If you think our city's financial problems are of little interest outside city borders, consider the recent question posed by German Chancellor Angela Merkel. She happened to be in town last week, meeting with civic leaders to talk about... civic leader stuff. (If you come to this blog for journalism, sorry to disappoint you.)
To me, the most noteworthy thing came during a roundtable discussion with our city's First Deputy Mayor, Austin Beutner. Beutner had just been appointed interim head of our beleaguered Department of Water and Power, because the last interim leader couldn't stop the beleaguering. At one point in the discussion, without any apparent prompting, Merkel asked Beutner what the deal was with the DWP's financial problems, and their effect on the city's deficit.
The Chancellor of Germany is asking about our DWP?? Then I remembered: Berlin is L.A.'s sister city.
So is this a matter of family just looking out for us? Or are our problems so enormous that they're drawing international attention?
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