spcaLA Provides Hot Weather Care Tips for Pets

August 9, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

The recent death of Louisiana Tech’s mascot, an English bulldog named Tech XX, due to negligence in 100-degree heat, has prompted the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Los Angeles (scpaLA) to urge residents to take extra care of their pets in hot weather.

Temperature as high as 100 degrees can cause heat stroke and permanent brain damage to children and pets.

The scpaLA, therefore. provides the following tips to best keep your pet safe:

—Keep plenty of clean, cool drinking water available at all times for your pet, including when traveling. If your pets are left alone during the day, ensure that their bowl is tip-proof.
—Protect your pet from the sun. If your pet must stay in the yard be sure there is adequate shade and ventilation, in addition to water.
—Keep pets groomed. To help your pet stay cool, clip coats short, but not shaved. Since sunburn is a danger to animals, apply regular sun block to vulnerable areas such as the ears and nose.
—Dog pads burn easily so avoid hot surfaces such as asphalt on hot days.
—Exercise pets in the morning or evening when it is cooler. After hiking, make sure to check for foxtails and other burrs, as these can cause major problems.
—If a pet is overcome by heat (detected by excessive panting, heavily salivating, and/or immobility) immerse it in cool water to lower body temperature, then go to a veterinarian. Never immerse a pet in cold water, as it may cause shock.

The scpaLA also reminds pet owners that under California Penal Code 597.7 it is illegal to “leave or confine an animal in any unattended motor vehicle under conditions that endanger the health or well-being of an animal due to heat.”

State Revokes Record Number of Real Estate Licenses

August 9, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

The California State Department of Real Estate (DRE) reported a record number of revoked real estate licenses on Monday blamed on the collapse of the real estate market, according to a written statement.

The DRE, responsible for licensing and regulating activities of real estate brokers and salespersons, recorded 1,109 licenses suspended, surrendered, and revoked in Fiscal year 2011/12 that accounts for double of the 553 suspensions, surrenders, and revocations five years ago. The 781 revocations in the last fiscal year alone shows a 14 percent increase from the 686 in the year prior. In this week’s report, the DRE also noted a record number of license surrenders from licensees facing disciplinary action.

A press release from the DRE cites the collapse of the real estate market as the cause for the record number, concluding that financially stressed homeowners paved the way for a greater number of foreclosure rescue and short sale scams. Since 2010 the DRE has filed close to 500 accusations and Desist and Refrain Orders against 1,400 respondents for illegal foreclosure rescue and short sale scams.

Bill Moran’s, DRE Enforcement Chief and Acting Chief Deputy Real Estate Commissioner main concern as stated in the press release is for consumer education to better protect themselves from the risk of fraud.

The DRE has recently released information on how to avoid scams, how to find a real estate agent and information on the foreclosure process itself.

For the latest CONSUMER ALERTS, tips on how to protect yourself from real estate scams and more information on the DRE, please visit www.dre.ca.gov.

Retired Space Shuttle Endeavour to Arrive in L.A. Next Month

August 9, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

The retired space shuttle Endeavour is scheduled to arrive Sept. 20 at Los Angeles International Airport, where it will remain until Oct. 12, when it begins what is expected to be a celebratory 12-mile procession along city streets to the California Science Center, officials announced yesterday.

The shuttle, which will be housed in a temporary hangar at the center until a permanent display pavilion is completed, is expected to open for public viewing on Oct. 30.

NASA announced last year that Endeavour would be permanently housed at the Science Center — returning the shuttle to the state where it was built more than 25 years ago.

“L.A. is a place of innovation … a place that moves the ball forward,” Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said at a news conference in a pavilion at the Science Center.

Moving the five-story-tall, 85-ton orbiter to its permanent home downtown is a “once-in-a-lifetime event” representing a “marvel of ingenuity and engineering,” the mayor said.

Endeavour was built in Palmdale, beginning in 1987, to replace the destroyed Challenger shuttle, which exploded 73 seconds after takeoff on Jan. 28, 1986, killing all seven astronauts aboard. Endeavour was completed in 1991.

Transporting the shuttle from the airport to Exposition Park is expected to be a jubilant daylong affair, but it will also require the trimming or even removal of some trees along the route to accommodate the size of the ship, which has a 78-foot wingspan.

Villaraigosa said two trees would be planted for every tree that needs to be removed.

The shuttle will fly across the country from Kennedy Space Center mounted on the back of a specially modified Boeing 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft.
Upon arrival at LAX, Endeavour will spend a few weeks at a United Airlines hangar undergoing preparations for transport and display.

The overland journey to the museum will be the first, last and only time a space shuttle will travel through public city streets, officials said.

“It is not only one of the biggest objects ever transported down city streets; it’s an irreplaceable national treasure,” Inglewood Mayor James Butts Jr. said.

According to science center officials, the shuttle will be hauled away from LAX beginning the night of Oct. 12 and taken overnight to Inglewood City
Hall, where a ceremony will be held the morning of Oct. 13.

“Space exploration events are like the Olympics — a time to feel good,” Butts said.

After the ceremony, the shuttle will begin its daylong journey to the science center. From Inglewood City Hall, the orbiter will be taken along Manchester Boulevard, then north on Crenshaw Drive/Crenshaw Boulevard and east on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard to Exposition Park.

At the intersection of Crenshaw and Martin Luther King Boulevard, the shuttle will be the centerpiece of a music and dance celebration produced by choreographer Debbie Allen.

The Science Center will become the retirement home of the shuttle, which traveled 115 million miles during 25 flights.

The center in May announced an “extraordinary” donation from the foundation of businessman and philanthropist Samuel Oschin, who died in 2003, to build a new wing of the Science Center to house Endeavour. The Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center is scheduled to open in 2017.

Plans for moving the shuttle echo the recent trip of a 340-ton boulder from a Riverside County rock quarry to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art on the Miracle Mile as part of the exhibit “Levitated Mass.” That trip took on a festival atmosphere as crowds gathered for the boulder’s unusual 11-night journey across the Southland.

Attempted Kidnapping at Garden Grove Hospital

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(CNS) – A woman was taken into custody Monday on suspicion of trying to abduct a newborn from Garden Grove Hospital and Medical Center, police said.

The unidentified woman is accused of attempting to abduct the newborn girl about 10 a.m. from the hospital at 12601 Garden Grove Blvd., Lt. Jeff Nightengale said.

Hospital workers caught the woman allegedly trying to snatch the baby born Sunday night, and called police, Nightengale said, adding that the infant was unharmed.

The woman, who was wearing hospital scrubs and carrying a visitor’s pass, somehow distracted the mother and put the infant into a large tote bag she was carrying with her, Nightengale said.

‘Civic’ Attachment Valued More By Undocumented Youth

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Undocumented youth think they will do better in society if they join a civic association to help them attach to this country, a USC research study has affirmed.

USC sociologist Veronica Terriquez surveyed more than 2,600 young people who grew up in California but who are not U.S. citizens or legal resident aliens. “Civic engagement appears to help address some of the issues that low-income youth encounter,” she said.

Her study found a clear difference in the expectations of undocumented youth who are engaged in community organizations, with 89 percent of those teens saying they expect to have a high-skills job requiring a four-year college degree, compared to 60 percent of other youth.

Community organization members report feeling empowered to make a difference in their communities, versus 41 percent of the overall population of youths, she reported.

Those positive attitudes translated to better grades in school, Terriquez said.

“These undocumented students have a strong attachment to this country,” she said. “They feel like they are Americans, but on paper they are not.”

Los Angeles Council Moves to Ban Skateboard ‘Bombing’ Down Hills

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In an effort to stop skateboarders from “bombing” down steep hills at death-defying speeds, the Los Angeles City Council Tuesday unanimously approved an ordinance that gives police more leeway in ticketing reckless riders.

The ordinance was backed by Councilman Joe Buscaino, who represents a hilly part of San Pedro where two young men died in skateboarding accidents within the last year.

“Many times they reach speeds as high as 40 miles an hour. Oftentimes, they don’t wear helmets or protective gear as they weave in and out of traffic, skateboarding in a reckless manner,” Buscaino said.

The ordinance, which the mayor said he would sign, will require skateboarders to stand while riding on public roads, sidewalks, parking lots or other public property. “Using, pushing, propelling or riding on a skateboard in a sitting, prone, kneeling or lying position is prohibited,” the ordinance states.

To slow skateboarders down, the ordinance makes it illegal to ride a skateboard faster than 10 mph through an intersection or to ride while hanging on to a vehicle. Drivers who knowingly tow a skateboarder with a vehicle can be ticketed.

The ordinance includes language prohibiting skateboarders from riding “recklessly or in such a manner or at such a speed as to cause or threaten to cause injury to himself or herself or to others.

A 14-year-old skateboarder, Michael Borojevich, died last November, 11 days after being injured near Western Avenue and 25th Street. In January, Caleb Daniel Simpson, 15, died from injuries suffered in a high-speed crash near Averil Park and Weymouth Avenue.

Los Angeles police assigned to the Harbor Station told the council they get calls daily from people concerned about “bombing.”

“The practice is getting to where it’s out of control,” said Officer Eve White, the acting senior lead officer in San Pedro.

Buscaino countered criticism that the ordinance is overly broad.

“I’m not here to ban skateboarding,” he said. “The last thing I want to do is bury another kid from reckless skateboarding.”

Councilman Tony Cardenas raised concerns the ordinance would be used only in San Pedro. He asked for police statistics on citations once the law has been in effect for a while. Cardenas said the city should build more skate parks to give skateboarders a safe place to ride.

“When we build one skate park, we’re not done,” Cardenas said. “We have a lot more to do and a lot more to build.”

Councilman Ed Reyes called for the city to post signs warning about the restrictions on streets that are notorious skateboarding bombing locations.
Councilman Bernard Parks, who represents a relatively flat area of the city, said he had more problems with people towing skateboarders on bicycles. He asked the City Attorney’s Office to look into barring that practice, as well.

Goodbye Pasadena Freeway: Hello Arroyo Seco ‘Streetway’

August 9, 2012 by · 2 Comments 

Pity the poor Pasadena (110) Freeway: first state officials stripped the “freeway” badge from the state’s oldest freeway, and now they want to drop its speed limit to the very unfreeway-like 45 miles per hour, it was reported last Saturday.

State officials want to impose a 45 mph on nearly all of the newly-renamed Arroyo Seco Parkway, leaving a top speed of 55 mph solely for the stretch near Dodger Stadium.

That news may come to relief for those waiting at the numerous stop signs that sit on entrance ramps to the one-time freeway, or those who face a total absence of deceleration ramps in advance of exits with posted 5 mph ramp speeds.

The Pasadena Star-News reports that a $650,000 safety study says the speed limits should be lowered. Recent safety improvements to the center median have increased freeway speeds, some Pasadena residents told the Star-News.

The Arroyo Seco Parkway was originally envisioned by noted landscape architect Frederick Law Olmstead Jr. as a bucolic and peaceful parkway between Los Angeles and Pasadena. Traffic engineers, impressed by the first German autobahns, instead plunked down California’s first freeway in what had been a parkland with a winding, mostly-dry stream.

Now, the Arroyo Seco Foundation proposes restoring the Arroyo Seco streambed by removing concrete, and adding bike routes and pedestrian trails to the linear park that is split by the parkway. Slowing down traffic from freeway speeds is one part of that plan.

But Caltrans spokesperson Kelly Markham told the Star-News “the concern has been raised that some motorists would ignore a reduced speed limit, just as they ignore the 55-mph limit.”

Walgreens Illegally Dumped Hazardous Waste, Sensitive Customer Information, Suit Claims

August 9, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

The city attorney of Los Angeles and nearly 40 other prosecutors statewide are suing the Walgreens drug store chain from allegedly dumping hazardous wastes into the environment.

The lawsuit maintains that more than 600 Walgreen Co. stores throughout the state improperly handled and disposed of various hazardous wastes and materials over a 6 1/2-year period.

A company representative could not be immediately reached for comment on the suit filed June 18 in Alameda County Superior Court.
The wastes allegedly include pesticides, bleach, paint, aerosols, automotive products and solvents, pharmaceutical and biohazardous wastes and other toxic, ignitable and corrosive materials.

“The mishandling and unlawful disposal of toxic chemicals and pollutants pose a serious threat to the health and safety of our residents,” said Los Angeles City Attorney Carmen Trutanich. “This wasn’t an isolated incident. Walgreen’s actions were systematic and statewide, and the company
must be held accountable.”

California hazardous waste law requires companies to carefully store, handle and dispose of hazardous wastes and materials. The prosecutors maintain that Walgreen Co. ignored environmental laws to cut costs and that employees improperly stored, handled and disposed of hazardous waste and pharmaceutical waste products.

Rather than separating the hazardous waste and properly disposing it at proper sites, Walgreen Co. allegedly directed it to area landfills, where it seeped into and contaminated the soil and groundwater, according to the lawsuit.

In a separate allegation, the prosecutors allege Walgreen Co. unlawfully disposed of customer records containing confidential medical information without preserving the confidentiality of the information. Companies in possession of medical information are required by law to protect the privacy of their customers’ confidential medial information.

The prosecutors allege that Walgreen Co. failed to take proper steps to preserve the confidentiality of its pharmacy customers.

The prosecutors are requesting that Walgreen be required to manage its hazardous waste and hazardous materials lawfully, maintain the confidentiality of medical information as required by law and be liable for civil penalties that result from the alleged violations.

Ex-L.A. Housing Official Pleads Guilty to Federal Charges

August 9, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

A former Los Angeles housing official who spent the last two years living as a fugitive in Guatemala while his brothers were prosecuted for their roles in a scheme involving contracts for non-existent construction projects pleaded guilty Monday to a conspiracy charge.

Victor Taracena, 42, who worked for the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles from 2003 to 2007, admitted arranging for contracts to be awarded to sham companies created by his siblings, Assistant U.S. Attorney Bay Gilchrist said.

He faces up to five years in federal prison when he is sentenced Oct. 15.

Taracena didn’t speak at the hearing other than to respond to the judge’s questions, including whether he understood the rights he was giving up.
“Yes, sir, I am,” Taracena said when U.S. District Judge Percy Anderson asked him if he was indeed guilty.

After the phony firms received checks totaling about $526,000 from the Housing Authority, the brothers kicked back more than $100,000 to their sibling, Gilchrist said.

Taracena was fired from the agency in 2007 and disappeared shortly afterward. It was not immediately clear when he was returned to the United States to face charges of conspiracy and multiple counts of bribery.

His brothers, Bennett A. Taracena and Diego L. Taracena, were each sentenced in June to 21 months in prison for their parts in the scheme after pleading guilty to federal conspiracy charges.

Along with the prison term, the brothers were jointly ordered to pay restitution of about $526,500 and serve three years under supervised release after they leave prison.

Community Calendar: August 9, 2012 to August 15, 2012

August 9, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Today, Thursday August 9
6:30-8:30pm—Montebello Concerts in the Park Series Features Bumptown at the City Park Amphitheater.
Sponsored by Cook Hills Properties. Amphitheater is located at 1300 W. Whittier Blvd. For more information on upcoming shows, call Parks and Rec. at (323) 887-4540.

5:30-7pm—Boyle Heights Collaborative Community Engagement Committee meeting at Clinica Msr. Oscar A Romero, 2032 Marengo St. Learn about the “Building Healthy Communities, Boyle Heights” initiative, which includes trainings, workshops, resources and support the work in the community. Food provided. Please call to reserve your space by calling or emailing: Ruth Trujillo-Acosta (213) 201-2746 or rtrujillo@clinicaromero.com

Friday, August 10
6pm—“Bollywood’ Comes to East LA Civic Center. Start off with music JAM Session followed by a movie at sundown.
East LA Civic Center located at 4801 E. 3rd Street. Take Metro, exit ELA Civic Center Station. For more information, contact LA County Parks at (323) 260-2360, or visit http://lacountyparks.org. Go Metro, 800-COMMUTE, www.metro.net.

7pm—Rainspirits Dance Benefit. Live show and performance featuring Old School, R&B, Oldies and more plus a karaoke and full bar. Donations are $10. All proceeds go towards U.S. Marine Veteran Ruben Navarro’s Legal Aid Fund. The American Legion Post 397 is located at 338 S. Ramona Ave. For more information call (323) 712-0011.

8pm—Commerce Movie Night at Bandini Park. This week’s feature is “Puss ‘N Boots,” rated G. Park is located at 4725 Astor Ave. Commerce, 90040. For more information, call (323) 264-5045.

Saturday, August 11
9am-3pm—Too Toxic to Trash: Free Countywide Household Hazardous and E-Waste Roundup in Downey.
Residents can safely discard of household hazardous waste such as antifreeze, unused medications, car batteries, used motor oil, paint, pesticides; sharps waste such as hypodermic needles, pen needles, syringes, lancets, and intravenous needles; universal waste including household batteries, fluorescent light bulbs, and electronic waste (e-waste) such as TVs and monitors, computers, VCRs, stereos and cell phones. Drop off site:LA County Office of Education, 12830 Columbia Way, Downey. For more information, call LA County Dept. of Public Works at 1(888) CLEAN LA or go to www.888CleanLA.com or the Sanitation Districts of LA County at 1 (800) 238-0172 or www.lacsd.org.

Saturday, August 11, 10am—La Santa Cecilia at BIG!WORLD!FUN! Family Series at the Ford Amphitheatre 2580 E. Cahuenga Blvd., Hollywood, 90068. Children admitted FREE (adults $5) to one-hour performance of Latin rock and world music by La Santa Cecilia; designed for kids 4-10 and their parents. Pre-show activities (9:00 am) include making Metepec clay sun ornaments. Bring LA County Library card & get a free book. Space is limited, so arrive early. To purchase/reserve tickets, call (323) 461-3673 or go online to www.FordTheatres.org

11am-3pm—Pesos for Pio Pico, Recycling Fundraiser. Support the Rescue Pio Pico State Historic Park effort by bringing your recyclables to the park. Acceptable items include aluminum cans, plastic bottles, glass, plastic juice, and milk bottles. The park is located at 6003 Pioneer Blvd. For more information visit piopico.org or email pesosforpiopico@piopico.org.

11am-4pm—End of Summer Book Sale at Anthony Quinn Library. Includes children’s books, materials in Spanish, and DVDs. Library is located at 3965 Cesar E. Chavez Ave. For more information contact the library manager at (323) 264-7715 or email jpolansky@library.lacounty.gov.

6pm—Concerts in the Park at the Eagle Rock Recreation Center presents “Hot August Nights,” a Neil Diamond Tribute. Concert in the band shell; free admission. Park is located at 1100 Eagle Vista Dr. in Eagle Rock.

7pm—Troy Evans’ Montana Tales at Audubon Center. At this one-night fundraising event for the Friends of the Southwest Museum Coalition, enjoy Troy Evans’ raconteur ranging in topics from the Montana gold fields to the Arroyo Seco. Dessert and coffee reception starts at 6:30 pm. Tickets are $25, $40 for two. The Center is located at 4700 Griffin Ave. For more information and to purchase tickets visit www.friendsofthesouthwestmuseum.com.

7:30pm—Summer Festival Aug. 11 at The Huntington. Flutist Larry Kaplan, violinist Luke Maurer, and harpist Alison Bjorkedal perform traditional Vietnamese folksongs accompanied by dan bau virtuoso Vân Ánh Vanessa Võ. Other performances include a rendition of Thành’s “Ascending Dragon” and more. The Loggia of the Huntington is located at 1151 Oxford Rd., San Marino. Grounds open at 5:30 for dinner and picnicking patrons and at 6:30 for concert patrons. For more information call (800) 726-7147 or visit swmusic.org.

Sunday, August 12
2pm—The Bluebird Reading at Ave. 50 Studio.
The Hollywood Institute of Poetics presents this poetic reading hosted by Jessica Ceballos and featuring Steve Abee, Christian Alvarez, Cassandra Love and an open reading after the feature. The studio is located at 131 N. Ave. 50. For more information, call (323) 258-1435.

4pm—Funky Punk at Levitt Pavilion in MacArthur Park. Kids can enjoy a free fun, interactive, circus clown extravaganza complete with puppetry, stilt-walkers, dancers, trampoline tricksters and more. The Pavilion is located at 2230 W. 6th St. For more information call (213) 384-5701 or email info@levittLA.org.

6-9pm—Hot August Night: A Neil Diamond Tribute. Come enjoy a musical tribute to Neil Diamond at the Eagle Rock Recreation Center and support the annual Concert in the Park series. Center is located at 1100 Eagle Vista Drive. For more information call (323) 254-5295.

Tuesday, August 14
4-6pm—Summer Picnic at Bell Gardens Neighborhood Youth Center.
Bring a picnic and eat “al fresco” with your neighbors; enjoy other activities including races, crafts, music, and more. Free for children ages 7-12. The youth center is located at 5856 Ludell Street. For more information, call (562) 806-7667.

Wednesday, August 15
10am-2pm—LA Downtown VA Clinic Hosting Open House.
Veterans and their families can learn about local job opportunities with employers like LAPD, Vons, and Chase Bank, and learn more about healthcare enrollment and needs. Veterans in the healthcare system that bring a fellow Veteran who gets enrolled, receives a super gift bag that includes a towel, blanket and flash drive. The Los Angeles Ambulatory Care Center is located at 351 East Temple Street. For more information contact Charles Green at (424) 645-9865 or visit www.losangeles.va.gov.

Los Angeles Mayoral Candidate Forum presented by Ya Basta and the East Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce
on Thurs., Aug. 16 from 6 to 8 p.m. Refreshments available. Location: La Casa del Mexicano, 2900 Calle Pedro Infante in Boyle Heights. For more information, contact Art Pullido at (323) 854-1473 or email Jose Aguilar at aguilarcd14@gmail.com

Penny Lane Centers presents “Arms Open Wide” fundraising/comedy event on Aug. 19 at 6pm. Laugh and enjoy a great time supporting LGBTQ foster youth and their families with comedians featured on Comedy Central, Chelsea Lately, and more. Location: Eleven Bar and Nightclub, 8811 Santa Monica Blvd. in West Hollywood. For more information visit www.pennylane.org or email nbarakat@pennylane.org.

It’s almost time for the Charity Golf Classic 2012 presented by the Bell Gardens Chamber of Commerce. Buy a ticket before they are completely sold out. $175 per player; includes lunch, drinks and dinner. Registration at 9 am; 11 am is the shotgun start and on course lunch; there will be an awards banquet at 4 pm. The Montebello Country Club is located at 901 Via San Clemente Montebello, Ca 90640. For more information call the Bell Gardens Chamber of Commerce at (562) 806-2355.

Geek Squad Summer Academy will have its two-day run starting August 25 at the Boyle Heights Technology Youth Center.
Students will learn about the latest technologies in fun and interactive ways with classes on programming, digital photography, digital music and more. $10 fee goes towards a drawstring backpack, a 1GB USB drive, a t-shirt, and lunch for two days. Sign up today at http://geeksquad.com/summeracademy.

Sponsors needed for 4th Annual Taste of East LA at the East Los Angeles Civic Center on Sept. 8. The family-friendly event features over 20 restaurants in East LA, live bands, mariachis, DJ’s and more and is hosted by the East Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce. For sponsorship opportunities call (323) 578-0513 or email eddie.torres@att.net.

Pan American Bank Offers Tickets to Chivas USA Games to Small Business Owners to either the Sept.15th or Sept. 29th game at the Home Depot Center. To qualify, small business owners must provide the last three months of credit and debit card processing statements for review by a Pan American Bank rep, who will show you how to save money. Non-profit organizations can also participate. For more information, email Alex Penaloza at apenaloza@panamericanbank.us or call Alex at (323) 264-3310.

Montebello High Class of 1972 will hold its 40th Year Reunion on Sept. 15, from 6pm until the wee hours at the Masonic Banquet Hall in Whittier. Other classes from the 70s are also invited. Rekindle friendships and memories as you enjoy an evening of dinner & dancing. Tickets: $65 per person before Aug. 31/$75 after. Casual dress. For more information or to purchase tickets, call (323) 728-2728.

Submit an event or announcement to the Community Calendar: email calendar@egpnews.com. All submissions subject to space availability. Paid advertising available; for more information, email advertise@egpnews.com or call (323) 341-7970.

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