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Morning Briefing: A Sad Milestone For LA

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"A sad milestone" is how Barbara Ferrer, Director of L.A. County Public Health described yesterday, which saw the highest single-day deaths from coronavirus.

It's been a tough week, but if the response from food banks are any indication, there are a lot of people in our neck of the woods who are eager to help. Food banks, in particular, are serving thousands of people in need, despite record demands.

"If you look at the global and national landscape, we are in good shape. We have a five- or six-week cushion," said Harald Herrmann, CEO of Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County.

On April 11, at its weekly drive-through distribution held at Anaheim's Honda Center, Second Harvest distributed food to more than 6,000 cars. And they don't expect to run out any time soon.

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What We Are Covering Today

  • We will stream Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti's State of the City address, scheduled to begin tonight at 5:15 p.m. This speech follows the release of startlingly high shortfalls forecast for city revenue. Our politics reporter Libby Denkmann will take a look at what Garcetti is proposing. He is expected to focus on protecting core public safety resources in the near-term.
  • Julia Paskin will have more on new safety legislation to be proposed in Los Angeles after a Sylmar food bank volunteer was killed Friday after getting pinned between two cars while loading food.
  • We'll also look at where plans stand for the Upper Los Angeles River revitalization project. A working group has moved the project to the next phase. It's part of longstanding effort to reinvent much of the Los Angeles River.
  • Looking for something to occupy your kids' time? The Children's Discovery Museum of the Desert has launched an online series focused on science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics. We will have more on what to expect from the non-profit organization.

The Past 24 Hours In LA

L.A., California, The World: There are now 12,021 coronavirus cases in L.A. County, 30,469 cases in California, and more than 2.3 million worldwide.

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Note: An earlier version of this post incorrectly gave the total cases as 112,021.

The Most Vulnerable: Thanks to new data from the California Department of Public Health, we now know exactly which skilled nursing homes have the most cases of COVID-19. Josie Huang and Brian Frank went the extra mile and mapped them for us.

Social Distancing means a lot less flying. Travel is down by almost 90% at LAX, but our beloved nightmare of an airport is still doing better than a lot of its counterparts across the country.

Homelessness: California is partnering with motels and hotels across the state, including Motel 6, to provide more than 15,000 rooms for the homeless. The occupants of those rooms will also receive three meals a day.

Save The Bookstore: Fans of the historic Larry Edmunds Bookshop in Hollywood have already donated upwards of $29,000 to save their beloved cinephile sanctuary from closing. The shop closed a month ago when all non-essential businesses were forced to close. Now their only income is from online orders that owner Jeffrey Mantor wraps and sends himself.

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Save The Music: Candelas Guitars in Boyle Heights is struggling, since most of its clientele are musicians with no gigs to play, now that live shows are cancelled. The good news is they're still taking phone orders and there's no better time to shred in the comfort of your own home.


In Non-COVID-19 News

Larry Mantle and his FilmWeek crew (new band name?) are keeping track of the many options for video-on-demand and streaming while you're stuck at home. That includes one choice film that will have you feeling "like you stuck your head in a bucket full of glitter." And who doesn't love a good bad review, am I right?

If you hate glitter, we have a finely curated list of virtual events you can enjoy this weekend without moving an inch from your couch. See? Isolation isn't so bad. At least we still have the internet.


Your Moment of Zen

Mark Girardeau, who owns Orange County Outdoors, captured the rare neon blue waves created by a bioluminescent tide from the sand in Newport Beach last week. The glow is created by marine organisms such as algae.

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(Courtesy of Mark Girardeau)

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The news cycle moves fast. Some stories don't pan out. Others get added. Consider this today's first draft, and check LAist.com for updates on these stories and more. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.


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