Southern California breaking news and trends

Police Commission elects Andrea Sheridan Ordin as new president


Andres Aguila/KPCC

The Los Angeles Police Commission, which provides civilian oversight to the department, has a new president.

A month-and-a-half after returning to the Los Angeles Police Commission, Andrea Sheridan Ordin is the body's new president.

Ordin takes over from Richard Drooyan, who finished his one-year term as president Tuesday. It was also Commissioner Wong Yang’s last day on the commission, as she submitted her resignation to the mayor after serving for nearly three years.

Ordin spent five years on the police commission before taking a break and then coming back in June. She's the former county counsel for Los Angeles and a former U.S. Attorney for the region. She also served on the Christopher Commission, which made recommendations for reforming the LAPD after the Rodney King riots. 

John W. Mac will continue as vice president of the commission.


No timeline for restarting San Onofre, says NRC chair

Grant Slater/KPCC

The San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant is seen on April 6, 2012.

Days after Southern California Edison said there was hope for a possible restart of the San Onofre nuclear plant in June, the chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) issued a statement saying there was no timeline planned for a reopening.

The statement, released Monday by Chairman Gregory Jaczko, says the agency will take "whatever time is necessary" to review exisiting and pending documentation on repairs and issues at the plant. 

Both reactors have been offline for more than three months following a radioactive gas leak and evidence of excessive and unusual wear on the tubing inside the steam generators.

Federal approval will be required to boot up the plant. Jaczko says to even discuss that possibility at this point is "premature."



NRC requiring modifications to every U.S. nuclear power plant

san onofre nuclear power plant atomic

Jason Hickey/Flickr Creative Commons

U.S. nuclear power plants have until the end of 2016 to comply with new safety recommendations released Friday by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. 

Plants were ordered to begin immediately implementing the upgrades in an effort to prevent a large-scale radioactive crisis like what occurred last year at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant following the earthquake and tsunami.

Recommendations were laid out in a three-part plan. Two points apply to every U.S. commercial nuclear power plant, including those under construction and recently licensed new Vogtle reactors. One point only concerns a specific type of containment structure, said the NRC in a press release.

  • The first Order requires the plants to better protect safety equipment installed after the 9/11 terrorist attacks and to obtain sufficient equipment to support all reactors at a given site simultaneously.
  • The second Order requires the plants to install enhanced equipment for monitoring water levels in each plant’s spent fuel pool.
  • The third Order applies only to U.S. boiling-water reactors that have “Mark I” or “Mark II” containment structures. These reactors must improve venting systems (or for the Mark II plants, install new systems) that help prevent or mitigate core damage in the event of a serious accident.