Today’s Headlines: California moves ahead on plans to close death row

By Elvia Limón, Laura Blasey and Amy Hubbard

Hello, it’s Tuesday, Feb. 1. Today many are celebrating 2022’s Lunar New Year, which brings the Year of the Tiger, third in the 12-animal Chinese zodiac cycle.

Tiger years have the potential to be explosive, The Times’ Ada Tseng and Anh Do report. But because 2022 is the Year of the Water Tiger — referring to the five elements that rotate alongside the animal signs — it may be less aggressive.

Looking at where we are now, still in the midst of an uncertain pandemic, Laura Lau, co-author of “The Handbook of Chinese Horoscopes,” thinks that there’s a lot of pent-up energy, and people need to express themselves.

Now, on to today’s stories you shouldn’t miss:


California moves forward on plans to close death row

California voters in 2016 approved Proposition 66, an initiative to clean up the state’s complicated death row system by speeding up executions. However, a smaller provision of the ballot measure also allowed for death row inmates to be housed in other prisons with proper security, where they are required to work and pay 70{a78e43caf781a4748142ac77894e52b42fd2247cba0219deedaee5032d61bfc9} of their income to victims.

That effort, called the Condemned Inmate Transfer Pilot Program, has moved more than 100 people off of death rows into other housing locations. The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation plans to soon introduce permanent regulations to expand the two-year pilot, which expired Saturday, and transition it from a voluntary program into a mandatory one.

Single-payer healthcare proposal fizzles

Lawmakers have declined to vote on a high-profile effort to overhaul California’s healthcare system, putting an end to a proposal that would have guaranteed medical coverage to every resident by levying billions in new taxes.

Assembly Bill 1400 would have created a publicly financed healthcare system called CalCare, which could cost between $314 billion and $391 billion in state and federal funds, according to a legislative analysis. But supporters that have championed the issue, including the California Nurses Assn., said residents in the state would ultimately have saved money when compared with paying for insurance, co-pays and deductibles.

More politics

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

Omicron: Southern California versus the Bay Area

During January, Southern California’s COVID-19 death rate was three times worse than the San Francisco Bay Area’s, and a lower rate of vaccination and booster shots may explain why. Hospitals have also been able to maintain capacity in San Francisco, while Southern California facilities have reported serious strain.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 82{a78e43caf781a4748142ac77894e52b42fd2247cba0219deedaee5032d61bfc9} of San Franciscans are considered fully vaccinated, and more than half have received a booster shot. By contrast, in Los Angeles County, about 70{a78e43caf781a4748142ac77894e52b42fd2247cba0219deedaee5032d61bfc9} of residents are fully vaccinated, and only about one-third have gotten a booster shot. And 3 million L.A. County residents haven’t received a booster even though they are eligible, said the county’s public health director.

More top coronavirus headlines

  • U.S. health regulators on Monday granted full approval to Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine.
  • L.A. County’s nursing homes have seen an extraordinary increase in coronavirus case rates during the Omicron surge, but that hasn’t been matched by a record-high number of daily COVID-19 deaths.
  • Gov. Gavin Newsom, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and other California leaders are facing criticism after they were photographed Sunday without face masks at the NFC Championship game at Inglewood’s SoFi Stadium.

Stay up to date on variant developments, case counts and vaccine news with Coronavirus Today.

Why doesn’t L.A. have piles of garbage on sidewalks? Years of fighting.

Embarrassingly, in the ’50s and ’60s, as other people in the nation were fighting the good fight for racial justice, official Los Angeles was waging a pitched battle over the city’s trash. To this day, Southern Californians routinely divvy up their recyclables from garden bits from hopeless garbage, columnist Patt Morrison writes. So it’s hard to conjure up the acid passions that went on over this, and went on for the better part of a dozen years.

Yet those passions were enough to help one man defeat an incumbent L.A. mayor, and they threatened to wipe the City Council clean of its members when the public found out that not separating trash could conceivably send a non-separator to jail for six months.

Women’s Sports Network seeks to spotlight female athletes

Major TV networks have historically dedicated billions of dollars and premium air time to men’s sports while largely neglecting female athletes. Now, shifting cultural attitudes and TV consumption patterns have created an opening for an independent Los Angeles studio and women’s sports leagues to put a bigger spotlight on female athletes and their achievements.

This summer, L.A.-based Fast Studios plans to launch the Women’s Sports Network, a 24-hour television channel entirely devoted to covering female athletes on and off the field. The Women’s Sports Network is partnering with several prominent organizations, which have agreed to provide content to the venture. The network also plans original programming, including a daily studio show produced in Los Angeles.

Our daily news podcast

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.


A man in a blue polo with a beard stirs a pot over a small fire as a dog lies on a couch behind him.

Finding community in an abandoned building in Koreatown. Alex Seijas Torres cooks a meal in his room in the Koreatown building on Dec. 1. Torres, with his dog, Wolf, is among a community of homeless people living at the site.

(Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)


UCLA cancels in-person classes after ex-lecturer appears to threaten mass shooting. UCLA canceled in-person classes Tuesday after a former lecturer and postdoctoral fellow sent a video referencing a mass shooting and an 800-page manifesto with “specific threats” to members of the university’s philosophy department Monday.

A federal judge declines to block law enforcement seizures of pot-store cash from armored cars. The judge said he was not taking a position on allegations by a company, Empyreal Logistics, that the FBI and San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department were breaking federal and state law by stopping its vans and seizing the money inside.

Firefighter shot, killed while putting out blaze in Stockton. Fire Capt. Max Fortuna, 47, was shot while responding with firefighters to a dumpster fire around 5 a.m., Stockton police said. A 67-year-old suspect was arrested and a firearm was found at the scene, according to police.

Whittier taco truck operator was arrested after allegedly vandalizing his competitor’s stand. Deputies last week arrested Carlos Plascencia, 37, on suspicion of pouring water onto the cooking fires of the Tacos La Guera stand and dousing its wares with a fire extinguisher.

Support our journalism

Subscribe to the Los Angeles Times.


A trial is underway as civil rights groups challenge Florida’s GOP voting restrictions law. Florida’s law forbids ballot drop boxes from being used outside of early voting hours and requires election supervisors to assign an employee to watch the drop box or face a $25,000 fine.

Georgia D.A. asks the FBI for security help after Trump calls for protests. The prosecutor who’s investigating whether Donald Trump and others broke the law by trying to pressure Georgia officials to overturn Joe Biden’s presidential election victory is asking the FBI for security help after the former president railed against prosecutors investigating him.

Florida GOP aims to curtail school lessons on sexual orientation and gender. Amid a national debate over how U.S. schools should teach about race, gender and history, state Republicans want to forbid discussions of sexual orientation or gender identity in schools with a bill that activists say endangers children.


Cheslie Kryst is remembered by Miss USA and ‘Extra.’ Kryst died Sunday at age 30. She was crowned Miss USA in 2019 and made history as one of three Black contestants to claim the coveted titles of Miss USA, Miss Teen USA and Miss Universe in the same year.

‘Maus’ ban makes Art Spiegelman’s Holocaust graphic novel an Amazon bestseller. After a Tennessee school board banned his work earlier this month, “The Complete Maus” (1996) and “Maus I: A Survivor’s Tale: My Father Bleeds History” (1986) broke onto Amazon’s top 20 list over the weekend

Joe Rogan vows to ‘balance things out.’ The popular Spotify podcaster responded to allegations of misinformation on his audio program that have led Neil Young, Joni Mitchell and other artists to pull their music from the platform. He pledged to do a better job of balancing different perspectives and put more time into researching topics.

‘Secrets of Playboy’ is not the Hugh Hefner takedown you were expecting. A&E’s series could have lived up to its title as an eye-opening exposé of previously uncharted terrain if it didn’t save its most damning revelations for the last episode. Burying the lead is a disservice to those who came forward, writes television critic Lorraine Ali.


Elon Musk and his fans complain that President Biden is overlooking Tesla. More than 33,000 people have signed a petition asking Biden to acknowledge Tesla’s electric vehicle leadership. The petitioners have accused the president of ignoring Tesla, a nonunion company, in favor of the traditional Detroit automakers, which are unionized.

Science podcasters call Spotify’s support of Joe Rogan a ‘slap in the face.’ Key people associated with Spotify exclusive podcast “Science Vs” have refused to do more podcasts until Spotify changes how it handles misinformation.

Univision CEO closes its Televisa deal and promises a new streaming push. Univision is the largest Spanish-language media company in the U.S., but hasn’t found its footing in online video yet. CEO Wade Davis said the new streaming service will have a free and paid tier, with entertainment, sports and news.


Want to see the Rams in the Super Bowl? Hope you have thousands of dollars to spare. Yes, you can be there. No, tickets are not sold out. The average ticket price on the free market, as of Monday morning: $10,540, according to TicketIQ.

Southern Section officials would be a paid flat rate under a new proposal. Officials’ fees typically cover a three-year period. There has been a shortage of officials, so a committee of school district members, principals, athletic directors and officials tried to come up with a fee structure to help attract and retain officials.

Free online games

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


President Biden is attacked for promising a Black woman on the Supreme Court. Former President Reagan was just as political. Much of the grievance toward Biden stems from the notion that some eminently qualified white male may be passed over for the high court. The architect of Reagan’s pledge said it was all about closing the gender gap.

Liberal Santa Monica versus the street vendors. Santa Monica is becoming the next cause célèbre for lovers of street vendors. More than 50 vendors protested in front of City Hall on Jan. 28 to decry the city’s heavy-handed tactics. But in the famously bleeding-heart city, there are no more tears to give for unlicensed vendors, writes columnist Gustavo Arellano.


Traffic in L.A. is just as bad as you think it is — and on Super Bowl Sunday? Fuggedaboutit. No need to worry, there are plenty of ways you can get to SoFi Stadium before kickoff and still have time to grab some Super Bowl-priced concessions.

If you are driving yourself to the game and aren’t starting from the immediate area around the stadium, you’re going to want to leave early. Never underestimate the likelihood of a miles-long backup on a Southern California highway, even on a weekend.

Commute time will also depend on where you’re parking. And in Los Angeles, a good spot is a rare commodity.


A man with dramatic eye makeup behind bars grabs the neck of another man in prison guard uniform and grabs for his gun.

Clark Gable is shown in the stage play “The Last Mile” at the Majestic Theatre in 1930. Actor Adrian Michael Morris played the prison guard.

(Los Angeles Times archives)

One hundred and twenty-one years ago today, Clark Gable was born. Among The Times’ archival photos of the screen star is the photo above from the 1930 stage production that drew the attention of Hollywood producers.

The actor, who died in 1960 at age 59, was just 15 when he fell in love with theater. He worked as a call boy, for no salary, at a theater, sleeping in the wings and buying food with the money actors tipped him. The Ohio native later worked in the oil fields, at a lumber camp and at a department store, selling neckties, before he broke into acting. He appeared in scores of movies and was married five times. Gable was Oscar-nominated for “It Happened One Night,” “Mutiny on the Bounty” and “Gone With the Wind.” Here’s our 1960 obituary on Gable.

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

Eleanore Beatty

Next Post

Universal health care bill dies in California

Wed Feb 2 , 2022
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A bill that would have produced the nation’s only authorities-funded universal wellness treatment program died in the California Assembly on Monday as Democrats could not get more than enough support to convey it for a vote forward of a legislative deadline. The monthly bill experienced to go […]

You May Like