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Pat Mcosker

OPINION
November 6, 2011
Perhaps no Los Angeles City Council district is as difficult to represent as the oddly shaped 15th, which runs south from Watts and north from the harbor communities of Wilmington and San Pedro, meeting in Harbor City and the awkward, jagged strip that is Harbor Gateway. Voters in the Nov. 8 special election who seek to fill the vacancy left by Janice Hahn's election to Congress this year can choose from among advocates with deep roots in one or another of those communities but generally limited expertise, and City Hall or political insiders with some know-how but priorities attuned less to the needs of the district than to public employee unions.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
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.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 10, 2012 | By Kate Linthicum
A Los Angeles mayoral candidate took an early campaign swipe at his leading opponents this week and inadvertently exposed the city Fire Department for publishing misleading performance data. Top brass at the Los Angeles Fire Department on Friday admitted that for years the agency put out data that made it appear that firefighters were arriving at the scene of emergencies faster than they actually were. The dust-up began Thursday, when candidate Austin Beutner complained in an online Huffington Post column that recent Fire Department budget cuts have sent response times for medical emergencies soaring.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
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.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
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.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
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.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 14, 2012 | By Robert J. Lopez and Kate Linthicum, Los Angeles Times
Amid growing criticism from political leaders, Los Angeles' fire chief acknowledged Tuesday that his agency should have acted sooner to disclose that it had changed the way it calculated emergency response times used in public reports. "Potentially, we should have put down that we changed our method," Fire Chief Brian Cummings told reporters at a downtown news conference. "We should have done that. " In several reports to lawmakers last year, the department included old data that made it appear that its personnel were getting to medical emergencies faster than they actually were.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 26, 2011 | By Patrick J. McDonnell, Los Angeles Times
A day after Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa unveiled a "watershed" labor agreement with city workers, he was quick to send a pointed message to other municipal unions. "We will be asking all employees and departments to consider how they too can offer reasonable, responsible changes at this time of historic deficits," the mayor said Friday. Though the pact tentatively struck with a coalition representing about 19,000 workers will help ease the city's budget crisis, its real import could be elsewhere: pressuring other city unions to follow, providing a multiplier effect — and tens of millions of dollars in additional savings.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 29, 2009 | Robert J. Lopez
Los Angeles Fire Department Chief Douglas L. Barry, who took office two years ago with a mission to reform a highly respected agency that had become tarnished by allegations of racism and retaliation, will retire at the end of August.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
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.
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