Archive for April 20th, 2010

InlandPolitics: S.B. County Economic Development Director departs

San Bernardino County’s Economic Development Director and two subordinate staff are reportedly leaving their positions with San Bernardino County.

Mark Dowling and and two staffers are the latest casualties in the ongoing shake-up in San Bernardino County’s administration.

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Information being disseminated by San Bernardino County administrators related to ongoing budget woes is somewhat reminiscent of tactics which have amplified the state’s financial mess.

In an effort to close a purported $90 million deficit for the 2010/11 fiscal year the county is asking employee organizations to come up with approximately $39 million in hard dollar concessions.

The $90 million figure excludes all recently discovered liabilities including millions of dollars in unreserved leave cash-out obligations.

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If you’re a public employee, can your boss read your text messages sent from your work-issued telecommunications device?

And if your superiors can read your text messages, can they then discipline you for your action and charge you the cost associated with sending them?

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Neil Derry

Joe Nelson, Staff Writer
Posted: 04/19/2010 04:57:31 PM PDT

SAN BERNARDINO – The county’s budget woes have prompted Supervisor Neil Derry to strip from his proposed Sunshine Ordinance a provision mandating the establishment of an ethics commission.

The county is facing a budget deficit of $90 million, and layoffs could occur if employees to not forgo pay raises for a second year, Derry said.

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iePolitics: More FPPC and PIU Complaints

Written by Administrator
April 19th, 2010 at 7:43 pm

Before I get into the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) and Public Integrity Unit (PIU) complaints filed today, I owe everyone an explanation of the complaint filed last week.  It was filed against San Bernardino County District Attorney Mike Ramos alleging possible violation of the $100.00 per year cumulative payment to a single vendor rule, violation of campaign-related expenditure requirements, and misuse of campaign funds.

The complaint reads:

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iePolitics: Mike Ramos “Drunk in Public”


Written by AntiCorruptionUnit
April 19th, 2010 at 6:51 pm

As briefly reported at Inlandpolitics on April 15, 2010 by blogger ten.fifteen under the “Frank Guzman releases his campaign website” thread,  the blogger eludes to an encounter by deputies with District Attorney Mike Ramos.

It was reported that District Attorney Mike Ramos was attending a party at a friend’s house located in Mentone, which is near Yucaipa and which falls under San Bernardino County Sheriff’s jurisdiction.

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SBSun: Court takes up public employees’ privacy case

Staff and Wire Reports
Posted: 04/19/2010 05:39:07 PM PDT

WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court appears likely to rule against Ontario police officers who claimed the city violated their privacy by reading racy text messages they sent on their employers’ account.

Several justices said Monday that the Police Department acted reasonably in monitoring the text messages in view of its written policy warning employees they have no guarantee of privacy in the use of office computer and electronics equipment.

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April 19, 2010 5:12 PM
Natasha Lindstrom

ADELANTO • Strapped for cash as the state delays billions of dollars in payments, the Adelanto School District may give itself a $3 million interfund loan to make payroll and seek help from the county to repay it.

“It’s not desired that you’d have to go seek a loan to pay, but it’s certainly an option,” San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools spokesman Dan Evans said. “The options out there aren’t great right now … and with more expected budget cuts you have to anticipate that these are going to be even tighter times for districts.”

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DailyBulletin: L.A. County plans up to 130 layoffs

Troy Anderson, Staff Writer
Created: 04/19/2010 07:01:34 PM PDT

Los Angeles County’s $22.7 billion spending plan for next year will require up to 130 layoffs and additional cuts in public services to cover an anticipated $511 million shortfall, officials said Monday.

This includes reduced hours at public libraries, consolidation of services at health clinics, the closure of a jail at the Pitchess Detention Center in Castaic, reducing sheriff’s overtime costs and Assessor’s Office cuts, which could delay home appraisals.

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By PE Politics
on April 19, 2010 3:05 PM

Incumbent Riverside County District Attorney Rod Pacheco and challenger Paul Zellerbach have both been invited to a candidates’ forum later this month in Riverside.

The Inland Empire Latino Lawyers Association gathering is set for 6 p.m. April 29 at the Zacatecas Cafe, 2472 University Ave. in Riverside.

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RivPE: Moreno Valley looks at directly electing mayor

10:00 PM PDT on Monday, April 19, 2010

The Press-Enterprise

The Moreno Valley City Council tonight will review the steps needed to put a measure on the November ballot that would let voters elect the mayor.

Under the current system, council members appoint the mayor from within their ranks. This term the mayor is Bonnie Flickinger.

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On politics in the Golden State

April 19, 2010 | 4:21 pm

While Jerry Brown the candidate for governor is honing a campaign message that is critical of Wall St., Jerry Brown the attorney general is using his official perch to go after what he views as bad actors in the corporate world.

At a Los Angeles news conference today, Brown announced he would file suit against Moody’s Investors Service, one of the nation’s largest bond-rating firms, for avoiding a subpoena in an ongoing investigation into the firm. Brown’s office has accused Moody’s and other ratings agencies of giving high ratings to investments backed by unstable mortgages on the eve of the collapse of the nation’s housing market.

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By Dan Walters The Sacramento Bee
Published: Tuesday, Apr. 20, 2010 – 12:00 am | Page 3A

When Attorney General Jerry Brown issued a broadside Monday against Moody’s Investors Service, accusing the Wall Street rating firm of refusing to give him information on the global banking meltdown, it fit neatly into Brown’s emerging strategy to win the governorship.

Democrat Brown, seemingly taking his cue from the Obama White House’s high-profile battle with the banking industry over new financial regulations, is beginning to paint his leading Republican rival, Meg Whitman, as the product of a morally bankrupt banking system.

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SacBee: CalPERS investment partner cuts fees, agents

By Dale Kasler
Published: Tuesday, Apr. 20, 2010 – 12:00 am | Page 1A

CalPERS’ largest investment partner made dramatic concessions to the pension fund Monday, agreeing to stop hiring placement agents and to cut its management fees by $125 million.

The deal with Wall Street powerhouse Apollo Global Management underscores CalPERS’ clout in the financial world – and cuts to the heart of its efforts to cope with a scandal over the marketing middlemen known as placement agents.

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CATHY BUSSEWITZ, Associated Press Writer

April 19, 2010 | 5:22 p.m.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The chief investment officer of California’s giant pension fund said Monday he is disturbed by the allegations of wrongdoing against investment firm Goldman Sachs.

The California Public Employees Retirement System, which manages assets totaling about $210 billion, owns 1.8 million shares in the embattled money-management firm.

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OCRegister: CalPERS misses point, governor’s advisor says

April 19th, 2010, 3:00 am · posted by Teri Sforza, Register staff writer

So we told you about the Stanford University study concluding that California’s public pension systems are massively underfunded.

And then we told you that the California Public Employees Retirement System – the nation’s largest public pension fund – attacked the Stanford study as deeply flawed.

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April 19th, 2010, 9:54 pm · posted by Jennifer Muir

A new, hybrid pension plan for county employees — touted as groundbreaking pension reform — won’t save the county cash as quickly as officials had hoped thanks to a hiccup at the good ole’ Internal Revenue Service.

Under the two-tiered plan current employees were supposed to be able to choose whether to keep their old benefits, or select a hybrid plan that features a reduced pension but also a defined contribution component, similar to a 401K. New employees also would get to pick which plan works best for them.

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By Garrett Therolf

April 19, 2010 | 1:52 p.m.

Los Angeles County Chief Executive William T Fujioka said Monday he was grappling with a $510.5-million budget shortfall that could lead to the layoffs of about 100 workers, even with negotiations underway with labor leaders that could yield compromises.

“This will be the worst year,” Fujioka said at a news conference Monday, predicting that the economic downturn would continue to ease and that pressure on the county would ease greatly in coming years.

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