The Los Angeles Times from Los Angeles, California on July 27, 1978 · 28
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The Los Angeles Times from Los Angeles, California · 28

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Los Angeles, California
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Thursday, July 27, 1978
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28
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lot Sngrlttf Wmt J Thuri., July 27, 1 978-Part II 7 Suit Charges Helen Copley Defamed, Stifled Reporter Tribune Newsman Alleges Publisher, Two Editors Blackballed Him for Articles About Friend of Hers BY TED VOLLMER Tlnwt Man writer :i I :i:iSi::;;lllI uiiii ; VP x .'f ... V - v "-,.1 " ife jiiiiiiiP W M.ri Mike Hoar, at left, sits on a cruiser, an old-fashioned bike with fat tires and pedal brakes; other cruisers are at right. Tlmei photot by Don Kelten PEDALING DOWN NOSTALGIA LANE 1 930s 'One-Speeds1 Back in Style BY ELLIOTT ALMOND Tlmtt SltH Writer Kids call them cruisers or clunkers. The names are appropriate because they're not the most sophisticated pieces of machinery. Yet combine the fickle but trendy tastes of youth, the desire to be dif-. ferent, a bit of nostalgia, and another Southern California fad is born. The latest craze is the old-fashioned bicycle, circa 1930s: fat, balloon tires, Texas longhorn handlebars, wide seats, one speed and pedal brakes. No longer do the sophisticated 10-speed derailers, some weighing a scant 25 pounds, hold a monopoly on the pedal market-at least in Southern California. The clunkers, the basic 40-pounders, are at a crest of popularity. For example: A clunker, in perfect shape, can sell for up to $250. At least one shop in Newport Beach deals only in clunkers. Another firm, LRV Industries of El Monte, has been distributing a one-speed bike called "The Regular Old Bike" since 1976. The giant bicycle maker Schwinn, recognizing the clunker's popularity, last year reintroduced one called the Spitfire, a copy of the 1932 Schwinn. There's even a newsletter for clunker lovers. A bike shop owner in Huntington Beach started the fad by restoring 1932 Schwinns. "I really liked riding the old r'-W -TNe WW mm .-fa- -- ISIIK Sk Larry McNeely in his Huntington Beach bicycle shop. bikes myself," said Larry McNeely, 24, owner of Recycled Cycles. "I saw immediate interest in the cruiser, so I came out with my own line. It's an exact replica of the 1932 Schwinn." McNeely sells between 10 and 15 bikes a week and has been doing so for three years. LRV sold 3,000 clunkers last year, mostly in the Southland, and firm president Tom Seifert is gearing up for a national wave. Seifert's marketing researchers noticed a trend in one-speed bicycles approximately three years ago. "We found there was sort of a nostalgia involved," he said. But we also found people wanted a more comfortable bike with wide seats and high handlebars. What they wanted was a cruiser." Jim Kucera of Schwinn's Consumer Relations department in Chicago, said, "We do sell the Spitfire all over the country, but there haven't been any signs of them taking over. Still, we're watching the market carefully." Yet, a Sunday stroll on the Balboa Peninsula oceanfront shows definite signs of a trend. Young and old alike ride cruiser bikes like hot rodders cruise Whittier Blvd. Sterling Pope, 53, and his wife started riding cruisers 14 years ago. Originally they wanted a bike nobody would steal. Now cruisers are more apt to be stolen than 10-speeds in Newport Beach. Schwinn and LRV cruiser bikes retail for approximately $125. A custom bike at Recycled Cycles costs from $130 to $250. Guys such as Pope and Mc-Flease Turn to Page H,CoLl 'LIFELINE' POWER RATES DEBATED A veteran reporter for the San Diego Evening Tribune has sued Publisher Helen Copley and two Tribune editors, alleging slander and a conspiracy by them to "blackball" him in the newspaper industry. Reporter Meinhart Lagies claimed that his troubles with the Tribune hierarchy stemmed from a series of stories last year about state Business and Transportation Secretary Richard Silberman, a personal friend of Mrs. Copley. The series about Silberman ended May 16, 1977, when a story by Lagies was changed after the beginning of a press run when Mrs. Copley called then-managing Editor Leo Bowler and ordered Lagies taken off the story, according to the suit Mrs. Copley allegedly told Bowler that Lagies "was rude to Silberman" and had been "rude to others." Lagies charged that, since the incident, he has been blackballed by the Tribune, has not received any merit pay increases, has had a number of investigative stories thwarted and has been barred from appearing on any television programs. The reporter said the Silberman story began when the San Diego financier was nominated by Gov. Brown to the cabinet position last year. Lagies learned that Silberman held three liquor licenses in San Diego, which presented a potential conflict of interest The Business and Transportation Agency has some control over the Alcoholic and Beverage Control Department A series of articles followed in which the state attorney general was deliberating on whether Silberman must divest himself of the liquor licenses. The attorney general's office eventually ruled that Silberman could not hold the liquor licenses and also hold the state position. Lagies, attempting to get a response from Silberman about the attorney general's opinion, tried to learn Silber-man's whereabouts through Mrs. Copley's secretary. According to the lawsuit, Lagies had read in a society column that Silberman and Mrs. Copley both had attended the Paris wedding of City Councilwoman Maureen O'Connor and reasoned that Mrs. Copley would know his whereabouts. Mrs. Copley's secretary did not know where Silberman was but, within an hour, the publisher phoned Bowler and said she wanted Lagies "pulled off the story," the suit alleged Instead of dropping the story, the presses were stopped, the first three paragraphs were altered and Lagies byline was stricken, the lawsuit showed. Later that year, the Sacramento-based California Journal ran a feature on changes within the Union-Tribune since Mrs. Copley assumed control and the Lagies incident was mentioned. San Diego writer Larry Remer quoted Mrs. Copley in the Journal article as saying, "I knew that story was wrong because I'd had dinner with Dick (Silberman) and the governor the night before. The facts just weren't right I wanted the reporter taken off that story. But the editors overreacted. They shut down the presses and made some changes." Lagies claimed that Mrs. Copley's statements to Bowler and the California Journal defamed him because they alleged that he is Ill-mannered" and "inept" "(Mrs. Copley's) statements . . . were intended to punish plaintiff for his audacity in investigating her friend, and for his presumptuousness in asking her secretary where Silberman might be," the suit asserted Lagies said numerous attempts to get Mrs. Copley to retract the statements have been unsuccessful Since the series ended May 16, Lagies claimed, his "relatively free hand" in investigating stories has been stifled and at least four investigative stories he has written have been "suppressed" Lagies charged that his editors are attempting to force him to quit because "they are unable to find valid cause to fire him." "Bowler and (Tribune Editor Fred) Kinne (also named as a defendant in the suit) have adopted their postures as sycophants to Mrs. Copley at the expense of and to the detriment of plaintiff, whom they wish to sacrifice to their publisher's wrath to save their own positions," the suit charged The suit sought an unspecified amount of general, special and punitive damages and a court order that the editors stop their alleged efforts to "blackball" Lagies. Mrs. Copley was unavailable for comment Kinne and Bowler, since named systems manager at the paper, would not comment until they discussed the lawsuit with their attorneys. Oceanside's Top Planner Resigns OCEANSIDE City Planning Director Louis N. Lightfoot, 30, Wednesday announced his resignation from the position he has held since July, 1975. In a letter to City Manager Robert S. Bourcier, Lightfoot said his decision to leave the $24,000-a-year job was "the most difficult decision I have faced during my tenure as director." His decision to resign was not the result of any pressures created by the job, Lightfoot said. Continued from First Page increases evenly among all consumers. Big industrial users of electricity would face 17.6 rate increases under the company's proposal and so would residential users. But SDG&E's industrial customers would be paying half as much for each kilowatt hour of electricity consumed The comparison, however, is clouded by a price structure that charges industries for every kilowatt that they draw from the system at peak times. The "peak demand charge' is a way of discouraging use by industry at times of the biggest drain on the SDG&E system, and at least in theory, reduces the need for the company to add to its generating capacity. But, those complications aside, the PUC staff and SDG&E officials do not see eye to eye on how to spread out rate increases. The PUC's electrical division staff has proposed several options for limiting the impact of rate increases on residential users. And the staff also would increase charges for peak-time use by industry. If SDG&E is granted the increases in rates and charges it has asked for, the monthly service charge for gas and electricity customers would increase $474 or $57 a year. The residential customer under SDG&E's proposal also would pay $2.04 a month more for 500 kilowatt-hours of electricity and an added $1.13 a month for the winter lifeline limit of 81 therms of natural gcj. A final decision on how much in crease to allow the company and how to distribute that increase over the various classes of customers is not expected until early next year. But the debate begins next week. IOC Chief Claims New Contract Offer From LA. LOS ANGELES International Olympic Committee President Lord KiUanin, taking a hard-line position for the second straight day against making any concessions to Los Angeles on Olympics financial liability, said in a press interview Wednesday in Dublin that Los Angeles has made some fresh contract proposals. But Mayor Tom Bradley flatly denied here that the city had made any new proposals PARKING LOT Continued from lint Pace Even though the payments will be made for only 10 years, Casey argued that Oceanside would receive about $100,000 a year "for as long as those stores stand there," depending on how the city invests the $1 million to accrue interest in future years. It's not something we are just looking at for 10 years," he said "The economic benefit will be forever." He also suggested that Oceanside could take equal pride in the development of the mall since this city's approval was necessary for the inclusion of a Broadway store in the center. "The Broadway store is as much in Oceanside as in Carlsbad," he said . May Stores consultant John Mamaux said after Wednesday's meeting that the Oceanside council acted "in a very honorable way." The Plaza Camino Real already includes a May Co. and a J.C Penney department store. The expanded center also will feature the Broadway, a Sears and a Bullocks Store. Together with 160 smaller mall stores, the 1.1 million square-foot facility should be completed by October, 1979, officials said Driver Rams Police in Chase RIVERSIDE A Riverside woman who said she wanted to kill herself rammed one pursuing police car during a 95-mp.h. freeway chase here, sending it crashing into a divider, and tried to ram a second one, police reported Wednesday. The chase ended only when an officer used a shotgun to blast one of the tires of the car driven by Nancy Sue Emerson, 24, and the vehicle tumbled down an embankment Miss Emerson escaped with minor injuries. She was booked on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon (her car). None of the officers was hurt Dining out? Read Roundabout in Calendar every Sunday. OP WAREHOUSE ALE 2 days only! Fine baskets, decorative tins, !;ourmet cookware, many items rom our regular stock reduced 2550 SomIImm Mow coat Abo everything in the downtown store will be discounted 10, including coffee, tea, apices, Cnkinart, Chemex, Henckela, Meiitta, Braun, Cordon Bleu Copper, coffee aacka, tea chests. Fridnv & Ssturday July 28-29, 9 a.a-6 p.m. 645 G Mo Diego "With The Times' new San Diego County Edition, we're getting additional coverage in a market that is a very good one for us. Our stores there do very well and I'm sure this new edition will only enhance the success of these stores." Jules Aroesty president. Carpet Town, Inc. Hollywood, California The nation'M largeit chain & (( ( ) ) San Diego't largest ipa showroom Vl V JJ mm (1 n D ri "" F fill "N n p ElH Will LAST CHANCE! Prices are at their lowest for this event. W haw tpat availabl for immediate delivery. COMPLETE SPA SYSTEMS DISCOUNTED! Save Big $$$ During Our Grand Opening Over 40 Spas on Display We Offer Only The Best in Equipment: Jacuzzi, Hayward & Teledyne Laars I a I N c MOKIR laJellal VIHoyDf. (J l MirefflorMT Dsmtnmi check fck took i i Am m mm roimsiaiisuill iPA BSOK 7032 KIXAKAR RD SAN BEEG0 CALL (714) 578-4300 Visit Our Display OpMTDaytaWMk I

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