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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 1, 1999
The citizens and voters of the South Orange County Community College District continue to pay for their foolish decision to elect status quo trustees to the college's governing board. Now we have a judge's order for the district to tape-record their closed-session meetings because of "persistent and defiant misconduct" by the Board of Trustees in "total disregard for the requirements of the open-meeting laws" (Jan. 21). Superior Court Judge Tully Seymour also referred the case to the district attorney's office to see whether criminal violations occurred.
ARTICLES BY DATE
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 13, 2014 | By Jason Song
The Los Angeles Community College District has selected a veteran educator to be its next chancellor, officials said Thursday. Francisco Rodriguez, 51, has been president and superintendent of the MiraCosta Community College District in north San Diego County for the last five years. He replaces Daniel LaVista, who announced his resignation in early 2013. Adriana Barrera has served as interim chancellor since last summer while Los Angeles district officials conducted a search for a permanent executive.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 5, 2011 | By Gale Holland and Michael Finnegan, Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles County Dist. Atty. Steve Cooley has opened a preliminary inquiry into allegations of irregularities in the Los Angeles Community College District's choice of a watchdog for its troubled $5.7-billion construction program. Deputy Dist. Atty. Max Huntsman said Monday that his office's public integrity division is examining why the college district hired a newly formed company, Policy Masters Inc., as inspector general over higher-ranked candidates. The company's founder, Christine E. Marez, had no background in independent audits and investigations.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 13, 2014 | By Jason Song
The Los Angeles Community College District has selected a veteran educator to be its next chancellor, officials said Thursday. Francisco Rodriguez, 51, has been president and superintendent of the MiraCosta Community College District in north San Diego County for the last five years. He replaces Daniel LaVista, who announced his resignation in early 2013. Adriana Barrera has served as interim chancellor since last summer while L.A. district officials conducted a search for a permanent executive.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 7, 2013 | By Carla Rivera, Los Angeles Times
The vast Los Angeles Community College District will gain experience and potentially greater political clout with wins by a past college president and a veteran state lawmaker to the Board of Trustees in this week's elections. But the results are not likely to radically alter the direction of an overburdened system that is the entry point for thousands of college students each year. Former East Los Angeles College president Ernest Henry Moreno and termed-out Monterey Park Democratic Assemblyman Mike Eng won solid majorities in unofficial results posted Wednesday.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 18, 2012 | By Carla Rivera, Los Angeles Times
A new, independent review of the Los Angeles Community College District's $6-billion campus construction program found a number of flaws in the process for selecting an inspector general to oversee the project, concluding that the eventual winner lacked essential experience and qualifications. In the review released Wednesday, Los Angeles City Controller Wendy Greuel found that the original proposal for bids was vague on the functions and requirements for the office of the inspector general.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 10, 2011 | By Michael Finnegan and Gale Holland, Los Angeles Times
The board of the Los Angeles Community College District voted Wednesday to fire the head of its $5.7-billion construction program after a series of Times articles documented extensive waste in the rebuilding of the district's campuses. Several dozen spectators burst into applause when board President Georgia Mercer announced that the seven trustees had voted unanimously in closed session to terminate Larry Eisenberg's employment contract, effective at the end of this week. "It's time to move on in a new direction," Mercer said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 15, 2012 | By Carla Rivera, Los Angeles Times
A Los Angeles County Superior Court judge has ruled that the Los Angeles Community College District violated the constitutional rights of an Irvine construction firm that was accused of making fraudulent claims and was barred from doing business with the system for five years. In a ruling issued late Tuesday, Judge Jane L. Johnson determined that the evidence presented against FTR International did not support the charges and that the district's Board of Trustees abused its discretion when FTR and its owner, Nizar Katbi, were barred temporarily from bidding or contracting for further work.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 17, 1998
Re "Controversies Taking a Toll on Colleges' Budgets," May 3: Those of us who have been concerned about the welfare of our South Orange County Community College District students have been expecting such reactions. It appears that the district's administrators are completely unaware of the problems being fostered at the district by the present trustee majority. The administration either foolishly ignores these problems or seems to attempt to cover them up. Consequently, even the charitable donors and corporate giving are drying up. The district is the only one in Orange County identified as being "financially unstable" and having "significant financial problems" by the state chancellor's office.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 9, 2000
The resignation of the best-known and most controversial of the trustees of the South Orange County Community College District is welcome, belated and an opportunity to set the district on a new course. Steven J. Frogue quit as trustee at the end of June, months before the end of his second term. Other trustees said he told them that by resigning at the same time that he left his job as a history teacher at Foothill High in North Tustin after 33 years, he would increase his pension.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 13, 2014 | By Abby Sewell
The former executive director of a foundation set up to help needy students at Los Angeles Trade-Technical College was arrested Thursday on suspicion of embezzlement and public corruption. Jiah Rhea Chung, 43, was arrested by investigators with the Los Angeles County district attorney's office and is suspected of embezzling nearly $140,000 while she served as the foundation's director between 2009 and 2011, authorities said. The Times reported on issues surrounding Chung's pay and benefits in early 2012.
NEWS
December 13, 2013 | By Patt Morrison
Some months after the Sandy Hook murders, Scott J. Svonkin, elected in 2011 to the Los Angeles Community College board of trustees, heard that a couple of his own campuses were hosting gun safety classes. They had to go, he decided. His colleagues unanimously agreed with him. “When I found out about it,” he said, “I decided I wanted to ban guns on our campuses. I wasn't aware of this noncredit gun class; I decided it'd be safer not to have guns on our campuses. I don't oppose people's right to own guns, but schools shouldn't be places where guns are allowed in the hands of anyone but law enforcement.” 2013 ENDINGS: Columnist Patt Morrison on what she won't miss His colleagues passed a resolution that, in the interest of a safe learning environment, banished the noncredit classes from all nine of the district's campuses; “the presence of firearms,” it read in part, “even when nonoperational and in the instructional setting, lends itself to the potential for panic and fear.” By doing so, the L.A. district bucked a trend.
OPINION
August 14, 2013
Re "Community college district bans guns from its 9 campuses," Aug. 11 The Times writes that a mass shooting at and around Santa Monica College in June "renewed debate that had begun after the 2007 shootings at Virginia Tech over whether to allow guns on college campuses. " It is difficult to understand why. Did the absence of a gun ban contribute to this shooting? Would one have prevented John Zawahri from entering the campus with an assault rifle and gunning down innocent bystanders?
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 8, 2013 | By Carla Rivera
The Los Angeles Community College District 's nine campuses will be gun-free zones, according to a resolution passed this week by the Board of Trustees that bans weapons in almost all circumstances. “It is our responsibility to provide a safe environment for our students, allowing them to feel secure and able to totally focus on their academic goals,” said board Vice President Scott Svonkin, who sponsored the resolution. “They must never be fearful about setting foot on one of our campuses.” The move follows a June shooting rampage at and around Santa Monica College in which five people died.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 18, 2013 | By Carla Rivera, Los Angeles Times
An incumbent who styles herself as an outsider and a reform-minded community activist and political aide will face each other in a runoff election Tuesday for the final seat on the Los Angeles Community College District Board of Trustees. Unlike the hard-fought Los Angeles mayor's race, the match between trustee Nancy Pearlman and challenger David Vela has been conducted with little public scrutiny and virtually no contact between the two candidates. It's a source of frustration for Pearlman and Vela, running for a seat in the largest community college district in the nation - with nine campuses serving 240,000 students in communities spread across 882 square miles, from Sylmar to San Pedro.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 30, 2013 | By Abby Sewell, Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles County supervisors rejected a bid Tuesday from several Santa Clarita Valley school districts and a water district hoping to consolidate elections in a bid to avoid the kind of voting rights lawsuits that other local governments have been hit with. The measure failed on a 2-2 vote, with Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas abstaining. County election officials opposed the change, arguing that shifting the districts to November even-year elections would exceed their ability to conduct elections.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 8, 1998
The power struggle at the South Orange County Community College District has now captured the interest of state officials overseeing community colleges. At the heart lies a serious rift between the district's administrators and faculty members over basic decision making. State officials are wondering about a controversial administrative reorganization implemented last year.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 16, 2013 | By Carla Rivera, Los Angeles Times
A Los Angeles Community College District proposal to lower the car allowances given to campus presidents and other executives - but use the money to boost salaries - has come under fire at a time when many students are unable to get classes because of budget cuts. Senior executives receive a $1,530 monthly allowance, the highest of any district in the state. Under a plan to be considered by the Board of Trustees on Wednesday, that amount would be reduced to $500 a month, effective July 1. The difference of $1,030 would be shifted to increase the salary schedules of nine campus presidents and six district administrators.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 6, 2013 | By Bob Pool, Los Angeles Times
The subject of the morning class was criminal investigation, and there was no hesitation on the part of the 17-year-old when he was asked to stand and explain aggravated assault. The boy related the story of how his father, estranged from his mother, had shown up at the house and begun pushing her around. He told of how police had come and explained to his mother the steps she would need to take to obtain a restraining order. School was in session at the Los Angeles Police Department's Ahmanson Training Center in Westchester as high school seniors dressed in brown khaki trousers and blue uniform shirts kicked off another day in an unusual law enforcement training program called the Police Orientation Preparation Program.
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