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Saturday, Sep 23, 2023

Valley Talk

Spring Fever It’s spring. Birds are chirping, the sun is shining and temperatures in the San Fernando Valley are climbing. How better to celebrate than with… snow? The Farmer’s Market & Family Festival in the Northridge Fashion Center will be kicking off its seasonal opening with 25 tons of the white stuff and an opportunity for kids to play in the slush. For those who might assume that imported, off-season snow costs a bundle, a press release announcing the opening festivities points out and underlines that the snow is free. But why have snow in the spring? A spokesman for the Fashion Center was not overly concerned. After all, he said, L.A. doesn’t get any snow anyway, so what difference does the season make? Visitor From the Past The city’s first workshop on neighborhood councils drew an unexpected visitor. Former Democratic presidential candidate Michael Dukakis dropped by during a break from his teaching duties at the UCLA School of Public Policy to get the lowdown on L.A.’s latest experiment in local representation. “This is what we do in New England all the time,” the former Massachusetts governor told the 200-plus people at the event in the Pico-Union district. “I’m glad to see it finally getting started here.” Dukakis said he got his start in politics as a representative on the Massachusetts equivalent of neighborhood councils. “You mean, if I get on one I can become a governor and presidential candidate?” one person in the audience quipped under his breath. Dissension in the Ranks If not now for Zev Yaroslavsky, then when? The county supervisor has yet to declare whether he’ll run for L.A. mayor. And while he has waited, several possible high-profile supporters have deserted him for the campaign of City Attorney James Hahn. The latest was city commissioner Lisa Specht, who would not comment on her decision. But one politically connected observer who knows Specht said she had grown tired of waiting for a decision from Yaroslavsky, known in some circles as the Hamlet of L.A. politics. “He’s already gone through three deadlines by which he’s told his friends and supporters he would have a decision,” the source said. “With this race moving ahead so early, it’s no wonder she looked elsewhere.” Nonetheless, Yaroslavsky has been appearing on a lot of local talk shows and other media outlets to talk about the LAPD’s Rampart scandal lately, possibly in an effort to raise his public profile. This Just In Neither rain nor sleet nor dead of night is supposed to stop the postman from delivering the mail. But does that include bulk mail? Tom Campbell, who recently won the Republican nomination to face Sen. Dianne Feinstein in November, might want to think about that when he sends out his next round of campaign literature. His request for funds dated Jan. 31 just arrived at the Business Journal, a week after voters went to the polls. “There are only 35 days to the March primary. It’s with this urgency that I am writing to you,” reads the letter, which was sent bulk mail. Campbell campaign workers said the mailing was actually quite successful. “We sent out 68,000 of those letters,” said one campaign worker. “Maybe some were delayed, but we actually had a lot of response.” Diaper Directive Becoming a father has given Supervisor Mike Antonovich a new perspective on politics. The Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a proposal recently by Antonovich to have county officials study the feasibility of recycling disposable diapers. “I’ve had the opportunity to be involved with diaper changing daily,” said Antonovich, whose son is now 11 months old. “Before this, I didn’t realize that 18 billion disposable baby diapers amounting to 4.4 billion pounds of waste wind up in U.S. landfills because they aren’t being recycled.”

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