Southern California breaking news and trends

KPCC DIGEST AM (Oct. 1)—Government shutdown, musical instrument breakdown, electronics powerdown, toxic trickle-down

1. The first partial government shutdown in 17 years (KPCC)

As much of the federal government grinds to a halt, President Barack Obama is telling the U.S. military he'll push Congress to re-open the government as soon as possible. Congress missed the deadline for averting the first partial government shutdown in 17 years.

As the clock struck midnight Monday, House Republicans were demanding that the Senate negotiate their demand for a one-year delay in President Barack Obama's 2010 health care law.

2. Obamacare: Everything you need to know about enrolling in California (KPCC)

Open enrollment for health plans will begin Tuesday, October 1, 2013, ushering in a new era of health coverage in California and new confusion around coverage options and responsibilities.

KPCC has complete coverage of the roll-out of the Affordable Care Act — Explore our Interactive Cost Calculator to see your options at a glance, read FAQs on Obamacare and MediCal expansion, and skim through a glossary of helpful terms.

3. Backlog of schools' broken musical instruments is 'like a war scene' (KPCC)

As L.A. Unified works to retool its arts education, at least 2,600 broken musical instruments are languishing in piles at a warehouse in DTLA, with hundreds more arriving every month. Some have been waiting there for years — one school's bundle was tagged as sent for repairs in July 2010.

Only six repair technicians are left and none of them can repair woodwinds. "It's a little demoralizing," said Edwin Barker, the shop's last remaining stringed instrument repairman.

4. Green chemicals: California regulators rethink rules from ground up (KPCC)

Toxic regulators have launched new, cutting edge rules guiding the use of hazardous chemicals. While some lawmakers have addressed this issue with product-by-product, chemical-by-chemical types of regulation, California has chosen a less piecemeal approach.

Instead, lawmakers passed what could be a groundbreaking way to think about chemical safety, focusing not only on the chemical's inherent risk, but also factoring in the pathway and extent of its exposure to people and the environment.

5. Breaking cultural boundaries for better bone marrow matches (KPCC)

Among the K-Pop performances, street cuisine and crowd-pleasing parade of the Los Angeles Korean Festival, a local non-profit was making appeals for bone marrow donations.

While Caucasians can expect a 93 percent chance of a match, the odds fall off steeply for certain minorities — 73 percent for Asian-Americans, 72 percent for Latinos, and 66 percent for African-Americans.  The challenges range from biological to cultural.

6. FAA may stop making you power off those electronics (NPR)

It's news many airline passengers have waited to hear: The Federal Aviation Administration may allow smartphones, tablets and other personal electronic devices to be used throughout an entire flight — including takeoff and landing.

Monday, an advisory committee made up of pilots, mechanics, engineers, airline executives and other industry experts recommended that the federal government change its rules to allow many electronics to be used during an entire flight. Recommendations are now under review.

7. Santa Monica crash: 4 bodies found in wreckage of private jet (KPCC)

A Los Angeles County Coroner's official says four bodies have been found inside the wreckage of a private jet that crashed  Sunday night into a hangar and burst into flames while landing at Santa Monica Airport from Hailey, Idaho.

Investigator Betsy Magdaleno says a crew is working early Tuesday to extract the bodies from the charred remains of the twin-engine Cessna 525A. She says it's too soon to tell if they are male or female.

 

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