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The Inyo mountains overlook one of the runways at the Lone Pine Airport. Due to lease issues, maintenance for the airport has been delayed, impacting local air ambulance services. (Dana Amihere/AfroLA)

Water and Power part two probes DWP holdups in airports’ repair

Our new investigative series, Water and Power examines the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power’s extensive land holdings in rural Inyo County. The second installment describes how Los Angeles DWP thwarts crucial improvements to Inyo County’s infrastructure, including airports, landfills and campgrounds. (ICYMI: Read the first story here.)


Landscape of hills and sparse snow with rain coming through the clouds.

Water and Power

LA controls the land of rural Californians 300 miles away. Why? Water


Installments of Water and Power will be published through the end of the year. The reporting is the result of more than two years of records requests, interviews and data analysis by AfroLA:

Stories of L.A.’s brazen land grab in the Owens Valley have been told for decades – it was loosely depicted in the 1974 blockbuster Chinatown. And the fierce legal battles that have ensued, including over the environmental impact, have made regional headlines for years.

But residents, business owners, and some municipal leaders in this rural region say L.A.’s landownership in the valley has taken on a new, and crippling, dimension in recent years.

Read the first story here. The first two stories were co-published online by AfroLA and Guardian US and in print by The Sheet, a weekly in Inyo County.

This investigation was supported with funding from the Data-Driven Reporting Project. The Data-Driven Reporting Project is funded by the Google News Initiative in partnership with Northwestern University | Medill.

Guardian US provided assistance as a co-publishing partner in the editing, production and promotion of this story. Collaboration and co-publication with Inyo County’s The Sheet helped ensure that Owens valley residents have ready access to news that directly affects their lives and communities. Thank you to the many people who made reporting and sharing this story possible. Thank you to the many people who made reporting and sharing this story possible.

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