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Feeling the Bern in Los Angeles

Good morning. It’s Wednesday, March 15, and here’s what’s happening across California:

TOP STORIES

Bernie-nistas in Los Angeles

The Bernie effect is being felt in a race in the heart of Los Angeles. Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, who started a national insurgent progressive movement and captured the 34th Congressional District from Hillary Clinton in the California primary last year, has helped shift the debate decidedly left in this heavily Democratic area. Los Angeles Times

Beware of sweetheart deals

L.A. Times columnist David Lazarus takes a look at the predatory practices of Future Income Payments. Until officials filed a cease-and-desist letter, it had offered a person a lump sum “in return for all or part of future pension checks, with total payments running considerably higher than the initial amount given.” This whole episode shows why “it’s important to have a national agency charged solely with protecting the financial interests of consumers,” Lazarus writes. Los Angeles Times

Putty’s guy in D.C.?

Here’s how Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, a protege of Ronald Reagan, became “Vladimir Putin’s favorite congressman.” Los Angeles Times

L.A. STORIES

Bye-bye blimp: Goodyear has deflated its last helium blimp. Employees watched Tuesday as the California-based Spirit of Innovation went the way of an old balloon. The blimp’s replacement at sporting events will have a frame, which means it maintains its shape when the helium is let out. Associated Press

Difficult trek gets harder: Want to get a close look at the Hollywood sign? You’ll soon have to stop using Beachwood Drive to trek up there. The city said Tuesday that the road to reach a popular trail near the sign will be banned for hikers and tourists. Los Angeles Times

Gang injunctions in the spotlight: Gang injunctions in quickly gentrifying neighborhoods “can place sweeping everyday restrictions — such as not being able to carry a marker pen or drink in public — on alleged gang members within designated areas.” Echo Park is one such place where this is occurring. BuzzFeed News

But would you eat it? This guy caught a 35-pound fish at the MacArthur Park lake. LAist

POLITICS AND GOVERNMENT

A way to reduce rents? A recently introduced bill would repeal a state law limiting rent control. Listen here to learn more about the implications of this move. KPCC

Nothing’s for free: California Democrats have proposed a law to enable students to graduate debt-free, but unless the state’s economic fortunes change this idea may not be possible. Orange County Register

Lead screening in the offing: A bill that’s making its way through the Legislature would require all California children to be screened for lead. California Healthline

CRIME AND COURTS

Mother arrested: A woman suspected of abandoning her 2-year-old daughter in a Riverside grocery store was arrested late Tuesday afternoon after a bank teller recognized her face from news reports. Los Angeles Times

Police shoot man: A knife-wielding man was shot and killed by Napa police. A witness said the man was waving a foot-long knife and appeared angry. KTVU

Lower the bar, please: Critics say the score required to pass the California bar needs to be lowered, and the State Bar has agreed to study whether this should happen to allow more prospective attorneys to pass. San Francisco Chronicle

THE ENVIRONMENT

Drive for change: Trump is expected to weigh in on EPA car mileage standards this week, and that will have potentially huge implications for California. Los Angeles Times

Over-pumping problems: The authors of a new book say over-pumping of groundwater has become so bad in the San Joaquin Valley that critical infrastructure is at risk. Water Deeply

“Endangered” battle: The fight to protect California’s wolves. Reuters

CALIFORNIA CULTURE

Not shipshape: The Queen Mary is in such bad shape that its hull could collapse and flood if repairs costing as much as $289 million are not completed in the next few years. Los Angeles Times

Luck of the Irish: St. Patrick’s Day is Friday. So here are L.A.’s 15 best bars to have a fun and responsible time. Eater Los Angeles

Your one shot! At 10 a.m. on April 30, tickets to see Hamilton at the Hollywood Pantages will go on sale. So get ready, because they’ll probably be gone in the blink of an eye. Los Angeles Times

Stupid money on a spot: A studio apartment in Presidio Heights goes for $2,000 a month. It’s not clear exactly how big it is except that the shower is in the kitchen. SFist

This beer is for you: Here’s where you can get beer on a budget in San Diego. New York Times

Small world: An opera about Walt Disney, in commuting distance of Disneyland. Los Angeles Times

CALIFORNIA ALMANAC

Los Angeles area: partly cloudy Wednesday, sunny Thursday. San Diego: sunny Wednesday and Thursday. San Francisco area: cloudy Wednesday, partly cloudy Thursday. Sacramento: partly cloudy Wednesday and Thursday. More weather is here.

AND FINALLY

Today’s California memory comes from Robin Goebel:

“As a kid growing up in Pacoima, I spent a lot of the summer months at the beaches. Carpinteria, Pismo Beach, McGrath State Beach and Refugio. Refugio always fascinated me since it had beautiful palm trees and a stream leading into the ocean. Very tropical-like, and it’s an inlet. Many years later I took my husband there, and we climbed the cliff and stood on the point and watched the surfers and the waves washing in and out. It is still beautiful and perfect to spend the day unwinding after you ate all that great food up in nearby Solvang.”

If you have a memory or story about the Golden State, share it with us. Send us an email to let us know what you love or fondly remember about our state. (Please keep your story to 100 words.)

Please let us know what we can do to make this newsletter more useful to you. Send comments, complaints and ideas to Benjamin Oreskes and Shelby Grad. Also follow them on Twitter @boreskes and @shelbygrad.

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