Archive for December, 2010

InlandPolitics: S.B. County: Judgeship a “no go” for corruption prosecutor?

Friday, December 31, 2010 – 11:45 a.m.

It looks like a Superior Court judgeship may not be in the cards for Deputy District Attorney Lewis Cope.

Cope, the lead prosecutor in District Attorney Mike Ramos’ public integrity unit, had been hoping for a judicial appointment from outgoing Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger before he leaves office next week.

Read the rest of this entry »

The PE: Inland counties prepare for their own redistricting

10:00 PM PST on Thursday, December 30, 2010

By DUANE W. GANG
The Press-Enterprise

The state’s new Citizens Redistricting Commission has ushered in a new era in California, heralded by supporters as a way to take politics out of the drawing of legislative and congressional boundaries.

But a political tug-of-war among elected officials could still play out at the local level next year as counties, cities and school boards redraw their own district lines.

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The Sun: Corruption probes cast wide net

District Attorney Mike Ramos

Investigators pursue cases across county
Joe Nelson, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/30/2010 05:47:55 PM PST

The past year has been fraught with scandal in San Bernardino County as state and local prosecutors charged two former county officials in a sweeping corruption complaint related to a $102 million land dispute and convicted a third former county official on charges of fraud, theft and conspiracy.

Also in 2010, federal investigators raided the county’s Arrowhead Regional Medical Center in Colton and Upland City Hall in what appear to be unrelated investigations.

Read the rest of this entry »

The PE: Hollingsworth appointment looming?

Hollingsworth

By PE Politics
on December 30, 2010 12:45 PM

Former Inland lawmaker Dennis Hollingsworth reportedly will be appointed to a six-figure post on the California Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board by departing Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

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Andrew Edwards, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/30/2010 09:03:04 PM PST

SAN BERNARDINO – Despite all the sound and fury surrounding an ill-fated attempt to restructure City Hall, 2010 comes to an end with the city continuing to face many of the same hardships as it did when the year began.

“I don’t think we got anything accomplished, but (for) balancing the budget,” first-year Councilman Jason Desjardins said.

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The Sun: 2011 could bring big political changes

James Rufus Koren, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/30/2010 07:05:15 PM PST

While continued budget woes will be front and center over at least much of the coming year, behind the scenes California will be conducting a few political experiments – ones that experts say has the potential to dramatically change how California’s government works.

In the coming few months, a group of 14 Californians – five Democrats, five Republicans, and four voters not affiliated with either major party – will redraw the boundaries of the state’s congressional, Assembly and state Senate districts.

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The Sun: San Bernardino begins year with a chance for change

Andrew Edwards, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/30/2010 09:01:55 PM PST

SAN BERNARDINO – What will 2011 bring in San Bernardino? A cinema? An airport?

A new cinema represents the latest hope within the halls of San Bernardino government to bring commerce back to downtown.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Sun: Elections, state budget woes dominated 2010

James Rufus Koren, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/30/2010 07:14:12 PM PST

In 2010, Californians voted to make it easier for Democrats to pass a budget without Republican support, but they voted to make it impossible for Democrats to raise fees without Republicans on board.

In this year’s gubernatorial race, Californians chose a longtime politician, Democrat Jerry Brown, over an outsider, Republican Meg Whitman, while voters in a few local Assembly districts chose outsiders over experienced local officials.

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InlandPolitics: S.B. County: Officials pay zero toward pensions

Thursday, December 30, 2010 – 12:45 p.m.

A large disparity exists when it comes to who pays what towards pensions in San Bernardino County government.

With looming pension obligation payments of more than $120 million due to its retirement system over the next two years, county leaders are expected to once again ask employees for concessions.

This time pension-related.

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By PE News
on December 29, 2010 1:42 PM

With the formal nomination period still more than a year away, a third candidate has announced he’ll run for the Riverside mayor’s seat in 2012.

Ron Woodbury, a business consultant and artist, on Tuesday (12/28) filed papers declaring he’ll run for the job and that he doesn’t plan to raise or spend more than $1,000 on his campaign, City Clerk Colleen Nicol said.

Read the rest of this entry »

The PE: DA LAWSUIT: Pacheco action against county dismissed

Pacheco

10:27 PM PST on Wednesday, December 29, 2010

By RICHARD K. DE ATLEY
The Press-Enterprise

A lawsuit that Riverside County District Attorney Rod Pacheco filed against county executives and the board of supervisors over his demand to hire more staff was dismissed Wednesday.

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The Sun: Experts: Gas prices to hit $4 next year

Mediha Fejzagic DiMartino and Dana Bartholomew, Staff Writers
Posted: 12/29/2010 08:42:50 PM PST

Diana Czarnecki still remembers a couple of years ago watching in disbelief as a driver of a sport-utility vehicle pumped $108 worth of gas into the vehicle.

“It was ridiculous,” said Czarnecki, who commutes from San Bernardino to Rancho Cucamonga. “I was so thankful for my $50 bill.”

But after a two-year reprieve, the sticker-shock experience that Czarnecki dealt with may be returning to a gas station near you – crude oil prices are nearing $100 a barrel and experts predict $4-per-gallon gas at the pump in 2011.

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Sandra Emerson, Staff Writer
Created: 12/29/2010 04:18:20 PM PST

UPLAND – An FBI and IRS raid was the biggest news out of this city in 2010, leaving some people hopeful the investigation’s conclusion will be the big news in 2011.

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Sandra Emerson, Staff Writer
Created: 12/29/2010 04:18:20 PM PST

UPLAND – FBI and IRS agents raided City Hall and the mayor’s home in June, causing many residents in thes city to question the integrity of their government in the last half of 2010.

Read the rest of this entry »

LATimes: Californians’ tax relief could be short-lived

Temporary taxes enacted in 2009 are set to expire but some legislators would like to extend them to help balance the budget as the state faces a $28-billion deficit.

By Shane Goldmacher and Nardine Saad, Los Angeles Times
December 30, 2010

Reporting from Sacramento and Los Angeles —

The new year is set to bring some financial cheer to roughly 11 million Californians in the form of lower state income taxes and fatter paychecks, but some in Sacramento are considering ways to roll back the tax relief, calling it unaffordable for a state staring at a $28-billion deficit.

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SacBee: Brown plans to take tax hike to voters in June

By David Siders
dsiders@sacbee.com
Published: Thursday, Dec. 30, 2010 – 12:00 am | Page 1A
Last Modified: Thursday, Dec. 30, 2010 – 8:23 am

Gov.-elect Jerry Brown will propose a ballot measure to extend temporary tax hikes set to expire next year, while pressuring fellow Democrats to consent to billions of dollars in spending cuts in virtually every area of state government, sources said.

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InlandPolitics Commentary: Victorville politicos in need of reality check

Wednesday, December 29, 2010 – 12:40 p.m.

During a usually slow news cycle it’s Victorville politics to the rescue.

Victorville has its share of trouble coming on the horizon. Primarily due to financial mismanagement.

But this past week has been very interesting. Politically speaking that is.

Read the rest of this entry »

The PE: DA LAWSUIT: Accountant’s claim disputed

06:36 PM PST on Tuesday, December 28, 2010

By RICHARD K. DeATLEY
The Press-Enterprise

The Riverside County district attorney’s office disputes an accountant’s sworn declaration that he was ordered to change a budget analysis to show the office had a surplus and could hire more people, according to court papers filed this week.

The new declarations from outgoing District Attorney Rod Pacheco’s office contend that the accountant, Eric Woolery, was pressured into making a statement that he altered his work to change a $4 million deficit into a $2 million surplus.

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The Sun: Rialto works to improve its financial footing

Josh Dulaney, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/28/2010 09:46:13 PM PST

RIALTO – Residents can expect to see a handful of grand openings as the city celebrates 100 years of incorporation next Nov. 17.

In the meantime, city officials will continue to juggle the budget.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Sun: Spending, scandal affect Rialto

Josh Dulaney, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/28/2010 09:46:13 PM PST

RIALTO – This city has had its fair share of controversy over the years, and 2010 was no different, with concerns over the size of public pensions, opposition to a new residential development and an alleged sex scandal that led to two city police officers leaving the force.

Right out of the gate, officials warned that sweetened pensions kicking in this month could place the city’s finances in peril.

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DailyBulletin: Hiring still a gamble

I.E. jobless rate likely to be stagnant in 2011
Mediha Fejzagic DiMartino, Staff Writer
Created: 12/28/2010 09:39:50 PM PST

The nation’s unemployment edged up to 9.8 percent last month, even though companies are performing well – all but 4 percent of the top 500 corporations reported profits this year, and the stock market is close to its highest point since the 2008 financial meltdown.

So why isn’t anyone hiring?

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LATimes: Jerry Brown plays hardball on state budget

His plan will confront both parties, with calls for tax extensions and deep program cuts.

Gov.-elect Jerry Brown, left, shown with state Controller John Chiang, will enter office with California facing a $28-billion budget shortfall. His plan is expected to rankle both sides of the aisle. (Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times / December 14, 2010)

By Shane Goldmacher, Los Angeles Times
December 29, 2010

Reporting from Sacramento

Gov.-elect Jerry Brown is laying the groundwork for a budget plan that would couple deep cuts to state services, including university systems and welfare programs, with a request that voters extend temporary tax hikes on vehicles, income and sales that are set to expire next year.

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LATimes: Cities reconsider using firm that audited Bell

The state controller called Mayer Hoffman McCann’s examination of the troubled city’s finance a ‘rubber stamp.’ The firm has about 150 municipal clients nationwide.

By Jeff Gottlieb and Jessica Garrison, Los Angeles Times
December 29, 2010

A week after a report by the state controller labeled the independent audits of Bell a “rubber stamp,” several cities are questioning their relationship with the well-known accounting firm responsible for the work.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Sun: Colton officials pondered public-safety shifts

Michael J. Sorba, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/27/2010 09:35:56 PM PST

COLTON – It has been a year of uncertainty in the city and one in which shifts in the way police and fire services are delivered were proposed to close continued budget shortfalls.

This month, the City Council voted to seek the costs to outsource police, fire, code enforcement and animal control services.

Read the rest of this entry »

VVDailyPress: Caldwell eyes new political office

Mitzelfelt                   Caldwell

December 28, 2010 8:08 AM
Brooke Edwards

VICTORVILLE • After 38 years on Victorville’s City Council, Terry Caldwell may be ready to try his hand at another political office — though he isn’t saying just yet which office that might be.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Sun: Special election set for Runner’s seat

Wesley G. Hughes, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/27/2010 09:35:57 PM PST

In one of his final acts as governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger on Monday called a special primary election for Feb. 15 to fill the 17th State Senate District seat vacated by conservative George Runner, who is moving to the state Board of Equalization.

Read the rest of this entry »

Wendy Leung, Staff Writer
Created: 12/27/2010 08:01:12 PM PST

RANCHO CUCAMONGA – With Don Kurth ducking out of the political limelight this year, it was a game of musical chairs on the City Council. Dennis Michael filled the mayor’s seat and two former councilmen rejoined that body.

But much of the political news this year was overshadowed by the guilty verdict delivered to Rex Gutierrez, the former councilman who is currently serving his sentence of two years and eight months in state prison.

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By David Siders
dsiders@sacbee.com
Published: Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2010 – 12:00 am | Page 1A

Likely scuttling Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s controversial bid to sell 11 state office properties to private investors, a state appellate court Monday effectively blocked the sale from proceeding until Gov.-elect Jerry Brown takes office next month.

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InlandPolitics: S.B. County to ask employees for concessions

Monday, December 27, 2010 – 10:00 a.m.

The arrival of 2011 brings with it a new round of budget problems for San Bernardino County officials.

The annual question of layoffs or ? is coming to an employee union near you.

Read the rest of this entry »

Benoit

10:23 PM PST on Sunday, December 26, 2010

By DUANE W. GANG
The Press-Enterprise

In his first year as a Riverside County supervisor, John Benoit has endured political warfare and personal tragedy.

He has cast difficult budget votes that have led to the layoffs of hundreds of employees, taken a firm stance on the need to make changes to the county’s pension plan and drawn the ire of some residents by reversing course on whether to allow medical-marijuana dispensaries.

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10:00 PM PST on Sunday, December 26, 2010

By ALICIA ROBINSON
The Press-Enterprise

Riverside will change to a new outside auditor after the state controller blamed the Mayer Hoffman McCann firm for failing to find problems when auditing the city of Bell’s finances.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Sun: Fontana keeps eyes on economy

A look ahead

Mediha Fejzagic DiMartino, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/26/2010 09:47:44 PM PST

FONTANA – In the new year, Mayor Acquanetta Warren said she wants to forge county, state and federal ties to bring about economic recovery and jobs to her city.

Read the rest of this entry »

DailyBulletin: Activists’ legal battle rages

Swerdlow, Chabot now head to civil court
Will Bigham, Staff Writer
Created: 12/26/2010 10:10:23 PM PST

RANCHO CUCAMONGA – Did Lanny Swerdlow push Paul Chabot?

That question has already been the subject of a criminal trial, and it’s now the issue at the heart of a civil lawsuit between Swerdlow and Chabot.

Chabot, an anti-drug activist and recent candidate for the Assembly, accused Swerdlow of shoving him in October 2007 at a meeting in Rancho Cucamonga of the Inland Valley Drug Free Community Coalition, which was co-founded by Chabot.

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DailyBulletin: Pomona faces cuts in schools, city

A look ahead

Monica Rodriguez, Staff Writer
Created: 12/26/2010 07:02:07 AM PST

POMONA – Holding down costs as they develop budgets for the coming fiscal year will be a top issue for the leaders of Pomona’s city government and its school system in 2011.

For both entities, it will require going to labor groups for concessions.

Read the rest of this entry »

Conway

Californians to watch

By Jim Sanders
jsanders@sacbee.com
Published: Sunday, Dec. 26, 2010 – 12:00 am | Page 3A
Last Modified: Monday, Dec. 27, 2010 – 7:16 am

When Connie Conway was elected to the Assembly, a colleague quipped that the former county supervisor was going “from the frying pan into the bonfire.”

Fast forward two years, and the one-liner seems prophetic as Conway assumes leadership of the Assembly Republican caucus while lawmakers brace for a new fight over billions in red ink.

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SacBee: Mike Jimenez looking for CCPOA contract

Californians to watch

By Jon Ortiz
jortiz@sacbee.com
Published: Monday, Dec. 27, 2010 – 12:00 am | Page 3A
Last Modified: Monday, Dec. 27, 2010 – 7:16 am

Mike Jimenez, president of the California Correctional Peace Officers Association, says he has three goals next year: “Get a contract. Get a contract. And then there’s get a contract.”

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WashExaminer Editorial: Closing the books on the worst Congress

By: Examiner Editorial 12/25/10 8:05 PM

Americans can give thanks in this Christmas season for an end to the reckless and destructive 111th Congress. This is the Congress that passed Obamacare, against the wishes of a substantial majority of the public, on Christmas Eve of last year. In the dead of night, Democratic lawmakers stuffed the monstrous 2,700-page bill with special-interest goodies and political payoffs like the “Cornhusker Kickback” and the “Louisiana Purchase.” As we have learned since, most members were still ignorant of the bill’s contents three months later, when it gained final passage in the House. No surprise that its immediate results — both intended and unintended — have been almost uniformly bad.

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DailyBulletin Editorial: Time for some transparency

Qunicey

Upland

Created: 12/25/2010 07:33:48 PM PST

So Upland’s city manager is involved in a domestic dispute, and the police are called.

A sergeant files a report on the incident, but no further action is taken.

Read the rest of this entry »

DailyBulletin: Ontario budget weathers the recession

Liset Marquez, Staff Writer
Created: 12/25/2010 10:11:49 PM PST

ONTARIO – Despite the economic uncertainty in the region, city officials went through the year without having to lay off any staff or worry about operating on a deficit.

The businesslike attitude adopted by city staff over the years helped the council pass a balanced, $383 million budget in July.

Read the rest of this entry »

McEachron

Federal, county investigations cost Victorville $300,000
December 25, 2010 1:43 PM
Brooke Edwards

VICTORVILLE • The cost and strain of responding to lengthy investigations by two federal and one county agency has newly seated Mayor Ryan McEachron calling for an end to the inquiries — though he first requested the forensic audit by the San Bernardino County Grand Jury.

The cost of responding has topped $300,000 in staff time and attorney fees, city officials estimated.

Read the rest of this entry »

InlandPolitics: Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas!

DailyBulletin: Open primaries could stymie tea party success

James Rufus Koren, Staff Writer
Created: 12/24/2010 07:00:27 PM PST

Tea party groups across the country clearly played some part in November’s Republican surge, but pinning down the role they played and the role they will play in California politics is tricky.

Local groups saw their influence in a few races and even helped win a few, but statewide, Republicans fared poorly, and tea party groups seemed to be a nonfactor. Changes in how state elections are run could make tea parties less influential in 2012.

Read the rest of this entry »

By Kevin Yamamura
kyamamura@sacbee.com
Published: Saturday, Dec. 25, 2010 – 12:00 am | Page 3A

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger issued grim budgets the last two years, but in many ways he had it easier than the challenge facing Gov.-elect Jerry Brown in 2011.

Read the rest of this entry »

Friday, December 24, 2010 – 03:30 p.m.

A lawsuit filed against the County of San Bernardino and District Attorney Michael Ramos by an alleged former mistress is moving closer to the deposition phase.

Read the rest of this entry »

Friday, December 24, 2010 – 02:45 p.m.

The past four months has delivered huge wins for privacy rights advocates and criminal defense attorneys across the country.

This month, the Sixth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has joined the First U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and ruled that the government must show probable cause and obtain a search warrant before seizing privately stored e-mails of individuals.

Read the rest of this entry »

InlandPolitics: County let opportunity get away

Friday, December 24, 2010 – 09:45 a.m.

Two years ago this week it was the response to predictions of heavy snow that made San Bernardino County officials look bad.

Back then officials in the county public works department didn’t believe forecasts of serious weather systems approaching the areas mountains and valleys.

Read the rest of this entry »

10:00 PM PST on Thursday, December 23, 2010

By BEN GOAD
Washington Bureau

WASHINGTON – Inland Southern California’s Republican House members are poised for action once their party takes control of the chamber next month.

Last month’s Election Day landslide delivered the GOP a comfortable House majority and, they say, a mandate to shrink government, slash federal spending and begin the work of undoing key initiatives undertaken by the Obama administration, including the sweeping health care law passed earlier this year.

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Josh Dulaney, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/23/2010 04:07:18 PM PST

SAN BERNARDINO – A fractured city employees group is awaiting an appeal of its vote to ditch its leadership and seek representation from another union.

The city’s general employees earlier this month voted 143-122 to dump the San Bernardino Public Employees Association and join the Pasadena-based chapter of the International Union of Operating Engineers. Three voted for no union at all.

Read the rest of this entry »

Sandra Emerson, Staff Writer
Created: 12/23/2010 06:34:21 PM PST

UPLAND – The Upland City Council gave the approval for the FBI to further search documents previously obtained from City Hall.

The Council discussed the matter in a special closed session Thursday at City Hall.

Read the rest of this entry »

The PE: Boeing business keeps SB Airport busy

10:00 PM PST on Thursday, December 23, 2010

By KIMBERLY PIERCEALL
The Press-Enterprise

Boeing needed space for its massive 747-8 freighter plane. And even though San Bernardino International Airport could offer less than six inches of air between the plane’s nose and a hangar wall, it was just enough room for the aviation company to store its planes.

Now hundreds of workers from the aviation company’s Washington state headquarters buzz around a former military hangar at the airport past signs taped to walls and doors that say “test briefing room” or “restricted access,” some wearing black ball-caps commemorating the cargo plane’s first flight.

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DailyBulletin: Chino Valley school district penalty reduced

Neil Nisperos, Staff Writer
Created: 12/23/2010 04:18:16 PM PST

CHINO – The state has agreed to significantly reduce a $7.5 million penalty for the Chino Valley Unified School District over missed instructional minutes at two schools.

Under an agreement with education officials, and brokered by Assemblyman Curt Hagman, R-Chino Hills, the penalty will be reduced to $1.5 million and paid over 8 years at $187,500 annually, starting next school year.

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If true, the discrepancy could cost the state billions of dollars in federal money and perhaps an additional seat in Congress. A court battle may be possible.

By Seema Mehta, Los Angeles Times
December 24, 2010

California officials estimate that the U.S. Census Bureau failed to count 1.5 million of the state’s residents, a discrepancy that if true could cost the state billions of dollars in federal aid over the next decade and perhaps an increase in its representation in Congress.

Read the rest of this entry »

The PE: DISTRICT ATTORNEY: Accountant says budget massaged

District Attorney Rod Pacheco

11:44 PM PST on Wednesday, December 22, 2010

By RICHARD K. DE ATLEY
The Press-Enterprise

PDF: Signed declaration of Eric Woolery

A financial officer in Riverside County District Attorney Rod Pacheco’s office was ordered to manipulate budget figures and turn a $4 million deficit into a $2 million surplus, according to a sworn declaration filed in court Wednesday.

Read the rest of this entry »

The PE: RIVERSIDE: Council to review its pay in January

10:00 PM PST on Wednesday, December 22, 2010

By ALICIA ROBINSON
The Press-Enterprise

Riverside elected officials have gone without a raise since 2007, and they appear likely to keep their pay status quo when they take up the issue in January.

But Mayor Ron Loveridge said he may call for a closer look at the costs and benefits of providing city officials — elected and appointed — with cars and gas on the taxpayers’ dime.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Sun: Ontario gears up for fight to regain control

Liset Márquez, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/22/2010 03:32:39 PM PST

ONTARIO – The city appears ready to roll up its sleeves and do battle with Los Angeles over control of LA/Ontario International Airport.

The Ontario City Council this week gave City Manager Chris Hughes the option to sue Los Angeles for violation of its joint powers agreement over the airport.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Sun: Grand Terrace Council to appoint new member

Ryan Hagen, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/22/2010 08:13:31 PM PST

GRAND TERRACE – After lengthy debate, the City Council has voted to accept applications for an open seat on the council.

The 3-1 decision, with Councilwoman Lee Ann Garcia dissenting, came following extended discussions at a special meeting Tuesday and the previous week, when the City Council delayed the decision to avoid an apparent 2-2 stalemate over whether to hold a special election or appoint someone.

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The Sun: Fontana council appoints new members to dais

Michael J. Sorba, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/22/2010 08:12:37 PM PST

FONTANA – Two new members have been appointed to the City Council, former Planning Commissioner Matthew Slowik and former Parks and Recreation Commissioner Lydia Salazar-Wibert.

Slowik and Salazar-Wibert were among 12 people the council considered to fill two open seats.

Read the rest of this entry »

Joe Nelson, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/22/2010 06:06:11 PM PST

California Attorney General-elect Kamala Harris has tapped San Bernardino County District Attorney Michael A. Ramos for her transition leadership team.

At a Dec. 15 news conference at the Hiram W. Johnson State Office Building in San Francisco, Harris named Ramos to co-chair her Committee on Gangs, Gun Crimes and Organized Crime, one of 11 “Smart on Crime” committees she has developed.

Read the rest of this entry »

DailyBulletin: Upland council calls special meeting

Created: 12/22/2010 06:29:08 PM PST

UPLAND – A majority of the members of the Upland City Council have called a special meeting at 5:30 p.m. today at City Hall, 460 N. Euclid Ave.

The council will recess into closed session to discuss “significant exposure to litigation pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 54956.9″ of the Government Code, according to the meeting notice from the city.

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VVDailyPress: Victorville quiet on embattled Bell auditor

December 22, 2010 5:26 PM
Brooke Edwards

VICTORVILLE • The city isn’t saying yet whether it’ll stick by its auditor, Mayer Hoffman McCann, in the wake of a scathing review from the State Controller about how the firm handled the city of Bell’s audits.

Read the rest of this entry »

Sharon Runner

Capitol Alert
The latest on California politics and government
December 22, 2010

SharonRunner.JPGFormer Republican Assemblywoman Sharon Runner said today that she will run for the state Senate seat formerly held by her husband, Republican George Runner.

Read the rest of this entry »

The PE: San Bernardino Airport makeover at $200 million so far

12:15 AM PST on Wednesday, December 22, 2010

By KIMBERLY PIERCEALL
The Press-Enterprise

At a special meeting convened early Tuesday morning, Inland officials voted to spend another $7.1 million to finish San Bernardino International Airport. And that isn’t likely to be the last they spend, airport officials said.

At least one board member of the Inland Valley Development Agency, which approved the expenditure, questioned the timing of the request.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Sun: Citizens, police address budget

Colton’s proposed cuts to affect force
Ryan Hagen, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/21/2010 09:08:53 PM PST

COLTON – The battle over how to cover the city’s impending budget deficit is spreading, with police associations statewide fighting against planned cuts to the Colton Police Department and some residents urging the city to do what it takes to keep taxes manageable.

A budget approved by the council in June states 16 police, nine firefighters and eight employees from other departments would be laid off if employees don’t accept any concessions to fill the hole left by the loss of a utility users tax that had generated about 16 percent of the city’s revenue.

Read the rest of this entry »

Sandra Emerson, Staff Writer
Created: 12/21/2010 12:13:08 PM PST

UPLAND – The city manager handled negotiations to settle a claim against the city that involved his own actions outside the office.

Robb Quincey agreed to a $25,000 settlement and the promotion of an Upland police sergeant in January.

Read the rest of this entry »

L.A. NOW
Southern California — this just in
December 21, 2010 | 9:47 am

For the first time in nearly a century and only the second time in state history, California’s congressional delegation will not grow in the next decade, based on population figures released Tuesday by the U.S. Census Bureau.

As it has since the last reapportionment 10 years ago, the state will continue to have 53 members in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Read the rest of this entry »

SeekingAlpha: The Coming Municipal Bond Crisis

Meredith Whitney

By: Cullen Roche
December 20, 2010

The following segment on 60 Minutes yesterday evening is a must see. The segment covered the state and local funding crisis in the USA. Meredith Whitney was a special guest and predicted that the crisis would unfold in the “next 12 months”. Whitney says the states are susceptible to hundreds of billions in losses and local insolvencies could be widespread.

Read the rest of this entry »

InlandPolitics: Census2010: California no longer golden

Tuesday, December 21, 2010 – 09:45 p.m.

Well the official 2010 U.S. Census numbers are in.

For the first time in decades California’s representation in the U.S. House of Representatives and the Electoral College will remain unchanged.

Yes, apparently California really has become less attractive than in times past.

The big winner this time? The Lone Star State of Texas.

.

(Click image to enlarge)

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11:21 PM PST on Monday, December 20, 2010

By ALICIA ROBINSON
The Press-Enterprise

A Riverside medical marijuana collective will be open to serve customers today, after an appeals court on Monday ruled the facility can operate while the city’s lawsuit to close it proceeds.

A lower court judge had granted an injunction to close the Inland Empire Patients Health and Wellness Center but stayed the order so the facility’s attorney could appeal.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Sun: Cinema plan under fire

Morris defends Regal negotiations
Josh Dulaney, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/20/2010 09:56:00 PM PST

SAN BERNARDINO – Officials are clashing with a business owner who is gathering opposition to what the city says is a key piece to downtown revitalization.

Ronald Rezek, who runs a logistics company, has written an open letter to the City Council calling the city’s efforts to lease a vacant cinema near Fourth and E streets to Regal Entertainment Group a “highly speculative and flawed downtown development plan” that will cost taxpayers millions.

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The Sun: Navarro claims officials broke law

Complaint filed against Colton school board
Ryan Hagen, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/20/2010 09:13:57 PM PST

An unannounced appearance by four Colton school board members at a Grand Terrace City Council meeting broke state law, alleges a complaint filed Monday with the county District Attorney’s Public Integrity Unit.

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DailyBulletin: Fighting cantina’s closure

Officials, officers in complaint
Sandra Emerson, Staff Writer
Created: 12/20/2010 10:08:45 PM PST

UPLAND – The property owners of the former Chronic Cantina building are preparing to re-file a federal complaint against the mayor, City Council and two members of the Upland Police Department.

The owners filed a complaint in U.S. District Court in April, but pulled the complaint in November to add allegations of racketeering, according to Robert Mills and his attorney, Jeffrey Willis.

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DailyBulletin: Claremont voters to fill 3 seats

A look ahead

Wes Woods II, Staff Writer
Created: 12/20/2010 10:08:45 PM PST

CLAREMONT- Eight candidates seeking three seats on the City Council will keep the attention of Claremont voters early in 2011.

The large number of candidates is the result of two of three incumbents – Peter Yao and Linda Elderkin -failing to file for re-election in the vote on March 8.

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DailyBulletin: LAWA eyeing private sector

New operator for ONT sought
Liset Marquez, Staff Writer
Created: 12/20/2010 10:08:50 PM PST

LOS ANGELES – Los Angeles World Airports officials said Monday they will look for private interests to possibly contract out the operation of LA/Ontario International Airport.

LAWA, which operates ONT, will solicit ideas from the private sector and other interested parties about managing the airport, said Stephen Martin, LAWA’s chief operating officer.

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DailyBulletin: Claremont defeated bond, won housing

Wes Woods II, Staff Writer
Created: 12/20/2010 10:08:48 PM PST

CLAREMONT – This city dealt with some contentious issues in 2010 including an affordable housing complex and a bond measure that provided for a David vs. Goliath matchup.

Among the top stories in 2010 in Claremont:

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The PE: POLITICAL NOTEBOOK: Baca back in familiar territory

Baca

10:00 PM PST on Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Press-Enterprise

Four of the five members of Inland Southern California’s congressional delegation are poised to return to the majority party when Republicans take back control of the House of Representatives next month.

And then there is Joe Baca. The Rialto Democrat has enjoyed majority status for the past four years, but will be relegated to the House minority, at least for the next two years.

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The Sun: Grand Terrace to decide council selection method

Ryan Hagen, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/19/2010 06:08:19 PM PST

GRAND TERRACE – The City Council will decide whether to elect or appoint the fifth member of the body at a special meeting starting at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

The council was scheduled to decide how to fill the seat, which opened up when Walt Stanckiewitz became mayor, at its regular meeting Dec. 14.

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DailyBulletin: Hearing for Pomona councilwoman postponed

Escobar

Will Bigham, Staff Writer
Created: 12/19/2010 10:23:09 PM PST

POMONA – An arraignment hearing was postponed for a Pomona councilwoman charged with stealing a campaign sign.

Ginna Escobar was set to be arraigned Friday, but her attorney appeared Wednesday in Pomona Superior Court and had the hearing postponed to Jan. 10.

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As the Citizens Redistricting Commission begins its work next month, members say, the 23rd Congressional District — which snakes 200 miles up the California coast — will be a good reminder of what not to do.

By Patrick McGreevy, Los Angeles Times
December 19, 2010, 8:59 p.m.

Reporting from Sacramento —

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger refers to it as the “ribbon of shame,” a congressional district that stretches in a reed-thin line 200 miles along the California coast from Oxnard to the Monterey County line. Voters there refer to it as “the district that disappears at high tide.”

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Calbuzz: The Calbuzz Plan for Budget Reform and World Peace

December 20, 2010

Thirty-two years ago, over the strenuous objections from then-Gov. Jerry Brown and nearly every Democratic and Republican official in public life, California voters passed Proposition 13 by 65-35%, slashing property taxes and requiring a two-thirds vote to increases local taxes of virtually any sort.

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Calpensions: UC pensions: Did regents solve the problem?

December 20, 2010
By Ed Mendel

UC regents approved a painful plan to begin closing a $21 billion retirement funding gap last week, getting support from faculty and staff groups despite a bite from their paychecks, higher health costs for most retirees, and lower pensions for new hires.

The plan emerged from a broad-based task force and suggestions from the university community that, fittingly, could be a model for a “collegial” approach to building support among stakeholders for retirement reform.

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InlandPolitics: S.B. County: Clueless supervisor defends airport boondoggle

Saturday, December 18, 2010 – 10:00 p.m.

San Bernardino County Supervisor Josie Gonzales, true-to-form, hasn’t a clue.

Gonzales, sits as co-chair of the San Bernardino International Airport Authority (SBIAA). The Airport Authority along with the Inland Valley Development Agency (IVDA) is vested with the redevelopment of the former Norton Air Force Base.

A base which closed in 1994!

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VVDailyPress: Valles calls for citizen watchdog group

Valles

Councilwoman to assemble advisory team to scrutinize city practices, finances
December 18, 2010 2:00 PM
Brooke Edwards

VICTORVILLE • Newly seated Councilwoman Angela Valles is asking for volunteers to form a citizen’s watchdog advisory committee to help her navigate “the maze of red tape and political smoke screens” that she believes have driven Victorville into trouble and “kept the truth” from taxpayers.

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LATimes: The time may be right for Kamala Harris

Kamala Harris

She hopes the tough economy, shifting public opinion and her savvy transition team will bolster her prison reform goals.

By Cathleen Decker, Los Angeles Times
December 19, 2010

Kamala Harris, the state’s next attorney general, last week announced a transition leadership team that was a marvel in its political heft: two former secretaries of State — of the country, not of California — and a host of other luminaries.

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SacBee: Jerry Brown buttons up to focus on budget

By David Siders
dsiders@sacbee.com
Published: Sunday, Dec. 19, 2010 – 12:00 am | Page 3A
Last Modified: Sunday, Dec. 19, 2010 – 11:09 am

For someone who liked to joke about his lack of “message discipline” in the campaign, Jerry Brown sure has buttoned up.

By announcing just two appointments and sharply limiting public appearances, the governor-elect has avoided distractions common to gubernatorial transitions while closeting those wandering, occasionally off-color musings that have tripped him up before.

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The PE: POLITICS: Detailed Nov. 2 results offer hope, heartburn for parties

10:00 PM PST on Friday, December 17, 2010

By JIM MILLER
Sacramento Bureau

Last month’s election offered more evidence that Inland Southern California’s politics are anything but set in stone, with the region’s voters swinging from Republican to Democrat and back again in just a few years.

Recently released statements of vote detail how different parts of the Inland area voted Nov. 2. The numbers could give hope — and heartburn — to party activists in Riverside and San Bernardino counties as they look ahead to the 2012 presidential campaign.

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