Southern California breaking news and trends

NFL at Rose Bowl: Pasadena approves $400,000 impact study

Mercer 13300

Susan Valot/KPCC

The 88-year-old Rose Bowl stadium.

A $400,000 environmental impact study was approved in a 6-to-1 vote by the Pasadena City Council on Monday night as the first step in potentially offering up the Rose Bowl as a temporary home for LA's non-existant NFL team. 

The study -- examining land use, air quality, noise, and traffic impact -- will take about eight months to complete, and the city will split expenses with Rose Bowl Operating Committee. The committee still has approve a $200,000 transfer to the city's General Fund, however, notes the SVG Tribune

Rose Bowl General Manager Darryl Dunn told KPCC he believes the cost is worth it and that the stadium can provide a comfortable interim home. "We’re in the middle of a renovation which will be completed substantially by September of 2013, which would be the soonest a team would be moving here," said Dunn. 

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Pepperdine University leader Maurice Hilliard found dead in Malibu

Pepperdine University

Photo by Yeshwanth Rao via Flickr Creative Commons

The body of Pepperdine University's athletic chaplain, assistant coach, and program director, Maurice Hillard, was found Monday on the beach in Malibu. The campus leader was reportedly out for a walk when he collapsed, reports KTLA.

Hilliard's body was discovered near Corral Canyon in the 2600 block of Pacific Coast Highway around 9 a.m. The exact cause of death was not determined, however the coroner noted no sign of foul play or trauma to the body. An autopsy will be conducted.

Pepperdine's president, Andrew K. Benton, released a statement Monday afternoon:

"We are saddened to learn that Maurice Hilliard, our University Athletic Chaplain and program director at the Boone Center for the Family, died earlier today. Maurice touched the lives of so many of us at Pepperdine, especially our athletes who looked up to Maurice as a friend, counselor, and mentor. He will be greatly missed.

Maurice grew up in Los Angeles and earned a bachelor's degree at the University of La Verne and a Master's of Divinity in Apologetics at Biola University. He spent 10 years as a basketball coach at Pepperdine and then became the program director at the Boone Center for the Family.

Maurice recently published a book called The Price of a Pearl where he shared what he learned through teaching, coaching, and mentoring young adults. He said he wrote the book for 'those who will open their hearts and minds to the healing power of God and who are willing to receive help.'

Maurice was frequently invited to speak at conferences and seminars about the transformational power of God in the lives of young adults.

More information will be provided as it becomes available.Please offer your prayers for Maurice's family and help each other through this difficult time."

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Little league strips season from 300 kids, balks at gentlemen's club donation

baseball lake

Photo by Marcus McCurdy via Flickr Creative Commons

No one's getting to home base this year. The Lennox Little League has changed its mind about accepting a $1,200 donation from a local strip club that could have saved their 2012 season.

Nearby gentlemen's club, Jet Strip, along with other donations, would have covered the higher price of playing ball after an increase in fees including the school district's double price for diamond usage.

Despite the fallout for around 40 teams — approximately 300 kids — league officials "felt the source of the money was not appropriate," KTLA reports.

League president, Roberto Aguirre, hopes the district will be able to re-negotiate fees so the kids can still play baseball this season.

Unlike, say, the movie-version of this storyline, Jet Strip was not asking for its logo to appear on any team jerseys.

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In which the little league season is saved by a gentleman's club

baseball lake

Photo by Marcus McCurdy via Flickr Creative Commons

With bases loaded and two outs, who will go to bat to save little league? Turns out, a local strip club.

The Lennox Little League season was saved, in part, to a big donation from Jet Strip, a nearby gentlemen's club in the unincorporated area of Los Angeles. James Wallace, Jet Strip's general manager and a 15-year member of Lennox's Coordinating Council, said the club does not like to brag about donations.

Their $1,200 gift to the struggling league came after the Lennox School District imposed new regulations and fees to pay for a field security guard position. The school board doubled the per-day fee it previously charged the league for use of the fields, the Daily Breeze explained.

Disputes between the league and the district have impacted player participation and delayed the start of the season by weeks. 

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Echo Park's 'Quinceañera' mural, now half off

Echo Park 'Quinceañera' mural

Photo courtesy of the Eastsider LA

Inspired by the ritual coming-of-age celebration for Latinas, Echo Park's "Quinceañera" mural on Logan Street became the focus of a neighborhood fracas when a new tenant began sandblasting the large-scale piece.

The mural was painted in 1996 by Theresa Powers on of the exterior of Pescado Mojado seafood restaurant, soon to be a Señor Fish location.

Mural removal was halted immediately after the artist, now living in San Antonio, changed her mind about documenting and preserving the piece, the Eastsider LA reported.

The Señor Fish crew, however, got caught in the net of "social networking speculation," notes KCET, prompting response from the offices of District 13, Cultural Affairs, and the Mural Conservancy, despite the operation being in complete accordance with mandates protecting artists rights.

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