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Inside the Koch brothers' campus crusade

By Dave Levinthal

The billionaire industrialists aren’t just investing in politicians, but also young hearts and minds.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Internal Revenue Service":

"… than $12.7 million, according to a Center for Public Integrity analysis of Internal Revenue Service tax filings. The vast majority of this cash was spread among 163 U.S. col …"

California report: Don't spend new education money on campus police

By Susan Ferriss

As California readies to direct millions to districts with neediest kids, a new policy brief warns against spending it on campus security.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… arate and Unequal,’ " brief was prepared by two community groups in Los Angeles and Oakland whose members are concerned that too much police involvement a …"

"… schools is undeniably one of [those barriers.]” One of the groups, the Los Angeles-based Labor-Community Strategy Center, has been instrumental in persuading …"

"… into courts every year for minor infractions. The brief reports that the Los Angeles Unified School District’s budget for this year calls for spending more t …"

"… mment on the brief because officials were still reviewing it. As the Los Angeles Times has reported, parents’ groups are mobilizing to demand that 80 per …"

Harsh school discipline gets more scrutiny in Congress

By Susan Ferriss

Researchers and educators urge schools to embrace alternatives to kicking kids out on suspension.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… n, one of the researchers, who is based at the University of California at Los Angeles. He spoke at a Congressional briefing Thursday sponsored by the Black …"

"… far away the children either were forced to do home study or drop out. In Los Angeles, until recent reforms changed practices, schools were calling police at ti …"

"… led with doubts about alternative discipline methods when he worked in the Los Angeles Unified School District. “I was one of those skeptics,” he said. He …"

A world awash in a nuclear explosive?

By Douglas Birch and R. Jeffrey Smith

Japan is leading a global move towards dangerous reactors fueled by a nuclear explosive, Thomas Cochran and other experts say.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… urity in 2003, the department dispatched agents to the ABC News offices in Los Angeles, the home of a cameraman, and Cochran’s home in Alexandria, Va., where t …"

Education groups battle teachers unions in state races

By Rachel Baye

Groups funded by billionaires back state-level candidates who want to weaken teachers unions and promote charter schools.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… reached unheard of heights, even at the school board level. The race for Los Angeles school board in May 2013 attracted nearly $4 million in spending on reform …"

"… of the pro-reform committee include Bloomberg, StudentsFirst and Broad, a Los Angeles resident. The organization was countered by roughly $2 million from labor …"

"… vocates. Before running for office, Johnson was the executive director of Los Angeles’ Larchmont Schools, a network of charter schools, and before that he was …"

"… ols, and before that he was the executive director of Teach for America in Los Angeles. He now works for the Teach for America-affiliated Leadership for Educatio …"

Obama announces foundation-funded project to help black, Latino youth

By Susan Ferriss

'My Brother's Keeper' is a $200 million program aimed at keeping minority youth out of the criminal justice system.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… or violating some of the same school policies as white students.  In Los Angeles, in the nation’s second largest school district, where about 75 percent …"

"… e ticketing thousands of students mostly at schools in low-income areas of Los Angeles for minor infractions that juvenile court judges complained were previousl …"

"… eling rather than the courts. Manuel  Criollo, an organizer with the Los Angeles Labor-Community Strategy Center,  has led campaigns to reform school …"

Comcast Foundation's giving to minority groups likely to aid approval of Time Warner buyout

By Jason McLure

Support of minority groups key to cable deal's approval, Comcast foundation has dealt out millions.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… upported Comcast’s acquisitions. In 2010, the Latino Business Chamber of Los Angeles wrote to the FCC to oppose Comcast’s acquisition of NBC/Universal, citin …"

"… light of the creation of a new Time Warner cable channel for the Los Angeles Dodgers that could increase cable rates $5 per month. As for Hispanic grou …"

New federal guidelines aimed at stopping explosion in harsh school discipline

By Susan Ferriss

Departments of Education and Justice team up to produce resource for school discipline and role of school police.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… ang affiliations and forced to pose for mock mug shots inside schools. In Los Angeles, a series of Center reports showed that the L.A. Unified School Police Dep …"

"… at school and through counseling. The Center interviewed the family of a Los Angeles boy, 12, who was arrested and charged with assault after teachers&nbs …"

"… rate of suspensions of black students. At the University of California at Los Angeles’ Civil Rights Project, whose data analysis has charted sharp racial disp …"

Nation's largest school police force, in L.A., will stop ticketing kids 12 and younger

By Susan Ferriss

After years of issuing thousands of tickets to students for minor infractions, L.A. school police will no longer cite kids 12 and younger.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… g to demand for reforms, the nation’s largest school police force — in Los Angeles — will stop issuing tickets to students 12-years-old or younger for mino …"

"… or near campuses during school hours. A memo this month to officers from Los Angeles Unified School Police Department Chief Steven Zipperman outlined the new p …"

"… respassing, jaywalking and other allegations. The new age-limit policy in Los Angeles, Zipperman said, includes room for exceptions “when all other methods of …"

"… ed. Children’s rights advocates have argued for several years that some Los Angeles school staff had begun to summon police too often to deal with minor disci …"

'Citizens United' ruling helped unions win state elections

By Alan Suderman and Ben Wieder

National unions, business groups focused on states in 2012 elections with unions gaining the edge, new analysis shows.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… he biggest beneficiary, however, was in California. Target Enterprises, a Los Angeles media buying firm, collected nearly $19 million and was the preferred vend …"

Soap opera producer tapped for top diplomatic post

By Michael Beckel

Major campaign fundraiser and soap opera producer Colleen Bell nominated to be next ambassador to Hungary.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… and, Bradley Bell, hosted two campaign fundraising events at their home in Los Angeles that Obama personally attended. One was a reception with about 1,000 suppo …"

Police killing of boy, 13, with pellet gun spotlights foiled attempts to regulate replicas

By Susan Ferriss

Andy Lopez, 13, was shot dead by deputies in California who came upon him walking with a pellet gun shaped like an AK-47.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… e National Rifle Association helped defeat a bill by Sen. Kevin de Leon, a Los Angeles Democrat, who came up with the proposal in response to similar police shoo …"

"… ansparent bodies or in certain neon colors. The measure had the support of Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck, who invoked the tragic 2010 shooting of another …"

In nation's richest farmland, some workers' kids get no education at all

By Susan Ferriss

Disciplined teens get no education for months because they can't do commute.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… languishing at home, with no schooling at all in this rural area north of Los Angeles. Kern is one of the top five most productive farm counties in the nation. …"

"… Kern expelled more kids, in raw numbers, than all the schools combined in Los Angeles County, which has nine times the number of pupils, according to data colle …"

Pro-Clinton super PAC creators have dubious pasts

By Michael Beckel

People behind pro-Clinton super PAC have histories of legal troubles and bankruptcy.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… st unveiled on KickStarter, a bespectacled, twentysomething white man from Los Angeles identified as “Austin” was shown as its author. Two years earlier, …"

Health care costs will mushroom as injured veterans age

By Jessica Wilde

News21 investigation finds injured veterans returning from Iraq, Afghanistan will need costly care for decades.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… or his injuries when he was discharged, he bought two mobile homes outside Los Angeles, one for him and his two children, ages 9 and 6, and one for his mother an …"

Claims processors received bonuses while backlog more than doubled

By Mary Shinn, Daniel Moore and Steven Rich

Veterans Affairs processors shared millions in awards while claims piled high, News21 investigation finds.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… Workers in Milwaukee received more than 5,000 old claims from Houston and Los Angeles beginning June 11. Sioux Falls received 2,600 claims from St. Louis, Houst …"

Parents, advocacy groups push back against independent study at home

By Susan Ferriss

Center piece on 'throwaway kids' spurs search for alternatives.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… in alternative schools. Sen. Ricardo Lara, Democrat of Bell Gardens, near Los Angeles, said his bill, SB 744, will address some concerns about transfers. It wou …"

"… Rawson of the Labor-Community Strategy Center, which provides court aid to Los Angeles-area schoolchildren, said she represented an 11-year-old special-needs boy …"

California cities seek $1 billion settlement for lead paint-related health care costs

By Lilly Fowler

Lawsuit says lead paint manufacturers should pay to remove old, toxic pigment from affected homes in California.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… , including the cities of San Francisco, Oakland and San Diego, as well as Los Angeles and Santa Clara counties. The suit seeks to force the defendants to inspec …"

"… to continue until at least late this month.   FairWarning is a Los Angeles-based nonprofit news organization focused on public health and safety issu …"

Conference addresses alternatives to racial profiling, harsh school discipline

By Susan Ferriss

The Advancement Project, a civil rights initiative, holds conference in D.C. to address educators' frustrations as well as student concerns.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… m is not confined to white educators or police. University of California, Los Angeles, psychologist Phillip Attiba Goff, who advises police departments, gave a …"

"… Advancement Project’s website highlights changes in policies in Denver, Los Angeles and other locations. Ramiro Rubalcaba, an official from the L.A. Unified S …"

"… e policies. Here’s a question-and-answer posted online that sums up how Los Angeles’ Garfield High School placed a moratorium on suspensions of student …"

How the defense industry dodges budget cuts

By Bill Buzenberg

Center's 'Gift Economy' project shows how money from defense contractors to key lawmakers affects key national security issues.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… and Digital First  newspapers spread across the nation from Miami to Los Angeles and San Jose. Its conclusions were described in Time Magazine’s Battlela …"

The huge drone that could not be grounded

By Richard H.P. Sia and Alexander Cohen

A major defense contractor used its connections on Capitol Hill to keep a troubled drone aircraft aloft at a cost of billions of dollars.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… ran, who successfully urged Northrop Grumman to move its headquarters from Los Angeles to his district in Falls Church, Va., in 2011, confronted top Air Force of …"

Throwaway kids: disciplined California teens struggle to school themselves

By Susan Ferriss

Strict district policies, distance from alternatives leave some disciplined teens no option but to school themselves.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… dents. That’s more than expulsions of all students from all districts in Los Angeles County, which has nine times the number of pupils. The pace at which Lati …"

"… , state Sen. Ricardo Lara, a Democrat from Bell Gardens, southeast of Los Angeles, said he’s alarmed by such stories. “We don’t want to paint them al …"

"… gest disappointment was missing a field trip to the Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles. He’d like to read more books about World War II, but the only library i …"

Cancer-cluster study seeking to debunk 'Erin Brockovich' has glaring weaknesses

By David Heath

An often-cited study finds no cancer cluster in Hinkley, Calif. But it fails to focus on people who drank poisoned water.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Erin Brockovich":

"… ll yeah, it was hurting people all that time?” …"

"… his analysis, Morgan said, “Now, what I presumed was you're going after Erin Brockovich.” Limitations of epidemiology Whether anyone in Hinkley got cancer from …"

"… pockets. “I've heard different reports of $2 million or $3 million that Erin Brockovich received herself. And yet, she is the humanitarian. Well, I'm more humanit …"

"… s 20/20 in which John Stossel uses his work to debunk the claims in Erin Brockovich that drinking hexavalent chromium can hurt people. The American Coun …"

Los Angeles school board cracks down on suspensions for minor infractions

By Susan Ferriss

L.A. school board limits suspensions for "willful defiance"

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… scipline, board members of the nation's second largest school district — Los Angeles Unified — took bold steps this week sure to be noticed nationally. They …"

"… mate Bill of Rights” the school board adopted in a 5-2 vote on Tuesday. Los Angeles Unified is the nation’s second largest school district, and with 300-plu …"

"… ey say.  Judith Perez, president of the Associated Administrators of Los Angeles, said her organization supports the new policy’s goals and supports keep …"

"… e students pulled out of classrooms. California, as a state, could follow Los Angeles’ lead in ending suspensions for defiance and setting limits on police in …"

California lawmakers latest to consider limits for cops in schools

By Susan Ferriss

Golden State lawmakers latest to think about limits.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… . California State Assembly member Reginald Jones-Sawyer, a Democrat from Los Angeles, introduced the state school police bill, Assembly Bill 549, to “get out …"

"… rt from the California Federation of Teachers, the union representing many Los Angeles teachers. That support helps it over one major political hurdle. The Calif …"

"… including middle-school-age children, in lower-income neighborhoods in the Los Angeles Unified School District. L.A. Unified is the nation’s second biggest sch …"

"… hrough property taxes or by tapping other state coffers. Urging caution Los Angeles County Presiding Juvenile Court Judge Michael Nash is so concerned about t …"

New immigration bill provides ray of hope for separated families

By Susan Ferriss

New immigration bill may ease years-long 'bars' that have split spouses and children

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… can Families United group that recently visited congressional offices. In Los Angeles, American Families United member Chris Xitco, said he was also optimistic …"

Louisiana sinkhole shatters calm, prompts buyouts on the bayou

By Ronnie Greene

A massive sinkhole roils a Louisiana bayou community — forcing many to seek buyouts, part of a U.S. trend of communities fighting to leave.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… and more are likely. Environmental activist Erin Brockovich, working with Los Angeles attorneys, came to town in March to meet with homeowners who contacted her …"

Conflicts of interest run rampant in state legislatures

By Nicholas Kusnetz

Legislation may overlap with business interests but part-time lawmakers vote anyway.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… lem,” said Ben Bycel, a lawyer who used to run the ethics commissions in Los Angeles, and later, Connecticut. Bycel said many states do not pay legislators eno …"

Controversy over cops in schools flares anew

By Susan Ferriss

Push for more police post-Newtown runs up against concern about 'school-to-prison pipeline'

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… failure, they say — the so-called school-to-prison pipeline.   In Los Angeles, for example, scores of students, most Latino or black and many just 11 or …"

"… nces other jurisdictions as they weigh putting more police in schools. In Los Angeles — home to the country’s largest school police force — school leaders …"

"… r student citations and arrests. The Center for Public Integrity analyzed Los Angeles Unified School District Police records and found that from 2009 through 20 …"

"… d on behalf of 56 students at Hoover High School in Glendale, Calif., near Los Angeles. The suit says that school administrators and Glendale police interrogate …"

GOP super donor's foundation leans left

By Paul Abowd and Dave Levinthal

Billionaire Republican super donor Harold Simmons chairs a foundation that backs liberal causes.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Los Angeles":

"… s. On the political front, Simmons has most recently lobbed $600,000 into Los Angeles’ mayoral race, funding a super PAC that supports Republican talk radio h …"