Politics, government and public life for Southern California

LA County officials in DC to talk immigration, guns, dollars

LA County Supervisor Don Knabe meets with lawmakers on Capitol Hill

Sheriff Baca lobbies for gun safety on Capitol Hill

LA County officials are in Washington this week, telling members of Congress how federal laws are affecting Southern California.

One of the messages: an unintended consequence of the proposed immigration bill could mean L.A. County picks up the tab for the health care of more than a million people.

It's a nexus between immigration reform and new health care laws. Tucked away in the 844-page Senate immigration bill is a provision that forbids undocumented immigrants from getting health insurance through the exchanges set up by the Affordable Care Act — until they complete their provisional status. L.A. County Supervisor Don Knabe says that's 15 years of no federal dollars. 

Knabe says the county currently gets about $600 million annually from the federal government to partially reimburse hospitals for treating the uninsured. Because the immigration bill also forbids any entitlement dollars from being spent on the undocumented, the county would lose the money.


LA City Attorney race: Rocky backs Trutanich


Maya Sugarman/KPCC

Los Angeles City Attorney Carmen Trutanich greets the crowd during primary election celebration at Rocco's Tavern in Studio City on primary election night in March.

Facing a tough re-election campaign, Los Angeles City Attorney Carmen Trutanich Wednesday touted the endorsement of a man he once criticized: former City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo.

When he first ran for the office in 2009, Trutanich knocked his predecessor for settling too many lawsuits against the city for too much money. Trutanich also said he’d bring more “professionalism” to the job. Outside City Hall Wednesday, with Delgadillo by his side, the city attorney sounded a different note.

“Rocky was a good city attorney,” Trutanich said. “I’m proud to have him standing with me.” Delgadillo added: "Different leaders have different priorities.”

Trutanich faces a stiff challenge from former State Assemblyman Mike Feuer in his bid for a second four-year term. Delgadillo defeated Feuer for city attorney in 2001.


Is there money trouble in Wendy Greuel's campaign? (updated)

Grant Slater/KPCC

There are signs that the Wendy Greuel campaign is short on cash. The campaign canceled its TV ad buys just two weeks out from the election.

Los Angeles Mayor race 2013With less than two weeks until the election, there are signs that the Wendy Greuel campaign may be having financial woes. 

The Los Angeles Times reported Wednesday the campaign canceled its television ad buys for two days — an unusual step for a mayoral campaign so close to the runoff. Over the weekend, Greuel personally gave her campaign $100,000. 

The latest campaign finance reports will be filed with the Ethics Commission Thursday. Up until the last report, Greuel and Eric Garcetti have remained neck-and-neck in the race to raise money. As of April 6, Greuel had raised $4.5 million in the general election. The Garcetti campaign raised $4.4 million during the same time. However, the Greuel campaign has spent money faster than her opponent, at one point releasing three television commercials in one week. 


Maven's Morning Coffee: Wendy Greuel suspends TV ads, San Bernardino County joins onto LAX lawsuit, Villaraigosa heads to China

Wendy Greuel

Wendy Greuel Campaign

Wendy Greuel's campaign has suspended its television advertisements two weeks out from the election. The Los Angeles Times says it's a sign of her fundraising difficulties.

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Today is Wednesday, May 8, and here is what's happening in Los Angeles:


The Wendy Greuel campaign has suspended its television advertisements, reports the Los Angeles Times. The paper says it's "a move that reflects her continuing struggle to raise enough money to compete head-to-head on the airwaves with her rival, Eric Garcetti."

Wendy Greuel and Eric Garcetti debated about education on Which Way, LA?

Los Angeles Times writer Steve Lopez went with Wendy Greuel to Tolliver's barbershop to watch her talk politics. "Not since Mayor Jim Hahn did the Slauson Shuffle at Tolliver's in 2005 have I seen a politician as comfortable there as Greuel," Lopez writes.


CA lawmaker pushes services for mentally ill to reduce prison and jail crowding

Mercer 556

Max Whittaker/Getty Images

File photo: California State Senate President Pro Tem Sen. Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento) wants to expand mental care in prisons. An estimated 20 percent of active parolees — roughly 10,000 people — were diagnosed with mental illness while in prison.

People with mental illness who end up in jail for minor crimes often stay longer because there’s no place for a judge to send them for treatment.

“Many of these individuals are arrested for low-level offenses,” says Nevada County Sheriff Keith Royal, who heads the California State Sheriffs Association. ”We have now become the new mental health asylums because of the closing of the state hospitals.”

Senate Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento) wants to solve that problem by expanding treatment for the mentally ill. He proposes building or contracting 2,000 residential crisis beds that offer short-term treatment, and adding 200 mental health triage counselors at community clinics and homeless shelters to help people with mental disorders get medical care, alcohol-and-drug treatment, and housing.