February 28, 2010 |
At least 56 people have died in U.S. traffic accidents in which sudden unintended acceleration of Toyota Motor Corp. vehicles has been alleged, according to complaints filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, lawsuits and police and state highway patrol reports. Some of the victims' names are unknown because NHTSA did not disclose them and they could not be confirmed through other sources. A Toyota spokesman declined to comment, saying the company does not discuss cases in which litigation has been, or could be, filed.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 21, 2010
The U.S. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, was established in 1969. California residents received $4.8 billion in food stamp benefits in 2009. WHO QUALIFIES: The program is available to U.S. citizens and many legal residents. Net household income after certain deductions must be at or below the poverty line -- $903 a month for a single adult or $1,838 for a family of four. Most applicants must show that their total household income does not exceed 130% of the federal poverty level -- $1,174 a month for a single adult or $2,389 for a family of four.
April 12, 2010 |
In the video game world, "respawn" means a character that was killed off has come back to life. So when two of the top creative talents in the industry form a new independent company called Respawn Entertainment, they are sending an unmistakable message to colleagues, competitors and fans. The pair, Jason West and Vincent Zampella, who played key roles in the development of the multibillion-dollar military shooter franchise Call of Duty, have been embroiled in a bitter dispute with their former employer, Activision Blizzard Inc., which fired them a month ago in a move that shook the industry with the force of a rocket-propelled grenade.
January 13, 2010 |
California ACORN has broken away from its embattled parent organization to form a new nonprofit group, a move that observers say might foreshadow other defections that would seriously undermine one of the nation's largest and most politically powerful community organizations. The new group will have the same mission, will be staffed by many of the same employees who worked for ACORN, and will be funded by most of the same donors, said Amy Schur, the former head organizer for California ACORN.
January 27, 2010 |
Flame-retardant chemicals found in many household consumer products may reduce fertility in women, researchers reported Tuesday. Their study joins several other papers published in the last two years suggesting that the chemicals, polybrominated diphenyl ethers, or PBDEs, affect human health. PBDEs have been used as flame retardants for four decades and are found in foam furniture, electronics, fabrics, carpets and plastics. The chemicals are being phased out nationwide, and certain PBDEs have been banned for use in California.
January 31, 2010 |
Dark films, particularly those that engage with social and political themes, dominated the Sundance Film Festival awards Saturday night. "Winter's Bone," writer/director Debra Granik's mystery-tinged tale about an impoverished teenager (Jennifer Lawrence) searching for her missing, meth-cooking father in the wooded Missouri Ozarks, won both the grand jury prize in the U.S. dramatic category and the prestigious Waldo Salt screenwriting award. And rugged terrain of a different sort was the setting for the winner of the U.S. documentary grand jury prize, "Restrepo," Sebastian Junger's and Tim Hetherington's vérité examination of a U.S. Army unit stationed in Afghanistan's dangerous Korengal Valley.
February 4, 2010 |
In a stark reminder of growing costs, the government has released a new estimate that healthcare spending grew to a record 17.3% of the U.S. economy last year, marking the largest one-year jump in its share of the economy since the government started keeping such records half a century ago. The almost $2.5 trillion spent in 2009 was $134 billion more than the previous year, when healthcare consumed 16.2% of the gross domestic product, according to...
February 26, 2010 |
Two dozen state office buildings across California officially go on sale Friday as the cash-strapped state seeks to raise more than $2 billion to pay off some of its long-term debt. The state plans to sell the buildings, which include the Ronald Reagan State Building in downtown Los Angeles, and then lease back the office space for state use for at least 20 years. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and the Legislature approved the sale last June. Under the proposal, for example, the twin-towered Reagan state office building at 3rd and Spring streets would be purchased by an investor who would in turn lease it to the state.
March 22, 2010 |
Ending the Democrats' decades-long quest to create a healthcare safety net to match Social Security, the House of Representatives on Sunday night approved sweeping legislation to guarantee Americans access to medical care for the first time, delivering President Obama the biggest victory of his young presidency. The bill, which passed 219 to 212 without a single Republican vote, would make a nearly $1-trillion commitment in taxpayer money over the next decade to help an estimated 32 million uninsured Americans get health coverage.
March 29, 2010 |
The National Academy of Sciences will lead a broad investigation into unintended acceleration and electronic vehicle controls under a 15-month study expected to be announced by federal regulators Tuesday. In addition, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will conduct a separate inquiry into sudden acceleration by Toyota Motor Corp. vehicles. Toyota has issued nearly 10 million recall notices worldwide to correct floor mat and gas pedal defects that it says can lead to runaway vehicles.