Southern California breaking news and trends

Bail reduced, but only slightly, for Assessor John Noguez

Noguez mugshot

LA County Sheriff's Dept.

A Los Angeles judge reduced Assessor John Noguez's bail to $1.16 million. His attorney said it is unlikely Noguez can get out of jail before his next hearing.

The bail amount for Los Angeles County Assessor John Noguez was reduced slightly Monday to reflect how much revenue the county reportedly lost when the assessor allegedly accepted bribes from a tax consultant. 

The assessor’s bail was reduced from $1.38 million to $1.16 million. Even with that revised amount, his attorney, Michael Proctor, said it is unlikely Noguez will be able to make bail. Bond companies typically require 10 percent of the bail amount in cash.

Tax consultant Ramin Salari’s bail was also reduced, from $1.36 million to $1.16 million. He is expected to bail out some time later Monday evening.

Noguez was arrested last week on 24 counts of bribery, perjury, conspiracy and misappropriation by a public officer. He is accused of accepting $185,000 in bribes from Salari in exchange for reducing the assessed values on properties owned by the tax consultant’s clients.


Assessor John Noguez and tax consultant plead not guilty to public corruption charges

Noguez mugshot

LA County Sheriff's Dept.

Los Angeles County Assessor John Noguez, who is facing 24 felony counts, is being held on $1.385 million bail.

Los Angeles County Assessor John Noguez and a tax consultant who allegedly bribed the elected official each pleaded not guilty Thursday to public corruption charges.

Wearing an orange jumpsuit and handcuffs, Noguez made his first court appearance since being arrested Wednesday at his Huntington Park home. He is facing 24 felony counts, which include bribery, perjury, conspiracy and the misappropriation of public funds. During the District Attorney’s year-long investigation, Noguez has maintained he did nothing wrong. 

Also in court was Ramin Salari, who allegedly bribed Noguez with $185,000 in exchange for lowering the assessed values of properties owned by his clients. Salari is charged with 23 felonies — bribing an executive officer, conspiracy and misappropriation. He is also accused of giving former appraiser Scott Schenter $100,000 in bribes.


LA County voters to decide whether adult films need condoms

Los Angeles County voters will decide this November whether performers who pornographic films should be required to wear condoms. Above is Los Angeles County's official condom wrapper.

The question of whether adults performing in pornographic films should be required to use condoms on set will be put to Los Angeles County voters in November.

With a 3-1-1 vote, the Board of Supervisors agreed to place the “Safer Sex in the Adult Film Industry” measure on the ballot. Supervisor Gloria Molina was the dissenting vote, with Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas abstaining.

If approved, performers who participate in adult films in the unincorporated areas of Los Angeles County would be required to use condoms during intercourse scenes. The 85 cities that receive Public Health services from L.A. County would have to incorporate the requirement into their municipal codes. Pasadena, Long Beach and Vernon have their own health agencies. 

In addition to obtaining a health permit, film producers would have to go through blood pathogen training and provide an exposure control plan. Violators would have their permits revoked and could face civil fines and misdemeanor penalties.


Los Angeles County supervisors consider extending term limits (updated)

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The Board of Supervisors is considering whether to amend Los Angeles County's charter to give elected officials more time in office.

The five members of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors could serve for at least 20 years – instead of the current 12 years – under a proposal to extend term limits. 

Supervisor Mike Antonovich will ask his colleagues tomorrow to place a charter amendment on the Nov. 6 ballot that would extend term limits from three four-year terms to five terms. Voters approved term limits in 2002, long after many of the current supervisors were elected to office.

In the Fifth District, Antonovich was elected in 1980. Supervisor Gloria Molina was elected in 1991, followed by Zev Yaroslavsky in 1994, Don Knabe in 1996, and Mark-Ridley-Thomas in 2008.  Under the current charter, Molina and Yaroslavsky would be termed out in 2014.

A sitting supervisor has not been defeated in 32 years. Back in 1980, Antonovich beat Baxter Ward and Deane Dana defeated Yvonne Burke. Twelve years later, Burke was elected to represent the Second District. 


LA County questions how to regulate condoms in pornographic films

AIDS Memorial Quilt On Display In Brooklyn For World AIDS Day

Chris Hondros/Getty Images

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors is considering a proposal that would require adults in pornographic films to wear condoms during intercourse.

An initiative that would require adult film performers to wear condoms during intercourse scenes was stalled today when members of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors questioned the enforcement of such a proposal.

AIDS Healthcare Foundation gathered enough signatures to have the initiative, which would also require producers to obtain a health permit, placed on a countywide ballot. However, under questioning from Supervisor Gloria Molina, attorneys for the county admitted it was unclear if the initiative would apply to cities throughout Los Angeles County or just the unincorporated areas.

“I really do think we need to have a better understanding of the jurisdiction, and if in fact it’s a countywide vote or is it unincorporated areas,” Molina said.

The matter will be back before the Board of Supervisors on July 24. The board has until Aug. 7 to decide whether to place the initiative on the November ballot.