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Essential California: LAPD officers' new contract, support for same-sex marriage, anniversary of Selma march

Good morning. It is Saturday, March 7, and here are a few articles for you this weekend as we “spring ahead” one hour:


Raises for LAPD: Los Angeles cops will get pay increases under a new contract reached between the police union and city leaders. The agreement comes months after rank-and-file members voted down an earlier proposal, which did not include any raises. L.A. Times

Suing over botched billings: The Department of Water and Power says it lost $88 million in billings when it switched over to a new computer system. And that’s why L.A. City Attorney Mike Feuer filed a lawsuit against Pricewaterhouse Coopers. According to the suit, the accounting firm was tasked with helping the DWP roll out the new system. L.A. Times

The path toward equality: Sandy Banks reflects on what the film “Selma” means on the 50th anniversary of the march from Selma to Montgomery. “The movie is a visceral reflection of a moment in history that pricked our national conscience with its raw brutality. L.A. Times

Showing their support: Two Republicans who ran for governor of California have signed on to a brief in support of same-sex marriage. Meg Whitman and Neel Kashkari joined 300 conservatives in filing the brief with the U.S. Supreme Court, which is expected to hear arguments next month in cases concerning same-sex marriage in Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky and Tennessee. Sacramento Bee

Picky customers not welcome: Are you a hard-to-please customer? If so, there’s one San Francisco restaurant that doesn’t want your business. Boing Boing

 

This week’s most popular stories in Essential California

  1. They’re not the type of kittens you'd find in a shelter. Rather, these kitties can be found hanging out in the Santa Monica Mountains and trying to cross the 405 Freeway. New pictures show what life is like for this family of mountain lions. L.A. Times

  2. It was big news when California lawmakers passed legislation requiring new consent laws on college campuses. Now, some want to teach high school students that “yes means yes.” The Guardian

  3. Voters who participated in Tuesday’s election approved a major change to when the city of L.A.’s votes. Municipal elections will now be consolidated with state and federal races in even-numbered years. It was also a big night for incumbents -- all five who were on the ballot will remain in office. L.A Times

  4. Abandoned couches have an ally in photographer Andrew Ward, who finds beauty in the discarded furniture. “This is a very transient city. There are hundreds and thousands of people coming and going at any particular time, so these sofas speak to our restlessness.” Los Angeles Magazine

  5. This Hollywood producer walked away from the business to focus on young men behind bars. Scott Budnick is using his influence in politics and entertainment to change the way inmates are treated in the state prison system. California Sunday

 

This week’s California Great Reads

Regrets and failed dreams: Inmates writing their own obituaries. It’s a dark exercise that’s intended to show prisoners at San Quentin their value beyond the nature of their crimes. L.A. Times

Bernie Sanders for president? Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-Vt.) flirtation with a presidential run speaks to the discontent some Democrats feel for Hillary Clinton. L.A. Times

Inches from discovery: The enduring mystery of the Lone Woman of San Nicolas Island. L.A. Times

 

Looking ahead

-- President Obama will be in Los Angeles next week for a Democratic Party fundraiser.

-- Jury deliberations will continue in the copyright infringement lawsuit brought by singer Marvin Gaye’s family against Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams.

 

Please let us know what we can do to make this newsletter more useful to you. Send comments, complaints and ideas to Alice Walton or Shelby Grad.


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