Archive for the ‘ State of California ’ Category

The Sacramento Bee: California carbon emission auction proceeds fall short

Oops!

Capitol Alert
By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
May 25, 2016 4:34 PM

  • State had anticipated more than $500 million from sale of allowances
  • The state will see just $10 million from latest auction
  • Shortfall could affect ambitious spending plans, including high-speed rail

Gov. Jerry Brown and the Legislature got some bad news Wednesday about plans to spend more than $3 billion in proceeds from the state’s “cap-and-trade” auction of carbon dioxide emission allowances.

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Red Flag

By Jeff McDonald | May 25, 2016 – 9 p.m.

  • CPUC worked with utility on legal strategy during San Onofre investigation

Even as it was preparing to review a $4.7 billion deal settling costs for the failed San Onofre nuclear plant, the California Public Utilities Commission was working behind the scenes to draft and send subpoenas on behalf of plant owner Southern California Edison.

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Politico: Brown’s endorsement of Harris raises a scenario involving his wife

Politico

By Carla Marinucci |
May. 24, 2016 – 7:47 a.m.

SACRAMENTO — With his endorsement of California Attorney General Kamala Harris in the U.S. Senate race on Monday, Gov. Jerry Brown will likely fuel the growing buzz in Sacramento about a “musical chairs” scenario: will Brown consider appointing his wife and chief counsel, Anne B. Gust, to fill Harris’ shoes?

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California State University

Rosanna Xia
May 24, 2016

The Cal State Board of Trustees approved a plan Tuesday to raise faculty salaries by 10.5% over three years, capping a long-running dispute over pay that threatened to wreak havoc on the nation’s largest public university system.

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Bernie Sanders

Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders gets a round of applause during a rally at Lincoln Park in East Los Angeles. (Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times)

Cathleen Decker
May 23, 2016

California, the state with a well-earned reputation for disinterest in things political, has been overrun by a vast and historic burst of new voters.

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The much-anticipated Newport Beach Civic Center has its grand opening to the public this Saturday. Event will include tours and open house. ///ADDITIONAL INFO: nb.cityhallpreview.0503 - 5/2/13 - PHOTO BY JOSHUA SUDOCK, THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER -- Picture made at Newport Beach City Hall in Newport Beach Thursday, May 2, 2013.

The heaviest loads in Orange County are in older cities, such as Newport Beach, that have had their own in-house police and fire departments for decades. Public safety workers usually get the most expensive pensions. (Joshua Sudock – File Photo)

By Teri Sforza / Staff Columnist
tsforza@ocregister.com
May 23, 2016 – Updated: 6:36 a.m.

So if you don’t live in Irwindale, rejoice: There, even when you look at it through rose-colored glasses, public pension liabilities equal $32,447 for each and every household in the city.

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Pensions

By Ed Mendel
May 23, 2016

Annual rates paid by employers to CalPERS and CalSTRS are going up, pension funding levels haven’t recovered from a big drop during the recession, and Gov. Brown’s pension reform put a lid on pension increases.

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The Sacramento Bee: Jerry Brown hopes to leave on high note, but fears downturn

Dan Walters

By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
May 21, 2016 – 1:59 PM

  • Governor reveals concerns about how he will leave
  • Budget looms as the greatest threat to his legacy
  • He shuns tax reform, pins hopes on a small reserve

Obliquely and perhaps unwittingly, Jerry Brown has acknowledged that as his remarkable political career nears an end, he’s concerned with how history will remember him.

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Los Angeles Times: Gov. Brown turns in signatures on parole ballot measure

Ballot Measures

John Myers
May 20, 2016 – 10:56 A.M.

Gov. Jerry Brown, still awaiting word on the legality of his plan to revamp the state’s parole laws, nonetheless submitted petition signatures on Friday to earn the measure a spot on the Nov. 8 ballot.

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Up Arrow

Job growth picks up in April.

Natalie Kitroeff
May 20, 2016

California employers picked up hiring in April, adding 59,600 jobs during the month, according to state data released Friday.

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The Sun: Colonies defense attorney alleges prosecutors destroyed evidence

Delete

By Joe Nelson, The Sun
Posted: 05/19/16 – 5:07 PM PDT |

To read filing, click the following link:
Motion to Dismiss – Destruction of Evidence by Attorney General

A defense attorney in San Bernardino County’s Colonies corruption case has filed a motion in Superior Court seeking dismissal of the case on grounds that prosecutors destroyed evidence.

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Pay Cut

The Associated Press
May 19, 2016 – Updated 5:12 p.m.

SACRAMENTO – The California Transportation Commission has adopted more than $754 million in cuts to planned highway, transit and other projects because of falling tax revenues tied to gas prices.

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California Voter Registration Form

John Myers
May 19, 2016

A new analysis finds nearly 32,000 voters in California’s American Independent Party changed their official registration and left the party in the two weeks after a Los Angeles Times investigation identified widespread confusion among the party’s members.

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Dan Walters

By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
May 19, 2016 – 3:19 PM

  • Those who don’t follow popular opinions face harassment
  • Rush to enact new gun laws shows trend
  • Another bill would punish free speech

Those who, by word and deed, are out of sync with California’s deeply blue political ethos risk social ostracism.

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Death Chamber

By Bob Egelko
May 19, 2016 Updated: May 19, 2016 5:38pm

Death-penalty supporters submitted signatures on a ballot measure Thursday aimed at speeding up executions in California, setting the stage for voters to decide in November whether to retain and overhaul the state’s death penalty or abolish it.

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fppc logo

Capitol Alert
By Taryn Luna
tluna@sacbee.com
May 19, 2016 – 11:59 AM

  • The former legislator admitted his part in a campaign finance scheme
  • The Fair Political Practices Commission lowered Strickland’s fine to $40,000
  • Strickland currently serves as the California chairman of the Committee for American Sovereignty, a new pro-Trump super PAC

Former Republican lawmaker Tony Strickland will pay a $40,000 fine under a settlement with campaign finance regulators approved Thursday, with the former lawmaker admitting that he arranged for supporters to bypass voter-approved contribution limits during his 2010 race for state controller.

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Inland Regional Center

Flowers and American flags honoring the victims of the San Bernardino attack a few days after the assault are placed outside the Inland Regional Center where the fatal shooting took place. (Nick Ut / Associated Press)

Patrick McGreevy
May 19, 2016

The state Senate on Thursday approved sweeping new restrictions on using guns in California in response to the December mass shooting by two terrorists that left 14 dead in San Bernardino.

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Child Abuse

Gabriel Fernandez was killed after breakdowns by Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services. (Family handout)

Garrett Therolf
May 18, 2016

Gov. Jerry Brown’s administration has quietly drafted a bill that would gut key portions of the state’s landmark law requiring child protective services agencies to release records when a youth dies of abuse or neglect. A vote is expected within the next week.

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High-Speed Rail

The supports for a 1,600-foot viaduct to carry high-speed rail trains across the Fresno River are seen under construction near Madera in February. (Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press)

Ralph Vartabedian
May 18, 2016

The Obama administration threw the California bullet train project another lifeline Wednesday, extending the schedule by four years for construction of 118 miles of rail through the Central Valley, according to congressional officials.

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Power Lines

The California Independent System Operator, which manages the state’s electric grid, said Tuesday the summer electric supply should meet demand for most of the state but Southern California might lack needed natural gas. (Henry A. Barrios / Associated Press)

Ivan Penn
May 18, 2016

The manager of the state’s electric grid expects current power supplies to meet summer needs for keeping the lights and air conditioning running, except in Southern California, where power plants might lack the needed natural gas.

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Capitol Weekly: Politico sets sights on Sacramento

Politico

By John Howard
Posted 05.18.2016

Politico, a Washington, D.C.-based news outlet, plans to expand its California presence by adding 34 full-time employees by the end of next year and an additional seven by 2020, according to state business officials.

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The San Diego Union-Tribune: Moody’s dings Southern California Edison

San Onofre

Reopening San Onofre nuclear settlement a ‘credit negative’

By Rob Nikolewski |
May 17, 2016 – 2:35 p.m.

It’s not a ratings downgrade, but Moody’s Investor Service on Tuesday called reopening the financial details of the San Onofre nuclear plant shutdown a “credit negative” for the plant’s operator, Southern California Edison.

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Debt

Capitol Alert
By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
May 17, 2016 – 12:03 PM

  • Pew Charitable Trusts pegged state’s debt at $344.7 billion
  • Most of the debt was for future state employee pensions
  • Unfunded health care and bonds made up the remainder

As a proportion of personal income, California had the nation’s 11th highest long-term state debt in 2013, a new report by the Pew Charitable Trusts says.

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Taxes

California Elections
By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
May 16, 2016 – 1:36 PM

  • 90 tax measures, 57 bond issues on June primary ballot
  • School bonds would total $6.2 billion if passed

California voters will face just one statewide measure on the June primary ballot, but they will pass judgment on at least 165 local government proposals, according to a compilation by government finance tracker Michael Coleman.

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Tim Donnelly

Former Assemblyman Tim Donnelly goes over strategy of campaigning door to door on April 23. Donnelly is now running for Congress. (Photo by Sarah Alvarado)

By Beau Yarbrough, The Sun
Posted: 05/15/16 – 7:34 PM PDT |

HESPERIA >> On a recent Saturday morning, former Assemblyman Tim Donnelly rallied the troops — in this case, seven volunteers — just off the 15 Freeway.

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Vote

John Myers
May 15, 2016

California voters this fall will likely wade through the longest list of state propositions since Bill Clinton was president, a sizable batch of proposed laws that is likely to spark a record amount of campaign spending.

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Dan Walters

Dan Walters
By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
May 15, 2016 – 6:00 PM

  • Developers push $9 billion bond issue despite governor’s criticism
  • Contractors seek to keep payments for illegal contracts
  • Schools, county treasurers joust over control of bond funds

The seemingly mundane matter of issuing bonds to build and fix schools has suddenly morphed into a bubbling stew of highly contentious politics.

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Dan Walters

By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
May 14, 2016 – 1:54 PM

  • State’s economic recovery is beginning to cool off
  • Governor cuts revenue estimate in revised budget
  • ‘Very resolute’ attitude means conflict with liberals

Gov. Jerry Brown unveiled his revised budget on Friday the 13th, which implies that he’s not superstitious.

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Kamala Harris

At this past week’s Senate debate, Kamala Harris said of the utilities commission, “We are concerned about what’s going on there, that’s why there’s an active criminal investigation. And the bottom line is this: We are going to go where the facts lead us.” — (Hayne Palmour IV)

By Jeff McDonald |
May 14, 2016 – 8 a.m.

  • Reports of missed deadlines are ‘absolutely incorrect,’ Harris says

Eighteen months ago, when the Attorney General’s Office served a search warrant on the California Public Utilities Commission headquarters in San Francisco, agents carted away computers, files and other materials by the armful.

It was more than a raid. It was a dramatic message to utility regulators: Attorney General Kamala Harris was serious about investigating government corruption.

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Loretta Sanchez+Kamala Harris

U.S. Representative Loretta Sanchez left. California Attorney General Kamala Harris right.

By Joe Garofoli
May 13, 2016
Updated: May 13, 2016 – 2:57pm

California’s U.S. Senate race has been overshadowed by the high-profile presidential campaign but that might change a bit Friday when Democrats Kamala Harris and Loretta Sanchez launched TV commercials.

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Veto

Patrick McGreevy
May 13, 2016 – 1:24 P.M.

Gov. Jerry Brown on Friday vetoed a bill that would have expanded the disclosure of lobbying activities to include those who seek to influence state officials on government procurement decisions. He said it is not necessary.

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Calculator

May. 13, 2016 – 6:54 PM ET

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California Gov. Jerry Brown proposed a $122.2 billion general fund spending plan Friday that sets the stage for a months-long debate with the Legislature over budget priorities.

Here’s a look at some of the numbers in Brown’s plan:

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taxifornia

John Myers
May 11, 2016 – 2:07 P.M.

When Gov. Jerry Brown asked California voters to raise taxes in 2012 , he made clear that it was temporary, revenues needed to balance the books for only a few years.

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Smoke and Mirrors

Public records show that Brown has financial ties to a company that could profit greatly from shipping coal through Oakland.

Mike Rosati
May 12, 2016

During a high-profile speech last July in Vatican City, Governor Jerry Brown told Pope Francis that “90 percent of the coal” reserves worldwide “can never be taken out of the ground” if the planet is to avoid a climate catastrophe. Brown’s remarks, which are posted on the governor’s official website, were hailed by climate change activists around the globe and further positioned Brown as a world leader in the fight to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

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Pay Raise

The State Worker
By Jon Ortiz
jortiz@sacbee.com
May 11, 2016 – 11:58 AM

  • Three-year deal includes salary increases
  • Employees to begin contributing to retiree medical benefit
  • Pay for medical checkups now pensionable

California’s correctional officers will see a raise on their July paychecks under terms of a new contract they overwhelmingly ratified, the union announced this week.

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Healthcare Tax

Capitol Alert
By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
May 11, 2016 – 12:15 PM

  • Pew report says California owes $80.3 billion for retiree health
  • Covering obligation would more than triple current spending

California is spending more than $2 billion a year on health care for retired state employees – up more than 80 percent in the last decade, according to Gov. Jerry Brown’s latest budget.

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Covered California

By Chad Terhune
California Healthline
May 11, 2016

California’s health insurance exchange estimates that its Obamacare premiums may rise 8 percent on average next year, which would end two consecutive years of more modest 4 percent increases.

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Cheryl Brown

Published: May 9, 2016
Updated:   May 11, 2016 – 6:45 a.m.

Critics of San Bernardino Democrat Cheryl Brown have a new nickname for the Inland assemblywoman – “Chevron Cheryl.”

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U.S. Senate Debate - 051016

Phil Willon, John Myers
May 10, 2016

U.S. Senate hopeful Kamala Harris found herself under attack Tuesday night during a fiery debate where she was accused of putting her political ambitions ahead of serving Californians as state Attorney General and pressed about why she hasn’t investigated police shootings.

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Dan Walters

By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
May 10, 2016 – 3:33 PM

  • San Onofre nuclear power plant shut down
  • Secret deal stuck ratepayers with most costs
  • As probe continues, PUC reopens the case

The long-simmering scandal in the state Public Utilities Commission over a secret deal to stick ratepayers with most of the costs of shutting down the San Onofre nuclear power plant just got more interesting.

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The San Diego Union-Tribune: State to reopen $4.7 billion San Onofre deal

CPUC

Deal left ratepayers to pay most of cost for premature shutdown of failed nuclear power plant

Jeff McDonald

By Jeff McDonald |
May 9, 2016 – 4:55 p.m.

State utility regulators on Monday reopened the agreement they approved in 2014 that assigned ratepayers the lion’s share of the multibillion-dollar cost for premature shutdown of the failed San Onofre nuclear power plant.

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fppc logo

Patrick McGreevy
May 9, 2016 – 2:01 P.M.

California enforcement officials are proposing $80,000 in ethics fines against former state Sen. Tony Strickland (R-Camarillo).

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Calculator+Finance+Budget

By Jonathan Cooper, Associated Press
May 10, 2016

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — As Gov. Jerry Brown prepares to release his revised state budget this week, he’s hearing a chorus of calls from Democratic lawmakers, liberal interest groups and even some Republicans urging him to significantly boost spending to help California’s poorest residents.

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Restaurant Worker

Restaurant workers, cashiers, parking lot attendants and other low-paid workers will benefit when California’s wage begins rising. But many business owners will be grappling with increased costs, leading to price hikes, reduced hours, increased automation or layoffs. (File)

By Kevin Smith, San Gabriel Valley Tribune
Posted: 05/07/16 – 5:55 PM PDT |

California’s new minimum wage requirements are being hailed by supporters who say workers must earn a “living wage,” but others fear the pay hikes will fuel layoffs, higher prices and more automation as businesses scramble to offset increased costs.

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Southern California News Group: Loretta Sanchez for U.S. Senate: Endorsement

Loretta Sanchez

Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-CA) shares remarks at Girl Scouts At 100: The Launch of ToGetHerThere at Capitol Hill Cannon House Office Bldg, Caucus Room on Feb. 1, 2012, in Washington, DC. (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for Girl Scouts of America)

By The Southern California News Group, San Bernardino County Sun
Posted: 05/06/16 – 4:50 PM PDT |

California in November will elect a new U.S. senator for the first time in 24 years. To replace four-term Sen. Barbara Boxer, who decided not to seek re-election, we endorse Rep. Loretta Sanchez, D-Orange, because she has demonstrated incredible judgment on the most crucial issues of our generation, taking tough stands in the face of tremendous opposition.

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San Manuel Gaming Chip

The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians has increased it’s lobbyist spending by 74-percent from two years ago.

Capitol Alert
By Jim Miller
jmiller@sacbee.com
May 6, 2016 – 5:07 PM

Trade associations, unions and other lobbyist employers spent more than $74.3 million during the first three months of 2016, recent state filings show, with some groups spending significantly more compared to the same period in the last legislative session.

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Refinery

Flyers were placed on nearly every door within a mile radius of the ExxonMobil refinery notifying residents of the impending restart of the facility. Thursday, May 5, 2016, Torrance, CA. (Steve McCrank/Staff Photographer)

By Nick Green, Daily Breeze
Posted: 05/05/16 – 8:40 PM PDT |

The February 2015 explosion that shuttered the ExxonMobil plant in Torrance was the costliest disruption at a California refinery in the past 16 years, with motorists paying at least $2.4 billion in higher pump prices in the following six months, according to a recent RAND study.

Read the rest of this entry »

Chad Mayes

Melanie Mason
May 5, 2016 – 2:25 P.M.

Just six days ago, Assembly Republican leader Chad Mayes was the opening act to his preferred presidential pick, Ohio Gov. John Kasich, at the California GOP convention.

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Tony Cardenas

Campaign reports show that Rep. Tony Cardenas (D-Los Angeles) has spent $306,470 of his reelection fund on legal services from five area firms. (Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)

Sarah D. Wire
May 5, 2016

U.S. Rep. Tony Cardenas (D-Los Angeles) has poured more than $300,000 from his reelection campaign fund into legal services with five Los Angeles law firms in the last year, but his attorney says there is no indication the congressman is the subject of a rumored federal investigation.

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Paul Chabot

Republican Congressional candidate Paul Chabot meets with volunteers in Rancho Cucamonga in 2014. Although he lost that election to Rep. Pete Aguilar, D-San Bernardino, Chabot has essentially kept campaigning for the 31st Congressional District for the past two years. Both the San Bernardino GOP and the Redlands Tea Party Patriots have endorsed him for the upcoming June 7 primary. (File photo by James Carbone for the San Bernardino Sun)

By Beau Yarbrough, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin
Posted: 05/03/16 – 6:42 PM PDT |

San Bernardino County conservative organizations like Paul Chabot, the once and future challenger to Rep. Pete Aguilar, D-San Bernardino but are split on whether they should endorse Rep. Paul Cook, R-Yucca Valley or former assemblyman Tim Donnelly.

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Upland seal

By Liset Márquez, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin
Posted: 05/02/16 – 4:26 PM PDT |

UPLAND >> Upland has a new ally in its battle against the California Cannabis Coalition: the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association.

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GOP

Capitol Alert
By David Siders
dsiders@sacbee.com
May 3, 2016 – 7:17 PM

  • State Republicans had hoped to play a decisive role in presidential race
  • “It was fun while it lasted,” Republican consultant says
  • Consultant working on anti-Trump effort in California says campaign will proceed

Marty Wilson, a Republican political consultant, was at a poolside reception at a GOP gathering in Burlingame over the weekend, analyzing paths forward for Ted Cruz and John Kasich in California. He offered one major caution.

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question-mark

Phil Willon
May 3, 3016 – 7:51 P.M.

A competitive California presidential primary had all sorts of potential to scramble the other races on June 7. One possible outcome: A surge in Republican turnout could have dashed Senate candidate Rep. Loretta Sanchez’s hopes of making it past the primary and to the general election.

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Marijuana

Patrick McGreevy
May 4, 2016

A measure to legalize marijuana for recreational use in California appears headed for the Nov. 8 ballot.

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Calpensions: Why bankrupt San Bernardino didn’t cut pensions

San Bernardino Seal

By Ed Mendel
May 2, 2016

After reaching agreements with all major creditors, San Bernardino is moving toward an exit from a four-year bankruptcy this fall without cutting public pensions, its largest and rapidly growing debt.

Read the rest of this entry »

Dan Walters

By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
April 28, 2016 – 2:51 PM

  • Former Sen. Joe Dunn fired as State Bar’s boss
  • Accused of deception, he’s now suing quasi-public agency

Joe Dunn’s ears must have been burning Tuesday.

Read the rest of this entry »

KPBS: Deadline Passes In Probe Of Secret San Onofre Deal

Kamala Harris

Customers may now have little recourse for accountability for how they were handed a $3.3 billion bill for the San Onofre nuclear power plant’s shutdown after a radiation leak in 2012.

By Amita Sharma
Friday, April 29, 2016

Aired 4/29/16 on KPBS News.

While California Attorney General Kamala Harris gathers steam in her campaign to replace U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer, the statute of limitations has run out for her to file charges for a secret meeting in Poland that spawned a San Onofre settlement.

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The Sun: Chabot accuses Aguilar campaign of stealing signs

Pete Aguilar+Paul Chabot

Pete Aguilar, left, and Paul Chabot.

By Jeff Horseman, The Press-Enterprise
Posted: 04/27/16 – 5:54 PM PDT |

Redlands police are investigating a report from Republican congressional candidate Paul Chabot that one of his campaign signs was stolen and replaced with a rival’s sign.

Read the rest of this entry »

Duncan Hunter

A photo posted on Rep. Duncan Hunter’s Facebook page about the time his campaign paid expenses on his trip to Italy.

By Morgan Cook |
April 28, 2016 – 7 a.m.

  • CREW also has concerns about oral surgery, video games, other expenses

An ethics advocacy group has filed complaints with two federal oversight agencies, asking officials to investigate what the group describes as a pattern of questionable campaign spending by Rep. Duncan D. Hunter, R-Alpine.

Read the rest of this entry »

Jim Brulte

California Republican Party Chairman Jim Brulte addresses the group’s fall convention in Anaheim in September 2015. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Phil Willon
April 27, 2016

Lost in the excitement over the top three GOP presidential candidates dropping by this weekend’s California Republican Party convention in Northern California is a proposed rules change that could have a big impact on the party’s leadership.

Read the rest of this entry »

Jerry Brown

California Gov. Jerry Brown speaks at a gathering of political, business and community leaders at the annual California Chamber of Commerce Host Breakfast in May 2015. Brown will release his revised budget proposal next month. (Rich Pedroncelli AP)

Capitol Alert
By Jim Miller
jmiller@sacbee.com
April 27, 2016 – 2:29 PM

  • Two-fifths of taxpayers saw gains in average real income from 1995 to 2014, new data show
  • That is an improvement over 1994-2013 span, when only top-fifth had real growth
  • Average income of top 1 percent almost doubled over past 20 years

The wealthiest Californians paid nearly half of the state’s income taxes in 2014 after seeing an uptick in their average income from 2013, according to updated income distribution data compiled by the state Franchise Tax Board.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Sacramento Bee: Dan Walters: No wounds inflicted by California Senate debate

Dan Walters

By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
April 26, 2016 – 3:50 PM

  • 34 Californians running for U.S. Senate this year
  • Which two will finish 1-2 in primary and face each other?
  • Monday’s debate among five candidates left Sanchez still standing

Barbara Boxer’s decision to retire has inspired 34 men and women to seek her U.S. Senate seat this year.

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The Sacramento Bee: U.S. Senate candidates’ styles emerge in first debate

debate

Capitol Alert
By Christopher Cadelago and David Siders
ccadelago@sacbee.com
April 25, 2016 – 01:00 p.m.

Stockton–

Democrats Kamala Harris and Loretta Sanchez offered contrasting styles Monday in the first televised debate of the U.S. Senate contest, while a trio of Republicans leapt at the chance to participate in a bipartisan skirmish.

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U.S. Senate Sample Ballot - 060716

Sample ballot for the June 7 California Senate primary. (Los Angeles County)

John Myers
April 24, 2016

If elections officials could send just one message to California’s 17.2 million registered voters about the U.S. Senate primary in June, it would probably be this: Read the instructions carefully.

Read the rest of this entry »

Loretta Sanchez

Rep. Loretta Sanchez gestures on the steps of a congressional office building in Washington during orientation week for new members of Congress. (Alex Garcia / Los Angeles Times)

Phil Willon and Noah Bierman
April 22, 2016

Rep. Loretta Sanchez’s easygoing, neighborly style has won over Orange County voters for two decades, but that blessing has come with a nettlesome curse: the occasional, stinging political gaffe.

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Jerry Brown

Gov. Jerry Brown carries notebook paper after unveiling his proposed 2016-17 state budget at the Capitol on Jan. 7. Brown warned that the state is overdue for a recession and needs to build reserves to cushion the effects of an economic downturn. (Renée C. Byer – rbyer@sacbee.com)

Capitol Alert
By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
April 22, 2016 – 2:51 PM

  • Texas shines in ability to absorb a recession
  • California and Illinois at the bottom

California, whose state budget is highly dependent on volatile income taxes, is the least able big state to withstand a recession, according to a “stress test” conducted by Moody’s Investor Service.

Read the rest of this entry »

Kamala Harris

Atty. Gen. Kamala D. Harris at a San Diego news conference. (Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)

John Myers
April 21, 2016

A federal judge has ruled that a nonprofit backed by conservative billionaires David and Charles Koch does not have to reveal its donors to Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris in a case that pitted state law governing charities against 1st Amendment rights.

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Capitol Weekly : Poll: Trump leads in GOP primary

Capitol Weekly

By Jonathan Brown
Posted 04.21.2016

Perhaps all attention on primary night in California should be on the 33rd Congressional District – home to the Trump National Golf Club. After all, in New York, the only Congressional District that Donald Trump didn’t win was the one in which he lives.

Trump is likely to do well in California, too.

Read the rest of this entry »

illegal-immigrant-sign

Capitol Alert
By David Siders
dsiders@sacbee.com
April 21, 2016 – 10:00 AM

  • Immigration remains major issue for Republicans in Riverside County
  • Republican presidential candidates’ focus on immigration elevates debate
  • Candidates gearing up for critical primary in California on June 7

MURRIETA– Morning light filtered into the doughnut shop in Murrieta’s old downtown, and Bob Swinford lingered over coffee, longing for a revolution.

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Dan Walters

By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
April 21, 2016 – 2:39 PM

  • California is eliminating at-large voting in local government
  • However, it maintains winner-take-all approach in presidential voting
  • We could apportion our electoral votes by congressional district

Civil rights groups, particularly those representing California’s burgeoning Latino population, have pressed for years to do away with “at-large” elections of city council and school board members.

Read the rest of this entry »

PPIC

Capitol Alert
By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
April 20, 2016 – 2:00 PM

  • Surtax on high-income Californians, school bonds headed for November ballot
  • Unions support tax extension, education groups and developers want bonds
  • Gov. Jerry Brown has not endorsed either, critical of bond issue

California voters are inclined to extend extra taxes on the state’s high-income residents to support public education and pass a new school construction bond issue, a poll by the Public Policy Institute of California has found.

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California Voter Registration Form

A California voter registration form. (Los Angeles Times)

George Skelton

George Skelton
Capitol Journal
April 20, 2016

About 400,000 Californians who might be planning to vote in the state’s pivotal Democratic presidential primary June 7 could be in for a shock.

They’ll be told, “Sorry, your vote’s no good here.”

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Chevron - Cheryl Brown Campaign Mailer

A campaign mailer, underwritten in part by Chevron, touts Assemblywoman Cheryl Brown, D-San Bernardino, as a champion of the environment. She failed to support major climate-change legislation last year. (Dan Smith dssmith@sacbee.com)

Capitol Alert
By Taryn Luna
tluna@sacbee.com
April 20, 2016 – 2:29 PM

  • California Environmental Justice Alliance condemns campaign mailer that lauds Brown’s environmental record
  • Brown’s camp defends the Democrat’s depiction as environmental advocate
  • Independent expenditure committee to support Brown’s re-election, largely supported by Chevron, paid for the advertisement

A California environmental group is crying foul after Chevron helped fund a campaign mailer casting Assemblywoman Cheryl Brown as an “environmental champion for us all.”

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calpers

Pension fund says rate hike smaller than expected

Business & Real Estate
By Dale Kasler
dkasler@sacbee.com
April 20, 2016 – 5:18 PM

CalPERS approved another round of rate increases Thursday, requiring higher contributions from state agencies and school districts for the 2016-17 fiscal year.

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The Sacramento Bee: Dan Walters: California’s income tax refugees get shield

Dan Walters

By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
April 19, 2016 – 2:04 PM

  • State has pursued inventor Gilbert Hyatt for a quarter-century
  • Nevada courts said California had harassed Hyatt
  • U.S. Supreme Court upholds Nevada’s spanking of California

There is a perpetual debate in California political circles over whether the state’s highest-in-the-nation income tax rates encourage the wealthy to take themselves and their money elsewhere.

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High Speed Rail

A full-scale mock-up of a high-speed train is displayed at the Capitol in Sacramento last year. (Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press)

Ralph Vartabedian
April 18, 2016

A key state legislative committee on Monday unanimously approved a Republican-led bill to strengthen oversight of the California bullet train, a sign of growing bipartisan concern about the project.

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Dan Walters

By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
April 17, 2016 – 12:05 PM

  • Legislature micromanages horse racing, liquor trade
  • Approving Arabian horse races rates an ‘urgency’ bill
  • Important issues languish in preoccupation with minor matters

One might think – or at least hope –that the men and women who occupy the state Capitol would devote themselves tirelessly to resolving complex issues of a very diverse and difficult-to-govern state.

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AIP Check Off

The American Independent Party is California’s largest third party. A poll shows 73% may be in it by mistake. Are you one of them?

By John Myers, Christine Mai-Duc and Ben Welsh
April 17, 2016

With nearly half a million registered members, the American Independent Party is bigger than all of California’s other minor parties combined. The ultraconservative party’s platform opposes abortion rights and same sex marriage, and calls for building a fence along the entire United States border.

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Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, who is leading a U.S. Congressional delegation to the Russian Federation speaks during a news conference in U.S. Embassy in Moscow, Russia, Sunday, June 2, 2013. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, a California Republican who led the six-person delegation this week, said at a press conference Sunday that there was “nothing specific” that could have helped April’s bombings, but that the U.S. and Russia needed to work more closely on joint security threats. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Costa Mesa, lashed out at former county GOP chief Scott Baugh for raising money to campaign for his congressional seat, expressing concern Friday that his longtime friend would run against him. (Alexander Zemlianichenko/AP File)

By Martin Wisckol
April 15, 2016
Updated April 16, 2016 – 3:20 p.m.

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher has lashed out at former county GOP chief Scott Baugh for raising money to campaign for his congressional seat, expressing concern Friday that his longtime friend would run against him.

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KPBS-TV: Harris Questioned For Representing Gov. Brown During San Onofre Probe

Kamala Harris

California Attorney General Kamala Harris (Richard Vogel/AP)

By Amita Sharma
Friday, April 15, 2016

How does a prosecutor build a case if she’s representing a potential witness in her investigation?

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Shell

By David R. Baker
Friday, April 15, 2016 – Updated 5:04 pm

Fifteen years after blackouts swept the state, a Federal Energy Regulatory Commission judge has found that a division of Shell Oil engaged in fraud and market manipulation during California’s energy crisis, with company traders joking on tape about burning the evidence if they were ever caught.

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American Apparel

American Apparel headquarters and manufacturing building located on Alameda Street and 7th street in Los Angeles where the clothier that was once a fashion trailblazer has taken drastic steps to stave off financial ruin. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

Shan Li and Natalie Kitroeff
April 15, 2016

Los Angeles was once the epicenter of apparel manufacturing, attracting buyers from across the world to its clothing factories, sample rooms and design studios.

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Jobs

Natalie Kitroeff
April 15, 2016

California added 4,200 jobs in March, the Employment Development Department reported Friday.

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Snowpack

Frank Gehrke of the California Department of Water Resources surveys the snowpack at Phillips Station near Echo Summit, Calif. (Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press)

Jason Song
April 15, 2016

The National Weather Service has confirmed what many Southern Californians suspected during a scorching February: El Niño, and its badly needed rainstorms, are pretty much kaput.

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The Sun: Proposal could increase number of Inland judges

Gavel

By Brian Rokos, The Press-Enterprise
Posted: 04/14/16 – 1:21 PM PDT |

A state judicial panel has proposed redistributing vacant judgeships from counties where there are too many to counties where there are too few, including Riverside and San Bernardino counties, where a lack of judges has caused hundreds of cases to be dismissed.

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