California Coastal Commission's executive director is ousted

Feb 11, 2016

Executive Director Charles Lester feels the burn after yesterday's public hearing with the California Coastal Commission, which fired him from his position.


From Capitol Weekly's Alex Matthews: "The California Coastal Commission fired Executive Director Charles Lester late Wednesday, after several commissioners complained about a lack of communication from Lester and the staff."


The action, a 7-5 vote by the 12-member commission, occurred behind closed doors and was then announced publicly. It followed an all-day public hearing at which hundreds of people lauded Lester and urged the commission to retain him."


"“Obviously, I’m disappointed,” Lester said moments after the vote. “Regardless of the outcome, this is a real testament and it’s a celebration of the vitality of the California coastal program to all Californians. I am so energized by all the people who came together for this.”

Believe it or not, Capitol Weekly wasn't alone in covering Lester's dismissal: The AP, the L.A. Times, the N.Y. Times, The Orange County Register and the Chronicle were there, too. 


A state worker sues the city of Los Angeles for 4 million dollars for racism and ultimately wins.


Brittny Mejia in the L.A. Times writes, "Five years after a white city parks worker accused a former supervisor of disparaging his skin color, the Los Angeles City Council on Wednesday approved a multimillion-dollar payout to satisfy a court judgment in the racial discrimination lawsuit."


"The council voted unanimously Wednesday to pay former gardener James Duffy nearly $3.8 million plus accrued interest in a court judgment that found Duffy suffered years of harassment and retaliation while working for the Department of Recreation and Parks."


The voter ID law is shaping up to be just like the poll tax from early American history that prevented many from participating in the ballots.


Daniel Wheaton with The San Diego Union-Tribune: "Researchers from the University of California San Diego have created a new statistical model indicating that voter identification laws do what detractors claim — reduce turnout for minorities and those on the political left."


"Overall, the researchers found, strict ID laws cause a reduction in Democratic turnout by 8.8 percentage points, compared to a reduction of 3.6 percentage points for Republicans."


Sen. Feinstein is relaunching a major California water bill that, if passed, would help divide and treat California's water sources equally across the state.


Michael Doyle with The Sacramento Bee reports, "Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein on Wednesday relaunched a big California water bill, in what might be cast as the triumph of hope over experience."


"Unveiling her third proposal in the past two years for ways to divide California’s water supply among many competing interests, Feinstein packaged her latest 184-page measure as a reasonable compromise that draws the best from past Capitol Hill efforts."


And now, for a Day in the Life of Donald Trump and his hair, as portrayed by... Johnny Depp? You've definitely got to see this.

Josh Hafner with USATODAY: "What if I told you that in the 1980s Donald Trump wrote, produced, directed and starred in a movie adaptation of The Art of the Deal, his best-selling business book?"


"You wouldn’t believe me, and that’s OK, but it’s what Ron Howard will tell you in the intro to The Art Of The Deal: The Movie, a star-studded, 50-minute film where Johnny Depp plays Donald Trump alongside a host of big names."


"It just dropped on Funny or Die Wednesday, and you need to watch it here now. We’ll wait."


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