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Dodger Stadium gondola plan moves ahead

Essential California A plan to construct an estimated half-billion-dollar, 1.2-mile gondola from Union Station through Chinatown into Chavez Ravine by former Dodgers owner Frank McCourt took its first steps toward reality.  ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌  ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌  ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌  February 25, 2024   View in browser A Sunset Boulevard billboard registers protest against the proposed Dodger Stadium gondola project. By Andrew J. Campa Good morning, and welcome to the Essential California newsletter . It's Sunday, Feb. 25 . I'm Andrew J. Campa, your host. Here's what you need to know to start your weekend: The Dodger Stadium Gondola project cleared its first hurdle. Rebec

Both McCarthy and Biden benefit from a debt deal

President Biden and Rep. Kevin McCarthy have different reasons for striking a debt deal, but the public is thirsty for compromise, and both men stand to benefit.
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Los Angeles Times
Today's Headlines
Click to view images Rep. Garret Graves (R-La.), left, with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield). (Patrick Semansky / Associated Press)

By Elvia Limรณn, Kevinisha Walker

Hello, it's Wednesday, May 31, and here are the stories you shouldn't miss today:

TOP STORIES

Why McCarthy and Biden both stand to gain from the debt deal

Despite the sharp rhetoric leading up to last weekend's debt and budget agreement, both House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and President Biden stand to benefit politically.

If the deal passes, McCarthy, a Bakersfield Republican whose hold on the speakership began as one of the most tenuous in history, can claim he won concessions from a Democratic White House that few of his recent predecessors were able to achieve. Getting the votes on his side to cement the deal would also reinforce his standing with Biden as a credible negotiator who can deliver, despite the fractious nature of his party.

Sign up for our California Politics newsletter to get the best of The Times' state politics reporting and the latest action in Sacramento.

How much do top Hollywood executives make?

Many of the concerns motivating the current Writers Guild of America's strike — from streaming residuals to the looming threat of AI displacement — are distinctly 2023 problems.

But, speaking from a picket line outside Fox Studios in Century City, Mike Royce framed the WGA's campaign in terms of a more timeless struggle: Workers make too little, and bosses too much.

A Times review of executive compensation at 10 publicly held media and entertainment companies supports that narrative, with some qualification.

L.A. County is giving out drug pipes and other supplies

As part of the front line of Los Angeles County's offensive against the deadly fentanyl epidemic, a group hands out glass pipes used for smoking drugs, clean needles, sanitary wipes, fentanyl test strips and naloxone, medication that can reverse an overdose.

These "harm reduction" supplies keep drug users alive and safe from infection and transmission of diseases including HIV and hepatitis C, members of the outreach team say, and the pipes help them switch from injecting to the relatively safer route of smoking drugs.

But the pipes strike a nerve, particularly in Skid Row, home to as many as 1,500 homeless people with substance abuse disorder, and a wide array of drug recovery and prevention groups that serve homeless people throughout the city.

Notre Dame's spire, a Paris icon, set to rise again after fire

When Notre Dame de Paris burned on April 15, 2019, the toppling of its spire was the catastrophe's defining moment — a dreamlike loop endlessly replayed, a stuttering stop-time interval that seemed, improbably, to last forever.

Now the spire is slowly rising again.

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PHOTO OF THE DAY

A woman in yellow protective suit holds a hand to her masked face, left, as a masked man puts his arm around her shoulder
Elena Padilla, left, speaks with Dr. Jason Prasso inside the intensive-care unit at MLK Community Hospital. Her brother needs to be transferred to a different facility for a medical procedure. Read more: "'We're at a standstill': Patients can face agonizing waits for hospital transfers" (Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)

CALIFORNIA

Deputy accused of being in 'Executioners' gang reveals tattoo in court, names names. Some witnesses offered the names of everyone they'd seen with the so-called Executioners tattoo. One provided pictures of a desk decorated with the group's symbol.

A judge orders a halt to the Ballona Wetlands restoration project. A judge ordered the state to suspend any project activity and prepare a "legally adequate" environmental impact report "if it chooses to proceed."

Charles Manson follower Leslie Van Houten could be freed after a court overrules Gov. Gavin Newsom. Van Houten, 73, has been recommended for parole five times since 2016, but all were denied by Newsom or his predecessor, Gov. Jerry Brown.

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NATION-WORLD

Former First Lady Rosalynn Carter has dementia, the Carter Center says. The family is sharing the news hoping to prompt conversations at kitchen tables and in doctor's offices that could help people and their families get the support they need, the statement said.

A year after the outbreak, Africa waits for its share of mpox vaccines. In lower-income countries such as those in Africa where mpox is endemic, health officials still do not have access to the vaccine. That could lead to the virus' reemergence as a global threat.

Keep your clothes on, Georgia tells residents using shirtless selfies for digital IDs. Some Georgia residents are shedding their shirts in their digital driver's license photos, according to officials who are urging motorists in the Peach State to stay covered up when snapping selfies.

HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS

Natasha Lyonne wants to grow old with 'Poker Face.' No one's arguing. Who doesn't want to see Lyonne making "Poker Face" well into her golden years? Every generation needs its version of Peter Falk's Lt. Columbo, and Lyonne staked an early claim to that title with the first season of her terrific mystery-thriller series, which debuted this year on Peacock.

How T.J. Newman went from flight attendant to Hollywood's most valued disaster novelist. Armed with the inside dope on what can go wrong at 36,000 feet, Newman has parlayed it into a pair of thrillers that are catnip to Hollywood producers.

9 shows you should make time for. There's so much quality TV out there and so little time to watch it all. Even television critics, who get paid to watch TV all day, can't keep up with it all by themselves. Here's The Times' list of nine under-the-radar TV favorites.

BUSINESS

Elizabeth Holmes to report to a Texas prison to begin her 11-year sentence. Disgraced Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes is scheduled to move to her new home — a federal prison in Texas where she has been sentenced to spend the next 11 years for overseeing a blood-testing hoax that became a parable of greed and hubris in Silicon Valley.

SPORTS

Mike Bohn was being investigated for racial and gender discrimination at the time of his hiring at USC. One complaint filed by a Cincinnati senior associate athletic director in 2019 describes several instances in which Bohn made "racially harassing and other unprofessional remarks about her and other individuals in the athletics department."

Bob Baffert makes history as horse racing deals with a spike in thoroughbred deaths. As horse racing wades through its most notable five-week period of the year, there is one name that, as usual, dominates the conversation, that of Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert.

OPINION

Opinion: A map of 1,001 novels to show us where to find the real America. "Maybe these books can keep us going as we read about the places we or our parents came from, regions we don't know, homes lived in decades or centuries ago or homes made last year by someone new," Susan Straight writes.

Column: Don't fall for any third-party baloney. It's the last thing we need in 2024. "If Americans are unhappy with the major party candidates, they have the right to cast protest votes. But let's be clear: That's what this would be — a protest vote. Third-party candidates don't win. They haven't in the past and they won't in 2024," writes Nicholas Goldberg.

ONLY IN CALIFORNIA

Snowy rocks dot the highly reflective surface of Mono Lake
(Brian van der Brug/Los Angeles Times)

Now that many of you have spoken, it seems clear that The Times' recently published list of 101 best California experiences is unacceptably short of castles, train rides, ghost towns, underground gardens, pixie margaritas and grunion runs.

So, here are 29 California experiences that cannot be missed, according to Californians.

FROM THE ARCHIVES

A black-and-white photo of a man in a hat and jacket walking toward the remains of iron beds lying amid debris
Photograph of an African American man with a camera looking at the skeletons of iron beds lying amid the ashes of a burned-out block after the Tulsa, Okla., race riot in 1921. (Oklahoma Historical Society)

On May 31, 1921, a white mob marched into the thriving Black neighborhood in Tulsa, Okla., with shotguns and Molotov cocktails, killing hundreds of Black people over the course of two days. The mob drove thousands more from their homes and looted businesses before burning them to the ground.

The rampage, known as the Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921, is among the worst incidents of racial violence in American history — and for nearly a century leaders throughout Oklahoma seemed determined to ignore it.

But in February 2020, The Times wrote about the city's plans to excavate a plot of land that it believes is a mass grave containing many of the victims.

We appreciate that you took the time to read Today's Headlines! Comments or ideas? Feel free to drop us a note at headlines@latimes.com.

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