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Shopping Carts

September 26, 2011 | By Bob Pool, Los Angeles Times
So far there have been no dead bodies, no safes stuffed with soggy cash, no rusty stolen cars. The only things exposed by the receding water at Echo Park Lake have been shopping carts, 55-gallon steel barrels, a parking-enforcement "boot" and lots of skateboards. But who knows what is still hidden in the muck at the bottom of the 13-acre lake, soon to be dredged and outfitted with a leak-proof clay liner? Officials say that leaks once required them to replenish the lake with valuable drinking water.
August 9, 2011 | By Louis Sahagun, Los Angeles Times
The long-awaited Paddle the Los Angeles River pilot program got off to a wobbly start Monday as two dozen civic leaders in hard hats and bulging life vests stepped into kayaks and pushed out through murky ripples in the Sepulveda Basin. The group of flood control officials and City Councilmen Tony Cardenas and Ed Reyes was chaperoned by experienced kayakers and naturalists on hand to make sure no one tipped over into the treated urban runoff or entangled themselves in the heavy brush laden with shredded clothing and plastic bags that lines the 70-foot-wide channel.
August 8, 2011 | By Jeff Dietrich
It looked like an anti-terrorist takedown: five cop cars, 10 police officers, a yellow skip loader and a 5-ton dump truck. They screeched to a halt and blocked off 6th Street in front of our soup kitchen in downtown Los Angeles. But their target this spring was not a suicide bomber or a hidden nuclear device; it was the four red shopping carts parked in front of our building. Those of us who had worked on skid row for a while were not surprised; we'd seen it all before. It has been standard city policy since the mid-1980s to have the aforementioned convoy of skip loader, dump truck and police escort patrol the streets of skid row to confiscate the unattended possessions of homeless people — belongings deemed superfluous, excessive or simply trash.
January 25, 2010 | By Corina Knoll
Tina Cassar spent last week watching rain flood her backyard and overflow from her pool. So when the sun came out Sunday morning, the Los Alamitos resident took her family for brunch and a stroll along Seal Beach. There they encountered a stretch of sand littered with mangled shopping carts, bicycle tires, tennis shoes and thousands of plastic cups and bottles. "It's awful," Cassar, 37, said as she walked along the shore. "It just shows what kind of pollution comes through the river system."
May 17, 2009 | Deb Riechmann, Riechmann writes for the Associated Press.
It's not all doom and gloom in the U.S. economy. Some products are bucking the recession and flying off store shelves. Sales of chocolate and running shoes are up. Wine drinkers haven't stopped sipping; they just seem to be choosing cheaper vintages. Gold coins are selling like hot cakes. So are gardening seeds. Tanning products are piling up in shopping carts; maybe more people are finding color in a bottle than from sun-worshiping on a faraway beach. Strong sales of Spam, Dinty Moore stew and chili helped Hormel Foods Corp.
December 19, 2008 | David C. Nichols
"Pretty ... is only pretty. . . . There are a million ways to make a nice physical impression." So begins "Ken Roht's 99-Cent Only Calendar Girl Competition" at the Bootleg Theater. Even longtime fans are unprepared for what follows. Irreverent musical theater visionary Roht achieves absolute synthesis with this marvelous gloss on beauty pageants and the politics of image. Conceived and created during the presidential election, "Competition" takes the price-conscious aesthetic elements on a runway strut to another realm altogether.
August 14, 2008 | Dan Sewell, The Associated Press
After watching the price of her favorite bread rising too quickly, Michele Shores decided it was time for a fresh approach. She began picking up store-brand breads, Kroger Co.'s namesake brand or Wal-Mart Stores Inc.'s Great Value, when her usual bread went from $2 to $3 a loaf. Less than half the price, and not half-bad. "My husband takes his lunch to work and we all eat a lot of sandwiches here," said the 30-year-old mother of two from Atlanta. "So that's a lot of money for us."
August 7, 2008 | Jean Merl
City officials took steps Wednesday to rid their streets of abandoned shopping carts with a proposed crackdown on supermarkets and other stores whose carts repeatedly turn up in neighborhoods. Using Glendale's enforcement program as their model, Los Angeles Councilmen Tony Cardenas and Greig Smith called for the Planning Department and the city attorney to draw up a proposed ordinance within 30 days. If approved by the City Council, the measure would require stores that habitually lose carts to use "containment" systems that would keep people from removing the baskets from the premises.
June 3, 2008
Re "Seeking a handle on blight from shopping carts," May 27 The article says, "Several California cities recently enacted, or started studying, measures that penalize retailers for not keeping a closer eye on their carts. Los Angeles City Councilman Tony Cardenas plans to propose such a law this week." If a homeless guy grabbed money from the retailer's till, police would arrest him. But stealing a $135 cart seems to be acceptable. Why not just ticket anyone in possession of a wayward shopping cart?
May 27, 2008 | Jennifer Oldham, Times Staff Writer
Ernest Jimenez Jr. pulls alongside an abandoned shopping cart nestled against a palm tree a few feet from a "No Dumping" sign in a quiet neighborhood. "I got one here; it's from Ralphs," he says, hopping out of his pickup truck to lift the metal basket onto the bed, where it joins a red plastic trolley from Office Depot. "They use the ones with green handles." Jimenez knows his shopping carts. And he should.
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