Archive for February 15th, 2010

InlandPolitics Commentary: A battle of Good vs. Evil

This last week’s developments involving the filing of charges against two former county officials, the naming of five “un-named” co-conspirators, and the reputation destruction of others referred to in a complaint and accompanying arrest affidavit has commenced a chain of events that will reverberate in San Bernardino County for years.

The charges and accusations come with less than one week before the filing period for the June primary election officially opens. District Attorney Mike Ramos is seeking re-election and California Attorney General Jerry Brown is running for Governor.

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Josh Dulaney, Staff Writer
Posted: 02/14/2010 06:21:00 PM PST

RIALTO – Morale among police officers is suffering and Councilman Ed Scott has mentioned the possibility of layoffs and bankruptcy as stalled talks between the city and the police union could delay a solution to the General Fund deficit.

“We are at a standstill but that standstill is based (on the fact that) we’re waiting for them to provide the answers to our financial situation,” said police Sgt. Richard Royce, head of Rialto Police Benefit Association.

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Consultant to look at management during fiscal crisis

Joe Nelson, Staff Writer
Created: 02/14/2010 09:11:02 AM PST

SAN BERNARDINO – The Board of Supervisors has commissioned a study to assess the effectiveness of the county’s government structure and to help new County Administrative Officer Greg Devereaux determine the best approach to fiscally managing county departments.

The board on Tuesday approved an $87,500 contract with Los Angeles-based Performance Works, LLC., which submitted the second lowest bid for the work.

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SacBee: Dan Walters: Whitman tries to run in a cocoon

Meg Whitman

By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com The Sacramento Bee
Published: Monday, Feb. 15, 2010 – 12:00 am | Page 3A

Meg Whitman says she can balance the deficit-ridden state budget and otherwise restore effective governance to California, citing her long experience as a top corporate executive, including a stint as CEO of eBay.

However, she won’t tell us how she’d do it, other than a vague pledge to eliminate tens of thousands of state workers, which probably would be impossible. Even if she could, it wouldn’t come anywhere close to bridging the immense gap between income and outgo.

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LATimes: California Legislature’s new look: ugly

CAPITOL JOURNAL

By George Skelton Capitol Journal

February 15, 2010

From Sacramento

Very, very ugly. So much for a new-look Legislature.

You remember, the Legislature that had recognized its rotten public image and vowed to clean itself up. To reform.

Just where are those promised reforms, anyway? A lot of talk. The lawmakers apparently can’t agree on many.

Never mind. Even if some internal operating procedures ultimately change, partisanship and pettiness haven’t — at least in the Assembly, among Democrats.

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Calpensions: Retiree health: bigger problem than pensions?

By Ed Mendel

One of the state of California’s biggest debts, health care promised current state workers when they retire, has grown to $51.8 billion — a trend a federal report says makes health care costs the top fiscal problem for state and local governments nationwide.

The new estimate from state Controller John Chiang last week was up $3.6 billion from $48.2 billion a year earlier, in part because CalPERS had used a surplus to reduce health care premiums in the period covered by the previous report.

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Some question the cost, effectiveness and environmental effect of erecting a fence on Otay Mountain, where those who hiked three days up a steep, arid peak were often met by border agents anyway.

By Richard Marosi

February 15, 2010

Reporting from San Diego – The border barrier dips and curves, zigs and zags, hugging the mountain’s contours like a slimmed-down version of the Great Wall of China.

Among the costliest stretch of fencing ever built on the U.S.-Mexico border, the 3.6-mile wall of steel completed last fall is meant to block trafficking routes over Otay Mountain, just east of San Diego.

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By JUDY LIN, Associated Press Writer

Sunday, February 14, 2010

(02-14) 09:00 PST Sacramento, Calif. (AP) —

Last year, California furloughed state workers, froze spending on public works projects and issued IOUs to state contractors, becoming the poster child for fiscal disasters undercutting state budgets across the country.
More News

This year’s forecast: more of the same unless Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and state lawmakers learn to get along.

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February 15, 2010 | Erica Perez

The Joint Legislative Audit Committee on Wednesday will review a request from Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco, to audit the University of California – a move that Yee said was bolstered by reports from California Watch and Spot.us.

California Watch reported last week that UCLA had hired a consulting firm that is being investigated by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission because of major accounting errors that resulted in a $57 million overstatement of the company’s income.

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RivPE: Being mindful of candidate’s cancer

Carly Fiorina

10:00 PM PST on Sunday, February 14, 2010

The Press-Enterprise

U.S. Senate hopeful Carly Fiorina needs to find a way to tell potential voters about her battle with breast cancer in 2009.

The former Hewlett-Packard CEO is seeking the Republican nomination against former congressman Tom Campbell and Assemblyman Chuck DeVore, R-Irvine.

She successfully underwent chemotherapy and radiation treatment, but on the campaign trail must explain it to voters who might not have otherwise known.

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Babies of illegals would not receive citizenship

Stephen Wall, Staff Writer
Posted: 02/14/2010 09:11:01 AM PST

Republican lawmakers in Congress are sponsoring a bill that seeks to abolish birthright citizenship for children born in the United States to illegal immigrant parents.

Federal law automatically grants citizenship to any person born on American soil, regardless of the immigration status of the child’s parents.

Supporters of the bill say that many people come to this country for the express purpose of having children who are American citizens, making the family eligible for welfare and other government benefits.

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SBSun: Baca’s bill aims to offer home buyers an edge

Rep. Joe Baca

Professionals question impact

James Rufus Koren, Staff Writer
Posted: 02/14/2010 09:04:36 PM PST

Many area real estate agents and anxious home buyers say it’s often difficult for average families to buy property because investors are snatching up houses with cash instead of a mortgage.

A new bill by Rep. Joe Baca, D-San Bernardino, would try to give regular home buyers a leg up. The bill would prevent investors – anyone who doesn’t plan to live in a home – from bidding on certain newly listed properties for 15 days.

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