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Morning Briefing: Jose Huizar Charged With Accepting $1.5 Million In Bribes

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(Illustration by Chava Sanchez / Jose Huizar photo by Erick Richardson via Flickr)
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If you’ve been following the almost unbelievable scandal unfolding at L.A. City Hall, you know City Councilmember Jose Huizar was recently arrested by the FBI on a racketeering charge that included the alleged acceptance of bribes in the form of villas in Las Vegas, hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash, escort services, payments to settle a sexual harassment lawsuit, trips on private jets and more.

Now, a federal grand jury has handed down a 34-count indictment against Huizar, charging, in part, that he led a criminal enterprise out of City Hall in which he “agreed to accept at least $1.5 million in illicit financial benefits.”

Huizar is scheduled to be arraigned Monday in L.A. Federal Court, and we’ll be following the story.

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Keep reading for more on what’s happening in L.A. today, and stay safe out there.

Jessica P. Ogilvie


Coming Up Today, July 31

Tracy Park began writing this illustrated letter as a way to shed her fear of the person who racially insulted her children. By the end, she says, she remembered that racists are the ones who are truly afraid.

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A federal memo says no new DACA applications will be accepted, and that current DACA recipients will have to apply to renew annually instead of every two years, which had been the practice. Adolfo Guzman-Lopez reports that the news hit some undocumented college students hard after June's Supreme Court ruling gave them hope of becoming DACA applicants for the first time.

Some community clinics are trying to get the word out to patients to respond to the 2020 Census, because an undercount could decrease their federal funding and hamper their service to local communities. Caitlin Hernández has the story.

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The Past 24 Hours In LA

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Coronavirus Updates: All donors at UCLA blood drives will now be tested for past exposure to COVID-19. We talk with National Guard troops about how they're helping California facilities fight the virus.

Money Matters: 50 organizations that run charter schools received federal coronavirus loans, and the fallout has been contentious. The Regents of the University of California are set to vote on an $80 million budget cut. A motion passed Wednesday by the LA City Council increases fines for littering PPE, such as masks or gloves.

L.A. Scandals And Earthquakes: A federal grand jury has returned a 34-count indictment against suspended L.A. City Councilman Jose Huizar. A 4.2 magnitude earthquake struck in the San Fernando Valley neighborhood of Pacoima at 4:29 a.m. and has produced more than 60 aftershocks and counting, most minor.

Foraging, On Earth And Mars: Jess Starwood, a local forager, pivoted from providing restaurants with freshly sourced goods to providing them to her community during the pandemic. The Mars rover Perseverance, built at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, is on its way to the red planet after an early morning launch from Cape Canaveral in Florida.

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Here’s What To Do: Check out the third installment of our special Unheard LA series on race in L.A., featuring the stories of Matthew Cuban Hernandez, Taz Ahmed, and October B.L.U. followed by a live conversation. Or, catch Thai flicks while eating Thai snacks at a pop-up drive-in, check out a documentary about Bob Marley, see stars from RuPaul's Drag Race werk it at the Rose Bowl, and more in some of this week’s best online and IRL events.


Photo Of The Day

Dried mushrooms and herbs collected by forager Jess Starwood sit in jars in her home.

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(Chava Sanchez/LAist )

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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.

This post has been updated to reflect changes in what's coming up for today.


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