Today's Headlines: Newsom makes a water plan for a future that's a lot hotter and drier - Los Angeles Times

2022-08-13 07:23:38 By : Mr. Jennifer Chen

Hello, it’s Friday, Aug. 12, and here are the stories you shouldn’t miss today:

We’ll be parched, but there’s a plan

With California enduring historic drought amplified by global warming, Gov. Gavin Newsom released a new plan to adapt to the state’s hotter, drier future by capturing and storing more water, recycling more wastewater and desalinating seawater and salty groundwater.

The water supply strategy focuses on accelerating infrastructure projects, boosting conservation and upgrading the state’s water system to match the increasing pace of climate change, securing enough water for an estimated 8.4 million households.

The plan says the new set of priorities will “put to use water that would otherwise be unusable, stretch supplies with efficiency, and expand our capacity to bank water from big storms for dry times.”

Must-read stories from the L.A. Times

Get the day's top news with our Today's Headlines newsletter, sent every weekday morning.

You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.

U.S. Atty. Gen. Merrick Garland has moved to unseal the Trump records warrant

The Department of Justice is moving to unseal the search warrant and itemized receipt of what was taken from former President Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence this week, Garland said.

Garland indicated he was driven to act by the misinformation around the search. Hours later, in messages posted on his Truth Social platform, Trump called for the “immediate” release of the documents.

The DOJ’s motion to unseal states that the matter “involves a law enforcement action taken at the property of the 45th President of the United States. The public’s clear and powerful interest in understanding what occurred under these circumstances weighs heavily in favor of unsealing.”

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

‘Everyone comes to Morro Bay to see Three Stacks and a Rock’

The smokestacks from a shuttered power plant will soon be taken down in the coastal California town. The company that owns the site is proposing building what would be one of the world’s largest lithium-ion battery storage facilities there. There are discussions about connecting a planned offshore wind farm to the power grid using infrastructure on the property.

But many in the town are mourning the loss of the smokestacks, which are seen as a symbol of its working-class ethos. The situation is also a harbinger of conflicts to come as communities deal with the hulking industrial infrastructure left over as the state turns to clean energy.

After violently suppressing democratic protests in 2018, President Daniel Ortega and his wife, Vice President Rosario Murillo, have tightened their grip on power, including attacking freedom of expression from all sides. They raided newsrooms, jailed journalists and ordered dozens of news outlets to close.

With virtually no independent media left inside the country and foreign reporters banned from entering, Nicaragua has become “an information black hole,” said an advocate for journalists. Government propaganda is all that remains.

“Not even Orwell could have dreamed up a country like this,” said one writer.

Food poisoning and unsafe temperatures: Many meal kit companies aren’t FDA-regulated

Days after trying a new lentil product from the meal subscription company Daily Harvest, L.A. resident Jackie Sloboda was hospitalized with debilitating full-body itching, stabbing abdominal pains and jaundice: “I’ve been run over by a car before, and this was more painful.”

More than 470 people have reported symptoms in the Daily Harvest outbreak. A Seattle attorney representing 356 people said 26 had had their gallbladders removed and eight had liver biopsies. The incident highlighted something few consumers knew: Most meal delivery companies are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration.

Experts say rapid changes in the meal delivery industry, combined with the slow pace of federal regulation and the inherent uncertainty of mailing perishable food, have made it effectively impossible for U.S. health officials to understand the scope of foodborne illnesses among meal delivery customers.

If you’re a fan of this newsletter, you’ll love our daily podcast “The Times,” hosted every weekday by columnist Gustavo Arellano, along with reporters from across our newsroom. Go beyond the headlines. Download and listen on our App, subscribe on Apple Podcasts and follow on Spotify.

L.A. County dropped out of the high COVID-19 level as the coronavirus surge eased. One top state health official expressed hope that California was at the end of the pandemic’s latest wave. Officials continue to urge caution, noting that coronavirus case rates remain high and still strongly recommend universal masking in indoor public spaces as schools resume classes.

The final two victims in the Windsor Hills crash were identified by family and friends: “I’m broken.” The two women, identified as Nathesia Lewis and Lynette Noble, were traveling in the same car at the time of the deadly crash.

A car crash in Wyoming led to a huge meth bust in Santa Clara. A single-vehicle crash led to the discovery of 40 pounds of crystal meth in the trunk. One of the car’s occupants told investigators they were transporting narcotics that had been picked up from a Santa Clara, Calif., warehouse. A raid on the facility followed.

Before Justin Flores killed two cops, probation officers had only visited him once in 16 months. That’s in spite of the fact that the probation department had received multiple reports that Flores was using drugs, had obtained a gun and attacked his girlfriend, officials said. The department’s lackadaisical monitoring of Flores — who gunned down Officer Joseph Santana and Cpl. Michael Paredes in June — has been the subject of a county investigation triggered by a Times report.

Subscribe to the Los Angeles Times.

Russia is struggling to replenish its troops in Ukraine. Moscow has refused to conduct a full-blown mobilization even as it suffers losses in Ukraine, where the war has dragged on for nearly half a year.

Meanwhile, Big Mac is coming back. McDonald’s will start reopening some of its restaurants in Ukraine in coming months, a step toward a greater sense of normalcy in the war-torn country and a show of support after the American fast-food chain pulled out of Russia.

A former police officer received seven-plus years in prison in a Jan. 6 case. The sentence for the off-duty Virginia police officer who stormed the U.S. Capitol with a fellow officer matches the longest prison sentence so far among hundreds of Capitol riot cases.

Brazilians rallied for democracy, seeking to rein in President Jair Bolsonaro. Thousands flocked to a law school in defense of the nation’s democratic institutions, an event that carried echoes of a gathering nearly 45 years ago when citizens massed at the same site to denounce a brutal military dictatorship.

The Getty will return illegally excavated sculptures to Italy. The Orpheus group of sculptures — nearly life-size terra-cotta figures known as “Orpheus and the Sirens,” some of the museum’s greatest antiquities — were determined to have been illegally excavated and exported, and they’re going back to Rome.

Aubrey Plaza kills it in “Emily the Criminal.” With her laserlike glare and deadpan timing, she can say absolutely nothing and slyly pocket a scene. Plaza shines in this engrossing thriller that’s also a takedown of predatory capitalism, with a protagonist who straddles a hellish Venn diagram of student loan debts, exploitative labor practices and sheer rotten luck, writes film critic Justin Chang.

Police say Anne Heche had narcotics in her system when she crashed her car. The actor, who slammed her car into a Mar Vista home last week, causing it to catch on fire, was under the influence at the time, police said. She was hospitalized with severe burns.

Who wouldn’t want to be Diane Keaton? But in a better movie than “Mack & Rita.” Watching Keaton read the phone book would be entertaining. Unfortunately, the phone book would have made more sense than the screenplay for this film, writes film critic Katie Walsh.

U.S. gas prices dipped just below $4 for the first time in five months. AAA says the national average for a gallon of regular was $3.99. But motorists in Hawaii and California are still paying above $5, and other states in the West are paying close to that.

Airline seats have been getting smaller for years. But relief may be in sight. After years of delays, federal regulators have begun taking public comments on a proposal to impose minimum standards on airline seat width and legroom.

Editorial: Keep police radio communications public. California police departments have begun encrypting radio communications that historically have served as the public’s ear on law enforcement activity. Proposed legislation would reopen an important channel for police transparency.

Op-Ed: What can cities do when bad gun laws are hurting the economy? Progressive cities like Atlanta are preempted by state law from regulating guns in public spaces, but privatization can help.

Get our free daily crossword puzzle, sudoku, word search and arcade games in our new game center at

For the first time in NBA history, one player will have his number retired leaguewide. Celtics legend Bill Russell, regarded as the league’s greatest winner, will be honored by the NBA as his No. 6 uniform will no longer be available to players entering the league.

Joshua Kelley arrived at training camp a changed man. The Chargers running back is bulked up and ready to win the job of backup to Austin Eckler.

Taste-test micheladas. This once-modest beer refresher is seemingly everywhere now. Bartenders vie to outdo one another, adding a variety of toppers including shrimp and cherries. Our Food colleagues went on the hunt for “the most dynamic and reliable micheladas in Los Angeles” and environs. Check out their 15 picks. Here’s a freebie: La Chupería in Lincoln Heights, with dark walls, blasting tunes, a full slate of beers on tap, plus tacos and nachos. “Its current miche offerings are highlighted by mango and watermelon varieties.” Also: The history of the michelada and the five basic types.

Take the hike of the week. Over at the Wild, Matt Pawlik recommends honoring the volunteers who staff Southern California’s forest observation towers by taking a “gut-busting” 5.9-mile (out and back) hike to Henninger Flats in the San Gabriels. You ascend, by way of a historic fire road, to the flats. There are benches for resting and appreciating the views along the way. When you arrive, you’ll find amid pines and picnic tables the “old Castro Peak fire lookout tower,” which was in operation from 1925 to 1971. Now, says Matt, it offers education and fine photo ops.

Note: Some of the sites we link to may limit the number of stories you can access without subscribing.

The secret history of family separations at the border. "[W]hen she walked into the processing center for the first time after Zero Tolerance was implemented, she saw a sea of children and parents, screaming, reaching for each other, and fighting the Border Patrol agents who were pulling them apart. Children were clinging to whatever part of their parents they could hold on to — arms, shirts, pant legs. ‘Finally the agent would pull hard and take away the child,’ she said.” An investigation delves into the story behind the Trump-era immigration policy of forced separations of parents and their children. It dives deeply into the factors that laid the groundwork and the people who propelled it on its disastrous course. The Atlantic

A chat with an 86-year-old water polo player — perhaps the oldest such player and “certainly the worst.” That’s Mark Braly’s own estimation. His skill level aside, Braly keeps up by swimming 40 minutes five times a week on top of twice-weekly, 90-minute water polo matches. He says in a busy life, it’s been his “greatest adventure.” New York Times

Why it took Congress so long to act on the climate. In 1969, President Nixon’s advisor Daniel Patrick Moynihan wrote a memo on the increase of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere caused by burning oil, gas and coal. He warned of melting glaciers and sea rise: “Goodbye New York. Goodbye Washington, for that matter.” Fifty-three years later, Congress took its first step in responding to the crisis. What finally made it happen? Lawmakers replaced sticks with carrots. New York Times

Eighty-eight years ago this week, on Aug. 11, 1934, the first civilian prisoners — 137 of them — arrived by the boatload to Alcatraz Island. The inmates came primarily from other penitentiaries and were considered “desperate or difficult.”

Prison officials aimed to keep secret the identities of the new inmates and when they were moved, but the press caught on. In January 1934, the San Francisco Chronicle announced that among the first prisoners would be Al “Scarface” Capone, George “Machine Gun” Kelly and Harvey Bailey.

Capone was secretly put on a train in Atlanta, a trip that would take him through Los Angeles. Word had leaked, and as The Times reported on Aug. 22, 1934, “several hundred persons were at the yards to await the arrival of the ‘Al Capone special’ as many of them called it.” Spectators shouted out, “Where’s Al Capone?” and “a heavy set man in shirt sleeves seated in the center of the first prison car waved his arm.”

We appreciate that you took the time to read Today’s Headlines! Comments or ideas? Feel free to drop us a note at

Must-read stories from the L.A. Times

Get the day's top news with our Today's Headlines newsletter, sent every weekday morning.

You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.

Amy Hubbard is the assistant newsletters editor. She’s worked in a range of departments at the Los Angeles Times since 1993, including as copy chief for daily Calendar, Travel, Books and the AM Copy Desk; SEO chief; and morning editor on the Metro desk. In 2015, she began a four-year stint at personal finance website NerdWallet, where she was the Banking editor. Hubbard is a graduate of the University of Missouri, Columbia, School of Journalism.