Los Angeles has a looming budget deficit estimated at between just under $100 million and as high as $160 million.
A committee led by a former Clinton administration official has been convened to look for long-term cures for the budget headache.
And the city's chief administrative officer has warned that although revenues are increasing, they're being outpaced by spending, with personnel and retiree costs taking bigger bites out of the budget each year.
So all I wanted to hear from mayoral candidates Eric Garcetti and Wendy Greuel in Thursday night's debate was this:
What exactly are they going to do about it?
It's a question they need to answer, not that they were asked it last night, though we got to hear what they think about the state of animal shelters and a possible return of the NFL.