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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 19, 2014 | By Jessica Garrison
Furious residents confronted state officials at a community meeting Wednesday night to discuss the high levels of lead found in the backyards of homes near a Vernon battery recycling plant. "We've been hearing the same junk over and over and over," said Robert Cabrales, an organizer with the environmental justice group Communities for a Better Environment. "When are we going to see cleanup in our communities?" The meeting came one week after state officials announced that soil testing had revealed elevated levels of lead in the soil at homes and a park north and south of the Exide Technologies plant.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 18, 2014 | Rong-Gong Lin II and Matt Stevens
They are not as familiar as the freeways, but Southern California's major faults -- such as the San Andreas, Newport-Inglewood and San Fernando -- have become familiar markers on the local landscape. But Monday's 4.4 earthquake in Encino is a reminder that the seismic danger extends well beyond those fault lines. The quake, which caused no damage but was the largest in the Los Angeles area in four years, erupted on a little-noticed fault deep under the Santa Monica Mountains. The temblor surprised seismologists because it was the strongest to hit directly under the Santa Monica Mountains in the 80 years "since we started recording earthquakes in Southern California," Caltech seismologist Egill Hauksson said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 17, 2014 | By Matt Stevens, Rong-Gong Lin II and Rosanna Xia
The magnitude 4.4 earthquake that struck near Westwood early Monday was a "rude awakening" for Angelenos who remain vulnerable to being caught unprepared by a major temblor, Mayor Eric Garcetti said. The earthquake that struck in Sherman Oaks at 6:25 a.m. was the most significant shake in Southern California since a 5.5-earthquake hit Chino Hills in 2008. It  was followed up by seven smaller temblors, with two registering as magnitude 2.5 or greater, according to the  U.S. Geological Survey . RELATED: Where exactly was the L.A. earthquake?
NEWS
March 13, 2014 | By Stacey Leasca
Do you spend a copious amount of time on Wikipedia? Harvard might have a job for you. Harvard's Houghton Library, home to the school's collection of rare books, is looking to fill a newly created job : Wikipedian in residence.  (And at $16 an hour, it beats what you make editing for Wikipedia, which is zero .) This individual will help populate pages on Wikipedia with some of the library's material. PHOTOS: Celebrity majors “Wikipedia is an important resource for folks at Harvard and folks all around the world,” John Overholt, Houghton's curator of early modern books and manuscripts, told the L.A. Times.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 10, 2014 | By Los Angeles Times Staff
A 71-year-old woman stung about 1,000 times by "killer bees" in Palm Desert was recovering in the hospital, officials said. Five firefighters and a few neighbors also got stung before the dangerous hive could be removed in Thursday night's attack, officials said. People who live in the community where the incident occurred are still shaken up by the attack by Africanized honey bees, also known as "killer bees. " "Hopefully they are gone for good," resident Galye Clark told KESQ-TV . She said this was not the first time bees have found their way to the Palm Desert neighborhood.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 6, 2014 | By Margaret Gray
The Pacific Resident Theatre's new production of Shakespeare's “Henry V," directed by Guillermo Cienfuegos, is about as spare and unvarnished as the theater gets. The set consists of a few folding chairs in the blackest, boxiest of conceivable black-box stages. There's one prop: a tinny-looking crown. The 11-member cast, onstage the entire time and slipping in and out of various roles, wear thrift-shop chic. For example, to mark his transformation from the delinquent Prince Hal to the steely King Henry V, Joe McGovern (who, with Cienfuegos, adapted the text)
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 6, 2014 | By A Times Staff Writer
Not surprisingly, there is a big gulf between the haves and have-nots in Beverly Hills, according to  U.S. Census Bureau  data. While the richest fifth of Beverly Hills households make an average of nearly $661,000 a year, the poorest bring in less than $14,500. That means the wealthiest fifth make more than 45 times as much as the poorest fifth, the biggest gap between rich and poor among California cities of similar size or larger, according to a Los Angeles Times analysis of Census Bureau estimates spanning 2010 to 2012.  Times reporters Emily Alpert Reyes and Martha Groves explored the unlikely place in Beverly Hills where some of the city's poor citizens live: And nowhere is that more obvious than at the apartments above the Whole Foods.
NATIONAL
March 5, 2014 | By Alana Semuels
Fires are an everyday occurrence in Detroit - the city has seen around 11,000 a year in the last decade, according to a June report. But the fire that broke out Wednesday morning in an apartment building in Detroit's west side was particularly virulent. Images showed bright yellow flames consuming the Jason Manor apartment building, setting off thick, black clouds of smoke, which nearly hid the “For Rent” sign on the building.   Firefighters rescued about 25 people from the three-story apartment building, which was so engulfed in flames that people were jumping out windows to escape.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 5, 2014 | By Patrick McGreevy
SACRAMENTO - The state Senate is under pressure to expel Sen. Roderick D. Wright for felony convictions that involve lying about living in his district when he ran for the upper house. But such a vote might be awkward for some of his colleagues who have faced questions about their own residency. Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento) raised the issue during a bitter floor debate last week, before a Republican motion to oust Wright was blocked by his fellow Democrats and sent to a committee to languish until the lawmaker's May 16 sentencing.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 4, 2014 | By Emily Alpert Reyes
A band of homeowners associations have lined up in opposition to allowing a Bel-Air home to exceed city height rules, arguing that hillside development restrictions are being eroded by granting exceptions to some landowners. “Little by little, they are dismantling” the hillside ordinance enacted three years ago, said Marian Dodge, president of the nonprofit Federation of Hillside and Canyon Assns., which includes dozens of local groups. If this home is allowed to build higher, she argued, “any neighbor can say, 'Why can't I?
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