abruptly ended his controversial eight-year tenure as head of the J. Paul Getty Trust
on Thursday, agreeing to resolve 'any continuing disputes' by paying the Getty $250,000
and giving up severance pay and benefits that would have exceeded $1.2 million."
Munitz is the former chancellor of the California State University.
"Munitz admitted no wrongdoing, and the trust did not specify the issues underlying his resignation. But the decision came after more than a year of relentless controversy at the Getty, much of which has centered on Munitz's leadership."
Getty board chairman John
"Biggs would not comment on whether the departure related to the committee's findings but said the $250,000 payment by Munitz was a 'ballpark' figure to cover 'disputed items' that are part of the attorney general's review."
Which is worse--having to pay $250,000 to be fired or being traded for a bunny rabbit
Meanwhile, Susan Kennedy
continues to make more news than her boss. Robert Salladay reports for the Times "Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's new chief of staff, who is spearheading a $9-billion plan to improve California's water system, was paid $120,000 last year by a Los Angeles developer
seeking to build a massive water storage project under the Mojave Desert."
"According to interviews and her financial disclosure statement, Susan P. Kennedy earned $10,000 per month in 2005 as a consultant to Cadiz Real Estate, operated by her longtime friend Keith Brackpool
Meanwhile, Don Perata
announced his strategy for an ad campaign to encourage support for his infrastructure bond proposal.
"Using images of an old clunker and Hurricane Katrina damage, state Senate leader Don Perata will launch an unusual $275,000 television ad campaign
today to promote his infrastructure bond proposal in mostly Republican-leaning areas of the state," reports Kevin Yamamura in the Bee.
It might not be so unusual once we figure out who's getting paid to make and place the ads.
"Perata, a Democrat, focuses on aspects of his $13 billion bond this year that would pay for freeway improvements and flood protection in the two ads."
Senate Republican Leader Dick Ackerman
thinks Perata is wasting his money. "'I would encourage him to spend a lot more,' Ackerman said. 'That's almost like putting an ad in Orange County saying, 'Call your legislators and tell them you want to raise taxes.'
"'I hope he pays for a lot of those ads. It would take money away from (legislative) campaigns. In fact, I may even call him up and suggest it to him.'"
Well, since there's only one competitive Senate race this fall, we doubt that's much of a problem.
From our Soft Bigotry of Low Expectations Files
, the Steve Westly gubernatorial campaign piqued our interest when he promised the backing of a "major" labor union, to be announced at Sacramento's Cesar Chavez Park. Given the location, we thought maybe the controller had picked off the UFW endorsement.
So, imagine our surprise when we got the news that Westly had received the coveted backing of the California Association of Professional Scientists. No offense. We're sure these guys are plenty smart, but calling it a major labor endorsement is like calling Fairfield a major American city.
The OC Register uses four -- count 'em, four -- reporters to tell the story of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim's victory in court
"Jurors decided that owner Arte Moreno
had the right to name his team Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, ending a yearlong battle with the ball club's hometown and a monthlong trial. The verdict brought tears of joy to Moreno."
Moreno also reportedly welled up while watching a Summer's Eve commercial during CSI earlier this week.
"The city has spent more than $2 million on the case. Mayor Curt Pringle
defended the decision, saying the name is worth more than $100million to Anaheim. 'I feel that it was the right thing to do to defend that asset," Pringle said.'"Boxer knocks out Sheehan
: After talking it over with Barbara Boxer
, Cindy Sheehan
has decided not to challenge Dianne Feinstein
in the June primary for U.S. Senate, reports Michael Finnegan in the Times. "'I am not running against Sen. Feinstein, but I will continue to be a thorn in her side
,' said Sheehan, who had been weighing a Senate run for weeks.'"
Feinstein can now focus on the November general against Richard Mountjoy
Meanwhile, Feinstein's office acknowledged a former staff member edited her Wikipedia profile
to delete unflattering details. Wikipedia recently blocked access to the open source encyclopedia to Capitol staffers for deleting truthful content about their members.
From our You Can't Run From the Law
Files: In Oakland, neighbors are irate at a man who has nearly 20 vehicles including cars, trucks and a sailboat parked in two-hour parking near his house
. Russ Daniels
moves the cars constantly to avoid getting tickets, although he isn't always successful.
"'I'm dancing as fast as I can,' Daniels said. 'What do people want me to do here, just vaporize?' That's pretty close to the sentiment expressed by some of his neighbors, even though Daniels has been avoiding parking in front of anyone's house anymore.
"His vehicles are parked along the side of a church and a business, both of which face MacArthur, in the 2-hour zone. But the people in the neighborhood still want the vehicles gone. At least one person has resorted to vandalism to persuade Daniels."
"Apparently the city is doing something because Daniels is getting parking tickets like crazy. He estimates he's gotten about a hundred tickets in the past few years
, and the enforcement has been stepped up."
"Daniels said he wants to leave, but he can't. The computer technician who is currently unemployed plans to move up to Lassen County where he has property and start an orchard. But, he said, he's bogged down in red tape with all the tickets, and keeping an eye on his vehicles so they don't get vandalized."
"'I've done nothing but go about my business and try to get out of people's way,' Daniels said. 'I feel like I'm in a video game where there's no exit.
Arnold Schwarzenegger may be losing naming rites at the Graz soccer stadium, but at least he has a species of genetic freak named after him
. The Schwarzenegger mice "are large rodents created by Lee Sweeney, a doctor at the University of Pennsylvania, with the introduction of a gene that stimulates muscle growth. Similar mice have been engineered at the Salk Institute in California, where there is a mouse called Lance (as in Armstrong), whose genetic make-up was altered to produce high levels of endurance muscle. Lance can run for twice as long on a treadmill as normal mice."
Reports out of the institute say the mice recently filed for divorce from Sheryl Crow