AirTalk for December 1, 2005

LAX Overhaul Plan Scrapped

The City of Los Angeles is scrapping its latest plan to modernize Los Angeles International Airport. After 11 years and $150 million in design costs for the plan drafted by former mayors Richard Riordan and James Hahn, the city will start over to craft a proposal that will do more to improve security and refurbish the aging facility. The plan had drawn criticism from the LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, poor reviews from security experts and lawsuits by airport-area residents. All but one of its elements will be reconsidered and some of the most controversial, including a check-in center near the San Diego Freeway, are almost certainly dead. Larry Mantle talks with LA City Councilman Bill Rosendahl, US Congresswoman Jane Harman, El Segundo Mayor Kelly McDowell and Mark Pisano of the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG).

Orange County Journalist "Roundtable"

Larry Mantle talks with Los Angeles Times staff writer Jean Pasco, Orange County Register op-ed column editor Steven Greenhut, and OC Weekly senior editorial writer and columnist, Gustavo Arellano about the latest news events and developments in Orange County.

"A La Carte" Cable and Indecency

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Kevin Martin told Congress Tuesday that parents need better and more tools to help them navigate the, entertainment waters, particularly on cable and satellite TV. Declaring television coarser than ever, the Chairman served notice on cable and satellite programmers that he planned to expand federal decency standards to include cable and satellite programs. Martin suggested several options, including creating a ``family-friendly'' tier of channels that would offer shows suitable for kids, such as the programs shown on the Nickelodeon channel and also suggested letting consumers pay for a bundle of channels that the could choose themselves, a variation of the so-called ``a la carte'' pricing system that some in Congress have backed. Cable and satellite providers complain that ``a la carte'' pricing or tiers would drive up costs for equipment, customer service and marketing. Christian broadcasters complain that “a la carte” offerings would leave their networks out of the cable line-up. Larry Mantle discusses the issue with Brian Dietz of the National Cable and Telecommunications Association, Dan Isett of the Parents Television Council and Paul Crouch, Jr. of the Trinity Broadcasting Network.

Parkinson's Disease and Pesticides

Approximately 1.5 million Americans currently suffer from Parkinson’s disease and it’s estimated that 60,000 new cases are diagnosed each year. There has long been a debate as to what causes the condition which usually develops after the age of 65, though 15% of those diagnosed are under 50. Many researchers believe that a majority of cases may have developed from a patient’s exposure to pesticides or other environmental factors. Larry talks with LA Times staff writer Marla Cone, UCLA Epidemiologist Dr. Beate Ritz and Joan Samuelson of the Parkinson's Action Network about new findings linking Parkinson’s to pesticides.
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