Politics, government and public life for Southern California

Ethics Commission fines Jose Huizar $10K for campaign missteps (updated)

Councilman Huizar

Corey Bridwell/KPCC

Councilman Huizar speaks to senior citizens from the 14th district.

L.A. City Councilman José Huizar was fined $10,500 Thursday for ethics violations related to his 2011 re-election campaign. 

The Ethics Commission found the Fourteenth District councilman accepted four contributions that exceeded the $500 cap that was in place at the time of the campaign. In two cases, the contributions came from individuals and their businesses. The other two contributions were from companies that had majority shareholders in common.

The Huizar campaign also failed to file three, mass e-mail communications as required by the Ethics Commission.

The Councilman's attorney, Stephen Kaufman, told commissioners: “Councilman Huizar accepts full responsibility for the actions of his committee and ultimately the buck stops with him but as you have identified, as with many, many other campaigns, the candidate relies upon professional staff, campaign staff to deal with compliance issues. We strive for perfection, but can’t always get it.”


A holiday tradition: Loretta Sanchez's Christmas card

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It's that time of year again: Democratic Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez has sent out her annual holiday card.

Uptight Capitol Hill has had a conniption fit in years past over Sanchez's choice of pictures for her seasons greetings — the Congresswoman astride a motorcycle or posing with her beloved cat Gretzky on her lap.

This year's card features the Anaheim Congresswoman and husband Jack Einwechter and a message that's an optimistic riff on the current deficit reduction negotiations: "May you dance with joy this holiday season (just not too close to fiscal cliffs)." There's also a nod to the late Gretzky, now sporting a halo.

The card design and postage are paid for by campaign contributions, though most cards are sent out by e-mail.  

The card may be all that friends and family see of Sanchez this holiday. Congressional leaders are warning members they may be back at work the week between Christmas and New Year's, voting on budget cuts and/or tax increases to avoid that fiscal cliff.


Central City Association releases endorsements for LA City Council's 2013 races

Los Angeles City Hall

Alice Walton/KPCC

The Central City Association backs Councilmen Paul Koretz and Joe Buscaino for re-election.

A downtown pro-business group on Thursday endorsed two incumbents and five candidates for open seats in the Los Angeles City Council 2013 race. 

The Central City Association endorsed councilmen Paul Koretz and Joe Buscaino for re-election.

“The council members have proven to be effective leaders who have helped us to create jobs and housing throughout Los Angeles,” said Carol Schatz, president and CEO of the Central City Association. 

In races where there are open seats, CCA endorsed:

  • Gil Cedillo, First District
  • Bob Blumenfield, Third District
  • Felipe Fuentes, Seventh District
  • David Roberts, Ninth District (includes a portion of downtown)
  • Mike Bonin, Eleventh District

The primary for all of those seats is set for March 5, 2013. Most of downtown is in District 14, which is represented by José Huizar, who is not up for re-election.


Maven's Morning Coffee: Jerry Brown undergoes cancer treatments, Animal Services get behavioral assessments, volunteers perform LA County's marriages

Jerry Brown Attends Rally In Support Of Proposition 30

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Gov. Jerry Brown is receiving radiation treatments for prostate cancer, according to his doctor.

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 Thursday, Dec. 13, and here is what's happening in Los Angeles:


Gov. Jerry Brown is receiving radiation treatments for prostate cancer. Treatment is expected to be complete in four weeks, reports KPCC.

Los Angeles Times writer George Skelton says now is the time to update Prop 13. "But anytime a thoughtful politician has had the courage to suggest tinkering, there have been howls from homeowners — egged on by anti-tax pros — who fret that their low property assessments are going to skyrocket," he writes.


Just how big is Obama in L.A. County? (Hint: Bigger than New Jersey)

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Stephen Chernin/Getty Images

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie leads a state that cast fewer votes for President Barack Obama than voters in Los Angeles County.

All the votes cast for President Barack Obama in Los Angeles County add up to more than he got in all of New Jersey, according to an analysis by Bloomberg News.

But New Jersey isn't alone —  it's just one of 42 states that L.A. County outnumbered in terms of votes for the President.

Obama received 2,216,903 votes from Los Angeles County, and 2,122,786 from New Jersey residents. So what, you say? (Actually, that was my first thought when my editor suggested I write about this.)

Let's face it. L.A. is a big, crowded place, with an economy that outrstrips entire nations. The sheer volume of just about anything we do here would seem to have lost its newsworthiness.

You want numbers? I gotcha numbers right heah, I say in a fake New Jersey accent.

L.A. County residents cast 885,333 votes for Mitt Romney. The entire population of New Jersey's five biggest cities — Newark, Jersey City, Paterson, Elizabeth and Edison — is only 10,500 more than that.