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Major online privacy bill becomes law after whirlwind week

Major online privacy bill becomes law after whirlwind week

by Chris Reed . A far-reaching online privacy bill that got next-to-no vetting or legislative debate was signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown last Thursday – the product of a quickly hammered-out agreement among state legislators, privacy advocates, tech firms and a real estate tycoon whose qualifying of an even more sweeping privacy measure for the November ballot […]

Democratic candidates for California governor reveal positions on single-payer health care and education

Democratic candidates for California governor reveal positions on single-payer health care and education

by Chris Reed The 2018 governor’s race got off to an informal start last week with candidate forums in Anaheim and San Francisco. Former San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom leads all gubernatorial candidates in polling and fundraising. A September Berkeley IGS survey showed he had support from 26 percent of likely voters, followed by Republican businessman John Cox with 11 percent. […]

Gavin Newsom announces new plan calling for housing boom

Gavin Newsom announces new plan calling for housing boom

by Steven Greenhut SACRAMENTO – If the past is any guide, California’s Legislature will declare its recently passed housing-affordability package a success and move on to the many other priorities that dominate Capitol discussions once lawmakers return in January. But the housing package – a spate of measures that increase funding for subsidized housing programs and reduce regulations for building […]

Northern California fires may hammer tourism, add to housing crisis

Northern California fires may hammer tourism, add to housing crisis

by Chris Reed The deadly and massively destructive wildfires now in their second week of ravaging Northern California’s wine country are likely to have lengthy negative effects on the region’s economy. But it could also exacerbate perhaps its most pressing social problem – housing costs so high they leave even some middle-class families living paycheck to paycheck. […]

CalPERS critic makes runoff for CalPERS board

CalPERS critic makes runoff for CalPERS board

by Chris Reed The underfunded California Public Employees’ Retirement System faces daunting challenges in coming years, with local governments increasingly vocal about not being able to afford the ever-growing cost of their CalPERS-managed pension programs, as CalWatchdog reported July 20. The nation’s largest public pension fund could face these challenges with a board that appears both solidly […]

Brown’s water tunnels plan still alive, but obstacles are many

Brown’s water tunnels plan still alive, but obstacles are many

by Chris Reed . With a seeming vote of confidence from the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California – the giant agency that supplies water to about half the state’s 38 million residents – Gov. Jerry Brown appears set to soldier ahead with his $17 billion plan to build two 35-mile-long tunnels under the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. Brown’s […]

California set to become ‘sanctuary state’ after deal between governor and state Senate leader

California set to become ‘sanctuary state’ after deal between governor and state Senate leader

by Drew Gregory Lynch Gov. Jerry Brown and Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León, D-Los Angeles, reached a compromise on the state’s “sanctuary state” bill this week, in a deal that amends the legislation to expand the ability of law enforcement to cooperate with federal authorities. The amended Senate Bill 54 “prevents our state and […]

Legislature could vote soon on major housing bills

Legislature could vote soon on major housing bills

by Chris Reed  . The first major votes on a raft of bills meant to address California’s housing crisis could come up for a vote Friday, with the Democrats who control the Legislature eager to demonstrate they know how much extreme housing costs are harming low- and middle-income families. Gov. Jerry Brown has often been critical […]

Democrats force recall backers to fight another court battle

Democrats force recall backers to fight another court battle

by Steven Greenhut SACRAMENTO – Most recall elections are primarily about electoral politics, as both sides duke it out with the usual broadcast ads and ground campaigns. But the burgeoning Republican effort to recall Orange County’s Democratic Sen. Josh Newman has turned into an inside-the-Capitol political fight as well as a high-profile legal battle. It could be months […]

CalPERS’ divestment goals in crosshairs as coal stocks soar

CalPERS’ divestment goals in crosshairs as coal stocks soar

by Steven Greenhut A newly released report from the California Public Employees’ Retirement System confirms that, fulfilling the Legislature’s directive to divest from coal-related investments, the pension fund has now largely exited from coal stocks. But as news reports this week suggest, this “socially responsible” investment policy has come at a price, as coal stocks soar under the […]