Good morning. It’s Wednesday, April 27.
|•||Water restrictions set in Bay Area and Southern California.|
|•||Cars are banished from popular road in Golden Gate Park.|
|•||And L.A. County sheriff goes after Los Angeles Times reporter.|
Two major water suppliers voted Tuesday to limit water usage for more than 7 million households across California as the state’s drought extends into its third summer. The new orders limit outdoor watering in Los Angeles, Ventura, and San Bernardino counties and cap daily household usage across much of Contra Costa and Alameda counties. “We are seeing conditions unlike anything we have seen before,” said Adel Hagekhalil, of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California. L.A. Times | S.F. Chronicle
Vice President Kamala Harris greeted families and caregivers at UCSF Mission Bay on April 21.
Kent Nishimura/L.A. Times via Getty Images
Vice President Kamala Harris tested positive for the coronavirus on Tuesday, making her the highest-ranking official in the Biden administration to become infected. Vaccinated and boosted twice, she was asymptomatic, her office said. Harris was in California over the past week, visiting Vandenberg Space Force Base, a fundraiser in Los Angeles, and a hospital in San Francisco. Washington Post | Politico
Other Covid-19 developments:
|•||California has experienced a sustained uptick in coronavirus infections in April. Yet hospitalizations have remained stable, with 950 patients statewide as of Monday, among the lowest totals of the pandemic. L.A. Times|
|•||Researchers built statistical models to estimate how many more Californians would have died in the absence of Covid-19 vaccines: about 19,000. L.A. Times|
|•||See California coronavirus tracker. 👉 Covid19.ca.gov|
Reporters released a new audio recording of Rep. Kevin McCarthy identifying far-right House members by name as security risks to other lawmakers after the Jan. 6 attack. “He’s putting people in jeopardy,” McCarthy says of Rep. Matt Gaetz, referring to the Florida congressman’s attacks against Republicans who criticized President Trump. “And he doesn’t need to be doing this. We saw what people would do in the Capitol, you know, and these people came prepared with rope, with everything else.” NY. Times (gift article)
While overdose deaths have soared on California’s streets, they are plummeting inside prisons. An initiative to give prescribed drugs like methadone to incarcerated addicts led to a 58% decline in the overdose death rate, officials said. It took years of urging to persuade officials to try the program in 2020; opponents warned that it would simply substitute one drug for another. Roughly 25,600 California inmates are now getting the treatments. A.P.
The 2022 spring bloom has paled in comparison to those of past years. But even patchy wildflowers are breathtaking in the California countryside. Dennis Johnston, a photographer in Tulare County, shared some pictures captured in March and April along the foothills of the southern Sierra. 👇
Joggers and cyclists took over John F. Kennedy Drive in Golden Gate Park during the pandemic.
San Francisco has been fighting over cars in Golden Gate Park for a century, and on Tuesday the pedestrians and cyclists got a major win. After a marathon debate, county supervisors voted 7-4 to banish cars from the east end of John F. Kennedy Drive, making permanent a policy introduced at the start of the pandemic. “Anyone who listened to the 10-plus hours of public comments Tuesday could feel history happening,” wrote Peter Hartlaub. S.F. Chronicle | KTVU
After a frantic 20 hours of searching, a 3-month-old boy kidnapped from a San Jose home was found unharmed on Tuesday, the authorities said. The recovery followed a tip from a woman who saw what she thought was a suspicious vehicle with a car seat inside. Three people were arrested. Police disclosed few details except to say the kidnapping was not random. “This was planned,” Sgt. Christian Camarillo said. NBC Bay Area | A.P.
Twitter headquarters in San Francisco on Tuesday.
Amy Osborne/AFP via Getty Images
The latest on Elon Musk’s Twitter deal:
|•||On the day of the Twitter announcement, 200,000 Katy Perry followers deactivated, while Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene gained 90,000. Twitter said it wasn’t bots. In short, the reporter Ben Collins said, a lot of people fled the platform, while right-wing users joined en masse. NBC News|
|•||Vijaya Gadde, a Twitter executive involved in decisions to tamp down harassment and misinformation on the platform, cried during an internal meeting as she expressed concerns about how the company could change. Politico|
|•||Charlie Warzel: “As one former senior Twitter employee put it to me this morning, Musk’s musings about improvements to the service are mostly ‘highly solipsistic things that are only about his experience of the product as a user with 80 million followers and a consent decree with the SEC.’” The Atlantic|
One day in 2013, on a lark, Angelica Glass decided she would walk every street in Santa Cruz County. After nine years and 3,000 miles, she realized what was driving her was a profound need to find beauty in the world around her. She found it in wild cucumbers, rainbow webs, and the kindness of others. “I’d never experienced that before, being excited to wake up in the morning,” she said. “The only feeling I can compare it to was being in love.” If you read one thing today, make it this exquisitely told story by Diana Marcum. 👉 L.A. Times
Sheriff Alex Villanueva pointed toward a picture of Alene Tchekmedyian and two others on Tuesday.
Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva on Tuesday announced a criminal investigation targeting a Los Angeles Times journalist over her reporting on a Sheriff’s Department cover-up. Gesturing with a pointer toward an enlarged photo of the reporter, Alene Tchekmedyian, Villanueva suggested she had received stolen property, referring to leaked surveillance video that showed officers kneeling on the head of an inmate. The extraordinary news conference drew a barrage of criticism from free-press advocates, prompting Villanueva to later issue a statement denying Tchekmedyian was a suspect. L.A. Times | A.P.
“A thinly veiled attempt to intimidate Ms. Tchekmedyian.” The general counsel of the Times sent Villanueva a scorching letter, including a primer on constitutional law protecting journalists. L.A. Times
“I shot this woman with a gun today.”
The Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office released dozens of videos related to Alec Baldwin’s fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the New Mexico set of “Rust.” One the most gut-wrenching moments shows Baldwin being informed in an interrogation room that Hutchins had died. He gasps and sits in stunned silence for a long while. Law & Crime/YouTube | Wall Street Journal (free)
Downtown Beverly Hills is blanketed in surveillance.
Downtown Beverly Hills has about 2,000 closed-circuit cameras, one for every 17 residents, making it among the most surveilled cities in the world. But that’s not enough, according to city officials. Under a five-year proposal adopted in 2020, the city plans to add an additional 900 cameras and 50 more license plate scanners. The goal, one official said, is “ubiquitous coverage.” Los Angeles Magazine
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