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Pat Mcosker

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.
November 29, 2012 | By David Zahniser, Los Angeles Times
Federal officials have opened a criminal investigation to determine whether confidential information was obtained illegally on hundreds of patients who rode in Los Angeles Fire Department ambulances, a high-level city lawyer said Wednesday. The Fire Department has begun informing past patients that personal records, including Social Security numbers and birth dates, were accessed "deliberately and maliciously" by an employee of the company that provides ambulance billing services to the city.
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.
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.
March 2, 2011 | By Sam Allen and Hector Becerra, Los Angeles Times
With the future of Vernon on the line, everyone seems to want a piece of the small but wealthy industrial city. On Tuesday, the battle over the city's fate moved to Los Angeles City Hall, where the City Council voted unanimously to support a bill in the Legislature that would dissolve Vernon and make it an unincorporated part of Los Angeles County. The bill would leave Vernon's sizable and coveted tax base up for grabs, and several surrounding cities are expected to be interested in annexation.
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 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.
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.
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.
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