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January 12, 2014 | By Oliver Gettell
The first major award show of the season takes place tonight at the 71st annual Golden Globes Awards, setting up plenty of interesting showdowns. The category for best drama film, for example, pits a ship's captain, an enslaved musician, an Irish mother, a stranded astronaut and a Formula 1 racer against one another. Best musical or comedy, meanwhile, is a throwdown between a a 1970s con artist, a man in love with his digital assistant, a hard-luck folk musician, a cantankerous old coot and a drug-addled corporate thief.
January 11, 2014 | By Christine Mai-Duc
Mayoral candidates in Long Beach are headed into a crowded field for the April primary, with 10 officially declared candidates qualified for the ballot, according to the city clerk's office. The nominating period for citywide and council district races ended Friday night, with most candidates waiting until this week to complete their filings. The list is heavy with city insiders and political heavyweights, including Assemblywoman Bonnie Lowenthal (D-Long Beach), Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske, Councilman Robert Garcia, and Long Beach City College Trustee Doug Otto.
January 9, 2014 | By Broderick Turner
When the third round of the NBA's All-Star balloting was announced Thursday, Clippers point guard Chris Paul had fallen out of the starting Western Conference backcourt. Paul had 651,073 votes, which dropped him to third place. He trailed Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry, who has 677,372 votes, and the Lakers' Kobe Bryant, who led all guards in the West with 844,538 votes. Of course, Paul is expected to be out up to six weeks with Grade 3 AC joint separation of his right shoulder.
January 4, 2014 | By Chris Megerian and Anthony York
SACRAMENTO -- Gov. Jerry Brown will join the push for a new ballot measure to help California stockpile cash as a buffer against future recessions, according to two Capitol officials. The proposed measure, which would need approval from two-thirds of the Legislature before it could be presented to voters in November, would siphon off some tax revenue and channel it into a special savings account. If successful, the account could mitigate the need for deep spending cuts during economic downturns and help California shed its reputation as a financial roller coaster.
December 30, 2013 | By Randy Lewis
Beyoncé's stealth midnight release - a self-titled collection of new music and videos - may have arrived in near silence earlier this month, but it now rules the charts and The Times' Consensus Top Albums of 2013. The list, which stretches to a dozen albums this year because of voting ties, pools the Top 10 lists from pop music critic Randall Roberts and seven other pop music staff writers, assigning 10 points for a No. 1 album, 9 points for a No. 2, 8 points for No. 3 and so on. Beyoncé's "visual album" was named album of the year by two Times writers - August Brown and Gerrick Kennedy - and picked up additional points with its fifth place finish on Times pop music editor Lorraine Ali's list.
December 27, 2013 | By Anthony York
A requirement for minors to notify their parents before having an abortion and a new tax on tobacco products are among the proposals that could be headed to the state ballot next fall. Sponsors of both have received clearance from the Secretary of State to begin gathering the hundreds of thousands of signatures needed by mid-June to begin qualifying for the November election -- a process that can cost upwards of $1 million. It is unclear whether backers of either proposal will invest the necessary money and effort.
December 27, 2013 | By Chris O'Brien
Investor activist Carl Icahn has submitted an advisory proposal asking Apple to increase the size of its stock buyback program in 2014 to $50 billion.  The details of the proposal were included in a proxy statement that Apple filed Friday afternoon with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The proxy revealed that Apple's annual shareholder meeting will be held Feb. 28, and it contains details of 11 proposals that investors will be asked to vote on.  Most of the proposals are mundane, such as reappointing board members or an auditing firm. However, Icahn's proposal (No. 10)
December 26, 2013 | By The Times editorial board
Californians could be faced in November with a proposal to dramatically alter the pension and benefit system for public employees. San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed has submitted a statewide ballot initiative that would allow government agencies to negotiate changes to current employees' future retirement benefits, reversing the long-standing principle that once a public employee is hired, his or her retirement benefits cannot be reduced. Public employee unions are already gearing up for a major fight over Reed's initiative, which he could put on the ballot as soon as 2014 (or as late as 2016)
December 24, 2013 | By Laura J. Nelson
Transportation officials in Los Angeles County plan to offer a ballot measure next fall or in 2016 that would raise the county's sales tax by half a cent or extend the life of Measure R, the levy voters approved in 2008. The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority and multiple advocacy groups say more transportation money would help expand the region's fledgling rail network, improve complementary service on bus lines, and speed construction and repairs on rail lines and highways.
December 12, 2013 | By Eric Pincus
The Lakers' Kobe Bryant is still dominating the All-Star balloting, despite sitting out most of the season recovering from an Achilles' tendon injury. Back just two games, Bryant leads all NBA guards with 501,215 votes. On Thursday, the league released the first set of returns in voting for the 63rd NBA All-Star Game. For the second-straight year, the ballot has two categories: frontcourt (centers and forwards) and backcourt (guards). Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat was the top backcourt player in the Eastern Conference with 396,279 votes.
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