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Morning Scoop: Classmates mourn, French Elvis, legalized pot?

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Good morning from the City Desk, where we're enjoying the crisp, post-storm air. Some California stories from today's paper to improve your daily atmosphere:

Guess he's gone: Georges Marciano used to have a vast empire. Then came the divorce and the drugs and the accusations.

Unfulfilled promise: Aydin Salek was smart and popular and full of promise. Now his friends at South Pasadena High School mourn the 17-year-old who died after drinking at a party over the weekend.

Pot shot: Backers of legalized pot say they have enough signatures to put the notion in front of voters on the November 2010 ballot.

Kids in need: Federal health officials aren't sure California's last-gasp funding scheme to keep nearly 700,000 children of the working poor in a government health insurance program passes regulatory muster.

French Elvis: They call Johnny Hallyday France's Elvis. And a crowd of French journalists has been gathered outside Cedars-Sinai for news of their star -- who reportedly is in the hospital.

Dreams of hair: A marketing executive has opened up a barbershop in downtown L.A. Hector Tobar sees him as an example of what the city needs to do to survive.

Slope shutterbug: Dave McCoy, 94, founded Mammoth Mountain ski resort. Since selling the spot and retiring, he's become an avid photographer. Don't miss the video.

Police problems: An audit finds that the LAPD failed to adequately track the spending of millions dollars of taxpayer money.

We're finding out more about the four bodies found in a home in a gated San Clemente community. We'll watch to see if the L.A. City Council votes to restrict music performers on the Venice boardwalk today. We'll bring you more stories as we get them. 

Got stories for us? See news happening around you? Drop me a line on Twitter or at [email protected].

-- Nita Lelyveld

Twitter180Leave me your comments here or follow @latimescitydesk on Twitter.

 
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About L.A. Now
L.A. Now is the Los Angeles Times’ breaking news section for Southern California. It is produced by more than 80 reporters and editors in The Times’ Metro section, reporting from the paper’s downtown Los Angeles headquarters as well as bureaus in Costa Mesa, Long Beach, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Riverside, Ventura and West Los Angeles.
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