TODAY’S ESSENTIAL NEWS
» L.A. Teachers Union Seeks 20% Raise, Saying Educators Are Stressed Out And Priced Out The Los Angeles teachers union is pressing its demands for a 20% raise over two years, smaller class sizes and a steep reduction in standardized testing. The members of United Teachers Los Angeles—which staged three simultaneous rallies Monday across the vast school system—say that intense financial and mental pressures are pummeling their profession, leading to dire teacher shortages in California and throughout the nation. Ongoing economic uncertainties and the high costs of living and housing in Los Angeles have intensified their focus on contract talks as teachers worry about career sustainability and increasing workloads. [L.A. Times]
» L.A. City Clerk Approves Recall Petition For Councilman Kevin de León A recall petition against embattled City Councilman Kevin de León was approved by the Los Angeles City Clerk Tuesday, allowing organizers to begin collecting signatures. Organizers must collect 20,437 signatures from registered voters of the 14th District by March 31, according to the city clerk’s office. An intent to recall de León was filed in October by five residents of the 14th District, including Pauline Adkins, who led two prior unsuccessful recall attempts of de León. [FOX]
» L.A. City Council Votes To Ban Styrofoam, Single-use Plastics The city of Los Angeles is going green. On Tuesday, the City Council voted in favor of several ordinances to reduce the city’s carbon footprint, including resolutions to stop using Styrofoam, plastic bags and other single-use plastics at city facilities. One resolution was passed unanimously with all present voting to prohibit the distribution and sale of Expanded Polystyrene products, aka Styrofoam, within the city. [KTLA]
» Bill Cosby & NBCUniversal Hit With Sexual Assault Suit From Ex-Cosby Show Actresses & Others Two former The Cosby Show actresses and three other women on Tuesday sued Bill Cosby and NBCUniversal for sexual assault and battery in New York state court. The 34-page filing by attorneys Jordan Merson and Jordan Rutsky in the Empire State’s Supreme Court adds, “Over the course of several decades, Bill Cosby engaged in the serial sexual assault of dozens of women for his sexual gratification while the co-defendants enabled and aided these sexual assaults to benefit financially by their association with Bill Cosby.” [Deadline]
» The Nine Best Pho Spots In Los Angeles And Orange County Pho is a perfect cold-weather companion. Luckily as Southern Californians, we live near one of the country’s largest Vietnamese populations in the San Gabriel Valley, Garden Grove, and Westminster. A good bowl of pho can be judged on the quality of its broth, which usually takes hours to simmer to a beautiful depth of flavor. Here’s a list of nine Pho spots worth the drive… [L.A. Taco]
TOP STORIES FROM L.A. MAG
Cityside Column: The incoming boss of the largest sheriff’s department in the U.S. grasps something Alex Villanueva never did—you gotta play politics
ONE MORE THING
Borat Bashes Trump and Kanye West in Surprise Kennedy Center Cameo
Sacha Baron Cohen took on the prestigious Kennedy Center Honors on Sunday night, bringing along his Kazakhstani character Borat Sagdiyev to take aim Donald Trump for hosting drain-circling onetime hip-hop and fashion mogul Kanye West in the midst of Ye’s dark, months-long, antisemitism-spreading spree.
“I know the president of U.S. and A is here,” Borat said, via The Guardian. “Where are you, Mr. Trump?”
Turning to Biden, he asked, “You don’t look so good. Where has your glorious big belly gone? And your pretty orange skin has become pale… But I see you have a new wife. Wawa-woooah! She is very erotic. I must look away before I get a Bono.”
Finally, Baron Cohen (Jewish), still as Borat (avowed antisemite, constantly looking over his shoulder for “the Jeh”), addressed West’s sad but not shocking spiral, and his decision to go quite so public with his pernicious Jew-hate.
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