requested data on what DWP employees made last year and "after multiple delays, DWP officials were poised to provide the information Wednesday — three weeks before the election. But union officials notified the city attorney's office that they would seek a court order indefinitely delaying the release."

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PAC releases TV spot highlighting Bill Clinton's support for Wendy Greuel

Bill Clinton

Alice Walton/KPCC

Former president Bill Clinton's recent appearance in L.A. on behalf of mayoral candidate Wendy Greuel has made its way into a TV commercial.

Just two weeks ago, former President Bill Clinton swept through town to support Wendy Greuel's mayoral campaign — and now that appearance has made its way into a television commercial. 

The political action committee Working Californians released the 30-second spot Wednesday. It shows Clinton speaking to Greuel supporters at Langer's Deli. 

"You want somebody who hit it out of the park every time she had a job by getting something done that changed somebody else's life. That's what I think of Wendy. I have seen her get things done," Clinton says in the commercial. 

A recent poll from USC and the Los Angeles Times found 53.7 percent of respondents would be more likely to vote for a mayoral candidate endorsed by Clinton. 

"Our poll shows that Clinton's endorsement has a tremendous impact for Greuel,"  said Dan Schnur, director of the Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics at USC. "She and her allies are obviously smart enough to know that highlighting his support in any and every way possible is critical."

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