Politics, government and public life for Southern California

LA Mayor’s race: Complaint alleges Greuel misused city email account


Maya Sugarman/KPCC

City Controller Wendy Greuel, seen here at a recent mayoral debate, admitted to using her official email account for campaign purposes.

Los Angeles Mayor race 2013An ally of Eric Garcetti filed an ethics complaint Friday against Wendy Greuel, claiming the city controller violated ethics rules by using her government email account in her campaign for mayor. 

“Ms. Greuel’s apparent mis-use of public resources is an insult to the voters and taxpayers of Los Angeles,” said former Los Angeles City Councilwoman Ruth Galanter, who has endorsed Garcetti for mayor. She filed her complaint with the City Ethics Commission.

The Los Cerritos Community News obtained Greuel’s emails through a California Public Records Act request. Those emails show she emailed political consultants and staff about her campaign on dozens of occasions.

In one note sent from wendy.geuel@lacity.org in January, Greuel asked her campaign consultants for advice on how to handle an event sponsored by California Common Cause. “This being the anniversary of Citizens United…anything we should be prepared for, stay quiet, go on the offensive?”


Congressional Asian Caucus fights to keep sibling visas


U.S. Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA), seen here in a file photo, says there are positive elements in the Senate's immigration bill, but she wants to see changes to the family visas category.

The Senate immigration bill is a product of compromise, which means not everyone is pleased, including Asian American House Democrats. Their concern is the limit on visas for adult married children and eliminating them entirely for siblings.

The Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus has been lobbying negotiators working on immigration bills in both the Senate and House. Democrat Judy Chu of Monterey Park, chair of the Asian Caucus, says the Senate bill contains some concessions: adult married children 30 and under would still be eligible for family visas, and siblings could still apply for visas, but only in the first 18 months after the law is enacted.

But Chu says the caucus will continue to raise its voice over the sibling issue. She cites the example of a woman who becomes a naturalized citizen and petitions for her parents to come over. "Does it make any sense that she has to leave her 12-year-old brother behind? That's what this would mean."


Sheila Kuehl makes her run for county supervisor official

Sheila Kuehl

Sheila Kuehl

Former member of the state Legislature Sheila Kuehl has officially launched her campaign for the Board of Supervisors' Third District.

After informally announcing her run for the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors in January, Sheila Kuehl has officially launched her campaign to replace Zev Yaroslavsky when he is termed out next year. She is the first candidate to declare for the seat.

Kuehl is a former member of the state Assembly and Senate. She was the first female  Speaker pro Tempore of the Assembly and the first openly gay person to be elected to the state Legislature. 

"This is going to be a campaign of ideas, combining innovation and experience, collaboration and leadership, continued attention to county stability as well as new approaches in some key areas, such as child welfare, healthcare, expanded transportation and environmental protection," Kuehl said in a statement. 

The Board of Supervisors oversees a $24.7 billion budget that funds county hospitals, jails, children's services and mental health, among other departments. County supervisors also sit on the Metro Board of Directors. 


Maven's Morning Coffee: poll puts Wendy Greuel in the lead, Metro suspends toll lane fee, City Hall considers gun control

Wendy Greuel Profile

Grant Slater/KPCC

A poll from Survey USA found Wendy Greuel leading in the mayor's race by three points.

Good morning, readers. Welcome to the Maven's Morning Coffee -- a listing of the important headlines, news conferences, public meetings and announcements you need to know to fuel up and tackle your day.

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Today is Friday, April 26, and here is what's happening in Los Angeles:


A new Survey USA poll shows Wendy Greuel leading the mayor's race 45 percent to Eric Garcetti's 42 percent, reports KPCC. That's quite a shift from a USC/LA Times poll released Sunday, which showed Garcetti up by 10 points.

Representatives with the Los Angeles Coalition for the Economy and Jobs penned an op-ed for the Los Angeles Times, looking at four assets the next mayor should focus on: the Convention Center, LAX, Port of Los Angeles and city-owned real estate.


Senate counters Governor's funding plan for disadvantaged students

California Budget Education

Rich Pedroncelli/AP

State Sen. President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, second from left, discusses Gov. Jerry Brown's education plans, during a Capitol news conference in Sacramento, Calif., Thursday, April 25, 2013.

State Senate Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg on Thursday unveiled a funding plan for schools that  had already drawn the ire of Governor Jerry Brown.

Brown wants to make sure disadvantaged students get more of the funding pie, but the Senate disagrees with the formula the governor wants to use.  

Brown's plan would provide districts with funds for each disadvantaged student. Additional funds would go to districts with a majority of impoverished students.

The Democratic senate leader said those extra district funds are where he and the governor differ. 

“We are concerned about the same kids he’s concerned about,” Steinberg said.  “Under his formula there are thousands of kids that remain invisible.”

Those “thousands of kids” live in pockets of poverty in otherwise well-off districts, Steinberg said.  “They’re not getting the additional money.”