Newsletter: Essential California: Measles outbreak could threaten L.A. campuses

Health officials warned this week that people who spent time at UCLA, above, and Cal State Los Angeles might be at risk of catching measles. A UCLA student has been infected with the disease.
(Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times)

Good morning, and welcome to the Essential California newsletter. It’s Wednesday, April 24, and here’s what’s happening across California:


Measles on campus: A measles outbreak has been declared in Los Angeles County, and students on two L.A. college campuses may now be at particular risk. Young adults in California are less likely to be vaccinated than other age groups, and close campus living can be a breeding ground for disease. University officials have already confirmed that a UCLA student was among those infected, and now Los Angeles health officials are warning that students and staff at UCLA and Cal State L.A. may be at risk of catching measles. Los Angeles Times

More on Senate Bill 50: A new report from the Los Angeles city planning department says that Senate Bill 50 could have “far-reaching effects” in Los Angeles. The bill — which would require cities to allow four- to-five story apartment complexes near transit, and smaller apartments and townhomes in wealthier neighborhoods close to job centers — faces a key committee hearing in Sacramento on Wednesday. The City Council previously voted 12 to 0 to oppose the bill, with council members voicing fears that that the legislation would exacerbate gentrification and the displacement of longtime residents. Los Angeles Times


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Obama Boulevard: An official date has been set for the renaming of Los Angeles’ Rodeo Road in honor of former President Barack Obama. Get ready for a street festival on May 4 — complete with music performances, vendors and food trucks — at the intersection of the new Obama Boulevard (currently Rodeo Road; not to be confused with Beverly Hill’s Rodeo Drive) and West Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard. Los Angeles Times

He’s driving: Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke of Texas will launch his 2020 California primary campaign Saturday with a four-day driving tour of the state. The former El Paso congressman will stop at Los Angeles Trade-Technical College downtown for an outdoor rally at 4 p.m. Saturday. Too soon for a trip down Obama Boulevard. Los Angeles Times



Improper detention? Two 17-year-olds from Bangladesh say they have been improperly held in an adult ICE detention facility in San Diego for months, despite being minors. Voice of San Diego


Victory for the beverage industry: A controversial soda tax proposal has been shelved by California lawmakers until next year. Associated Press

Ascendant mayors: California has 75 cities with larger populations than South Bend, Ind. — home of fast-rising Democratic presidential candidate Mayor Pete Buttigieg. So how do those 75 mayors now see their own political futures? Fox & Hounds


Former sports reporter Kelli Tennant walks past members of the media after holding a news conference Tuesday to discuss her sexual assault allegation against former Los Angeles Lakers head coach Luke Walton.
(Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)

Fear of repercussions: Kelli Tennant, the woman suing former Lakers coach Luke Walton for an alleged sexual assault, held an emotional news conference on Tuesday afternoon. The TV sports reporter said she waited five years to come forward with the allegations because she was “scared” she might lose her job. Los Angeles Times


College admissions scandal: Two more people, including a former USC soccer coach, will plead guilty in the college admissions scandal. Los Angeles Times


Why so much? Gov. Gavin Newsom wants to know why California’s gasoline prices are higher than in the rest of the country, blaming potential “inappropriate industry practices” Tuesday rather than the state’s higher taxes and tougher environmental regulations. Associated Press

A perilous journey: Every year, gray whales make their annual pilgrimage north from the coastal lagoons of Baja California to Alaska. But seven migrating whales have been reported dead in the San Francisco Bay so far this year. What’s causing their deaths? Mercury News


Train troubles: San Francisco officials voted to delay $62 million in funding for SF Muni’s troubled new rail fleet, after a “slew of mishaps.” San Francisco Chronicle

RIP: Steve Golin, an Oscar-winning producer who helped launch the filmmaking careers of directors like David Fincher, Spike Jonze and Michael Bay, died at 64. Los Angeles Times

A semi-accurate blast from the past: In 1981, the New York Times pulled out its crystal ball and made some predictions about San Francisco’s changing demographics and what they meant for the city. A writer dug up the old story nearly four decades later and found that the 1981 prediction of an “elitist takeover” of SF “basically came true.” SF Gate



Los Angeles area: sunny, 76, Wednesday; partly cloudy, 76, Thursday. San Diego: partly cloudy, 71, Wednesday; mostly sunny, 72, Thursday. San Francisco area: sunny, 71, Wednesday; partly cloudy, 64, Thursday. San Jose: sunny, 88, Wednesday; partly cloudy, 82, Thursday. Sacramento: sunny, 90, Wednesday; mostly sunny, 88, Thursday. More weather is here.


Today’s California memory comes from Virginia Drake:

“Back in the ’50s, I would go on Friday nights to the Griffith Park area to a livery stable where they offered a night ride over the hill to Burbank. It was great fun, nice horses, and it took about an hour to get to the terminus next to a casual restaurant. We’d have dinner and then ride back. The price was reasonable, the views great, and the memory of those rides has stuck with me over the years.”

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.