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Valuable Service

July 29, 2001
I realize that it's not fashionable to say anything positive about jury duty, but as I wind down my 10 days of jury service in Santa Monica I can't resist outlining my own contrasting experience to those published (letters, July 21). Long lunches (usually at least 11/2 hours), unlike lunchtimes at work, which often involve a quick bite at my desk; plenty of time to catch up on my reading; meeting interesting people of all ages, races and backgrounds; seeing the legal system in action, in all its splendor and/or boredom; if chosen for a jury, learning intricate details of events with which I normally would have no contact; ending the workday at a decent hour, unlike many of my employer-related workdays; performing a valuable service to the best of my ability--and hoping others would afford me the same effort, time and commitment if I were to need it someday; taking a guilt-free afternoon nap; and, after seeing the expense, stress, twisting of truth, upheaval of lives and uncertain outcomes in court cases, I am reminded why I do not want to be arrested and/or involved in a lawsuit--and that makes it all worthwhile.
September 8, 1996
I want to say thanks for the nice feature Ed Bond did on Glendale Fire Capt. Corey Creasey ("Firefighter Blazes Trails on the Computer," Aug. 15). Folks like Creasey are the innovators and leaders of America's fire service, which works until the job gets done. I access your newspaper via the Internet. When I was a youngster growing up in Bakersfield, I had a Los Angeles Times neighborhood paper route. It was a real thrill, particularly when my sales volume increased to the point that I earned a red wagon emblazoned with "L.A.
July 26, 1995 | DAVID R. BAKER
Hoping to improve the cluttered appearance of an automobile swap meet in Newbury Park, Thousand Oaks planners will recommend several changes to the state in the way the operation runs. Planners will suggest that the state--which is now negotiating an extension of the swap meet's contract--limit the number of recreational vehicles that can be displayed in the lot.
December 4, 1986
It appears that every time the Glendale City Council meets, it violates the rights of the citizens. This time I refer to your article, "Vendor Says He'll Stand--and Fight" (Nov. 27). Three cheers for Pablo Torres! He is just a hard-working man who wants to earn an honest living. I can't understand why Glendale officials are fining him and threatening him with imprisonment. I have worked in the Glendale Federal Building for 2 1/2 years and always see Pablo's catering truck nearby.
August 11, 1998 | PAMELA J. JOHNSON
More than a quarter of a million dollars for Ventura County educational programs is included in the state budget approved Monday by the state Senate, according to Sen. Jack O'Connell (D-San Luis Obispo). The budget was expected to be approved by the Assembly late Monday before being presented to Gov. Pete Wilson for consideration. In the plan, Ventura Unified School District would receive $200,000 toward renovation of the Buena High School stadium. The money would help the district with its $2.
October 20, 1991
This letter concerns your article "Radio Renegades" (Oct. 2). The glamorization of the illegal and irresponsible activities of a tiny minority of radio operators is an insult to the legitimate participants in the Amateur Radio Service. The legitimate hams provide a unique and valuable service to our community and nation by maintaining, at their own expense, a sophisticated communications system that is often the only reliable means of communication when disaster strikes. The illegal activities of the "renegades" are not harmless pranks.
July 27, 1999 | NANCY FORREST
The Community Literacy Project brings reading to low-income families in Oxnard by allowing young children and their parents to check out books from a vehicle devoted to the purpose. But now the bookmobile project, sponsored by the Oxnard Elementary School District, has hit a bump in the road after losing its funding. Donations are needed to revive the popular program, said its coordinator, Cherie Moraga. "The funding for the project ended June 30," said Moraga, a former kindergarten teacher.
June 22, 1989 | KIM MURPHY, Times Staff Writer
Two former Mafia brothers who went undercover for the government and collected evidence against the Los Angeles crime family had their jail sentences suspended Wednesday for work that authorities said dealt a "knockout punch" to the mob in Southern California. Craig Anthony Fiato, 45, and Lawrence Fiato, 34, longtime organized crime associates who were among the first government informants to be considered for induction into the Mafia, were sentenced to five years' probation and fines of $1,000 each for the illegal loan-sharking activities that first led them into the underworld.
July 3, 2011 | By Kenneth R. Harney
The settlement of a major class-action suit is shedding new light on a controversial real estate practice that home buyers and sellers typically know little about: fees paid to realty brokers and agents for promoting home warranty policies. The case involves potentially thousands of buyers and sellers who bought warranty coverage from American Home Shield Corp. between May 2008 and March of this year. American Home Shield is the dominant player in the home warranty field, with sales of $657 million in 2010, according to the company.
December 2, 2011 | By Duke Helfand, Los Angeles Times
For a quarter-century, Dr. Terry Vines built his Redlands dental practice the old-fashioned way: one mouth at a time. Vines sponsored youth soccer teams. He renovated historic buildings around town to build good will. He turned his waiting room into a cozy nook with soft chairs and a big-screen TV. As business increased, Vines hired more dentists to accommodate his thriving practice, Pure Gold Professionals in Dentistry. Then the economy tanked, hundreds of patients stopped coming, and Vines decided he needed help.
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