Stories for July 1997

Monday, July 28

ELSEWHERE

Seattle and Los Angeles when it comes to aerospace, it really is a tale of two cities.

Digest

Two affiliated investment partnerships in Burbank, Trefoil Capital Investors II L.P. and Trefoil Israel Partners L.P., announced last week that they have sold half of their 22.5 percent stake in Israel's largest industrial enterprise, Koor Industries Inc.

space

Los Angeles may have lost its place as the country's biggest airplane factory, but it is emerging as the country's biggest satellite factory.

lippo

Illegal campaign funding is the current hot topic on Capitol Hill, but managers at downtown L.A.'s beleagured Lippo Bank say they are more concerned with correcting years of poor banking practices than any misdeeds in the funding scandal.

newsmakers

Robert Brown has been named vice president of creative services at Baxter Gurian & Mazzei Inc., an agency which specializes in medical and health care marketing communications. He will work out of the agency's Los Angeles office.

lastories

Rumor has it that heads were rolling at Walt Disney Co. last week, with the fury emanating from none other than top dog Michael Eisner himself.

consolidation

Crunched by defense cutbacks and global competition, the aerospace industry has undergone radical consolidation in the 1990s, most recently highlighted by the announced merger of Los Angeles-based Northrop Grumman Corp. with Bethesda, Md.-based Lockheed M

WEEKLY BRIEFING

Boutique-sized retailers face a host of challenges when they open their stores, from devising budgets to getting the word out. But Linda Scharlin and her business partner and longtime friend, Sylvia Yellin, took on additional emotional challenges when the

history

In January 1910, Los Angeles played host to the nation's first air show, a 10-day affair held on a dusty expanse in Dominguez Hills. Aviators, engineers and flight enthusiasts from all over the world attended the exhibition, where they watched pilots comp

de la Rocha

As the president of the Los Angeles City Ethics Commission, Raquelle de la Rocha has one of the most important non-elected positions in Los Angeles city government.

ontario

Dave Charest has been named senior manager for Grant Thornton LLP's management consulting practice. Charest will work out of the firm's Los Angeles, Irvine and Woodland Hills offices and will work within the company's Information Technology practice.

FORUM

The international media coverage surrounding the murder of international fashion designer Gianni Versace has raised the issue of personal safety for high-level business executives. In the minutes leading up to his death, Versace had returned to his home f

entrenote

At the heart of leadership is power a fact of life in business. Power is an aspect of social reality that many have tried desperately to remove from organizations.

l-vint

Your article on corporate headquarters leaving Los Angeles ("Corporate Powers Keep Leaving," July 14) reminded me that within the past few weeks I read that business taxes are much higher in Los Angeles than elsewhere in the Southland. I also seem to reca

layoffs

Alice Lee still remembers the day four years ago when she was handed her pink slip, like so many fellow engineers working at McDonnell Douglas Corp.'s space division.

Company Index

Accountants Overload 51

renegade

Darrell Van Citters certainly has enjoyed the national attention he and his Burbank animation boutique have attracted for their creation of a burger-swallowing tattoo that runs around on the body of basketball bad boy Dennis Rodman.

oped

Enough has been written about estate planning in recent years to fill several editions of the Encyclopedia Britannica. But one bit of advice unavailable in all the tomes on this subject is that the best time to sell a business is right now.

football

Just two months after city officials and developers finally unified behind a plan for rebuilding Memorial Coliseum, proponents of alternate sites are getting the attention of some elected officials.

LIST

Los Angeles County's temporary employment industry continues to boom as the region's economy improves.

entjobs

Economic pressures are forcing even some of the largest studios in Hollywood to change the way they operate, and studio workers have the pink slips to prove it.

renegade box

Driving force: Strong demand by TV advertisers for more animated commercials, and for coupling animation with live action

anecdotes

The history of L.A.'s aviation industry revolves around a handful of larger-than-life figures such as Howard Hughes, Donald Douglas and Jack Northrop. But there are thousands of others pilots, engineers and assembly-line workers who fueled the re

newsmaker

Bruce Silverman's career has spawned such memorable slogans as American Express' "Don't leave home without it," and Pace Picante's "This stuff's made in New York City!" (which has cowboys ranting about the origin of salsas).

computercol

Healthy PC from Symantec is one of those little utility programs that promises to give your system a checkup and either fix, or tell you how to fix, any problems with your hard disk. It looks for viruses and checks to make sure your hard disk is set up pr

image

When word flashed on news wires that Northrop Grumman Corp. had agreed to be acquired by Lockheed Martin Corp., it represented more than just another huge takeover deal. For Los Angeles, Northrop was the last of the big aerospace companies to be snapped u

Freeman

Past Employers: New York Power Authority, Sacramento Municipal Utility District, Tennessee Valley Authority, Lower Colorado River Authority.

samo

The bank's dilemma may seem like a desirable one what to do with a pool of excess capital that has accumulated in the course of a recent turnaround.

persfi

Can trees grow to the sky? This stock market's astonishing rate of ascent has given pause even to people like me who think investors should buy and hold.

wsw

Last week, this space mentioned the difficulty that small companies have in gaining "sponsorship," or the backing of a brokerage and the recognition of institutional investors.

recolumn

J.H. Snyder Co. is heading for the suburbs in its latest development deal, a $35 million shopping center in Granada Hills at the site of the former Coast Savings Bank administrative headquarters.

TDC

Transpacific Development Co. is "seriously considering" going public through a real estate investment trust and could file a prospectus with the Securities and Exchange Commission within the next 90 days, TDC President Tom Irish said last week.

l-kingston

It is unfortunate that your reporter chose to ignore the important and valuable current business activities of the Century Housing Corp. in his recent article ("Century Freeway Done, but Housing Agency Lingers," July 14).

l-arias

As the president of Metropolitan Los Angeles Communities In Schools (a member of CIS, our nation's largest stay-in-school program) and long-time resident of the San Fernando Valley community, I feel compelled to express my disappointment with your editori

marketcol

Last month, Howard Paster got a call from an attorney representing a very large corporation that was involved in a takeover battle.

WESTWOOD

Westwood Village has become a hotbed of development activity in recent months and that activity has prompted Malibu-based developer Larry Taylor to go on a buying spree.

Monday, July 21

Midcities

Speculative construction has been percolating in the Mid-Cities industrial sector for several months, and now that "spec" activity is expanding into the market's office sector.

Lents

On July 31 James Lents will leave his post as executive officer of the South Coast Air Quality Management District, a position he has held for 11 years.

Digestadd

The California Public Employees' Retirement System, the largest purchaser of health care in the state, last week warned that the U.S. Senate version of Medicare reform legislation would have a "drastic" effect on California especially the Los Angeles ar

Simpson

The O.J. Simpson ordeal brought gawkers, paparazzi and a perpetual police presence to his Brentwood Park neighborhood. But amid all that turmoil, neighborhood property values held steady.

Oped-Landau

Beverly Hills-based Arden Realty Inc. last week announced that it bought seven properties for a combined $188.4 million during the second quarter, bringing its year-to-date acquisition outlay to $245 million.

Shamrock

Roy E. Disney, 67-year-old family scion and vice chairman of Burbank-based Walt Disney Co., sold 1.2 million shares of Disney stock in June.

Listory

While public-sector projects still account for the bulk of billings for L.A.-area general contractors, the amount of private-sector work is growing, according to this week's List. And that private-sector demand may soon soar, industry sources said.

Newsmakers

Linda Krakowsky Jackson has been promoted to vice president, group director at advertising agency McCann-Erickson Los Angeles. She will spearhead advertising efforts for the Nutritional Products Division of Nestl & #233; USA. Jackson was vice president, manageme

Weekly Briefing

Q We haul away and dispose of waste from the entertainment industry. Many of these items can be recycled into industrial and/or consumer products but I need financing to build that end of my business. Do you know where I can look?

Tri-Cities

Office vacancy rates in the Tri-Cities of Burbank, Glendale and Pasadena have dropped to the single digits over the past year, sending rents upward and pushing several new developments.

Sangabe

Developers are squeezing more industrial space out of the San Gabriel Valley market despite the shortage of large parcels of vacant land.

Vargas

A: I want to retire (laughing). I haven't thought about it. I feel that there are so many challenges right here that I haven't even thought about tomorrow.

LA Stories

Versace-mania swept the nation last week, with shoppers scrambling to buy up anything bearing the label of Gianni Versace, who was gunned down outside his Miami Beach mansion.

Newsmaker

Nellie Seddigh eats breakfast at Tiffany's almost every day. As the new director of the Beverly Hills store of Tiffany & Co., she oversees all operations for the jewelry store.

Disability

Sheriff deputies, firefighters and other county employees are garnering an ever-rising tide of disability payments and it's largely hidden from public view.

Digest

Hoping to profit from the burgeoning market for soundstages, Los Angeles and Swiss developers proposed a $150 million movie studio and hotel/entertainment facility in Culver City.

Wilshire Corridor

Commercial real estate leasing along the Wilshire Corridor was little changed over the last quarter, but the consensus among brokers was that it's just the calm before the storm.

WSW

It's a word being heard more and more on Wall Street West lately, although, of course, the idea has been around for generations.

JPL

Its scientists have watched the heavens for more than 60 years, but these days the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Canada Flintridge is itself a star.

Forum

Scrambling to take advantage of a shrinking federal deficit, the House, Senate and White House are each proposing their own tax cut plans and each includes a capital gains tax cut. The benefits could include an infusion of capital into the economy, as i

Valley

A few major San Fernando Valley commercial tenants have announced plans to relocate but they're not really going anywhere.

Contents

Overview: L.A.'s vacancy rate kept dropping in the second quarter, as markets tightened in Burbank, Glendale and many parts of the Westside.

South Bay

After being pummeled by aerospace industry losses for much of the late 1980s and early '90s, the South Bay industrial real estate market is seeing something of a rebirth. The area has posted its lowest industrial vacancy rate in 10 years and is finally st

Downtown

Real estate analysts have cautioned for years that recovery of the downtown office market may take some time.

Gracie

L.A. County Sheriff Deputy Charles Cabarrubias was on the street wrestling with a powerful and belligerent suspect, an ex-con wanted in the violent assault of two officers in the city of Paramount. After several minutes of fighting, Cabarrubias unhooked h

Cosco

The Port of Long Beach has reached an agreement with the U.S. Navy that port officials say will allow construction to begin next year on a shipping terminal on former Navy property.

Foreign

Lost amid the recent departures of First Interstate, Security Pacific, Crocker, California Federal and Great Western is the flourishing foreign bank sector.

Company Index

Bank of Taiwan 1

Inland

The booming market for big box industrial space in Southern California keeps drawing developers to the Inland Empire, where speculative warehouses of hundreds of thousands of square feet are being built and in many cases leased before construction is comp

ENTREPRENEUR'S NOTEBOOK

The selection process for the next LAPD chief is in the final stretch. There are presently six candidates for the post. At the end of this month the Police Commission will forward the names of three of the candidates to Mayor Richard Riordan. He will choo

Interview

Over the past decade, KTTV-TV Channel 11 has gone from a sleepy local station to Fox Broadcasting Co.'s Los Angeles powerhouse emerging as the most-watched station on weeknights among men and women aged 18 to 54.

Overview

The quarter was ushered in with the closing of the "deal of the decade" the $480 million sale of the Century Plaza Towers. It ended with Marvin Davis paying one of the highest per-foot prices in West Coast history (nearly $400) to buy back Fox Plaza.

Pilots

Back in 1919, after a career spent captaining cargo vessels up and down the West Coast and guiding whaling expeditions in the icy waters off Alaska, Norwegian seaman Jacob Jacobsen was ready to build a new life on land.

Merisel

Strapped for cash and weakened by competitors, one of the world's biggest computer-wholesaling operations is teetering on the brink of bankruptcy.

Cyber

There is the on-line shopping world (still largely unproven), and the real-life shopping world. Tuck Rickards is looking to marry the two.

Gracie Spotlight

Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Academy

Computer Column

The company's market share has fallen by half in the past 18 months. Its stock has plunged to the cellar. The board just laid off the third CEO in four years. Is there any good news at Apple Computer?

Marketplace

When the creators of "Marketplace" sat down to design a business radio program, they wanted a show that would appeal to the masses.

HMO

Five months after declaring a compromise on city taxes that would keep five L.A.-based health maintenance organizations from leaving town, negotiators still have not reached a final agreement and a deal may not be cut for months.

Real Estate Column

After years of being tightly shut, the spigot for speculative office construction appears to be opening gradually in the Los Angeles area.

Disney

Continuing to expand its real estate empire, Walt Disney Co. has submitted plans to the city of Burbank for a new 10-story office tower on its studio lot facing the Ventura (134) Freeway.

CRA

Hamstrung by a court ruling, Los Angeles redevelopment officials say they will increasingly rely on the private sector to complete improvements to the city's downtown core.

Persfi

With trading volume on the New York Stock Exchange reaching about 500 million shares a day, have you stopped to wonder who's handling all those shares?

Westside

The Westside office market furthered its almost two-year-long resurgence in the second quarter, with vacancy rates continuing to shrink and rents edging higher. Some real estate observers are even declaring certain neighborhoods "landlords' markets."

North County

"No Vacancy" is what faces companies looking for industrial space in the Santa Clarita Valley. Located in the northernmost reaches of Los Angeles County, the area has a 1.2 percent industrial vacancy rate, according to CB Commercial Real Estate Group Inc.

Hansen

When L.A. City Councilman Richard Alarcon walks along a jogging path overlooking Hansen Dam in the Northeast San Fernando Valley, he sees two deep gravel pits and an outdated steam plant.

Ventura

For more than three years, Ventura County real estate brokers have been trying to sell an aging, 1960s-era industrial building near the Oxnard Airport.

Monday, July 14

Oped-Levine

A walk down a major street in many cities will likely result in at least one solicitation by a beggar seeking spare change. Some city streets resemble an obstacle course, with residents dodging and weaving to avoid confrontations with beggars in their pat

TCG

They've become a familiar site at museums and various family attractions theaters with giant, multi-story screens showing documentaries on space, nature and wildlife.

Leaving

That question, pondered by shell-shocked L.A. executives throughout the recessionary years of the early 1990s, is at center stage again following the announcement that Northrop Grumman Corp. will close its Century City headquarters after it is acquired by

L-Morales

As a breast cancer survivor, I want to express my gratitude to the 8,000 Southlanders who walked with me in the American Cancer Society's Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk-by-the-sea in Santa Monica June 8. The Bank of America Team was among those

Interview-Rodgers

Anthony D. Rodgers

Violins

Hans Benning sits in his shop, running a tiny finger plane over the backside of a cello, painstakingly sculpting a rough slab of mountain-grown maple into a smooth and graceful contour.

Staying

In the three years the Business Journal has published the List of Fastest Growing Public Companies in Los Angeles, only five companies have had the staying power to appear each time.

Century

When Caltrans built the Century Freeway, it did more than create the last major freeway in Los Angeles.

Sprint

"Small business owners have less time to monitor changes in the industry and need to rely on their vendors to proactively provide updates on new products and services."

Smallbiz

Like many small business owners, Arthur Davis wants to steer his company in a new direction but he has his hands full just keeping the ship afloat.

Correction

In a June 23 article, "Senator Revives Debate Over Stadium with Public Hearing," the Business Journal incorrectly described the land ownership in the area where South Park Sports Inc. wants to build a football stadium. A portion of the land is owned by Tr

Killinger

After swallowing two of Southern California's biggest thrifts, Washington Mutual Inc. is setting its sights on becoming a West Coast powerhouse capable of taking on BankAmerica Corp. and Wells Fargo & Co. in the consumer banking arena.

Digest

The Los Angeles City Council will consider placing a one-year moratorium on its own new law banning the use of leaf blowers within 500 feet of homes.

Company Index

COMPANY INDEX

Playa

The long delays in breaking ground for the massive Playa Vista project has put the brakes on a $280 million bond measure to pay for public improvements to the site delays that could adversely affect the bond ratings, analysts say.

Newsmaker

After 27 years of guiding publicity efforts at Carl Terzian Associates, Tom Tomlin is moving to Century City and forming his own public relations firm Tom Tomlin Associates.

Westwood

A lawsuit between developer Ira Smedra and Cinamerica Theaters L.P. was recently decided, but their feud raged on last week.

Northrop

If and when Northrop Grumman Corp. completes its proposed merger with Lockheed Martin Corp., its Century City headquarters will pack up and head east to Lockheed's Bethesda, Md. home base.

Computer Column

For expert users deeply familiar with the Internet, it is a superb place to do research, using the extensive sources available through newsgroups. But for the rest of us who may just want to look something up from time to time, there are some excellent si

Real Estate Column

The latest to join the growing list of office buildings commanding top prices is the so-called California Federal Bank building at 12001 San Vicente Blvd., near the corner of Saltair Avenue in Brentwood.

Subway

Kent Hagan likes the fact that his business, Toyota of North Hollywood, is visible from the Ventura (134) Freeway. It's the cranes, dust and debris engulfing his car dealership that drive him crazy.

Edit1111

Whenever policymakers try convincing their constituencies that something could be made better, they had better first establish the need to change that certain something. Otherwise, why bother?

Kyser

There are many stories to tell about the economy of Los Angeles County. One is about an economy that is growing at a brisk pace again. Another is about continued turmoil in the business base. Still another story is about both emerging and existing indu

Mayor

Mayor Richard Riordan has announced an ambitious agenda for his second term, including implementation of a new business tax system and boosting community economic improvement plans.

TV Critics

For three weeks this month, more than 100 television reviewers from across the country will set up camp at the Ritz-Carlton in Pasadena for the annual Television Critics Association summer press tour.

Smartalk

Robert Lorsch, founder and chief executive of SmarTalk TeleServices Inc. in Westwood, likes to think of his success as a real Horatio Alger tale.

Xerox

"Printers, copiers and fax machines scattered throughout the workplace are stand-alone devices in a networked world."

L-Brogin

This is in response to your recent editorial on Universal Studios ("Shrinking Universe," June 23). Who is underwriting your paper now Orlando Fla., home of many of the competitors to Universal Studios Hollywood?

Internet Facts

Estimated number of new jobs created by the Internet in 1996, worldwide: 1.1 million

Nextel

OPTIMIZING YOUR COMPANY & #237;S WIRELESS TELECOM SYSTEM BY EXPLORING THE LATEST HIGH-TECH ALTERNATIVES

Giorgio

The familiar white and yellow stripes grace Giorgio's store awning and product line stripes that became world famous after the successful launch of its signature perfume in 1981.

L-Berger

Martin Kristal's attack on Westwood residents who have raised sincere concerns about the impact the Village Center Westwood project will have on their quality of life ("Friends of Westwood Blocking Progress," June 30) is very troubling. Kristal has insult

L-Whittle

Santa Monica-based Hamagami/Carroll & Associates has named Jim Berte head of the firm's corporate communications division. He will be responsible for the creative development, management and design of annual reports, collateral systems and corporate ident

Alameda

The movement of information, products and services from one location to another is integral to every business transaction we conduct. As we hurtle through the Information Age into the 21st Century, the speed and efficiency in which we transport our infor

Intranets

PULL QUOTE: "The attractiveness of Intranet technology lies not just in lowering networking costs and high return on investments, but in improved communications between employees, customers and suppliers."

Forum

One of the few remaining large aerospace companies headquartered in Los Angeles Northrop Grumman Corp. has agreed to be acquired by Lockheed Martin Corp. It is expected to mean the loss of jobs at the company's Century City headquarters and at plants

Gone

For Quarterdeck Corp., it was the kind of growth many companies dream of but few actually experience.

First Person

Managing a "mom-and-pop" retail store can be a challenge when your competition is a discount warehouse-type national chain. Advertising, pricing, even inventory can be dictated by what the competition carries. But Frank Ponder, general manager of Bel-Air

Health Column

Daniel Freeman Hospitals and Saint John's Health Center have signed a letter of intent to form a joint operating company that will pool the two organizations' resources but maintain their separate identities.

GST

"In today's information age, adequate bandwith capacity is vital to insuring fast, reliable transfer of voice, data and video information."

Call Centers

"A broad, global approach to call center technology is more critical today than ever before--even for so-called "local" businesses..."

Cartoonsville

Steven Scarduzio figures he knows enough about kids and parents to make one whopper of a bet: That instead of trekking to the local Chuck E. Cheese for the usual pizza/video experience, they'll be willing to try out a variation of the theme on the ground

Rodeo

Twenty five years ago this month, a group of local merchants banded together to pursue the lofty goal of elevating a three-block stretch of retail shops to international prominence.

Electric

Nearly a year after its grand opening, the electric vehicle-charging station at the Costco store in Lancaster sits empty most days. In fact, it gets used on average about once every two days.

Persfi

All mutual fund investors get an annual report, showing how much the fund gained or lost. You probably assume that your personal investment did the same.

Listory

Based on Los Angeles' 100 fastest-growing public companies, there's a full-on sales boom going on.

The Future is now

Chief executives at L.A.'s biggest savings and loans might be feeling more secure about their future these days, ever since Washington Mutual Inc. agreed to pay a premium price to acquire Great Western Financial Corp. of Chatsworth.

Untangling the Web

Core business: Manufacture of extra-strong immersible non-metallic parts for sewage treatment plants

Monday, July 7

Power

The power play of the century is going on now in the back rooms of L.A.'s biggest energy users.

Smallbiz

In the film "The Graduate," there is a famous scene in which an older man tries to give a one-word piece of career advice to the confused college graduate played by Dustin Hoffman.

Company Index

Aerostar Capital 1

Bonds

Not since the 1994 Northridge earthquake will one event have such an effect on the construction industry in Los Angeles.

Northrop

The last big aerospace company headquartered in L.A. seemed destined to disappear last week after Bethseda, Md.-based Lockheed Martin Corp. announced that it will buy Century City-based Northrop Grumman Corp. in a deal valued at $11.6 billion.

Forum

Ruben Zacarias was sworn in as the 43rd superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District last week. A 31-year veteran of the school district, he most recently served as the deputy superintendent. Being an insider thrust him to the forefront durin

Wage

With the economy for institutional furniture manufacturers improving, Torrance-based Virco Manufacturing Inc. is shutting down its 25-year-old, 700-employee plant in Sonora, Mexico, and shifting production back to Los Angeles.

Bonds Box

Voter-Approved School Bonds

Cinema

Edwards Theaters Circuit Inc. will announce plans this week to build a 22-screen cinema and nine-story-high Imax theater at the Howard Hughes Entertainment Center in Westchester.

Dunlop

On the day Albert J. Dunlap was named chairman and chief executive of Sunbeam Corp. last summer, Sunbeam's stock price soared 59 percent. It is believed to be the single biggest jump in New York Stock Exchange history, based on the naming of a CEO.

WSW

If you had any doubt that the securities industry is doing well, cast them aside and look at these numbers, courtesy of New York-based brokerage Smith Barney: There were 269,369 stockbrokers nationwide in the first quarter, an all-time record, and up a he

Tele-TV

Two months ago, Pacific Bell launched a brand new, technically advanced television system in Los Angeles and Orange counties unlike anything the marketplace had ever seen before.

Virco

With the economy for institutional furniture manufacturers improving, Torrance-based Virco Manufacturing Inc. is shutting down its 25-year-old, 700-employee plant in Sonora, Mexico, and shifting production back to Los Angeles.

Insurance Listory

L.A.'s insurance brokerage industry is both booming and consolidating, with more than one-third of the businesses on the List posting double-digit revenue growth in 1996.

Market Column

Roger Richman appears to be doing quite well as a talent agent, considering that nearly all his clients are dead.

LA Stories

During his second inaugural address last week, Mayor Richard Riordan spoke of Angelenos' optimism, vision for the future and ability to meet any challenge.

Pizza

New Yorkers are expected to take major seats at the table of that culinary embodiment of the L.A. lifestyle, California Pizza Kitchen Inc.

L-Rosten

The owner of Galpin Ford last week signed an agreement to buy an abandoned manufacturing plant in Burbank, where he plans to develop a multi-franchise car dealership that sells and services new and used cars.

GM Plants

Development plans for the former General Motors plant in Van Nuys firmed up last week with the announcement that the project would break ground within three months and that four major retail tenants had signed leases.

Boeing

Los Angeles International Airport's Master Plan will come a little closer to reality this weekend, when the Department of Airports begins its latest series of public meetings on the ambitious, multi-billion-dollar expansion proposal.

Briefing

Q Our manufacturing company is moving to a 50,000-square-foot site near Los Angeles International Airport and we need to borrow $4 million dollars for the plant and equipment purchase. Would an Industrial Development Bond (IDB) make sense for us, and what

Q & A Shaffer

Riding herd over $21.7 billion in assets is Kenneth Shaffer, chief investment officer for the Los Angeles County Employee Retirement Association, commonly called LACERA.

L-Chacon

It seems that certain groups think California voters don't understand democracy. Why else would these groups, the ones that purport to advocate for our best interests, take the same tired health care proposals to the Legislature after we defeated them in

TRW

An increasing demand for satellites and space-related products has triggered a hiring surge at TRW Inc., which has added 2,900 workers at its Redondo Beach facility since 1994 and aims to hire another 1,200 by year's end.

Health Column

Just when the folks at Kaiser Permanente were starting to feel good about life again, the California Supreme Court slapped the nation's largest HMO back to reality last week.

Persfi

Different lenders use different rules for determining how big a risk a borrower is. Here's how you'd be ranked at Presidential Home Finance in Wayne, Pa., which lends in 22 states:

Newsmakers

Carlos Darquea has been appointed executive vice president, creative director and partner at Ahlman & Associates in Westlake Village. He will be responsible for the creative end of all accounts including the development of strategic positioning, concepts,

Cable

We may be about to find out, as officials with cable TV operator Century Communications Corp. begin experimenting with the concept in Orange County.

The List

As the fortunes of Los Angeles businesses go, so go the fortunes of the public relations agencies that represent them. And most of the county's top shops reported healthy revenue growth in 1996.

Real Estate Column

The Arboretum office complex in Santa Monica was popping with news last week with Lowe Enterprises selling its Sony Music headquarters campus and then announcing it will build a new speculative office building elsewhere on the site.

Editorial

Although it may not seem so at first glance, the recent decision by a federal judge in the Digital Equipment keyboard case is a boon for computer users who sit at a keyboard every day and live in fear of repetitive stress injuries (RSI).

Newsmaker

He's a curve-ball hitter by night, but Dr. H. Rex Greene is better known for his work in the field of oncology.

Universal

Bowing to homeowner pressure, Universal Studios Inc. agreed last week to cut the size of its expansion project by more than 44 percent, eliminating a new theme park, scaling back additions to its retail center and trimming the number of new hotel rooms.

Heroin

In response to the growing use of heroin in Los Angeles and across the United States, two local hospitals have introduced competing, high-tech methods for treating opiate addiction.

Entrepreneur's Notebook

TEXT: Elizabeth Brandon-Brown will be online to answer questions about Direct Public Offerings from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. Thursday, July 17 on EC2's Cyber Chat site. Log on at http://www.ec2.edu.

Alfalfa

Already record-high alfalfa prices have jumped again in recent months, putting financial strains on Los Angeles' surprisingly large horse industry.

Studios

At Warner Bros., they don't just make movies and television shows. They make automobile covers, awnings, intricately carved wooden moldings, or just about any other hand-made item you can dream up.

Playa

Lenders threatening to foreclose on Rob Maguire's long-delayed Playa Vista project are keeping pressure on the L.A. developer, despite having struck a tentative new deal on the $8 billion project last week.

Earthlink

In the six months since Pasadena-based EarthLink Network Inc. held its initial public offering, the Internet service provider's share price has shot up, tumbled down, and clawed its way back to roughly where it began, at about $12.