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In Latest Coronavirus Update, Garcetti Talks About Efforts To House Homeless People, Get Meals To Seniors

File: This still image taken from a live stream provided by the Office of Mayor Eric Garcetti shows Garcetti displaying putting on a protective face mask during his daily news conference in Los Angeles on Wednesday, April 1. Office of Mayor Eric Garcetti

At today's coronavirus briefing (watch live above), Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti started by discussing how statewide reopening plans would impact the city.

Earlier today, California governor Gavin Newsom said the state will start moving into Phase 2 of the coronavirus fight this Friday. Reopenings may happen regionally. Businesses in sparsely populated areas might reopen sooner than ones in densely populated urban areas.

"Our death rate is lower than the national average thanks to what you have done," Garcetti said, "but we nevertheless have suffered about half of the state's COVID-19 related deaths. And our timing on opening may vary from other parts of the state... So it's important that when we hear the governor, know he isn't talking to all of us in exactly the same way. He's brought together a framework that then requires us to do the hard work here to determine what's right for Los Angeles."

Garcetti says that in the coming days, he'll meet with mayors and council members of other cities across Los Angeles County, as well as the county's our Board of Supervisors and public health department to "make these decisions together."

Garcetti also discussed a new mandate for nursing homes, efforts to house homeless people, meals for seniors and protections for renters.


Los Angeles County reported 568 new COVID-19 diagnoses, bringing the total to 26,217 cases — a 2% increase since yesterday.


Garcetti updated an order he issued on April 24. Effective immediately, all skilled nursing facilities in the city of Los Angeles must hand-deliver to all residents and workers notices that include the last date testing was offered and the next date it will be offered. These notices must be updated and circulated once a month and, at least two days prior to testing, an update notice must be publicly displayed at the main entrance of every facility and provided to anyone (whether in the media, government or general public) who asks for it.


Garcetti said the city had opened up 24 temporary shelters at recreation centers across Los Angeles. These shelters are currently housing 900 people and are at 87% capacity. Garcetti said anyone who needs a bed should call 211.

The mayor highlighted Project Room Key, a partnership that uses city, county and state funds to secure hotel rooms for people experiencing homelessness. He said that over the weekend, L.A. County officials secured an additional 505 motel rooms, a 25% boost, bringing the total number of rooms to 2,711 rooms across the county.

"This helps give badly needed revenue to our hotels and motels and puts people back to work while protecting the lives of those people experiencing homelessness and saving the lives of all of us by ensuring the spread of COVID-19 slows down," Garcetti said.

He also said a large downtown L.A. hotel has offered an additional 460 rooms, which will push the total number of rooms above 3,000.

"Because this is our first large downtown hotel and because it's closer to the epicenter of our homeless crisis and Skid Row, it will boost our efforts to support Angelenos who are at the greatest risk of dying from this virus," Garcetti said.

Garcetti says city officials have called more than 800 hotels and motels in the search for rooms and they continue looking for more but he also explained that some hotels are too expensive for

"Keep in mind, many of the newer world class hotels nearby are very expensive. We don't want to overspend taxpayer dollars. We wouldn't be able to bring in as many people off the street," Garcetti said.


Garcetti says the city of L.A. has already scaled up and is now providing meals to 12,000 seniors and doubled the number of meals being delivered to each participant.

He says the city is partnering with the Hospitality Training Academy, which is working with four hotels and hospitality kitchens that have rehired 106 workers as well as three taxi cab companies.

If you're 65 or over or age 60 to 64 with an underlying medical condition and you need of a meal delivered to your home, call 213-263-5226 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. or go online and sign up. You cannot already be enrolled in another meal program. Garcetti also urged restaurants that want to provide meals to sign up.


"Having just passed the first of the month, I want to again encourage renters to notify your landlords if you're unable to make rent because of the impact of this novel coronavirus," Garcetti said.

He recommended that renters notify their landlords within seven days after the date their rent is due but he also reminded people, "Our city does not compel anyone to provide this notice or documentation but we do strongly urge you to do that as soon as possible."

Garcetti also said he supports national legislation that would forgive both mortgage and rental payments. "That is a priority that I hope this Congress will adopt and our President will sign in the next round of the CARES Act for families and households across our city and throughout our country."

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LA Sheriff Villanueva Closes Two Patrol Stations, Makes Other Cuts

(Kyle Grillot for LAist)

Blaming the Board of Supervisors for underfunding his department, L.A. Sheriff Alex Villanueva said today that he’s being forced to close the Parks Bureau, two patrol stations, and specialized detective units that focus on sexual assaults, gangs and cybercrimes.

The two patrol stations being closed are Altadena and Marina del Rey. Those areas will be patrolled by deputies from nearby stations, the sheriff said.

Nobody will lose their job. Deputies and civilian staff who work in these bureaus and units instead will be transferred to other parts of the department, according to the sheriff.

The sheriff said the closures will reduce administrative costs, but didn't provide further details on how savings will be achieved. He said the cuts will reduce spending by a total of nearly $200 million a year.

Villanueva had asked for $3.9 billion for the fiscal year that begins July 1. The Board of Supervisors tentatively approved $3.5 billion, saying the sheriff ran up deficits his first two years in office. In addition, the county is expected to see a $1 billion drop in sales tax revenue because of the coronavirus.


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'We’re Just Cleaning, Not Going Anywhere.' How Small Businesses On Two City Blocks Are Weathering Coronavirus

Globe Cleaners on Lincoln Boulevard in Venice is now selling masks. The store has seen an uptick in drop-off laundry from people trying to avoid laundromats. Emily Guerin/LAist

Back in mid-March, when there was a new coronavirus regulation nearly every day and no one knew quite what to expect, I visited almost every small business along a two-block section of Lincoln Boulevard in Venice.

Last week, I went back and found them in varying stages of survival.



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Owner Who Reopened OC Barbershop Says We All Have To Take COVID-19 'Really Seriously'

Screenshot from a video on Barberhood's website promoting their reopening.

Christine Wood, who reopened her Laguna Hills barbershop ahead of stay-at-home orders lifting, defended the decision today on our newsroom's public affairs show AirTalk.

Wood detailed the steps she has taken to protect customers and staff at Barberhood and told AirTalk host Larry Mantle that she doesn't "condone the shops that are just opening as if nothing ever happened. I think we all have to really take this seriously, and adhere to every possible precaution and protocol we can to keep our community safe."

Of course, she conceded it's not possible to adhere to six feet of physical distancing while you cut someone's hair.

When asked if the reward was worth the risk, Wood said:

"Yes, we put our heart, and soul, and savings into this business ... And given the percentage of fatalities from this virus in our county, we felt we had no choice but to either open, or let our dream die."


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L.A. Times Art Critic Wins Pulitzer Prize; Long Beach Opera Production Cited

A scene from "The Central Park Five," composed by Anthony Davis for Long Beach Opera. Keith Ian Polakoff

Christopher Knight, the longtime art critic for The Los Angeles Times, won the Pulitzer Prize for criticism on Monday for his writing about the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, while the Long Beach Opera was cited for premiering music prize winner Anthony Davis’ “The Central Park Five.”

Knight, who had been a Pulitzer finalist three times before, was honored for his often unsparing criticism of LACMA, particularly about its troubled expansion.

The Pulitzer jurors said that Davis’ “The Central Park Five,” which premiered at Long Beach Opera in June of 2019, was “a courageous operatic work, marked by powerful vocal writing and sensitive orchestration, that skillfully transforms a notorious example of contemporary injustice into something empathetic and hopeful.” (Richard Wesley wrote the libretto.)

Read the entire story here.

Off-Duty LAPD Officer Arrested On Suspicion Of Attempted Murder Of Fellow Officer

(Andrew Cullen for LAist)

An off-duty LAPD officer has been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder after allegedly shooting a fellow officer during a camping trip near Apple Valley.

The incident was reported just after 1 a.m. Sunday at a campsite in the Stoddard Wells Off-Highway Vehicle area in unincorporated San Bernardino County.

San Bernardino County sheriff's deputies said they found Ismael Tamayo, 44, at the scene with a firearm in his possession. Another man was found with a gunshot wound and a third man was uninjured. All three are LAPD officers.

Tamayo is currently being held on $1 million bail and is scheduled to appear in a Victorville court tomorrow, according to jail records.

The wounded officer was airlifted to a hospital and is expected to recover.

LAPD Police Chief Michel Moore released this statement Sunday about the incident:

"The events overnight culminating in the serious injury to our off-duty officer, apparently at the hands of another member of this Department, give me great concern. I spoke earlier this morning with San Bernardino Sheriff John McMahon, pledging our full support of their criminal investigation. I am thankful our injured officer is in stable condition and expected to survive. I am committed to determining what and how this occurred.”


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LA County Will Share Its Recovery Plan This Week


Shortly after the governor shared plans for gradually reopening California, Los Angeles County indicated it would release its own plans later in the week.

Without giving many details, county public health director Barbara Ferrer said she recognized a shared desire for businesses to begin reopening and for people to get back to work.

But Ferrer said COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus, will continue to "spread in our community for months to come," and she mostly laid out a vision for a life very similar to what we're experiencing now:

"There is a lot at stake as we reopen, and doing our part becomes more important than ever. The virus has not changed, and it's still easily transmitted amongst people who are in close contact with each other, and the virus remains deadly... As we enter recovery, it will be really important for you to continue to stay at home as much as possible and to have your essential goods and services delivered to your house, whenever possible."

Businesses that are planning to reopen will have to follow strict protocols to maximize infection control and keep employees and customers safe, Ferrer said.

"Recovery is a journey, and one that will take many months, and I want us all to do this journey together and be prepared that there will be new normals," she said.

Here are some of the latest numbers she shared from L.A. County:

  • 28 more people died — 22 older than 65, and 18 of those with underlying health conditions
  • 568 new cases (Ferrer said numbers on Monday tend to be lower because very little testing happens over the weekend)
  • 26,217 total cases now
  • 1,256 total have died so far in L.A. County
  • 5,019 cases (or 19%) were at some point hospitalized
  • 1,819 people are currently hospitalized — 30% in the ICU and 17% on ventilators. These numbers have declined for the last three days.
  • 2,978 confirmed cases among health care workers and first responders, an increase of more than 1,000 over last week due in part to increased testing.
  • 15 health care workers have died — 12 of them work in skilled nursing or assisted living facilities

Here are some of the latest numbers on cases in institutional settings:

  • 6,285 total institutional cases, including 3,900 residents and 2,385 employees — and 616 people, primarily in skilled nursing facilities, have died, representing nearly half of all coronavirus deaths in L.A. County
  • 196 confirmed cases among the homeless — 111 were among the sheltered, were isolated and had their close contacts quarantined. The majority were at Union Rescue Mission.
  • 265 confirmed cases in jails, including 180 incarcerated and 85 staff
  • 123 cases in state prison — 92 among the incarcerated and 31 staff
  • 533 cases in federal prisons, 525 among incarcerated and 8 staff, the vast majority of these cases are at Terminal Island.

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Gov. Newsom: California Starts Moving Into Phase 2 Reopening This Friday


The top headline of today's briefing by Gov. Gavin Newsom: The state will start moving into Phase 2 this Friday.

Newsom said that means as early as the end of this week, retail can begin to reopen for pickup. This phase includes reopening:

  • Curbside retail (Newsom specifically listed clothing, bookstores, music, toys, sporting goods, florists, and others)
  • Manufacturing and supply chains that go into retail

A region is eligible for Phase 2, Newsom said, if they have the adequate capacity for:

  • testing
  • contact tracing
  • physical distancing
  • sanitation
  • protecting the most vulnerable residents

Local health officials and county supervisors will need to certify capacity in those areas to make that shift.

"This is an optimistic day," Newsom said. But he later added, "Just because you're open, doesn't mean customers show up."

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Newsom stressed the importance of making Californians feel confident and safe about their health needs, which is why modifications are necessary.

Guidelines for modifying the state's stay-at-home orders will be put out this Thursday, with details on the modifications needed to reopen.

Ahead of that release, California Department of Public Health Director Dr. Sonia Angell said guidelines for counties to move faster into Phase 2 will be shared later today. How each county plans for their own readiness will be made public online.

The governor also noted that it's also OK for some areas to be more strict, such as the guidelines set by the Bay Area, Newsom said.

Another important note: Phase 2 does not allow for all businesses to reopen just yet. That includes offices, seated dining at restaurants, and shopping malls, Angell said.


When asked about consequences for counties going against state orders and reopening, Newsom said there are situations where enforcement will be necessary, but that they are working with local areas to help them make changes. Without naming the county, he referenced what he said last week about Orange County about admiring the reopening guidelines they had laid out.

The governor mentioned work that the state has done with Orange County to reopen two beaches in Laguna Beach and San Clemente, praising the local plans.

Newsom also addressed some businesses opening early, without permission.

"There may, in some cases, be unfortunate consequences in that," Newsom said. He added that licenses were threatened to be pulled from some bars and restaurant/bars that reopened without permission, leading to 80 businesses being closed once again.

Local areas will not be allowed to start moving past Phase 2, even with certification, Newsom said.


There are six key metrics on the "State Reopening Roadmap Report Card" shared by Angell during today's state press conference, matching the metrics which the state has shared before. All six metrics were said to be on schedule:

  • Stability of Hospitalizations
  • Personal Protective Equipment Inventory
  • Health Care Surge Capacity
  • Testing Capacity
  • Contact Tracing Capability
  • Public Health Guidance In Place

Angell went into greater depth on the progress made in specific areas.

  • Stability of Hospitalizations: Hospitalizations and the numbers in ICUs have been stable, Angell said.
  • Personal Protective Equipment Inventory: The state has on hand 18.2 million surgical masks, 5.8 million face shields, and 7.2 million gloves, Angell said — it's also ordered hundreds of millions of surgical and N95 masks.
  • Health Care Surge Capacity: There are 14 facilities statewide ready to accept patients, with 2,072 additional available beds, more than 10,000 ventilators not in use throughout the state, and more than 94,000 applications received to be part of the California Health Corps.
  • Testing Capacity: The state has met its goal of 25,000 tests per day, with 86 new testing sites focusing on rural, urban, and underserved areas. The state has averaged 25,000 tests over the last seven days, with more than 30,000 per day over the weekend, Newsom said, and more than 768,000 tests conducted thus far.

Newsom said that health care capacity is vital.

"People ask, well why do you have these empty facilities that you've built? Well, we're pleased that they're empty," Newsom said. "We built them in anticipation of a surge that did not materialize because of the stay-at-home order — because of millions of Californians being thoughtful, not only about their own health, but about the community health, and about the physical distancing that allowed that curve not to ever rise to where some of those models suggested."


There were 39 coronavirus deaths over the past 24 hours, Newsom said, lower than any day last week. Another 1,321 people tested positive for COVID-19. Hospitalizations declined by 1%, with ICU patients up 0.9%.

A total of $7.8 billion has been distributed in unemployment and pandemic unemployment assistance (PUA) since March 15, Newsom said. He added that the money still isn't being distributed fast enough, and the PUA process has proved frustrating for people applying for it. Newsom described the call volume as "intense," with 4 million claims processed so far.


The state is working with UCLA and UC San Francisco to create a virtual academy to help train new tracers, or "disease detectives," as Newsom described them. There are currently 2,845 people in the tracing workforce in California, mostly done at the local level, he said — the plan is to train more than 3,000 people per week, with 10,000 as the Phase 1 goal and 20,000 as the Phase 2 goal.

The program will be county-led but feed into a central database, Newsom said. It will be focused on health and confidentiality, and it will be confidentially managed, Angell said. The state's data management platform will be free to local public health departments. It will be used to support case investigation and contact tracing, as well as symptom checks by text, chat, email, phone, and an automated system.

The online training academy will be free for participants and free to local health departments, Angell said. The first training in this new 20-hour course goes online on Wednesday, with 12 hours of instruction online and 8 hours in person. Both local and state employees will be re-deployed to be part of this workforce.


Newsom thanked the work on regional variation done by Oregon and Colorado as part of the Western states coalition working on reopening. The partnership has been helpful for California, Newsom said.

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Wanted: 200 Volunteers To Sew Fabric Masks For Health Care Workers

Reyna, a Huntington Park resident, wears a cloth mask in Boyle Heights. Chava Sanchez/Laist

A local sewing group has an ambitious goal to sew 30,000 fabric masks for Southern California health care workers — and it wants your help.

The Sew Helpful Brigade has already distributed over 3,000 masks to workers at Children's Hospital Los Angeles, Long Beach Medical Center and UCLA. But it needs 200 more volunteer sewers.

Pediatric nurse and group organizer Anna Kitabjian says health care workers appreciate the effort:

"They're so very thankful for something they can wash and reuse, something that's a security. In different health care facilities we're required to wear a mask all day long, so if you're not taking care of patients, you still have to wear a mask. And these are much more comfortable, they're much more skin-friendly."

The Sew Helpful Brigade provides supplies for volunteers willing to help out. Materials and delivery support come from JOANN Fabric, Michaels stores, American Eagle and RAW Artists, Inc.

Interested? Email

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Unemployment Help For Freelancers: Unless They Have A W-2

The shutdown of Hollywood has slammed the industry's many freelancers.( Amy Sussman/Getty Images)

L.A.'s many freelancers were happy to hear about last week's launch of the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program. That's the fancy name for a federal effort to provide financial relief for self-employed folks who've lost work to the pandemic.

But there's a bit of a catch for those freelancers who do even a little bit of work for a traditional employer.

  • If you got a W-2 for any work — even for a weekend gig acting in a TV commercial — you don't qualify for help under PUA.
  • In that instance, your unemployment benefits will be calculated on their W-2 wages, even if most of your income came from freelance work.

The silver lining is the $600 in temporary additional weekly unemployment benefits Congress recently approved.


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Hunger Is Now Another Side Effect Of The Pandemic 

Cars lined up for hours at the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza to receive boxes of food from the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank. (Chava Sanchez/LAist)

With so many people out of work, many Angelenos don’t know when they will get their next meal. Food banks, along with community organizations, have been seeing a growing number of families coming to get groceries.

Even before the pandemic, about two million residents in Los Angeles County faced food insecurity, which means they have no access to affordable, nutritious food.

Labor Community Services, a non-profit, has teamed up with the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank to provide groceries to help out-of-work union members from the hotel and entertainment industries, and many other sectors.

“The lines are extremely long. It just shows you the need that people have,” according to Armando Olivas, a board director with Labor Community Services.

The food distribution stations usually happen three times a week in different parts of the county and the lines can stretch up to four miles.

“This is a disaster of major proportions,” Olivas said.

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Thousands Of EMT's Can Now Work In LA Nursing Homes Hit By Coronavirus

After staff didn't show up to work, patients from the Magnolia Rehabilitation and Nursing Center in Riverside had to be evacuated on April 8, 2020. (Screenshot of video from Riverside University Health System)

It seems absurd: thousands of health care workers are without jobs in the middle of a pandemic. But a new rule from L.A. County health officials aims to put some of them back to work, filling in the staffing gaps created by COVID-19 outbreaks at nursing homes.

Nursing homes have become epicenters of coronavirus outbreaks in Southern California. And it’s not just residents getting sick — thousands of health care workers and first responders have contracted the disease.

The new rule change by L.A. County health officials allows many furloughed and out-of-work paramedics and EMT's to perform procedures they normally wouldn’t be able to under their scope of practice, with the goal of getting them into hard-hit nursing homes.



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LAUSD Fall Semester Resumes In August -- But Classes Could Still Be Online

LA Unified Superintendent Austin Beutner delivers his weekly video update on April 27, 2020

Los Angeles Unified School District leaders have made no decisions about whether the fall semester — still scheduled to begin on August 18 — will involve students in classrooms, online or both.

In an interview with KPCC/LAist on Sunday, Beutner said it’s still not clear what the public health conditions will allow.

Last week, Governor Gavin Newsom surprised many educators when he suggested California schools could resume in-person instruction early — perhaps even as early as mid-July. Newsom fears the longer students remain at home, the farther they’ll fall behind academically.

“We will reopen schools as safely as we can reopen them,” Beutner said.

Additional details will be released in Beutner’s weekly address at 11 a.m. You can watch here.


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For Farmworkers With Few Safety Nets, It's A Question Of Survival

Maria, an undocumented worker, holds a punnet of strawberries (Chava Sanchez/Laist)

It's just about the peak of strawberry season in California, one of the most lucrative times of the year for berry farms.

But with major supply chain issues due to COVID-19, this year they're looking at big losses - and in turn workers who rely on them for income may lose their jobs.

For Maria, an undocumented single mother of four who picks strawberries in Oxnard, it's a question of survival, as few safety nets are available.

“I don’t want to panic, but this goes through my mind: What will happen if I lose my job? The kids, the rest, the food. How am I going to pay the rent? How am I going to feed them? This all passes through my mind,” she said.


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Walkout Leader Bobby Lee Verdugo Leaves Legacy For Next-Gen Latino Activists

Bobby Lee Verdugo, left and Yoli Rios were high school sweethearts growing up in Lincoln Heights. (Courtesy of Yoli Rios)

Bobby Lee Verdugo, who helped lead the 1968 Los Angeles high school student walkouts, died Friday after a lifetime of activism and mentoring young Latinos.

Fifty-two years after walking out of his Lincoln Heights school, Verdugo was still inspiring the next generation, said his fellow student leader, Moctesuma Esparza.

“He took a stand for everyone, that we should all have the opportunity to have a quality education and be encouraged to reach our potential and be able to go to college," Esparza said.

A film producer, Esparza helped immortalize his friend in the 2006 HBO movie, "Walkout."


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Morning Briefing: LA Scientists Take On COVID-19 Research


Never miss a morning briefing, subscribe today to get our A.M. newsletter delivered to your inbox.

It was a busy weekend in Southern California.

At Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, researchers continued their work testing remdesivir, the antiviral drug that preliminary studies have shown can help patients recover from COVID-19 faster. At USC, researchers are pursuing a theory about suppressing the immune system to fight the virus. And while most Orange County residents wound up abiding by Gov. Gavin Newsom’s closure of their beaches, they didn’t go down without a fight.

Meanwhile, not one but two small earthquakes shook Chatsworth in a span of less than 12 hours, and across the state, health officials scrambled to access coronavirus testing supplies, which have seen highly uneven distribution from one county to another.

In other words, we’re hitting this week at full speed ahead — even from inside lockdown. Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you tomorrow morning.

Jessica P. Ogilvie

Coming Up Today, May 4

Maria, an undocumented farmworker in Oxnard, shares her concerns with Jacob Margolis about picking strawberries during the time of COVID-19.

When city and state stay-at-home orders were taking effect the week of March 17, Emily Guerin visited every small business on a block of Lincoln Boulevard in Venice. Six weeks later, she checks in again to see how they're faring.

L.A. County officials are giving paramedics and EMT's special permission to work in nursing homes. As Jackie Fortiér reports, the county's move comes as many nursing homes are short-staffed due to COVID-19 outbreaks.

A Martínez talks with Tyree Boyd-Pates, a curator at the Autry Museum of the American West. The Autry is launching Collecting Community History: A Regional Collections Initiative of Exploration and Preservation, the first in a series of efforts to help communities in the West collect, catalogue and preserve moments of history.

Listen to rare music from Nick Cave and Phish. Celebrate Cinco de Mayo at home. Christine N. Ziemba has these couch-worthy events as well as the Reno 911! revival, the Los Angeles Latino International Film Fest and a Paley Front Row event featuring Brockmire.

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The Past 48 Hours In LA

L.A., California, The World: There are now at least 25,677 coronavirus cases and 1,229 deaths in L.A. County. There are at least 54,721 cases and 2,210 deaths in California. Worldwide, there are more than 3.5 million cases and 247,000 deaths.

Money Matters: Freelancers who had W-2 income might receive less money for unemployment. Airbnb hosts are struggling to pay off their mortgages now that reservations have disappeared. Long Beach officials are talking about reopening the economy, even as the city reports its highest number of new confirmed COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations.

Broken Systems, Shaking Plates: Most California nursing homes that experienced COVID-19 outbreaks already had red flags. Supply chain limitations have plagued the labs responsible for coronavirus testing in California. Two earthquakes hit Chatsworth on Sunday.

Beachy Keen: Huntington Beach police patrolled the beaches on Saturday, although they were all but empty this weekend. San Clemente's city council is arguing over whether or not to take legal action to reopen their beaches. Meanwhile, Dr. Deborah Birx, a top White House advisor on coronavirus, told Fox News she found the images of tightly packed, unmasked protesters of stay-at-home orders "devastatingly worrisome."

L.A. Researchers On COVID-19: Cedars-Sinai is playing an important role in a promising trial for remdesivir, an antiviral drug that was approved for emergency treatment of COVID-19. USC immunologists theorize that suppressing the immune system may help the body fight off the virus.

Breaking The Fast: A virtual iftar brought interfaith participants together via Zoom.

Final Good-Byes: Bobby Lee Verdugo, who helped lead the 1968 Los Angeles high school student walkouts, died Friday after a lifetime of activism and mentoring young Latinos. Fifty-two years after walking out of his Lincoln Heights school, Verdugo was still inspiring the next generation, said his fellow student leader, Moctesuma Esparza. “He took a stand for everyone, that we should all have the opportunity to have a quality education and be encouraged to reach our potential and be able to go to college,” Esparza said.

Your Moment Of Zen

Some residents of Orange County still aren't happy about it, but this photo of an empty Huntington Beach is about as tranquil as it gets.

(Photo by Apu Gomes/AFP via Getty Images)

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