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City Beat: L.A.'s 311 operators field some unusual calls


"One call to City Hall" -- that's how Los Angeles bills its 311 information line.

Just dial the three numbers for help with any city service.

Some callers interpret that offer very broadly. They make some peculiar requests.

One man once called shouting, irate. Someone had littered his lawn with Butterball turkeys. He expected the city to send someone out immediately to take the shrink-wrapped birds away.

Read the story of the turkeys and more in my latest City Beat story.

And check out what I sent out on Twitter from the scene:

-- Nita Lelyveld

Follow City Beat on Twitter at @latimescitybeat and on Facebook. Send ideas for City Beat dispatches to nita.lelyveld@latimes.com.

Photo: Operator Raquel Lopez, who has been answering the city's 311 information line for seven years, listens to a caller. "We're like a human Google," she says. Credit: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

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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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