Report says LA plagued by poverty, traffic jams

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Updated: 1/08 4:00 pm

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A new report says Los Angeles risks becoming a city in decline as it struggles with poverty, poor schooling, traffic jams and a crisis of leadership.

A citizens' panel, the Los Angeles 2020 Commission, said Wednesday that city government lacks accountability, direction and a coherent approach to economic development that has slowed job growth.

The 19 percent poverty rate is the highest among major U.S. cities. The report says LA also suffers from a high school dropout rate, drastic service cuts and "wishful thinking" on handling budget problems.

The report says LA has some strengths, including a diverse population, world-class universities and its image as a sunny home of creativity and opportunity.

But the panel says LA must start taking firm steps to deal with its problems.

©2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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