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Pat Mcosker

February 17, 2010 | By Pat McOsker
In writing about the city of Los Angeles' growing budget crisis in his Feb. 13 Op-Ed column, Tim Rutten expresses concern for "employees who aren't police officers or firefighters" and the fact that the mayor may choose to lay off many of them in the months ahead. Rutten rightly acknowledges the sacrifices these working people have already made, pointing out that mandatory furloughs will reduce their take-home pay by "at least 5%" this year. He calls on police and fire unions to "step up and take an equitable share in the sacrifice," continuing, "That's doubly true given the mayor's firm commitment to maintaining both the police and fire staffs at their current levels."
July 19, 2010 | By Abby Sewell, Los Angeles Times
City and Fire Department officials face opposition from organized labor and some City Council members over a proposal to contract out billing and collections for the Los Angeles Fire Department's emergency medical services. The proposed outsourcing of collections is bundled with a popular initiative to move to electronic collection of medical data by the Fire Department's emergency medical services unit. The proposal would give paramedics hand-held tablet computers on which they would input patient medical information at the scene of an emergency, eliminating the current system of hand-printed forms that department staff called cumbersome and prone to transcription errors.
October 27, 2006 | Joe Mathews, Times Staff Writer
When Los Angeles County labor chief Miguel Contreras died of a heart attack in May 2005, some news reports said he had been stricken in his car after a long day of meetings. But according to an LA Weekly cover story published Thursday, Contreras was found unconscious at a business that purported to sell herbal medicines on Florence Avenue in South Los Angeles.
April 21, 2005 | Daniel Hernandez and Jeffrey L. Rabin, Times Staff Writers
Mayor James K. Hahn and his opponent, Councilman Antonio Villaraigosa, can spend an unlimited amount of money on their May 17 runoff election because the cap was lifted Wednesday when two unions with close ties to Hahn reported spending $320,000 to support his reelection. Hahn has so far benefited from $402,632 in independent spending, primarily from unions, while Villaraigosa has benefited from $121,865, less than a third as much.
September 9, 2006 | Duke Helfand, Times Staff Writer
The event at the Foshay Learning Center was billed as a momentous occasion: Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa endorsing Democratic gubernatorial candidate Phil Angelides. But while cameras trained on Angelides' speech, a smaller moment occurred off-screen: A 12-year-old girl standing on the stage in the hot auditorium crumpled in a faint, and Villaraigosa scooped her up in his arms and carried her outside.
March 6, 2009 | Catherine Saillant
Troubled by recent wildfire deaths in Australia, California fire chiefs have put on hold an ambitious new firefighting model that would encourage some homeowners to stay and fight advancing flames. Proposed guidelines for the program could be delayed for months, and perhaps scratched altogether, as California fire officials look closely at what went wrong in Australia, said Bob Roper, vice chairman of Firescope, the statewide fire panel considering the change.
October 19, 2010 | By Patrick J. McDonnell, Los Angeles Times
With Los Angeles facing a $320-million budget shortfall next year, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa backed on Monday what he termed a "landmark proposal" to reform "out of control" pension costs and retiree health benefits for newly hired city police officers and firefighters. "The days of unsustainable pensions are over," Villaraigosa declared at a City Hall press conference, accompanied by City Controller Wendy Greuel and Miguel Santana, the city administrative officer. "The era of free healthcare is over.
April 25, 2006 | Lisa Richardson, Times Staff Writer
Hiring civilians to replace most firefighters at the Los Angeles Fire Department's dispatch center would save $2 million to $4 million a year, according to an audit released by City Controller Laura Chick. Currently, the department's 75 dispatchers are required to have four years of experience as firefighters or paramedics. Chick recommends redeploying 62 of them to the field. Her audit also recommends redeploying 18 additional firefighters who are assigned to special duty.
April 7, 2012 | By Kate Linthicum, Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles' top budget official raised the specter of bankruptcy Friday in a sweeping report that calls for new taxes, possible layoffs and the privatization of some city services. Chief Administrative Officer Miguel Santana said rising employee costs combined with flat-lining revenues have left the city in a precarious position. Even after reducing its workforce by 4,900 positions in recent years, the city faces a $222-million budget shortfall, he said, a figure that is expected to rise to $427 million by 2014-15.
April 22, 2005 | Steve Hymon and Wendy Thermos, Times Staff Writers
At least 14 members of the Los Angeles Fire Department have been disciplined or face sanctions over allegations of troubling behavior toward women and minorities over the last year, a department official said Thursday. In one case, a rat was placed in the locker of a black firefighter; one firefighter was suspended and two were transferred, said Fire Capt. Andrew Fox, who handles department discipline.
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