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Morning scoop: Capitol compromises, oral arguments, the wild dogs of Duroville

March 5, 2009 |  9:40 am


Good morning from the City Desk! Spend some time with your daily paper. It's full of fascinating news.

Columnist George Skelton writes about the complicated compromises that brought about a state budget deal -- between those who wanted tax increases and those focused on a spending cap.

The investigation of last fall's deadly Metrolink crash in Chatsworth has exposed major problems with the way national safety rules are enforced and sharp differences over how to improve safety and prevent future accidents, write reporters Robert J. Lopez and Dan Weikel.

As if the notorious Duroville trailer park in Thermal wasn't bad enough already. The shantytown, which is home to as many as 5,000 poor farmworkers, also features hundreds of aggressive dogs, who travel around in packs, leap at cars and bite residents.

Chaos broke out in a Stockton courtroom yesterday when an accused murderer testifying at his own trial leapt from the witness stand, stabbed the judge and was shot and killed by police.

Check out Mark Boster's gorgeous photo gallery of wildflowers in bloom in the Anza-Borrego Desert.

Two Florida business after lucrative concession contracts at Los Angeles International Airport have been charged with conspiring to launder nearly $40,000 in political donations to Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's 2005 campaign.

Watch your purses and your laptops when you head to the Central Library downtown. Police say it's an oasis not just for readers but for thieves.

A Los County supervisor says federal stimulus money could create as many as 10,000 temporary jobs.

Bob Claunch and Jack Reavley have been together more than half a century. They didn't leap to get married when same-sex marriage became legal last year. But they're watching -- but they'll be watching closely today as the state Supreme Court hears oral arguments on the constitutionality of Proposition 8, which bans such marriages. People gathered around the state to protest the ban on the eve of the event.

Still wondering about the results in Tuesday's Los Angeles election? Go to our Election Central to check out the winners and losers. Read Hector Becerra's story on the ugly election season in southeast Los Angeles County. And go to City Hall reporters David Zahniser and Phil Willon for a look at whether the mayor received the bounce he needed from the election to catapult him into the 2010 race for governor.

We're inside and outside the state Supreme Court in San Francisco for the oral arguments today. We'll have blog updates and reporter Jessica Garrison will be covering the arguments as they happen @latimeslive on Twitter. We'll also be in the downtown courtroom where Chris Brown will appear this afternoon. And we'll have a story on how the octuplet saga is prompting cries for legistation to regulate the fertility industry and is being seen by some anti-abortion activists as an opportunity to further their cause.

-- Nita Lelyveld

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