Archive for March 26th, 2010

Bloomberg: Half of U.S. Home Loan Modifications Default Again (Update1)

By John Gittelsohn

March 25 (Bloomberg) — More than half of U.S. borrowers who received loan modifications on delinquent mortgages defaulted again after nine months, according to a federal report.

The re-default rate of loans modified in the first quarter of 2009 was 51.5 percent by the end of the year, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Office of Thrift Supervision said in a joint report today. The figure, which measures payments at least 30 days late, climbed to 57.9 percent for changes made in the prior 12 months.

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RivPE: Campaign ad suit dismissed

STATE SENATE RACE: The judge says the case was filed too late and was “lacking any showing of malice.”

10:00 PM PDT on Thursday, March 25, 2010

By DUANE W. GANG
The Press-Enterprise

A Riverside County judge dismissed a lawsuit Thursday against Supervisor John Benoit over a campaign mailer sent during Benoit’s 2008 Republican state Senate primary.

Bogh Construction, Inc., the family business of Benoit’s GOP opponent, former Inland lawmaker Russ Bogh, sued Benoit and others for libel last month over a mailer by a group called the Inland Empire Taxpayers Association.

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RivPE: Judges’ benefits continue in new agreement

10:00 PM PDT on Thursday, March 25, 2010

By IMRAN GHORI
The Press-Enterprise

San Bernardino County Superior Court judges will continue to receive judicial benefits — automobile, security and education allowances — under an agreement approved by county supervisors this week.

The agreement, which spells out payments and services between the courts and the county, is the first since the Board of Supervisors rejected a proposal last year by Supervisor Neil Derry to eliminate judicial benefits.

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RivPE: Police chief guilty of DUI gets probation

11:41 PM PDT on Thursday, March 25, 2010

By PAUL LAROCCO
The Press-Enterprise

Without appearing in person, Riverside police Chief Russ Leach pleaded guilty Thursday to driving under the influence during his post-Super Bowl ride in a heavily damaged city-car.

The 62-year-old, who consumed 11 drinks in the hours prior to being stopped, was sentenced at arraignment to three years probation and a 30-day home monitoring program. He’s required to pay more than $1,700 in fines and take an alcohol education class. He stepped down as chief on Feb. 11 and is seeking a medical retirement.

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DailyBulletin: Gerrymandering takes toll

James Rufus Koren, Staff Writer
Created: 03/25/2010 03:39:51 PM PDT

At its widest point, the 59th State Assembly District stretches nearly 80 miles.

It covers parts of two counties, two National Forests and five area codes. It’s impossible to drive from one end to the other without leaving the district.

Also impossible, experts say, is to run a successful campaign in the sprawling 59th without raising and spending lots of cash.

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Joe Nelson, Staff Writer
Created: 03/25/2010 09:32:41 PM PDT

RANCHO CUCAMONGA – If San Bernardino County wants to grow smart in coming years, it must ensure that quality medical care, education and infrastructure are in place and that economic opportunities are ripe for businesses.

But faced with an unemployment rate of 15 percent, some of the poorest performing schools in the country and a gloomy business climate, the county has its work cut out for it.

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Michael J. Sorba, Staff Writer
Posted: 03/25/2010 06:46:19 PM PDT

Tim Graston of Adelanto hasn’t had much luck during the recession – he’s been unemployed for two years.

Living on an income provided by unemployment benefits, Graston’s been able to pay for his basic needs. But starting next week that will end when his benefits expire.

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WSJ: Calpers Deals Part of Probe by Justice Into Pay-Play

MARCH 26, 2010

BY JOHN R. EMSHWILLER

LOS ANGELES—-Federal criminal investigators are looking into possible wrongdoing involving investment transactions of public pension funds including Calpers, according to people familiar with the matter.

Justice Department investigators in Los Angeles have been looking at whether potentially illegal payments were made to influence decisions on where to invest public pension-fund money, these people said. Among the matters being examined, they said, are investments made by the California Public Employees’ Retirement System, the nation’s biggest public pension fund by assets.

The Calpers-related inquiries are focused on a small number of individuals, said one of the people.

By Steve Harmon
Thursday, March 25th, 2010 at 12:33 pm

Mike Murphy, the chief strategist for Meg Whitman — yes, the same consultant who was listed under Bonaparte Films in Whitman’s spending report who’s been paid $495,582 since coming on board on Nov. 25 — says the media have it all wrong in our collective gasp over Whitman’s record $46 million spending spree.

His point is that for a state as large as California, the money Whitman has spent on advertising so far — about $28 million total — is not so far out of line when you index it by the number of registered voters.

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SFChronicle: Personal income falls 2.5% in California

Tom Abate, Chronicle Staff Writer

Friday, March 26, 2010

Personal income in California fell last year for the first time since the Great Depression, the Commerce Department said Thursday.

State income plunged even more sharply in 2009 than the similar, historic drop that occurred on a national basis, a notable reversal given that California generally has beaten the national averages throughout the 80-year history of this report.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – March 22, 2010
Contact: Mark Szymanski
202-463-5874

U.S. Chamber Launches National Advertising Campaign: ‘Jobs, Not Lawsuits’

LOS ANGELES, CA—The U.S. Chamber’s Institute for Legal Reform (ILR) today released its survey ranking the states with the best and worst legal climates in the country. According to the survey, the states with the worst legal climates are California (46th), Alabama (47th), Mississippi (48th), Louisiana (49th), and West Virginia (50th). The states with the best legal climates are Delaware (1st), North Dakota (2nd), Nebraska (3rd), Indiana (4th), and Iowa (5th).

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