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Newsletter: Today: Not on Their Front Walk

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Chris Homandberg, a volunteer with KTown for All, shows areas around Koreatown where planters, fencing and other obstacles have been placed by property owners to keep the homeless from camping along the sidewalk.
(Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)

In L.A., private citizens are putting up barriers along public sidewalks to prevent homeless people from setting up tents.

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Not on Their Front Walk

Chain link and orange mesh fences. Rosebushes and spiky cactuses. Huge planters. Frustrated by homeless encampments and L.A.’s uneven response to a growing crisis, residents and business owners have taken things into their own hands by placing obstacles — usually without a permit — in the “furniture zone,” the city’s designation for the sometimes paved and sometimes grassy area between the sidewalk and street. That has prompted the L.A. City Council to pass a motion calling on city agencies “to work together to investigate and remove illegal fencing citywide that restricts free passage in the public right-of-way.”

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Very Interesting

After much badgering by President Trump to lower interest rates, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome H. Powell signaled that the Fed is almost certain to cut rates at the end of this month. Coincidence? Powell essentially argued Wednesday that growing uncertainty from trade tensions and slowing global economic growth, along with low inflation, is enough to justify the move. But the central bank now looks more vulnerable to criticism that it is caving to political pressures that will only intensify as the election cycle heats up.

More Politics

-- Current and former Homeland Security officials tell the New York Times that nationwide raids to arrest thousands of undocumented families have been scheduled to begin Sunday.

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-- Labor Secretary R. Alexander Acosta has defended his handling of a sex-trafficking case involving now-jailed financier Jeffrey Epstein. He’s trying to stave off intensifying Democratic calls for his resignation.

-- A federal appeals court has ordered the dismissal of a lawsuit accusing Trump of illegally profiting off the presidency through his luxury Washington hotel, handing Trump a significant legal victory.

-- A federal judge says the Justice Department can’t replace nine lawyers so late in the dispute over whether to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census without explaining why it’s doing so.

-- Trump signed an executive order directing the government to revamp the nation’s care for kidney disease so more people whose kidneys fail have a chance at early transplants and home dialysis. “The kidney has a very special place in the heart,” the president said.

A 2014 Accusation Comes to Light

Interviews and university records reviewed by The Times show UCLA Medical Center learned in 2014 that a patient had made abuse allegations against gynecologist Dr. James Mason Heaps, but officials did not move to fire him until four years later, after more accusations came to light. The university’s actions raise new questions about whether it did all it could to protect patients. Heaps has denied any wrongdoing, and his attorneys have said he will fight the charges.

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FROM THE ARCHIVES

On this date in 1977, Walt Disney Productions went full throttle in promoting the film “Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo.” A ceremony at Mann’s Chinese Theater featured Herbie the Love Bug leaving its tire prints in the famous forecourt.

Herbie the love bug leaves a tireprint in the wet cement at the courtyard at Mann’s Chinese Theater
July 11, 1977: Herbie the Love Bug leaves tire prints in the wet concrete at Mann’s Chinese Theater.
(Robert Lachman / Los Angeles Times)

CALIFORNIA

-- When isolated Ridgecrest was hit with its biggest quake in decades, residents’ self-reliance and sense of community came in handy.

-- Officials say a Southern California man died last week after contracting West Nile virus in what is likely the first death caused by the disease this year in the state.

-- A Glendale couple is suing a fertility clinic, saying their embryo was implanted into the wrong woman.

-- Orange County prosecutors are reviewing video of a violent brawl that broke out among family members at Disneyland over the weekend to determine whether criminal charges should be filed.

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HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS

-- Mid-budget movies keep flopping. But STX Entertainment’s problems don’t end there. (Did you see the animated musical “UglyDolls”? Not many did.)

-- NBC’s “Dateline” is benefiting from true crime’s role as a dependable fixture for cable networks that have battled audience declines due to streaming.

-- Billie Eilish, music’s biggest anti-pop star, returned home a hero in a concert at the Shrine.

NATION-WORLD

-- After a storm swamped New Orleans, there are concerns that even worse weather is on the way: a possible hurricane that could raise the Mississippi River to the brim of protective levees.

-- The United States admonished other countries looking to preserve the Iran nuclear deal to not give in to “nuclear extortion” from Tehran.

-- Human rights lawyer Amal Clooney accused world leaders of failing to protect journalists and responding with “a collective shrug” over the slaying of Saudi writer Jamal Khashoggi.

-- Lourdes, France, has seen its tourism industry drop off. But it’s hoping for a revival from a musical based on the life of Bernadette, a teenager who said she saw apparitions of a young woman in 1858.

BUSINESS

-- Jason Sugarman, a minority owner of the Los Angeles Football Club and son-in-law of Hollywood mogul Peter Guber, has been accused of participating in an elaborate scheme that defrauded investors in tribal bonds of some $43 million.

-- Uber and Lyft drivers swarmed Sacramento as state lawmakers advanced a gig workers’ rights bill.

SPORTS

-- At Wimbledon, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal won their quarterfinal matches in men’s singles and will face each other yet again in a semifinal on Friday.

-- Those Dodgers stars you cheer? Marty Lamb saw them first, as columnist Bill Plaschke explains.

OPINION

-- Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo’s new panel on human rights is unnecessary and perhaps dangerous.

-- Taxing tampons isn’t just unfair, it’s unconstitutional.

WHAT OUR EDITORS ARE READING

-- The White House is hosting what has been billed as a “social media summit” today with some of conservative media’s biggest stars as well as some fringe figures who push conspiracy theories. (CNN)

-- Automatic license plate readers are coming to a neighborhood near you and, in fact, may already be there. (Slate)

ONLY IN CALIFORNIA

The Bixby Creek Bridge on Highway 1 is a symbol of Big Sur that’s in the opening credits of HBO’s “Big Little Lies” as well as in countless selfies by nearly anyone who visits the area. But over the weekend, it got a temporary addition that revealed an ongoing frustration among many locals: a neon-yellow banner, blaring the all-caps message, “OVERTOURISM IS KILLING BIG SUR.” So, of course, people took pictures of it.

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