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Fronnie Lewis - Editor

Tag Archives | government

Clip art of Halloween witch with trick or treat pumpkin

“Lucky 13” tips for Halloween

Halloween is in the air. I’m seeing bats, vampires, ghouls, and other night creatures lurking around my Burbank neighborhood. Adults as well as kids are gearing up for the haunting night of October 31. While you’re preparing to get your “spook on” the Food and Drug Administration has a few guidelines to keep in mind. Today the FDA released its “Lucky 13” tips for a safe and fun Halloween. The agency warns the wrong choices could haunt you long after all that trick-or-treat candy has been eaten or... Read More →

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Historic health care reform bill passes the House

  Photo: Pete Souza/White House — President Obama and staff react to the victory vote in the House on health care reform UPDATE: March 23, 2010 — President Barack Obama signed into law the landmark health care reform bill today. The president declared, “Today, I’m signing this reform bill into law on behalf of my mother, who argued with insurance companies even as she battled cancer in her final days.” President Obama went on to say, ” … we have now just enshrined… the core principle that everybody should have... Read More →

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Photo Gallery: President Obama & First Lady Michelle Obama

  Official White House Photo/Chuck Kennedy — President Obama makes a point to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky) during the Bipartisan Health Reform meeting at Blair House on Thursday, February 25, 2010.   First Ladies meet & chat Official White House Photo/ Samantha Appleton — First Lady Michelle Obama chats with Mrs. Margarita Zavala de Calderon, the First Lady of Mexico, in the Yellow Oval Room of the White House on Thursday, February 25, 2010.

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Burbank banner debate

Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — Banner on Burbank Boulevard in Burbank The colorful street light banners in Burbank got slammed in yesterday’s Burbank Leader newspaper and on its website by columnist Richard Tafilaw who called them, “lame-o.”  I disagree big time for a few reasons. The banners are high above the street and not a real distraction for either motorists or pedestrians. Photo: Banner on Magnolia Boulevard in Burbank The banners contribute a nice festive touch to streets and boulevards.      Photo: Banners on... Read More →

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President Obama’s State of the Union Address:”We don’t quit”

White House photo: Pete Souza — President Obama delivers the State of the Union Address 01/27/10 More jobs and pumping up the weak economy were major themes in President Obama’s first State of the Union speech delivered before a joint session of Congress last night. And that’s the way it should be. The country, and especially the backbone of the our society — middle class folks — are still struggling under the weight of this recession. ” For these Americans and so many others, change has not come fast enough.  Some... Read More →

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President Obama tells the big banks: “We want our money back and we’re going to get it!’

White House photo by Samantha Appleton 01/14/10: President Obama calling for new bank fees. Some “fat cats” on Wall Street got a rude whack upside the head from President Obama today. A tough talking Obama put the big banks on notice that he wants them to repay “every dime” of our money they got in that huge financial bailout. The president wants to slap the big banks with a fee designed to recoup perhaps as much as $117 billions over 12 years.   “And my determination to achieve this goal is only heightened when I... Read More →

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Biz Bytes: Vote on the best plan to save taxpayer dollars & holiday shoppers holding back

Federal employees come up with thousands of ways to save money It was a simple idea, but boy did it pay-off big time. At the end of September, President Obama’s SAVE Award contest was launched by the Office of Management and Budget. Federal workers were asked to come up with ways to save taxpayer money by making the government perform more effectively and efficiently. In three weeks, they got 38,484 entries! Some of the plans were so good that the Obama administration is already working on putting them into practice. The President’s SAVE Award will... Read More →

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President Barack Obama wins Nobel Peace Prize and sparks new controversy

Here we go again, another President Obama controversy.  This morning, the Norwegian Nobel Committee surprised many by announcing Obama had won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize. Obama has been in office less than a year and while dealing with huge domestic problems, he’s managed to confront some major global issues as well.  The Nobel Committee noted Obama’s international impact in its press release today. The Nobel Peace Prize for 2009 The Norwegian Nobel Committeehas decided that the Nobel Peace Prize for 2009 is to be awarded... Read More →

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Burbank City Council speaks out on those lawsuits and investigations

Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — Burbank Mayor Gary Bric read a statement at last night’s council meeting. Finally, after weeks and months of mostly silence or as some folks have described it stonewalling, the Burbank City Council spoke out last night about the controversial and very messy situation surrounding the police department. Back on May 13, I wrote a post about the alleged problems in the BPD and called on the city council to not… ” wait until it all explodes into a full blown controversy, but step forward now and explain the situation to residents.” Mayor Gary Bric and city... Read More →

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Burbank, the city council, and that disturbing water wasting video

  Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — Burbank Burbank officials have hammered residents with new water restrictions, penalties, and higher rates recently. We’re in a water crisis they insist. Well, you’d think if the shortage is as serious as they say, the first order of business would be to make the city as water efficient as possible. There are indications this has not been a high priority or the job was left incomplete.  Besides the repeated sprinkler problem/flooding at the Burbank jail mentioned in an earlier post on this blog, now the city has been caught on video wasting precious water... Read More →

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Water a hot issue at the Burbank City Council meeting

Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — Burbank  We’re deep in the heat of a Southern California summer with temperatures  reaching over 100 degrees on many days. So what does the Burbank City Council do?  Last Tuesday, they voted to slap stiffer restrictions on water use. Hopefully, the council will reconsider this decision when the issue comes back for a final review.  At this week’s city council meeting, Dr. David Gordon was the only council member to speak out strongly about the timing of the new restrictions and the impact on the public. Dr. Gordon voted “no.”  However, the rest of the city... Read More →

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Senator Ted Kennedy dies at 77

File Photo: April 2008  Adam Hunger/Reuters One of the most powerful figures in American politics is being remembered today. U.S. Senator Edward M. Kennedy died last night at the family compound in Hannis Port, Massachusetts at the age of 77 after a valiant battle with brain cancer. Since the assassination of his brothers, President John F. Kennedy and Senator Robert Kennedy in the 1960s, the Massachusetts senator has been the leader of the most influential political family in the country. Ted Kennedy will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery near the... Read More →

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Burbank City Council selects new police commissioner

Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — Burbank City Hall Now that the Burbank City Council has filled the vacant seat on the police commission, hopefully, that body can move forward with a busy agenda. Last night, real estate consultant and long time Burbank business owner, Raymond Gerald Adams, was the top vote getter out of a field of six contenders. Adams received votes from council members David Gordon, Jess Talamantes, and Vice-Mayor Anja Reinke. Ironically, these are the exact same three votes that got Human Rights Activist John Brady appointed to the... Read More →

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Actor Sidney Poitier among Medal of Freedom winners

Photo: Chuck Kennedy/White House A special ceremony at the White House last night honored 16 super achievers with the nation’s highest civilian award, the Medal of Freedom. In the photo above, former President of Ireland Mary Robinson congratulates fellow medal recipient, Actor Sidney Poitier. The other medal winners included Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, Scientist Stephen Hawking, Tennis Star Billie Jean King, Entertainer Chita Rivera, and Retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor. In his remarks, President Obama praised the medal winners for their incredible achievements: “The recipients of the Medal of Freedom... Read More →

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White House launches new health insurance reform resource

  The debate over the pros and cons of health insurance reform is seriously heating up. In an effort to get its message out about what it considers the “stability and security” of health insurance reform, the White House launched a new online resource today WhiteHouse.gov/RealityCheck  The Obama administration is encouraging the public to visit  “Reality Check” to find out what is really in health insurance reform and what is not in there. Meanwhile, more town hall meetings on the controversial issue are set for tomorrow. President Obama will be center stage at one of... Read More →

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Sonia Sotomayor sworn in as U.S. Supreme Court Justice

Photo: Jim Young/Reuters It’s official. Judge Sonia Sotomayor is now an associate justice of the 220-year-old U.S. Supreme Court. Sotomayor went through two swearing-in ceremonies this morning, one private and one public, at the Supreme Court. Chief Justice John Roberts administered the oath. After the public ceremony, Sotomayor is shown in the photo above being congratulated by Chief Justice Roberts while her mother, Celina, and brother, Juan Luis Sotomayor, look on. On Thursday, Sotomayor, a federal appeals court judge, easily won confirmation from the U.S. Senate. Sotomayor is the first Hispanic and... Read More →

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Judge Sonia Sotomayor makes history

Photo: Jason Reed/Reuters  Judgment Day turned into a shining moment for U.S. Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor. Today Judge Sotomayor won confirmation from the U.S. Senate on a sweeping 68-31 vote. Nine Republicans joined Democrats in voting for the 55-year-old federal appeals court judge. Sotomayor will be the first Hispanic and only the third female to sit on the nation’s highest court. Republican opponents insisted Sotomayor was too liberal. Supporters defended her as an impartial jurist who would be an asset to the U.S. Supreme Court. In his remarks after the confirmation, President Obama praised his... Read More →

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Two freed California reporters arrive in Burbank

                                                     Photo: Irfan Khan/ Los Angeles Times  Two California journalists, newly freed from North Korea, shared an emotional reunion with family and friends at  the Bob Hope Airport in Burbank this morning. After months of negotiations, Former President Bill Clinton was able to fly to North Korea yesterday and secure the release of 36-year-old Euna Lee and 32-year-old Laura Ling. In the photo above, Lee hugs husband Michael Saldate and daughter Hana and Ling greets her husband Iain Clayton. On March 17, Lee and Ling were arrested near the North Korea-China border. In June,... Read More →

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Burbank Police Commission gets down to business

Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove The Burbank Police Commission’s July meeting yesterday at the Burbank Police and Fire Headquarters was very difference from the previous month. In June, the commission voted to adjourn before conducting any real business because of a cloud of uncertainty hanging over newly appointed commissioner, John Brady. In a controversial move, the Burbank City Council voted to remove Brady from the police commission citing his probation for  a DUI as the reason. Nevertheless, the human rights activist showed up at yesterday’s commission meeting and sat with a small... Read More →

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Senate hearings for U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Sonia Sotomayor

  Photo: Jason Reed/Reuters More hard hitting questions today for U.S. Supreme Court nominee, Judge Sonia Sotomayor. The Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearings for the New York federal appeals judge kicked off yesterday.  At the hearing, senators have called upon Sotomayor to express her views on a number of controversial issues, including abortion, gun rights, and race. Today, Sotomayor was quizzed on a statement made in a 2001 speech, in which she said “a wise Latina” might make a better legal decision than a white male. Sotomayor explained she was trying to be... Read More →

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Fire department cutbacks in Burbank

Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove UPDATE: Daily minimum staffing for Burbank firefighters will be reduced from a high of 38 last year to 36 on Monday, July 13. This will not result in any layoffs.   Times are tough. The city of Burbank is tightening its financial belt. I understand all of that, still it doesn’t seem smart to cutback the fire department in the heat of a dry summer. Yet, that is just what’s happening in Burbank. As part of a city council mandated reduction of 5 percent for every department,... Read More →

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Burbank Mayor Gary Bric, his restaurant, & those trash talking e-mails

Photo: from city of Burbank website I don’t know if Burbank Mayor Gary Bric plays any street basketball, but it’s pretty clear he can trash talk. Earlier in the week, I popped over to Jim Carlile’s Burbank blog and discovered a post from last Tuesday, June 30 about some caustic e-mails he got from the mayor. The town is abuzz with chatter about these e-mail zingers. Mayor Bric apparently got steamed under the collar after reading one of Carlile’s letters in the Mailbag section of The Burbank Leader newspaper. Here’s a sampling of... Read More →

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