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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 11, 2014 | By Emily Alpert Reyes
The Los Angeles City Council reversed course and voted Friday to nix part of a plan that city officials said could have inadvertently boosted the pay of top city managers. The council had voted unanimously Wednesday for a salary plan to cover city workers who aren't unionized. A document prepared for the council suggested that under the plan, dozens of city department heads would get a series of pay increases over the next 15 months. Council President Herb Wesson said in a statement Wednesday that City Administrative Officer Miguel Santana had unintentionally included general managers in the document, which “was never our intent.” Wesson spokesman Ed Johnson said that if Mayor Eric Garcetti had signed off on the plan, raises would have automatically been granted to every department head.
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BUSINESS
April 11, 2014 | By Ricardo Lopez
Quitters wanted: Unhappy with your job? Feeling unproductive? Take $5,000 and go. At least, that's what Amazon.com Inc. is offering its warehouse employees. In a letter to shareholders this week, Chief Executive Jeffrey Bezos outlined the details of a rare human resources strategy the online retail giant has launched. Dubbed Pay to Quit, the program is offered once a year to employees who work in Amazon fulfillment centers. In the first year, the offer is $2,000. After that, it rises $1,000 every year until it reaches $5,000.
BUSINESS
April 11, 2014 | By Stuart Pfeifer
Saturday night is fight night, with the highly anticipated rematch between Manny Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley set to be broadcast on big screens across the nation. As thousands of fans traipse into bars and restaurants to catch the big fight, a small army of corporate detectives will be lurking in the background, hoping to catch something else. Paid by the promoters of the closed-circuit televised event, these sleuths will be on the lookout for bar owners who show the Pacquiao-Bradley fight without paying the commercial rate, which dwarfs the fee to watch in your living room.
BUSINESS
April 10, 2014 | David Lazarus
Call it a curveball that nobody wants to swing at. After decades of forcing consumers to pay for channels they don't want, the pay-TV industry is strongly resisting Time Warner Cable's efforts to make subscribers of all its rivals pony up $4 to $5 a month for a Dodgers channel. All eyes are currently on satellite heavyweight DirecTV, whose 1.2 million Los Angeles customers give it a roughly 30% share of the local pay-TV market, slightly less than Time Warner's estimated one-third market share.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 10, 2014 | By Corina Knoll and Kate Mather
A Los Angeles Superior Court judge lashed out at a former Bell leader Thursday, sentencing her to more than 11 years in prison and branding her a "hog" for tapping the town treasury for her lavish salary while the working-class city slid toward insolvency. Angela Spaccia became the first person sentenced in the municipal corruption case, and the lengthy prison term was the first indicator of how Judge Kathleen Kennedy intends to punish those convicted of misappropriating more than $10 million from one of Los Angeles County's poorest cities.
BUSINESS
April 9, 2014 | By Chad Terhune and Doug Smith
Newport Beach oncologist Minh Nguyen woke up Wednesday wearing a dubious distinction: Medicare's highest-paid doctor in California and one of the top physicians nationwide. Some of his patients and fellow physicians immediately called him wanting an explanation of why newly released federal data show he got paid $11.3 million for treating Medicare patients in 2012. Like dozens of other doctors across the country, Nguyen was unwittingly thrust into the spotlight as federal officials listed for the first time what the government pays individual doctors to treat elderly Americans.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 9, 2014 | By Mike Boehm
Through nearly 70 years of acclaim as a theater, film and television director - most particularly as a theater director - Peter Brook has been called a magician many times. In 1962, the British critic Kenneth Tynan extolled him not for pulling a rabbit out of his hat but for an unprecedented approach to "King Lear" that for the first time made the character a palpably human, "edgy, capricious old man" instead of "the booming, righteously indignant titan of old. " Brook, who recently celebrated his 89th birthday, clearly absorbed a fundamental lesson of "King Lear": considering its pitfalls, perhaps retirement is best put off as long as possible.
BUSINESS
April 8, 2014 | By Ricardo Lopez
CVS Caremark Corp., the country's second-largest pharmacy chain, has agreed to pay $20 million to settle charges that it misled investors and used improper accounting techniques to artificially boost its financial earnings, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission announced Tuesday.  The charges stem from activities that occurred in the third and fourth quarters of 2009, regulators said.  According to the SEC, CVS had conducted a $1.5-billion...
BUSINESS
April 8, 2014 | By Shan Li
Drugmakers Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. and Eli Lilly & Co. were ordered to pay a total of $9 billion in punitive damages after a Louisiana jury decided the companies did not disclose cancer risks of their diabetes medicine Actos. Japan-based Takeda said Tuesday that it was ordered to pay $6 billion in punitive damage, and Eli Lilly, which helped promote the drug, was ordered to pay $3 billion. The jury also awarded the plaintiffs nearly $1.5 million in compensatory damages.  Takeda was accused in the suit of failing to warn users of the medication that research had linked Actos to increased risk of bladder cancer.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 8, 2014 | Robin Abcarian
Happy Equal Pay Day. Happy what ? According to the National Committee on Pay Equity , a coalition of women's groups, civil rights groups and labor unions, Equal Pay Day commemorates the continuing American gender wage gap. "This date," says the group, "symbolizes how far into 2013 women must work to earn what men earned in 2012.” According to the Independent Women's Forum , a conservative nonprofit policy group that resists the...
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