What a difference a day makes.
In 24 little hours, the L.A. school board journeyed last week from chaos to harmony; from nothing to a November ballot measure; from no new taxes to a bond measure that will ask voters to raise their property taxes for schools "one last time."
If voters go for it, these local school bonds would be the fourth in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) since 1997, and would raise $3.985 billion to pay for new and repaired schools. Part of the money is needed to make up for the feverishly rising cost of school construction; the rest would fund a program that has expanded to some $15.2 billion, perhaps the nation's largest ongoing public works project outside of Iraq.
Angelenos in need of emergency care are facing the threat of longer journeys to fewer facilities. Faced with a projected deficit in excess of $700 million in 2005, the L.A. County Department of Health Services has proposed to shut down two of its hospitals, increasing the burden on remaining hospitals countywide.