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March 22, 2013
Re "Five guilty in Bell," March 21 The jury in the first city of Bell corruption trial has found five of the six defendants, all former council members, guilty on numerous charges and is undecided on other counts. Throughout the trial, the defendants denied their guilt, blaming their actions on the influence of former City Manager Robert Rizzo. They may have a point, but it is no excuse for not governing responsibly. Their defense is an admission of unfitness for holding office in the first place.
September 2, 2010
T he people of Bell can hardly be blamed for wanting to throw the bums out. By bums, of course, they mean the city leaders who have enriched themselves at the taxpayers' expense. At first, the nearly $800,000 salary of former City Manager Robert Rizzo was as puzzling as it was outrageous. Perhaps there was an explanation? Maybe the veteran public employee was pulling off some sort of magic — such as maintaining extraordinary fiscal soundness for the city in the midst of bad times — that could have made him worth such a sum?
August 18, 2010
Here are some of the loans made by the city of Bell to employees and elected officials: Former City Manager Robert Rizzo: $160,000 Former Assistant City Manager Angela Spaccia: $230,000 Administrative Services Manager Lourdes Garcia: $100,000 Councilman Oscar Hernandez: $20,000 Councilman Luis Artiga: $20,000 Former Councilman George Bass: $20,000 Source: City of Bell ...
November 6, 2010
Here is a recap of investigations into public finances in Bell: L.A. County district attorney's office: Prosecutors charged eight current and former Bell officials with public corruption; the office is now investigating fees charged to businesses. U.S. Justice Department: It is investigating possible civil rights violations by the city. California attorney general's office: It filed civil lawsuits against Bell officials and is seeking oversight of Bell affairs.
March 30, 2012 | By Houston Mitchell
Baylor women's basketball coach Kim Mulkey has been diagnosed with Bell's palsy, a form of facial paralysis. Baylor is in the women's Final Four and will play Stanford on Sunday. Mulkey told the Boston Globe that before practice Wednesday, she noticed only the left side of her mouth was working when she smiled, her right eye was drooping and she couldn't hear properly out of her right ear. "When I smile it's crooked and when I talk, and talk loud, the hollowness in my hearing is weird," Mulkey told the Associated Press.
September 19, 2010 | By Patrick McGreevy, Los Angeles Times
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is mulling a raft of bills touted as the remedy to the kinds of pay and pension excesses discovered in the city of Bell, but there is disagreement among experts over how effective they might be in preventing future abuses. If the governor signs the measures into law, the discord could turn into a legal battle, with some of the rules being decided by the courts, according to city representatives and legal experts. The League of California Cities has urged Schwarzenegger to veto one of the bills, which would limit cushy employment contracts for local government managers, arguing that it would not achieve its goal of holding officials accountable for excessive pay and benefits.
December 14, 2009
To kick up the intensity of your workout, use a kettle bell. The iron bell is more unstable than a traditional dumbbell, so you'll need to work harder to control it. To safely do this move, you'll need plenty of space. -- Karen Voight 1Holding a kettle bell in your left hand, stand with your feet staggered, right foot in front of your left, about 2 1/2 feet apart. Bend your right knee, right hand resting on your right thigh. Lean forward at a 45-degree angle. Begin with your left hand below shoulder level.
April 19, 2011 | James Rainey
There were several great moments in the Los Angeles Times newsroom Monday, as the paper reeled in a couple of Pulitzer Prizes. You had to love Ruben Vives, just three years into his reporting career, accepting a glass of champagne with a shaking hand, but speaking like a practiced orator about the value of newspapers. Who wasn't tickled for Barbara Davidson, the winner for feature photography, beaming and threatening to sing the anthem of her native Canada? Times Editor Russ Stanton drew a roar of approval paying tribute to Vives' journeyman reporting partner.
August 3, 2010 | By Ruben Vives and Hector Becerra, Los Angeles Times
Despite vowing greater transparency in the wake of a salary scandal, the city of Bell is refusing to turn over public records to The Times, community activists and even a sitting councilman. "They continue to keep us in the dark," said Councilman Lorenzo Velez, who has been critical of the high salaries paid to top Bell administrators and other City Council members . "The problem is a continuation of so many years of doing whatever they wanted in City Hall." The Times and others have requested records involving elections, budgets, city financing and salaries that typically are available for viewing at city halls — and in some cases can be found online.
October 15, 2013 | By Jessica Gelt
If you ever watched "Saved by the Bell" on NBC in the early '90s, chances are you remember the famous scene where Elizabeth Berkley's character Jessie Spano totally freaks out on caffeine pills. It may have traumatized you as a teen, but if you happen across a rerun of the overly dramatic, soap-tastic moment these days, it will likely make you laugh. Which is exactly why Berkley's re-enactment of the famed scene on "Dancing With the Stars" on Monday night had viewers howling with joy. "I need them.
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