Archive for April 14th, 2010

LATimes: State Sen. Roy Ashburn sentenced to two days in jail for DUI

Roy Ashburn

PolitiCal

On politics in the Golden State

April 14, 2010 | 10:14 am

State Sen. Roy Ashburn (R-Bakersfield) was sentenced Wednesday to two days in jail and three years probation after pleading no contest to charges of driving under the influence of alcohol.

Sacramento County Superior Court Judge Russell Hom gave Ashburn one day of jail credit for his time behind bars after he was arrested by California Highway Patrol officers who saw his state car being driven erratically near the state Capitol on March 3. Ashburn was not present in court Wednesday during the sentencing on two misdemeanor charges, which will not affect his state job.

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SacBee: FPPC Chairman Ross Johnson announces resignation

Capitol Alert
The latest on California politics and government
April 14, 2010

Fair Political Practices Commission Chairman Ross Johnson announced today that he will step down April 30.

Johnson said in a statement that the decision to resign was “entirely personal and the result of recently discovered health issues.”

“I believe that sunshine is the best disinfectant in the political process, and I am confident that the good work of the commission will continue,” he said in a statement. “My fellow commissioners and I have worked together in a non-partisan way to interpret and enforce the Political Reform Act and I am proud of what we have accomplished over the past three years.”

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The “800-pound budget gorilla” is in the room for both Riverside and San Bernardino Counties, which is putting their respective employee unions in a critical dilemma.

Push wage and benefit concessions on their members or trigger layoffs. Layoffs cause reductions in union member rolls thus affecting revenue that supports operations.

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RivPE: Riverside County budget trouble mounts

10:00 PM PDT on Tuesday, April 13, 2010

By DUANE W. GANG
The Press-Enterprise

Riverside County’s budget gap for next year has grown to $131.5 million, officials said Tuesday, even as supervisors took a major step toward overcoming the shortfall.

Supervisors directed county departments to build budgets for next year that include significant cuts that could result in fewer sheriff’s deputies, the closing of fire stations and reduced code-enforcement staffing.

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Stacia Glenn, Staff Writer
Posted: 04/13/2010 07:40:09 PM PDT

Layoffs are inevitable if county labor unions refuse to forgo raises a second year in a row to help close a looming $90 million deficit, county officials say.

County Administrative Officer Greg Devereaux has been meeting with union leaders since February, giving them the low down on budget problems and stressing the need for everyone to contribute.

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10:00 PM PDT on Tuesday, April 13, 2010

By IMRAN GHORI
The Press-Enterprise

San Bernardino County supervisors Tuesday again delayed making a decision on a request from prosecutors for access to documents in the Colonies Partners legal settlement.

At their April 27 meeting, supervisors will continue their closed-session discussion on whether to waive attorney-client privilege in the Colonies case, said county spokesman David Wert.

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RivPE: Top cops blamed in ex-chief’s stop

06:57 PM PDT on Tuesday, April 13, 2010

By PAUL LaROCCO
The Press-Enterprise

Riverside’s city manager placed clear blame Tuesday on police leadership for the handling of a traffic stop involving the heavily intoxicated former chief, though he failed to single out any individual.

Brad Hudson said “mistakes were made” in a statement released after 5:30 p.m., and hinted at corrective action for those who made the decision to drive Russ Leach home Feb. 8 without arrest or a sobriety test.

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Democrat Gatto will face GOP’s Ramani in the 43rd Assembly District. GOP’s Emmerson will face Democrat Blake and Monica of the American Independent Party in the 37th Senate District.

By Jean Merl

April 14, 2010 | 12:35 a.m.

Two hard-fought Southern California special elections for vacant state legislative seats will be decided in a June 8 runoff, as no candidate in either race won a majority of the vote Tuesday.

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SacBee: California state worker retirements spike

By Jon Ortiz
jortiz@sacbee.com
Published: Wednesday, Apr. 14, 2010 – 12:00 am | Page 1A
Last Modified: Wednesday, Apr. 14, 2010 – 12:18 am

The number of California state workers who took their first pension check in January jumped more than 30 percent over the same month in 2009, a strong indication that the state’s budget and labor turmoil is pushing a growing number of longtime employees out the door.

New statistics provided to The Bee by the California Public Employees’ Retirement System also show that state retirements for the entire year increased almost 18 percent from 2008. School and local government civil service retirements for the year rose about 17 percent.

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By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com The Sacramento Bee
Published: Wednesday, Apr. 14, 2010 – 12:00 am | Page 3A

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s threat to shut down city government two days a week because of a looming shortage of cash fizzled when city officials suddenly discovered an additional $30 million in property taxes.

Nevertheless, Los Angeles’ financial woes are emblematic of a widening crisis in California’s 5,000 units of local government as they deal with flattening or even declining property and sales tax revenues, reduced and/or delayed payments from a deficit-wracked state budget, and burgeoning costs. And if their pinch continues, which seems highly likely, some probably will wind up in bankruptcy court.

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By Dale Kasler
dkasler@sacbee.com
Published: Wednesday, Apr. 14, 2010 – 12:00 am | Page 8B

Stung by controversy and heavy losses, California’s two public pension funds are about to restrict themselves from investing in real estate deals that rely on driving tenants out of rent-controlled housing.

CalPERS and CalSTRS are set to revise their investing policies after two such deals – one in East Palo Alto, one in New York – blew up in their faces last year.

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DailyBulletin: Area hospitals draw penalties from state

Jim Steinberg, Staff Writer
Created: 04/13/2010 06:55:09 PM PDT

Inland Empire hospitals accounted for six out of 10 administrative penalties announced Tuesday by the California Department of Public Health.

Kaiser Hospital of Fontana accounted for two of those penalties, while St. Bernardine Medical Center in San Bernardino had one. It is the first time those two hospitals have been fined for patient safety violations since the department began issuing fines to health care facilities in 2007.

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