Los Angeles County, California


Los Angeles County, California
County of Los Angeles
—  County  —

Flag

Seal
Map of Los Angeles County, with incorporated areas (islands not shown in actual positions); inset- location of the county in California
California's location in the US
Coordinates: 34°3′N 118°15′W / 34.05°N 118.25°W / 34.05; -118.25Coordinates: 34°3′N 118°15′W / 34.05°N 118.25°W / 34.05; -118.25
Country  United States
State  California
Region Southern California
Metro area Los Angeles metropolitan area
Incorporated 1850
Named for Named for the city of Los Angeles
County seat  Los Angeles
Incorporated cities 88
Government
 - Chief Executive Officer William T Fujioka
 - Board of Supervisors
Area
 - Total 4,752.32 sq mi (12,308.5 km2)
 - Land 4,060.87 sq mi (10,517.6 km2)
 - Water 691.45 sq mi (1,790.8 km2)
Highest elevation[1] 10,068 ft (3,069 m)
Lowest elevation[2] 0 ft (0 m)
Population
 - Total 9,818,605
 - Density 2,066.1/sq mi (797.7/km2)
Time zone Pacific Standard Time (UTC−8)
 - Summer (DST) Pacific Daylight Time (UTC−7)
ZIP Code 90001-90899, 91001-93599
Area code(s) 213, 310, 323, 424, 562, 626, 661, 818
Website lacounty.gov

Los Angeles County (incorporated as the County of Los Angeles)[3] is a county in the U.S. state of California. As of 2010 U.S. Census, the county had a population of 9,818,605, making it the most populous county in the United States. Los Angeles County alone is more populous than 42 individual U.S. states. The county seat is the city of Los Angeles, the largest city in California and the second-largest city in the United States (after New York City).

Los Angeles County also includes two offshore islands, San Clemente Island and Santa Catalina Island.The county is home to 88 incorporated cities and many unincorporated areas. At 4,083 square miles (10,570 km2), it is larger than the combined areas of the states of Rhode Island and Delaware.

The county is home to over a quarter of all California residents. One of the most diverse counties in the country, the county is home to the nation's largest urban Native American population.[4] Within its boundaries are most of the principal cities composing the Los Angeles metropolitan area, and is the core of the five counties that make up the Greater Los Angeles Area.

Contents

History

Los Angeles County was one of the original counties of California, created at the time of statehood in 1850.[5] The county's large area included parts of what is now Kern County, San Bernardino County, Riverside County and Orange County. These parts of the county's territory were given to San Bernardino County in 1853, to Kern County in 1866 and to Orange County in 1889. In 1893, part of San Bernardino County became Riverside County.

Geography

According to the 2000 census, the county has a total area of 4,752.32 square miles (12,308.5 km2), of which 4,060.87 square miles (10,517.6 km2) (or 85.45%) is land and 691.45 square miles (1,790.8 km2) (or 14.55%) is water.[6] Los Angeles County borders 70 miles (110 km) of coast on the Pacific Ocean and encompasses towering mountain ranges, deep valleys, forests, islands, lakes, rivers, and desert. The Los Angeles River, Rio Hondo, the San Gabriel River and the Santa Clara River flow in Los Angeles County, while the primary mountain ranges are the Santa Monica Mountains and the San Gabriel Mountains. The western extent of the Mojave Desert begins in the Antelope Valley, in the northeastern part of the county. Most of the population of Los Angeles County is located in the south and southwest, with major population centers in the Los Angeles Basin, San Fernando Valley and San Gabriel Valley. Other population centers are found in the Santa Clarita Valley, Crescenta Valley and Antelope Valley.

The county is divided west-to-east by the rugged San Gabriel Mountains, filled with coniferous forests and subject to plentiful snowfall in the winter. The San Gabriel Mountains are part of the Transverse Ranges of southern California, and are contained mostly within the Angeles National Forest. Most of the highest peaks in the county are located in the San Gabriel Mountains, including Mount San Antonio (10,068 ft) at the Los Angeles-San Bernardino county lines, Mount Baden-Powell (9,399 ft), Mount Burnham (8,997 ft), and the well-known Mount Wilson (5,710 ft) where the Mount Wilson Observatory is located. Several smaller, lower mountains are located in the northern, western, and southwestern parts of the county, including the San Emigdio Mountains, the southernmost part of Tehachapi Mountains, and the Sierra Pelona Mountains.

Major divisions of the county

Los Angeles, CA from the air

Cities

There are 88 incorporated cities in Los Angeles County. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, the most populous are: [7]

Unincorporated areas in Los Angeles County

Despite the large number of incorporated cities, most of the area of the county is unincorporated, and falls directly under the county government's jurisdiction. With no city government, residents of these areas must petition the appropriate member of the Board of Supervisors when they have a grievance about the quality of local services.[citation needed]

Census-designated places

Communities not census-designated

See: Los Angeles Almanac MAP: Unincorporated Areas and Communities of Los Angeles County

Adjacent counties

Los Angeles
Counties and bodies of water adjacent to Los Angeles County, California

National protected areas

Transportation infrastructure

Roads

The county has an extensive freeway network of legendary size and complexity, which is maintained by Caltrans and patrolled by the California Highway Patrol. It also has a vast urban and suburban street network, most of which is maintained by city governments. The county and most cities generally do a decent job of maintaining and cleaning streets. For more information about the primary exception, see the Transportation in Los Angeles article.

Both the freeways and streets are notorious for severe traffic congestion, and the area's freeway-to-freeway interchanges regularly rank among the top 10 most congested points in the country.

In addition to Metro Bus service, numerous cities within the county also operate their own bus companies and shuttle lines.

Major highways

Air

Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), located in the Westchester district, is the primary commercial airport for commercial airlines in the county and the Greater Los Angeles Area. LAX is operated by Los Angeles World Airports, an agency of the City of Los Angeles. Other important commercial airports in Los Angeles County include:

  • Long Beach Municipal Airport operated by the City of Long Beach
  • Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, operated by the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority
  • LA/Palmdale Regional Airport in Palmdale, also operated by Los Angeles World Airports. Palmdale Airport is planned for expanded commercial service to serve the Antelope Valley. The airport is a separate facility on the grounds of Air Force Plant 42.

The following general aviation airports also are located in Los Angeles County:

County operated airports (Department of Public Works, Aviation Division)
City operated airports

The U.S. Air Force also has two airports in Los Angeles County:

  • Portions of Edwards Air Force Base, located at the northern edge of the county, and
  • Air Force Plant 42 in Palmdale, sharing runways with LA/Palmdale Regional.

Train

Los Angeles is a major freight railroad transportation center, largely due to the large volumes of freight moving in and out of the county's port facilities. The ports are connected to the downtown rail yards and to the main lines of Union Pacific and Burlington Northern Santa Fe headed east via a grade-separated, freight rail corridor known as the Alameda Corridor.

Passenger rail service is provided in the county by Amtrak, Los Angeles Metro Rail and Metrolink.

Amtrak has the following intercity Amtrak service at Union Station in the city of Los Angeles.

Union Station is also the primary hub for Metrolink commuter rail, which serves much of the Greater Los Angeles Area.

Light rail, subway (heavy rail), and long-distance bus service are all provided by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro).

Sea

The county's two main seaports are the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach. Together they handle over a quarter of all container traffic entering the United States, making the complex the largest and most important port in the country, and the third-largest port in the world by shipping volume.

The Port of Los Angeles is the largest cruise ship center on the West Coast, handling more than 1 million passengers annually.

The Port of Long Beach is home to the Sea Launch program, which uses a floating launch platform to insert payloads into orbits that would be difficult to attain from existing land-based launch sites.

Ferries link the Catalina Island city of Avalon to the mainland.

Economy

Los Angeles County is commonly associated with the entertainment industry; all six major film studios—Paramount Pictures, 20th Century Fox, Sony, Warner Bros., Universal Pictures, and Walt Disney Studios—are located within the county. Beyond motion picture and television program production, other major industries of Los Angeles County are international trade supported by the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach, music recording and production, aerospace, and professional services such as law and medicine.

The following major companies have headquarters in Los Angeles County:

Demographics

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1850 3,530
1860 11,333 221.0%
1870 15,309 35.1%
1880 33,381 118.0%
1890 101,454 203.9%
1900 170,298 67.9%
1910 504,131 196.0%
1920 936,455 85.8%
1930 2,208,492 135.8%
1940 2,785,643 26.1%
1950 4,151,687 49.0%
1960 6,038,771 45.5%
1970 7,041,980 16.6%
1980 7,477,421 6.2%
1990 8,863,164 18.5%
2000 9,519,338 7.4%
2010 9,818,605 3.1%

2010

The 2010 United States Census reported that Los Angeles County had a population of 9,818,605. The racial makeup of Los Angeles County was 4,936,599 (50.3%) White, 856,874 (8.7%) African American, 72,828 (0.7%) Native American, 1,346,865 (13.7%) Asian (4.0% Chinese, 3.3% Filipino, 2.2% Korean, 1.0% Japanese, 0.9% Vietnamese, 0.8% Indian, 0.3% Cambodian, 0.3% Thai, 0.1% Pakistani), 26,094 (0.3%) Pacific Islander (0.1% Samoan), 2,140,632 (21.8%) from other races, and 438,713 (4.5%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4,687,889 persons (47.7%); 35.8% of Los Angeles County is Mexican, 3.7% Salvadoran, 2.2% Guatemalan, 0.5% Puerto Rican, 0.4% Cuban, 0.4% Honduran, 0.4% Nicaraguan, 0.3% Peruvian, 0.3% Colombian, and 0.2% Ecuadorian.[12]

The County
Total
Population
White
African
American
Native
American
Asian
Pacific
Islander
other
races
two or
more races
Hispanic
or Latino
(of any race)
Los Angeles County 9,818,605 4,936,599 856,874 72,828 1,346,865 26,094 2,140,632 438,713 4,687,889
  100% 50.3% 8.7% 0.7% 13.7% 0.3% 21.8% 4.5% 47.7%
Incorporated
city
Total
Population
White
African
American
Native
American
Asian
Pacific
Islander
other
races
two or
more races
Hispanic
or Latino
(of any race)
Agoura Hills 20,330 17,147 267 51 1,521 24 590 730 1,936
Alhambra 83,089 23,521 1,281 538 43,957 81 10,805 2,906 28,582
Arcadia 56,364 18,191 681 186 33,353 16 2,352 1,585 6,799
Artesia 16,522 6,446 589 94 6,131 40 2,630 592 5,910
Avalon 3,728 2,313 20 22 49 13 1,137 174 2,079
Azusa 46,361 26,715 1,499 562 4,054 87 11,270 2,174 31,328
Baldwin Park 75,390 33,119 913 674 10,696 85 27,079 2,824 60,403
Bell 35,477 19,098 337 315 259 8 13,899 1,561 33,028
Bell Gardens 42,072 20,824 377 476 261 37 18,787 1,310 40,271
Bellflower 76,616 32,337 10,760 731 8,865 615 19,732 3,576 40,085
Beverly Hills 34,109 28,112 746 48 3,032 12 485 1,674 1,941
Bradbury 1,048 652 22 4 276 0 59 35 218
Burbank 103,340 75,167 2,600 486 12,007 89 7,999 4,992 25,310
Calabasas 23,058 19,341 375 48 1,993 8 368 925 1,481
Carson 91,714 21,864 21,856 518 23,522 2,386 17,151 4,417 35,417
Cerritos 49,041 11,341 3,388 131 30,363 138 1,822 1,858 5,883
Claremont 34,926 24,666 1,651 172 4,564 38 2,015 1,820 6,919
Commerce 12,823 6,930 96 161 140 9 4,886 601 12,114
Compton 96,455 24,942 31,688 655 292 718 34,914 3,246 62,669
Covina 47,796 27,937 2,013 532 5,684 104 9,230 2,296 25,030
Cudahy 23,805 11,708 333 246 137 24 10,339 1,018 22,850
Culver City 38,883 23,450 3,694 191 5,742 81 3,364 2,361 9,025
Diamond Bar 55,544 18,434 2,288 178 29,144 106 3,237 2,157 11,138
Downey 111,772 63,255 4,329 820 7,804 221 30,797 4,546 78,996
Duarte 21,321 11,076 1,587 179 3,361 26 4,108 984 10,190
El Monte 113,475 44,058 870 1,083 28,503 131 35,205 3,625 78,317
El Segundo 16,654 12,997 337 68 1,458 38 799 957 2,609
Gardena 58,829 14,498 14,352 348 15,400 426 11,136 2,669 22,151
Glendale 191,719 136,226 2,573 531 31,434 122 12,146 8,687 33,414
Glendora 50,073 37,582 930 345 3,999 52 4,756 2,409 15,348
Hawaiian Gardens 14,254 6,477 546 178 1,513 57 4,929 554 11,010
Hawthorne 84,293 27,678 23,385 565 5,642 974 22,127 3,922 44,572
Hermosa Beach 19,506 16,928 229 49 1,111 46 325 818 1,632
Hidden Hills 1,856 1,713 37 3 42 1 30 30 123
Huntington Park 58,114 29,776 440 752 393 28 24,535 2,190 56,445
Industry 219 129 1 0 18 0 63 8 115
Inglewood 109,673 25,562 48,164 751 1,484 350 28,860 4,502 55,449
Irwindale 1,422 833 12 29 34 8 448 58 1,288
La Cañada Flintridge 20,246 13,959 109 24 5,214 5 245 690 1,267
La Habra Heights 5,325 3,855 47 26 841 6 333 217 1,254
La Mirada 48,527 29,462 1,099 394 8,650 142 6,670 2,110 19,272
La Puente 39,816 19,658 558 430 3,356 42 14,316 1,456 33,896
La Verne 31,063 23,057 1,065 265 2,381 61 2,822 1,412 9,635
Lakewood 80,048 44,820 6,973 564 13,115 744 9,249 4,583 24,101
Lancaster 156,633 77,734 32,083 1,519 6,810 362 29,728 8,397 59,596
Lawndale 32,769 14,274 3,320 301 3,269 367 9,374 1,864 20,002
Lomita 20,256 11,987 1,075 174 2,923 140 2,680 1,277 6,652
Long Beach 462,257 213,066 62,603 3,458 59,496 5,253 93,930 24,451 188,412
Los Angeles 3,792,621 1,888,158 365,118 28,215 426,959 5,577 902,959 175,635 1,838,822
Lynwood 69,772 27,444 7,168 464 457 206 31,652 2,381 60,452
Malibu 12,645 11,565 148 20 328 15 182 387 769
Manhattan Beach 35,135 29,686 290 59 3,023 49 409 1,619 2,440
Maywood 27,395 14,244 166 208 87 20 11,495 1,175 26,696
Monrovia 36,590 21,932 2,500 279 4,107 76 5,818 1,878 14,043
Montebello 62,500 33,633 567 634 6,850 58 18,431 2,327 49,578
Monterey Park 60,269 11,680 252 242 40,301 28 6,022 1,744 16,218
Norwalk 105,549 52,089 4,593 1,213 12,700 431 29,954 4,569 74,041
Palmdale 152,750 74,901 22,677 1,316 6,548 335 38,773 8,200 83,097
Palos Verdes Estates 13,438 10,346 161 21 2,322 8 94 486 631
Paramount 54,098 22,988 6,334 440 1,629 419 20,023 2,265 42,547
Pasadena 137,122 76,550 14,650 827 19,595 134 18,675 6,691 46,174
Pico Rivera 62,942 37,411 602 871 1,614 42 20,069 2,333 57,400
Pomona 149,058 71,564 10,924 1,763 12,688 282 45,171 6,666 105,135
Rancho Palos Verdes 41,643 25,698 1,015 80 12,077 41 748 1,984 3,556
Redondo Beach 66,748 49,805 1,852 291 8,004 199 2,725 3,872 10,142
Rolling Hills 1,860 1,437 29 5 303 2 24 60 102
Rolling Hills Estates 8,067 5,463 109 19 2,007 8 120 341 499
Rosemead 53,764 11,348 273 396 32,617 32 7,940 1,158 18,147
San Dimas 33,371 24,038 1,084 233 3,496 48 2,828 1,644 10,491
San Fernando 23,645 12,068 222 314 248 33 9,877 883 21,867
San Gabriel 39,718 10,076 388 220 24,091 43 3,762 1,138 10,189
San Marino 13,147 5,434 55 5 7,039 2 198 414 855
Santa Clarita 176,320 125,005 5,623 1,013 15,025 272 21,169 8,213 51,941
Santa Fe Springs 16,223 9,514 371 233 677 31 4,712 685 13,137
Santa Monica 89,736 69,663 3,526 338 8,053 124 4,047 3,985 11,716
Sierra Madre 10,917 8,967 201 44 835 9 390 471 1,628
Signal Hill 11,016 4,650 1,502 83 2,245 135 1,778 623 3,472
South El Monte 20,116 10,136 107 250 2,211 12 6,718 682 17,079
South Gate 94,396 47,645 890 878 732 99 40,624 3,528 89,442
South Pasadena 25,619 13,922 771 107 7,973 9 1,422 1,415 4,767
Temple City 35,558 11,941 283 150 19,803 31 2,316 1,034 6,853
Torrance 145,438 74,333 3,955 554 50,240 530 7,808 8,018 23,440
Vernon 112 99 4 0 2 0 7 0 48
Walnut 29,172 6,913 824 69 18,567 28 1,750 1,021 5,575
West Covina 106,098 45,432 4,741 1,045 27,333 198 22,641 4,708 56,471
West Hollywood 34,399 28,979 1,115 103 1,874 34 1,049 1,245 3,613
Westlake Village 8,270 7,326 98 12 490 13 114 217 533
Whittier 85,331 55,117 1,092 1,093 3,262 123 20,848 3,796 56,081
Census-designated
place
Total
Population
White
African
American
Native
American
Asian
Pacific
Islander
other
races
two or
more races
Hispanic
or Latino
(of any race)
Acton 7,596 6,564 57 70 155 5 451 294 1,373
Agua Dulce 3,342 2,854 59 24 78 3 223 101 611
Alondra Park 8,592 3,716 806 32 1,396 48 2,167 427 4,304
Altadena 42,777 22,569 10,136 300 2,307 71 4,852 2,542 11,502
Avocado Heights 15,411 8,564 136 107 1,359 13 4,726 506 12,648
Castaic 19,015 13,607 630 119 2,162 26 1,466 1,005 4,716
Charter Oak 9,310 5,602 405 85 1,035 18 1,693 472 4,546
Citrus 10,866 5,898 240 120 860 4 3,302 442 7,911
Del Aire 10,001 6,052 458 60 922 131 1,815 563 4,724
Desert View Highlands 2,360 1,286 182 29 50 1 669 143 1,253
East La Mirada 9,757 7,022 178 78 462 20 1,557 440 4,907
East Los Angeles 126,496 63,934 817 1,549 1,144 63 54,846 4,143 122,784
East Pasadena 6,144 3,183 183 47 1,589 7 857 278 2,139
East Rancho Dominguez 15,135 4,774 2,404 133 33 109 7,156 526 12,407
East San Gabriel 14,874 5,037 243 58 7,421 3 1,602 510 3,700
Elizabeth Lake 1,756 1,591 21 9 23 1 47 64 231
Florence-Graham 63,387 23,895 5,861 498 150 25 30,704 2,254 57,066
Green Valley 1,027 901 8 11 12 1 35 59 123
Hacienda Heights 54,038 21,873 743 315 20,065 99 9,199 1,744 24,608
Hasley Canyon 1,137 966 15 2 26 1 75 52 244
La Crescenta-Montrose 19,653 12,807 142 70 5,375 12 533 714 2,232
Ladera Heights 6,498 979 4,786 20 231 2 134 346 355
Lake Hughes 649 544 19 7 5 1 54 19 104
Lake Los Angeles 12,328 6,862 1,388 178 116 27 3,068 689 6,604
Lennox 22,753 8,623 765 199 177 188 11,811 990 21,162
Leona Valley 1,607 1,456 11 4 28 0 51 57 198
Littlerock 1,377 808 75 16 24 11 373 70 745
Marina del Rey 8,866 7,071 465 31 749 10 154 386 686
Mayflower Village 5,515 2,929 83 28 1,734 4 491 246 1,521
North El Monte 3,723 1,768 33 13 1,437 4 336 132 1,002
Quartz Hill 10,912 8,218 795 142 303 28 947 479 2,689
Rose Hills 2,803 1,573 54 9 440 1 471 255 1,647
Rowland Heights 48,993 11,506 772 175 29,284 61 5,658 1,537 13,229
San Pasqual 2,041 1,344 63 7 438 1 104 84 362
South Monrovia Island 6,777 3,433 570 49 418 9 2,003 295 5,013
South San Gabriel 8,070 2,198 83 56 3,990 4 1,427 312 3,444
South San Jose Hills 20,551 9,302 304 195 1,649 30 8,449 622 17,713
South Whittier 57,156 33,663 859 743 2,305 147 17,085 2,354 44,094
Stevenson Ranch 17,557 11,271 606 65 4,028 34 765 788 2,827
Sun Village 11,565 6,806 809 167 129 24 3,113 517 7,311
Topanga 8,289 7,313 117 35 353 3 125 343 534
Val Verde 2,468 1,404 105 26 48 1 732 152 1,507
Valinda 22,822 11,058 439 240 2,718 42 7,530 795 17,977
View Park-Windsor Hills 11,075 669 9,392 45 147 4 244 574 720
Vincent 15,922 8,670 312 146 1,128 31 4,857 778 11,921
Walnut Park 15,966 9,046 70 277 89 2 5,953 529 15,543
West Athens 8,729 1,584 4,578 31 111 10 2,127 288 3,843
West Carson 21,699 7,630 2,330 185 6,730 301 3,411 1,112 7,100
West Puente Valley 22,636 11,383 471 256 1,650 28 7,945 903 19,365
West Rancho Dominguez 5,669 1,054 2,974 32 46 21 1,354 188 2,526
West Whittier-Los Nietos 25,540 15,170 254 372 393 43 8,404 904 22,369
Westmont 31,853 5,037 16,262 188 126 31 9,180 1,029 14,871
Willowbrook 35,983 8,245 12,387 273 119 49 13,858 1,052 22,979
Unincorporated
communities
Total
Population
White
African
American
Native
American
Asian
Pacific
Islander
other
races
two or
more races
Hispanic
or Latino
(of any race)
All others not CDPs (combined) 136,360 81,172 10,441 920 16,393 224 21,340 5,870 46,050

2000

Map of Los Angeles County showing population density in 2000 by census tract

As of the census[13] of 2000, there were 9,519,338 people, 3,133,774 households, and 2,137,233 families residing in the county. The population density was 2,344 people per square mile (905/km²). There were 3,270,909 housing units at an average density of 806 per square mile (311/km²). The racial makeup of the county is 48.7% White[14] 11.0% African American, 0.8% Native American, 10.0% Asian, 0.3% Pacific Islander, 23.5% from other races, and 4.9% from two or more races. 44.6% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race. The largest European-American ancestry groups are German (6%), Irish (5%), English (4%) and Italian (3%). 45.9% of the population reported speaking only English at home; 37.9% spoke Spanish, 2.22% Tagalog, 2.0% Chinese, 1.9% Korean, and 1.6% Armenian. [15]

Because the county is so populous, what is not so evident is that it has the largest Native American population of any county in the nation: according to the 2000 census, it has more than 153,550 people of indigenous descent, and most are from Latin America. "The invisible population that is virtually ignored by the census is that of indigenous people from Mexico, Central and South America."[16]

There were 3,133,774 households out of which 36.80% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.6% were married couples living together, 14.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.8% were non-families. 24.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.98 and the average family size was 3.61.

In the county the population was spread out with 28.0% under the age of 18, 10.3% from 18 to 24, 32.6% from 25 to 44, 19.4% from 45 to 64, and 9.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females there were 97.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.0 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $42,189, and the median income for a family was $46,452. Males had a median income of $36,299 versus $30,981 for females. The per capita income for the county was $20,683. There are 14.4% of families living below the poverty line and 17.9% of the population, including 24.2% of under 18 and 10.5% of those over 64.

According to TNS Financial Services, Los Angeles County has the highest number of millionaires of any county in the nation, totaling 261,081 households as of 2007.[17] In addition to millionaires, Los Angeles County has the largest number of homeless people, with "48,000 people living on the streets, including 6,000 veterans."[18]

Housing

The homeownership rate is 47.9%, and the median value for houses is $409,300. 42.2% of housing units are in multi-unit structures.

Law, government and politics

The county's voters elect a governing five-member Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors. The small size of the board means each supervisor represents over 2 million people. The board operates in a legislative, executive, and quasi-judicial capacity. As a legislative authority, it can pass ordinances for the unincorporated areas (ordinances that affect the whole county, like posting of restaurant ratings, must be ratified by the individual city). As an executive body, it can tell the county departments what to do, and how to do it. As a quasi-judicial body, the Board is the final venue of appeal in the local planning process, and holds public hearings on various agenda items.

As of 2008, the Board of Supervisors oversees a $22.5 billion annual budget and approximately 100,000 employees.[19] The county government is managed on a day-to-day basis by a Chief Executive Officer, William T Fujioka, and is organized into many departments, each of which is enormous in comparison to equivalent county-level (and even state-level) departments anywhere else in the United States. Some of the larger or better-known departments include:

The Grand Avenue entrance of the Stanley Mosk Courthouse.
  • Los Angeles County Coroner – performs autopsies and determines the cause of death for those who die without medical supervision.
  • Community Development Commission of the County of Los Angeles[20] serves as the County's housing authority as well as the housing and community and economic development agency with wide-ranging programs that benefit residents and business owners in unincorporated County areas and in various incorporated cities.
  • Los Angeles County Department of Beaches and Harbors
  • Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services – administers foster care
  • Los Angeles County Fire Department – provides fire protection, suppression, and prevention as well as emergency medical services
  • Los Angeles County Department of Health Services – operates several county hospitals and a network of primary care clinics, and also runs the public health system, which has a requirement that all restaurants in the unincorporated County and the majority of independent cities prominently post their food safety inspection grade in their front window
  • Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation[21] – administers public parks and the largest public golf course system in the U.S.
  • Los Angeles County Department of Public Social Services – administers many federal and state welfare programs
  • Los Angeles County Department of Public Works – operates countywide flood control system, constructs and maintains roads in unincorporated areas
  • Los Angeles County Department of Regional Planning – maintains the Zoning Code that regulates land use in the unincorporated areas, researches and facilitates land-use decisions and serves to connect the community to the established building regulations.
  • Los Angeles County District Attorney – prosecutes criminal suspects
  • Los Angeles County Museum of Art – public art museum
  • Los Angeles County Probation Department
  • Los Angeles County Public Defender – defends indigent criminal suspects
  • Los Angeles County Public Library – operates a large network of branch libraries
  • Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department – provides law enforcement services to unincorporated areas and cities that do not have their own police departments, and operates the county jails. The LASD is the largest county Sheriff's Department in the United States.
    • Los Angeles County Disaster Communications Service ( DCS ) is a volunteer organization administered by the Sheriff's Department Emergency Operations Bureau for the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors. Their main function, authorized under County Ordinance, is to provide volunteer disaster relief communication for the citizens of Los Angeles County.
  • Los Angeles County Department of Consumer Affairs – offers consumers in the county a variety of services including: consumer and real estate counseling, mediation, and small claims counseling. The department also investigates: consumer complains, real estate fraud and identity theft issues.

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, despite its name, is not a County department. Technically it is a state-mandated county transportation commission that also operates bus and rail.

The Los Angeles Superior Court, which covers the entire county, is not a County department but a division of the State's trial court system. Historically, the courthouses were county-owned buildings that were maintained at county expense, which created significant friction since the trial court judges, as officials of the state government, had to lobby the county Board of Supervisors for facility renovations and upgrades. In turn, the state judiciary successfully persuaded the state Legislature to authorize the transfer of all courthouses to the state government in 2008 and 2009 (so that judges would have direct control over their own courthouses). Courthouse security is still provided by the county government under a contract with the state.

Politics

Los Angeles County vote
by party in presidential elections
Year GOP DEM Others
2008 28.8% 956,425 69.2% 2,295,853 2.0% 65,970
2004 35.6% 1,076,225 63.2% 1,907,736 1.3% 39,319
2000 32.4% 871,930 63.5% 1,710,505 4.2% 112,719
1996 31.0% 746,544 59.3% 1,430,629 9.7% 233,841
1992 29.0% 799,607 52.5% 1,446,529 18.4% 507,267
1988 46.9% 1,239,716 51.9% 1,372,352 1.2% 32,603
1984 54.5% 1,424,113 44.4% 1,158,912 1.1% 29,889
1980 50.2% 1,224,533 40.2% 979,830 9.7% 235,822
1976 47.8 1,174,926 49.7% 1,221,893 2.5% 62,258
1972 54.8% 1,549,717 42.0% 1,189,977 3.2% 90,676
1968 47.6% 1,266,480 46.0% 1,223,251 6.3% 168,251
1964 42.5% 1,161,067 57.4% 1,568,300 0.1% 1,551
1960 49.4% 1,302,661 50.2% 1,323,818 0.3% 8,020
1956 55.4% 1,260,206 44.3% 1,007,887 0.3% 7,331
1952 56.2% 1,278,407 42.7% 971,408 1.1% 24,725
1948 46.5% 804,232 47.0% 812,690 6.5% 112,160
1944 42.7% 666,441 56.8% 886,252 0.6% 8,871
1940 40.6% 574,266 58.1% 822,718 1.3% 18,285
1936 31.6% 357,401 67.0% 757,351 1.4% 15,663
1932 38.6% 373,738 57.2% 554,476 4.3% 41,380
1928 70.2% 513,526 28.7% 209,945 1.1% 7,830
1924 65.5% 299,675 7.3% 33,554 27.2% 124,228
1920 69.1% 178,117 21.6% 55,661 9.3% 23,992

Los Angeles County has voted for the Democratic candidate in most of the presidential elections in the past four decades, although it did vote twice for Dwight Eisenhower (1952, 1956), Richard Nixon (1968, 1972), and Ronald Reagan (1980, 1984). In 2008 approximately 69% of the electorate voted for Democrat Barack Obama.

In the United States House of Representatives, California districts 27–39 are situated entirely within the county and are all represented by Democrats. In order of district number they are Brad Sherman, Howard Berman, Adam Schiff, Henry Waxman, Xavier Becerra, Judy Chu, Karen Bass, Lucille Roybal-Allard, Maxine Waters, Jane Harman, Laura Richardson, Grace Napolitano, and Linda Sánchez. Parts of the county also lie in the 22nd, 25th, 26th, 42nd, and 46th districts, which are all represented by Republicans: Kevin McCarthy, Buck McKeon, David Dreier, Gary Miller, and Dana Rohrabacher respectively.

In the State Senate, all of districts 20–22 and 24–28, and 30 are entirely within the county and are all represented by Democrats. In order of district number they are Alex Padilla, Carol Liu, Kevin De Leon, Ed Hernandez, Roderick Wright, Curren D. Price, Alan Lowenthal, and Ron Calderon. Most of the 17th, 23rd, and 29th districts are in the county. The 17th and 29th districts are represented by Republicans Sharon Runner and Bob Huff, respectively while the 23rd district is represented by Democrat Fran Pavley. Parts of the 19th and 32nd districts are also in the county. The 19th district is represented by Republican Tony Strickland while the 32nd is represented by Democrat Gloria Negrete McLeod.

In the State Assembly, all of districts 39, 40, 42–55, 57, and 58 are entirely within the county and are all represented by Democrats. In order of district number they are Felipe Fuentes, Bob Blumenfield, Mike Feuer, Mike Gatto, Anthony Portantino, Gilbert Cedillo, John A. Perez, Holly Mitchell, Mike Davis, Mike Eng, Ricardo Lara, Steven Bradford, Isadore Hall, III, Betsy Butler, Bonnie Lowenthal, Warren T. Furutani, Roger Hernandez, and Charles Calderon. Most of districts 38, 41, and 56 are in the county. The 38th is held by Republican Cameron Smyth; the 41st and 56th are held by Democrats Julia Brownley and Tony Mendoza. Parts of districts 36, 37, 59, 60, and 61 are also in the county. The 36th, 37th, 59th, and 60th districts are represented by Republicans: Steve Knight, Jeff Gorell, Tim Donnelly, and Curt Hagman. The 61st is represented by Democrat Nell Soto.

On November 4, 2008, Los Angeles County was almost evenly split over Proposition 8 which amended the California Constitution to ban same-sex marriages. The county voted for the amendment 50.1% with a margin of 20,806 votes.[22]

Legal system

The Los Angeles County Superior Court has jurisdiction over all cases arising under state law, while the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California hears all federal cases. Both are headquartered in a large cluster of government buildings in the city's Civic Center.

Unlike the largest city in the US, New York City, all of the city of Los Angeles and most of its important suburbs are located within a single county. As a result, both the county superior court and the federal district court are respectively the busiest courts of their type in the nation.[23][24]

Many celebrities like O.J. Simpson have been seen in Los Angeles courts. In 2003, the tabloid television show Extra (based in nearby Glendale) found itself running so many reports on the legal problems of local celebrities that it spun them off into a separate show, Celebrity Justice.

State cases are appealed to the Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District, which is also headquartered in the Civic Center, and then to the California Supreme Court, which is headquartered in San Francisco but also hears argument in Los Angeles (again, in the Civic Center). Federal cases are appealed to the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, which hears them at its branch building in Pasadena. The court of last resort for federal cases is the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C.

Seal

The county was targeted with the threat of legal action by the American Civil Liberties Union in 2004 regarding a small cross on its seal. The ACLU said that separation of church and state prohibited this display. On September 14, 2004, the seal was modified to address this and other complaints.[25][26]

Crime statistics

Crime in 2008 (reported by the sheriff's office or police)[27]

  • Assaults: 5452
  • Auto thefts: 7727
  • Burglaries: 5254
  • Murders: 568 (5.7 per 100,000)
  • Rapes: 582
  • Robberies: 2210
  • Thefts: 9682

Federal investigation

The county is the subject of a federal investigation along with the City of Los Angeles, several unions, trade groups, and businesses it has had dealings with. In addition there is an ongoing investigation into a bribe that a County Supervisor and a former Los Angeles City Council Woman received from a well known latino activist group in return for voting in favor of boycotting other US states that did not adopt policies the group wanted.

Education

The Los Angeles County Office of Education provides a supporting role for school districts in the area. The county office also operates two magnet schools, the International Polytechnic High School and Los Angeles County High School for the Arts. There are a number of private schools in the county, most notably those operated by the Los Angeles Archdiocese.

Colleges and universities

Colleges

Universities

Religion

As of 2000, there are hundreds of Christian churches, 202 Jewish synagogues, 145 Buddhist temples, 48 Islamic mosques, 44 Bahai worship centers, 37 Hindu temples, 28 Tenrikyo churches and fellowships, 16 Shinto worship centers, 14 Sikh gurdwaras in the county.[28] The Los Angeles Archdiocese has approximately 5 million members and is the largest in the United States.

Sites of interest

L.A. County Fair at dusk, 2008
Photo of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art during its 2005 Ancient Egypt exhibit.

The county's most visited park is Griffith Park, owned by the city of Los Angeles. The county is also known for the annual Rose Parade in Pasadena, the annual Los Angeles County Fair in Pomona, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Los Angeles Zoo, the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, the La Brea Tar Pits, the Arboretum of Los Angeles, and two horse racetracks and two car racetracks (Pomona Raceway and Irwindale Speedway), also the RMS Queen Mary located in Long Beach, and the Long Beach Grand Prix, and miles of beaches—from Zuma to Cabrillo.

Venice Beach is a popular attraction where its Muscle Beach used to find throngs of tourists admiring "hardbodies". Today it is more arts-centered. Santa Monica's pier is a well known tourist spot, famous for its ferris wheel and bumper car rides, which were featured in the introductory segment of the television sitcom Three's Company. Further north in Pacific Palisades one finds the beaches used in the television series Baywatch. The fabled Malibu, home of many a film or television star, lies west of it.

In the mountain, canyon, and desert areas one may find Vasquez Rocks Natural Area Park, where many old westerns were filmed. Mount Wilson Observatory in the San Gabriel Mountains is open for the public to view astronomical stars from its telescope, now computer-assisted. Many county residents find relaxation in water skiing and swimming at Castaic Lake Recreation Area – the county's largest park by area – as well as enjoying natural surroundings and starry nights at Saddleback Butte State Park in the eastern Antelope Valley – California State Parks' largest in area within the county. The California Poppy Reserve is located in the western Antelope Valley and shows off the State's flower in great quantity on its rolling hills every spring.

Museums

Entertainment

Music venues

Disney Concert Hall

Amusement parks

Other attractions

Other areas

Lakes and reservoirs

  • Crystal Lake
  • Echo Park Lake
  • Silver Lake
  • Elizabeth Lake
  • Hughes Lake
  • Holiday Lake
  • Jackson Lake
  • Munz Lakes
  • Tweedy Lake





See also

References

  1. ^ Mount San Antonio in the San Gabriel Mountains, on border with San Bernardino County.
  2. ^ Sea level at the Pacific Ocean.
  3. ^ Los Angeles County History
  4. ^ http://portal.lacounty.gov/wps/portal/lac/residents/cities
  5. ^ Coy, Owen C.; Ph.D. (1923). California County Boundaries. Berkeley: California Historical Commission. p. 140. ASIN B000GRBCXG. 
  6. ^ "Census 2000 U.S. Gazetteer Files: Counties". United States Census. http://www.census.gov/tiger/tms/gazetteer/county2k.txt. Retrieved 2011-02-13. 
  7. ^ http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/06/06037.html
  8. ^ Jon Gertner, "Playing Sim City for Real," New York Times Magazine, March 18, 2007
  9. ^ "JDPower.com." J. D. Power and Associates. Retrieved on August 22, 2009.
  10. ^ FactFinder.Census.gov, "Thousand Oaks city, California". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on August 22, 2009.
  11. ^ Encyclopedia.com, "Dole gets ready to turn first shovel of headquarters dirt: plans are set to go to Westlake Village City Council". (Dole Food Co. Inc. Los Angeles Business Journal. January 31, 1994. Retrieved on September 27, 2009.
  12. ^ "2010 Census P.L. 94-171 Summary File Data". United States Census Bureau. http://www2.census.gov/census_2010/01-Redistricting_File--PL_94-171/California/. 
  13. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  14. ^ This included over 65,000 Arabs and 75,000 Iranian, who many people would not count as White (see 2000 Census fact sheet table). For a clear discussion of Arabs being counted as white, see Census.gov
  15. ^ http://www.mla.org/map_data_results&state_id=6&county_id=37&mode=geographic&zip=&place_id=&cty_id=&ll=all&a=&ea=&order=r
  16. ^ "The Invisible Minority", Indian Country Today, 9 November 2009, accessed 12 March 2010
  17. ^ Frank, Robert (May 5, 2008). "California Boasts Most Millionaires". The Wall Street Journal. http://blogs.wsj.com/wealth/2008/05/05/california-boasts-most-millionaires/tab/article/. Retrieved September 29, 2011. 
  18. ^ Nagourney, Adam (2010-12-12). "Los Angeles Confronts Homelessness Reputation". New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/13/us/13homeless.html. Retrieved 2010-12-14. 
  19. ^ William T Fujioka, "Department Section," County of Los Angeles, Annual Report 2007-2008, 4.
  20. ^ LACDC.org
  21. ^ Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation
  22. ^ SFgate.com
  23. ^ A look at your Superior Court, Public Information Office, Los Angeles Superior Court
  24. ^ About the Los Angeles Superior Court
  25. ^ Kennedy, J. Michael (May 25, 2004). "County Seal Has a Cross the ACLU Can't Bear". Los Angeles Times. http://articles.latimes.com/2004/may/25/local/me-cross25. Retrieved March 11, 2010. 
  26. ^ "County Insignia History". http://lacounty.gov. Retrieved March 11, 2010. 
  27. ^ "City data – Los Angeles County, CA". analyzed data from numerous sources. http://www.city-data.com/county/Los_Angeles_County-CA.html. Retrieved 2009-04-18. 
  28. ^ Selected Non-Christian Religious Traditions in Los Angeles County: 2000 Prolades.com

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