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Morning Briefing: Financial Relief For LA Eateries

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Good morning, L.A.

Restaurants, bars, wineries and breweries have taken hit after hit from coronavirus-related restrictions. Some closed soon after the county-wide shutdown in March, and still more have struggled to stay afloat via take-out and outdoor dining.

When another temporary outdoor dining ban was announced last week, it felt like a fatal blow to those whose doors were still open. In response, the county has launched a grant program, offering $30,000 to restaurants that qualify. The catch, reports my colleague Elina Shatkin, is that not many will make the cut.

Eateries must be located in the county of L.A. but not the cities of L.A. or Pasadena, have fewer than 25 employees, and meet a number of other requirements. Businesses that were offering outdoor dining prior to the most recent ban will be given priority.

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So, it’s far from a perfect fix, but it’s something. Oh, and L.A. County set another record yesterday with nearly 7,600 new coronavirus cases. Keep reading for more on what’s happening in L.A. today, and stay safe out there.

Jessica P. Ogilvie

Coming Up Today, December 2

Ghost kitchens live and die by delivery. Without a location, are they building sustainable brands or just offering fancy catering? LAist contributor Ben Masirow examines the question.

When Red Flag warnings are announced, the Los Angeles County Fire Department responds in kind by sending out strike teams across the region to hunker down near problem areas to wait for a fast-moving wind-driven blaze. Jacob Margolis decided to find out what it’s like on the ground.

We solicited your awkward, silly and tough-to-ask questions about race as part of Racism 101. Now we’re sharing the answers from our project panelists. This time, one of our panelists answers the question, “Why do Americans focus on calling people by a color, ‘I'm Black,’ or ‘I'm white,’ like Crayolas?”

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LAist Studios: Servant of Pod With Nick Quah

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It's been a year of protest, not just in America but around the world. It’s in this environment that Las Raras, a Spanish-language narrative podcast telling stories of freedom and liberation, launched its latest season, which focuses on Chile. In this week's episode, Nick talks with the duo behind the project, Catalina May and Martin Cruz, about the show's creation, why they focus on stories of outsiders, and the future of Spanish-language podcasts.

The Past 24 Hours In LA

California Kids: California leaders unveiled a much-anticipated master plan for early childhood education that will shape programs in the state for years to come.

Coronavirus Updates: Public health researchers believe restaurants are among the most common places to contract COVID-19, but contact tracing has been so lackluster that it’s been challenging to link disease clusters to in-person dining. Here’s a running list of California politicians who warned us about the dangers of eating at restaurants, but then did it themselves.

Fire At Sea: The captain of the Conception dive boat faces manslaughter charges for the deadly fire off the Santa Barbara coast that killed 34 people aboard last year.

Hollywood News: The Oscar-nominated actor Elliot Page, who formerly used the name Ellen Page, today announced that he is transgender. A new, six-story mosaic made up of 39,000 stainless steel sequins was unveiled on Netflix’s Hollywood campus.

Photo of the Day

Empty patio tables separated by plastic dividers are adorned with American flags at Mel's Diner in West Hollywood.

(ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images)

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