June 28, 2018

28Jun

POLICY & POLITICS

 

Valley:

 

We’re not only trashing each other, we’re trashing America

Fresno Bee

Suddenly, the lack of “civility” in public discourse was all anyone could talk about. Republicans leapt in gleefully, prominent among them former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who decried the “increasing personal nastiness” toward members of this administration.

Candidate denies fellow Nunes challenger Janz's claims of support

Fresno Bee

A candidate in the wild primary race to unseat high-profile Republican Rep. Devin Nunes said Wednesday that he will not support top challenger Andrew Janz due to his position on abortion and other issues.

Dolores Huerta Foundation calls on Kevin McCarthy to act on family separations at border

Bakersfield Californian

About 50 attendees, who held up American flags and protest signs, surrounded Chavez, the development coordinator for the foundation, as she prayed for the families who have been separated at the country’s southern border by the U.S. government.

 

State:

 

California Democrats pursue biggest Assembly advantage in 40 years

Sacramento Bee

Nearly three weeks after the California primary election, there are nearly 300,000 votes to count, but it is becoming clearer which candidates will appear on the November ballot.

 

'The most far-reaching privacy law in the country' heads to vote in California Legislature
Sacramento Bee

A last-minute deal between lawmakers, company rights groups and consumer privacy advocates is heading to a vote in the state Legislature Thursday.

See also:

     Uneasy California lawmakers set to OK internet privacy bill San Francisco Chronicle

     California lawmakers advance last-minute data privacy bill Washington Post

     California is on the verge of passing a sweeping new online privacy law targeting Facebook, Google and other tech giants Washington Post

     EDITORIAL: With the federal government missing in action, California should set its own rules for internet privacy Los Angeles Times

     Facebook’s Latest Problem: It Can’t Track Where Much of the Data Went Wall Street Journal

 

Soda taxes and privacy rights: Rushing to meet the ballot measure deadline
Sacramento Bee

Today's the deadline. If deals are to be made to keep two initiatives off the statewide ballot, it's now or never. First up is a bill on consumer privacy.

See also:

     Testing a Strategy to Stop New Soda Taxes New York Times

 

Deconstructing California’s top-two primary

Capitol Weekly

The most noteworthy change appears to be the manner by which campaigns are extending their reach across the partisan aisle. But they are not doing it in the way that the authors of the Top Two Candidates Open Primary Act, which took effect in 2011, intended.

 

Newsom, Feinstein continue to lead in poll; gas-tax repeal ahead with three-state measure trailing

San Diego Union-Tribune

Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom is well ahead of Republican challenger John Cox in the November race to succeed Gov. Jerry Brown, according to a new poll released Wednesday by SurveyUSA.

 

Walters: Supreme Court voids California law, upholds free speech

CALmatters

Californians of a liberal bent may not like it, but the U.S. Supreme Court this week struck an important blow for the constitutional right of free speech.

 

Federal:

 

Justice Kennedy, the pivotal swing vote on the Supreme Court, announces his retirement

Washington Post

Justice Anthony M. Kennedy announced Wednesday that he is retiring from the Supreme Court, a move that will give President Trump a chance to replace the pivotal justice and solidify a more conservative majority on the court that plays a crucial role in American life.

See also:

     Senator Kamala D. Harris Statement on Announcement of Justice Kennedy Retirement Sierra Sun Times

     'Best news in a generation!' vs. 'I'm worried': Readers weigh in on Kennedy's resignation Bakersfield Californian

     California Democrats gear up for Supreme Court battle over Anthony Kennedy successor San Jose Mercury

     Feinstein: Wait till after midterms to replace Anthony Kennedy San Francisco Chronicle

     Justice Kennedy loves Sacramento, but friends doubt he'll retire in his hometown Sacramento Bee

     Bretón: We say farewell to Anthony Kennedy, but we already said goodbye to his Sacramento Sacramento Bee

     Justice Kennedy’s Legacy Is the Dignity He Bestowed Bloomberg

     Justice Kennedy’s Biggest Moments Wall Street Journal

     The Supreme Court is returning us to the Gilded Age — and it’s about to get worse Washington Post

     Justice Anthony Kennedy Defined His Career at Center of Biggest Decisions Wall Street Journal

     Justice Kennedy to retire, Trump has chance to reshape Supreme Court Reuters

     What Kennedy's retirement could mean for the Supreme Court ABC

     Kennedy Retirement Shuffles Senate’s Legislative and Campaign Agenda Roll Call

     Kennedy’s Retirement Puts Abortion Ruling in Striking Distance for Conservatives Bloomberg

     Kennedy's retirement could open the door to new attack on legal abortion NBC

     It’s not just abortion: 5 issues likely to be affected by Kennedy’s exit Politico

     President Trump says process to replace Kennedy on Supreme Court will 'begin immediately' USA Today

     McConnell: Senate will vote on Supreme Court nominee this fall The Hill

     Democrats, prepare to be steamrolled on Trump's Supreme Court nominee Los Angeles Times

     The Supreme Court Isn’t Going to Restrain Trump The Atlantic

     EDITORIAL: Justice Kennedy’s retirement ends era of Central California values on the Supreme Court Sacramento Bee

     EDITORIAL: In replacing Justice Kennedy, Trump should rein in his partisan, populist tendencies Los Angeles Times

     EDITORIAL: Pivotal vote on Supreme Court is retiring San Francisco Chronicle

 

After Supreme Court loss, school-employees unions gird for fight to keep their members

Los Angeles Times

The battle over school employees will be intense in California, where their unions, fueled by member dues, have long been a political force. Their strength has helped the state remain a bastion of liberalism and labor-friendly policy even as labor’s fortunes have suffered elsewhere.

See also:

     'Fair share' union fees struck down, delivering blow to California labor  Sacramento Bee

     Supreme Court Ruling Delivers a Sharp Blow to Labor Unions New York Times

     SCOTUS ruling in Janus vs. AFSCME receives strong reactions Sacramento Bee

     L.A. union leaders slam Supreme Court ruling Los Angeles Times

     California's politically powerful labor unions have been preparing for this Supreme Court ruling for a long time Los Angeles Times

     Supreme Court rules against public unions collecting fees from nonmemberWashington Post

     With Janus, California public employees are free from union shakedowns, finally Sacramento Bee

     Court case will cost California unions big money immediately. Then the real fight begins. Sacramento Bee

     Supreme Court ruling riles California government workers KCRA 3

     What is at stake in Supreme Court ruling on Janus vs. AFSCME San Francisco Chronicle

     Public-Sector Unions Brace for Fallout From Supreme Court Decision on Fees Wall Street Journal

     The Future After Janus AEI

     Is This the End of Public-Sector Unions in America? The Atlantic

     SCOTUS Stands Up for Public-Sector Workers National Review

     In Public-Sector Union-Fees Case, SCOTUS Strikes a Blow for Freedom National Review

     After Janus, Conservatives and Teachers’ Unions Should Collaborate National Review

     EDITORIAL: The Supreme Court weakens unions with a bogus ‘free speech’ ruling Los Angeles Times

 

Was Gorsuch Worth A Trump Presidency? It’s Starting To Look That Way

The Federalist

It’s odd, isn’t it, that so many of the folks who warn us about the authoritarianism of the GOP also happen to support an array of policies that coerce Americans to do things they don’t want to?

 

North Korea Is Rapidly Upgrading Nuclear Site Despite Summit Vow
Wall Street Journal

North Korea is upgrading its nuclear research center at a rapid pace, new satellite imagery analysis suggests, despite Pyongyang’s commitment to denuclearization at a summit with the U.S. this month.

The Rule of Law Prevails in the Travel-Ban Case

Wall Street Journal

The judicial “resistance” to President Trump suffered a well-deserved defeat in the Supreme Court’s “travel ban” ruling, Trump v. Hawaii.

See also:

     How a 1944 decision on Japanese internment affected the Supreme Court’s travel ban decision Washington Post

 

The VA continues a centuries-long history of scandal

AEI

When Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin was ousted earlier this year, most of Washington wrote it off as another result of President Trump’s chaotic management style. Perhaps, but the change also reflects the state of pandemonium long associated with the VA

 

Foundation faceoff: The Trump Foundation vs. the Clinton Foundation

Washington Post

The New York attorney general’s lawsuit against the Trump Foundation, alleging “persistently illegal conduct,” prompted this tweet by the manager of  the president’s reelection campaign.

 

Crowley going down spotlights the looming Democratic identity crisis

Washington Post

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — a 28-year-old activist who identifies as a socialist and was a bartender just last year — toppled New York Rep. Joe Crowley, a 10-term incumbent who chairs the House Democratic Caucus and controls the political machine in Queens.

 

Other:

 

Our politics are close to the boiling point, and there’s no relief in sight

Washington Post

Nothing is going to the change our course if the president doesn’t take the lead. We are heading toward a cliff. The problem is that no one knows how steep that cliff is and what lies at the bottom.

 

The Rise of McPolitics
The New Yorker

Democrats and Republicans belong to increasingly homogeneous parties. Can we survive the loss of local politics?

 

America’s Problem Isn’t Too Little Democracy. It’s Too Much.

Politico

Democracy’s lamentations sometimes seem deafening these days. “Democracy is dying,” proclaimed many recent articles. But what if these perspectives have it all backwards? What if our problem isn’t too little democracy, but too much?

 

Millennials Worry Less About National Security & Democracy Than Baby Boomers Do—for Now

RAND

Millennials are not as concerned as baby boomers are about national security. But these attitudes may be more about being young than being millennials.

 

America Can Ride the 21st Century’s Waves of Change

Wall Street Journal

The world is experiencing change of unprecedented velocity and scope. Governments everywhere must develop strategies to deal with this emerging new world. They should start by studying the forces of technology and demography that are creating it.

 

Adobe Uses AI to Detect Altered Images in Battle Against Fake News

The Quint

Fake news is an ongoing phenomenon that is one of the most daunting, complicated issues society is facing these days, and it has even proved fatal. Morphed images are a big part of that.

 

 

MADDY INSTITUTE PUBLIC POLICY PROGRAMMING  

 

Sunday, July 1, at 10 a.m. on ABC 30 – Maddy Report“Veterans Programs and Services” – Guests: Carole D'Elia, Executive Director of Little Hoover Commission and Jacqueline Barocio from LAO. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

 

Sunday, July 1, at 10 a.m. on Newstalk 580AM/105.9FM (KMJ) – Maddy Report  - Valley Views Edition“Valley Vets: Challenges and Opportunities” – Guests: Carole D'Elia, Executive Director of Little Hoover Commission; Jacqueline Barocio from LAO; Julie Cusator with Fresno Veterans Home; and Lorenzo Rios with Clovis Veterans Memorial District. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

 

Sunday, July 1, at 7:30 a.m. on UniMas 61 (KTTF) – El Informe Maddy: “Senior Citizen Boom”  Guest: Marisol Cuellar, PPIC Analyst. Host: Ana Melendez.

 

 

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AGRICULTURE/FOOD

 

California farmers prod Congress on immigration reform

Bakersfield Californian

This week's failure by Congress to pass either of two immigration reform bills has prompted California's leading agricultural trade group to reiterate, in polite terms, its longstanding demands for a solution to the state's chronic shortage of farmworkers.

 

House farm bill passes with controversial food stamp changes

Politico

The House passed its farm bill Thursday by a vote of 213-211 after weeks of uncertainty over whether leadership would be able to secure enough support within the fractious GOP Conference to pass a measure that is critical to farm country.

 

Desperation 'You Can Smell' as Pot Shops Sell Untested Weed

San Francisco Chronicle

Regulations being phased in six months after the state broadly legalized marijuana require that pot sold after Saturday meet strict quality standards, so retailers unloading untested inventory are offering blowout prices.

 

California Cannabis Outlook Slashed by BDS on Slow Licensing

Bloomberg

Legal pot that was once expected to generate $3.7 billion in revenue this year now is forecast to total just $2.9 billion, Greg Shoenfeld, vice president for operations at BDS Analytics, said by phone Wednesday, previewing a report the research firm plans to issue later this week. BDS had previously cut its forecast to $3.5 billion.

 

CRIMINAL JUSTICE / FIRE / PUBLIC SAFETY

 

Crime:

 

Research finds Prop. 47 has reduced racial disparities in drug arrests

Sacramento Bee

Racial disparities in drug arrests have decreased significantly since the passage of Proposition 47, the 2014 ballot measure that reclassified nonviolent drug and property offenses from felonies to misdemeanors.

 

California family sues over police shooting of black man

SFGate

The family of a black man fatally shot by deputies in Northern California announced Wednesday it has filed a lawsuit alleging they opened fire as the unarmed man ran away and that authorities have failed to provide details more than a year later.

 

DMV employee found guilty in bogus license scheme with truck driving schools
Sacramento Bee

A DMV employee faces up to 20 years in prison in the latest conviction stemming from a federal investigation that uncovered a web of fraud, conspiracy and bribes involving state employees and truck driving schools scheming to buy bogus licenses, the U.S. Attorney's Office reported Wednesday.

If He Didn’t Kill Anyone, Why Is It Murder?

New York Times

A bill moving through the California Legislature would change state law so that only someone who actually killed, intended to kill or acted as a major player with “reckless indifference to human life” could face murder charges.

 

Public Safety:

 

Stockton police get $3 million grant for department’s first helicopter

Stockton Record

The Stockton Police Department on Wednesday was awarded a $3 million grant signed by Gov. Jerry Brown for the purchase of a police helicopter. Stockton Police Chief Eric Jones said it will be the first department helicopter in history.

 

Atwater to have another interim police chief, leaders say

Merced Sun-Star

Drew Bessinger, who has been an interim in Fowler, Parlier and Kingsburg, takes over as interim chief in Atwater on July 2, according to a news release. He served 22 years as an officer in Clovis, and is on the Clovis City Council.

Public Safety Tax Does Not Have the Votes, Fresno Mayor Still Has an Option

Observer

Does Fresno Mayor Lee Brand have the leadership skills to extricate himself and, at the same time, make the city a better place? The fundamental issue, of course, is money.

 

Fixing our gun violence problem will require fixing our democracy

Democracy Behind Bars

Despite its broad reach, many Americans view our criminal justice system through a distorted lens. Popular understanding of the system follows narratives created by movies and television shows.

 

Fire:

 

Northern California wildfires: Pawnee Fire grows as others approach containment

Sacramento Bee

As many of the Northern California fires that ignited over the weekend and on Monday have approached containment, the Pawnee Fire in Lake County has continued to burn.
See also:

     California Fire Map: Where Pawnee Fire and Others are Still Burning Newsweek

 

California Assembly panel passes insurance bill, but strips provision to aid October fire victims

Santa Rosa Press Democrat

The state Assembly Insurance Committee approved on Wednesday legislation to revamp insurance rules in the aftermath of natural disasters, but removed a provision that could have aided victims of last year’s North Bay fires.

 

ECONOMY / JOBS

 

Economy:

 

Court case will cost California unions big money immediately. Then the real fight begins

Sacramento Bee

California public employee unions will feel an almost immediate financial hit from Wednesday’s Supreme Court decision barring them from collecting so-called fair share fees, depriving them of dues from tens – if not hundreds – of thousands of workers.

 

Nearly a quarter of Americans have no emergency savings

CNN

How would you rate your emergency fund? Americans may be over-confident about how comfortable they are with their emergency savings, according to a study from Bankrate.

Trump tax cuts carry a big price tag: Huge debt and risk of another financial crisis, budget office warns
Los Angeles Times

The tax cuts championed by President Trump are helping push the nation toward an unprecedented level of debt, heightening the risk of another financial crisis, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

See also:

       U.S. cruises toward record-breaking debt on Trump's watch Politico

 

President Trump announces a major U.S. Steel expansion — that isn’t happening

Washington Post

U.S. Steel ducks questions about whether an alleged phone conversation ever took place.

 

EDITORIAL: Tariffs take a toll

Stockton Record

The tariffs President Donald Trump implemented that were to save U.S. jobs and products, instead have produced a casualty.

See also:

       A trade war would affect our economy AEI

 

Jobs:

 

Trump claims credit for the strong labor market. Experts say he also should thank Obama

Los Angeles Times

When it comes to jobs, Trump is like the wealthy heir who, as the saying goes, was born on third base and thinks he hit a triple.

 

EDUCATION

 

K-12:

 

John Ervin III named to Modesto City Schools board

Modesto Bee

The Modesto City Schools Board of Education has appointed John Ervin III to fill the vacancy created by member Steve Grenbeaux's resignation last month.

'I want nothing but scalps.' School board member raises ire with Facebook 'stunt'
Modesto Bee

Modesto City Schools trustee John Walker had to answer for an angry post on his Facebook page last week over an issue that won't go away.

Visalia Unified School District board approves $109 million bond measure

Visalia Times Delta

Visalia residents may soon see construction around the city in the form of school campus upgrades, improved safety, and a new high school.

But only if they approve to help pay for it.

 

State budget has nearly $400 million for science, math education — but not teacher training

EdSource

Science education got a boost in the 2018-19 state budget, but the plan stops short of funding training for teachers in California’s ambitious new science standards — something education leaders had been pushing for.

 

Higher Ed:

 

CSUB sees nearly 8% jump in summer enrollment

Bakersfield Californian

More students have signed up for summer sessions at Cal State Bakersfield than ever before. The college said enrollment for summer classes went up about 8 percent from 2,254 students last year to 2,439 this year.

 

Cal State University Chief Lauds Funding Boost in Budget

SCV News

California Governor Jerry Brown signed his last state budget in Los Angeles Wednesday, and it provides California State University an ongoing increase of $197.1 million as well as $161.1 million in one-time funding to expand enrollment, address deferred maintenance, and bolster campus efforts to support student well-being.

 

ENVIRONMENT/ ENERGY

 

Environment:

 

Rising Seas Will Eat Away at Southern California Coastal Cliffs This Century, Study Says

The Weather Channel

More than 130 feet of Southern California's coastal cliffs could be lost by the turn of the century if nothing is done to curb rising seas, a new study says.

See also:

     Southern California's coastal communities could lose 130 feet of cliffs this century as sea levels rise Los Angeles Times

 

A huge stretch of the Arctic Ocean is rapidly turning into the Atlantic. That’s not a good sign

Washington Post

Scientists studying one of the fastest-warming regions of the global ocean say changes in this region are so sudden and vast that in effect, it will soon be another limb of the Atlantic Ocean, rather than a characteristically icy Arctic sea.

Energy:

 

Ontario ready to pull out of carbon market, leaving California in limbo

CALmatters

The agreement that linked the Canadian province of Ontario with California and Quebec in one of the world’s largest emissions trading markets was announced with much fanfare in 2017.

 

HEALTH/HUMAN SERVICES

 

Health:

 

Valley Children's named one of the best, expands in Visalia

Visalia Times-Delta

Nationally, Valley Children's ranked No. 33 in neonatology, No. 33 in pediatric orthopedics, No. 44 in pediatric diabetes and endocrinology, and No. 46 in pediatric gastroenterology and gastrointestinal surgery.

 

KCFD applies for grant to help firefighters fight against valley fever

Bakersfield Now

The Kern County Fire Department has just applied for a grant that could help them in the fight against valley fever. The department has applied for a $100,000 state grant that would help clear vegetation from fire-prone areas without the use of fire crews.

See also:

     Governor approves $3M for valley fever research in Kern County Bakersfield Californian

 

Check-up: How health care fares in California’s new spending plan

CALmatters

California has been a national leader in the effort to expand health care coverage, but some advocates say this year’s state budget marks a step backward in the quest to reduce and ultimately eliminate the number of uninsured people.

 

Emergency Departments and the Affordable Care Act

Public Policy Institute of California

Coverage expansions under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) have resulted in a dramatic decline in the uninsured population in California. Much of the coverage gains have been driven by expanded eligibility for Medi-Cal, the state’s Medicaid program.

 

Fewer Americans are spending their final days in the hospital and more are dying at home

Los Angeles Times

The American way of dying seems to have become less frantic, desperate and expensive.
That’s the upshot of a new study that finds that seniors were less likely to do so in a hospital and more likely to pass away in a home or other community setting.

 

Human Services:

 

Who will run Tulare Regional Medical Center?

Visalia Times Delta

Watch: Administrators from two hospitals seeking to become Tulare Regional Medical Center's financial managers.

 

5 things you need to know about the Americans with Disabilities Act

Marketplace

The Americans with Disabilities Act, or the ADA, is the primary civil rights law that covers people with disabilities. It's designed to allow everyone access to public spaces, and to protect the rights of people with disabilities.

 

Supreme Court rules for faith-based pregnancy centers, blocks California disclosure law

Los Angeles Times

The Supreme Court on Tuesday blocked enforcement of a California law that requires faith-based crisis pregnancy centers to notify patients that the state offers subsidized medical care, including abortions.

 

IMMIGRATION

 

House rejects immigration bill pushed by Trump in last-minute tweet

Washington Post

The House on Wednesday soundly rejected a wide-ranging GOP immigration bill that would have funded President Trump’s border wall, offered young undocumented immigrants a path to citizenship and partially addressed the family-separation crisis at the southwest border.

See also:

     House Defeats GOP Immigration Bill Wall Street Journal

     House Rejects GOP’s ‘Compromise’ Immigration Bill — Overwhelmingly Roll Call

     The GOP’s Bill to Stop Family Separations Looks Dead for Now The Atlantic

 

Judge's ruling on migrant children in custody gives families few answers

Los Angeles Times
A day after a federal judge in San Diego ordered the Trump administration to reunite 2,042 migrant children taken from their parents and put into detention facilities at the border, no plan for bringing the families back together had emerged.

 

Defendants In Diapers? Immigrant Toddlers Ordered To Appear In Court Alone

Kaiser Health News

As the White House faces court orders to reunite families separated at the border, immigrant children as young as 3 are being ordered into court for their own deportation proceedings, according to attorneys in Texas, California and Washington, D.C.

 

ICE barricades office headquarters ahead of immigration protest

The Hill

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers on Wednesday set up a barricade in front of the agency's headquarters in Washington, D.C., in preparation for an “occupation” protest.

See also:

     Trump: ICE protesters 'want anarchy' The Hill

     Democrat Introduces Bill to Abolish ICE, Says Agency Is 'Ripping at the Moral Fabric of Our Nation' Fox News

 

DHS asks military for space to house 12,000 migrant family members

NBC News

The Defense Department said it's been asked to house migrant families at military facilities, or build temporary camp-like structures.

See also:

     DHS formally asks Pentagon to house 12,000 migrant family members Fox News

Majority of undocumented immigrants show up for court

PolitiFact

Defenders of President Donald Trump’s aggressive approach to illegal U.S.-Mexico border crossings say the country faces a binary choice: hold offenders in detention centers while their cases are adjudicated, or allow them to fall off immigration authorities’ radar.

 

LAND USE/HOUSING

 

Land Use:

 

Lawmakers shelve proposal that would have increased electronic billboards along California freeways

Los Angeles Times

Faced with opposition from California counties and cities, lawmakers on Tuesday shelved a proposal that would have replaced 25 digital signs operated by the state along freeways with electronic billboards running commercial ads in addition to traffic warnings.

 

PUC judge gives approval to proposed San Onofre settlement

San Diego Union-Tribune

Five months after owners of the failed San Onofre nuclear plant agreed to slice hundreds of millions of dollars from the cost to ratepayers of the 2012 breakdown, a California Public Utilities Commission judge has endorsed the proposed settlement.

 

A Seismic Change in Predicting How Earthquakes Will Shake Tall Buildings

New York Times

Some of the world’s top earthquake experts now say the projections significantly underestimate the severity of shaking that buildings in several West Coast cities are likely to undergo during earthquakes.

 

Housing:

 

Millennial Buyers Face Tough Housing Market

Pew Charitable Trusts

Millennials are starting to follow in the footsteps of earlier generations and buy suburban houses after fueling a boom in city apartments.

 

Californians face November decision on $2-billion spending plan for homeless housing

Los Angeles Times

Californians will decide in November whether to borrow $2 billion to fund new housing for homeless residents. Gov. Jerry Brown authorized the ballot measure Wednesday when he signed the state’s annual budget and related legislation.

 

Homelessness Crisis Gets Relief From California Gov. Jerry Brown’s New Budget

Capital Public Radio

The California budget signed on Wednesday by Gov. Jerry Brown includes $500 million for cities, counties and regional-planning organizations that work on housing and services known as “continuums of care.”

 

Homeless in California—what the data reveals

CALmatters

California is struggling to confront its a homelessness crisis: After big-city mayors up and down the state lobbied hard for more funding, state leaders agreed to spend an additional $600 million this month to help fight the problem.

 

A walk along Skid Row in Los Angeles—block by bleak block

CALmatters

There are 55,188 homeless people in Los Angeles County—about 40 percent of Californians without shelter, the latest Department of Housing and Urban Development census shows. California has more homeless people, by far, than any other state.

 

EDITORIAL: To help homeless, more housing is the answer

San Francisco Chronicle

Homelessness arises from a lack of homes. But the connection between the state’s gaping housing shortage and its spreading homelessness still strikes too many Californians as a great controversy requiring endless debate.

 

PUBLIC FINANCES

 

Fresno City Council wants to make millions in changes to city budget

Fresno Bee

Fresno City Council members over a series of budget hearings this month have proposed millions of dollars in changes to the city's 2019 budget.

Modesto prudent with city budget as it faces rising pension costs

Modesto Bee

Modesto's new budget reflects a conservative approach — including increasing reserves — as the city prepares for pension costs that are expected to more than double in a decade before leveling off.

Gov. Jerry Brown signs his final state budget, California's largest yet

Los Angeles Times

California schools, healthcare and social services programs will see spending increases under the state budget signed Wednesday by Gov. Jerry Brown. The $201.4-billion plan, which takes effect next week, is the final budget of Brown's eight-year tenure.

See also:

     Jerry Brown approves $201 billion California budget, says it fulfills his fiscal pledge Sacramento Bee

     Termed-out Gov. Brown signs his final California budget San Francisco Chronicle

     California Governor Touts Turnaround In His Final Budget KPBS

     Gov. Jerry Brown Signs His Final California State Budget Capital Public Radio

     2018-19 State Budget Invests in Reserves and an Array of Vital Services, Sets Course for Future Advances California Budget & Policy Center

     Notable Expenditures in $139 Billion California Budget AP News

 

Skelton: Gov. Brown can largely blame himself if the state's gas tax increase is repealed in November

Los Angeles Times

His clever campaign ploy eight years ago has come back to bite Gov. Jerry Brown as he packs to leave office while fighting to save an unpopular gas tax increase.

 

California extends film and TV tax credit program to 2025

Los Angeles Times

In a major win for the local movie and TV production industries, California has extended the state’s film tax incentive program to 2025, adding five years to the program that has helped stem the tide of runaway productions to states including Georgia, Louisiana and New York.

 

Poll: Support for GOP tax law erodes

Politico

Public support for the recent tax overhaul plunged in the past two months, as more voters became ambivalent about it.

 

The New 1040 Tax Form: It’s Shorter. But There Are More Forms to Fill Out

Wall Street Journal

Deductions and other items that once appeared on the main form are now relegated to schedules

 

As Treasury Targets Workarounds to Tax Law, Impact May Extend Beyond High-Tax States
Wall Street Journal

Efforts to regulate state pathways around SALT cap could hit hospitals and school programs elsewhere.

 

Are You Retired or Semi-Retired? Check Your Tax Withholding Now

Wall Street Journal
The tax overhaul risks leaving pension recipients underwithheld when it comes time to file for 2018.

 

TRANSPORTATION

 

Passenger rail on track in Tulare County

Sun Gazette

The Tulare County Association of Governments (TCAG) Board voted to approve the Cross Valley Corridor Plan (CVCP) converting 75 miles of existing freight rail into passenger rail between Huron in southwest Fresno County to Porterville in southeast Tulare County.

 

CA: Slow Trains in Downtown San Jose May Speed Up

Mass Transit Magazine

The Valley Transportation Authority is launching a $900,000, six-month pilot project to speed up the trains and erect barriers to funnel pedestrians, bicyclists and drivers to certain areas for crossing.

 

Lawmakers shelve proposal that would have increased electronic billboards along California freeways

Los Angeles Times

Faced with opposition from California counties and cities, lawmakers on Tuesday shelved a proposal that would have replaced 25 digital signs operated by the state along freeways with electronic billboards running commercial ads in addition to traffic warnings.

 

House passes transportation security bill

Progressive Railroading

The U.S. House of Representatives has passed a bill that would increase security at the nation's transportation facilities, called the Securing Public Areas of Transportation Facilities Act of 2018.

 

The Airline Fee That Exists for No Apparent Reason

Wall Street Journal

Beware ‘carrier-imposed fees’ on international flights when searching for frequent-flier award tickets; why hide a fare as a fee?

 

WATER

 

Modesto Irrigation District removes roadblock to water plant for Turlock and Ceres
Modesto Bee

Modesto Irrigation District leaders on Tuesday backed off previous opposition to a future treatment plant supplying tap water to homes and businesses in Turlock and Ceres.

Nestlé granted three-year permit to keep piping water out of California national forest

Desert Sun

The U.S. Forest Service has granted Nestle a new three-year permit to continue operating its bottled water pipeline in the San Bernardino National Forest.

See also:

     Nestlé Offered Permit To Continue Taking Water From California Stream NPR

 

Pruitt seeks to limit EPA's authority to block water pollution permits

The Hill

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) head Scott Pruitt is planning to limit the agency’s authority to block permits for activities that could pollute or harm waterways.

 

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HERE.

 

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Maddy Institute Updated List of San Joaquin Valley Elected Officials HERE.

 

The Kenneth L. Maddy Institute at California State University, Fresno was established to honor the legacy of one of California’s most principled and effective legislative leaders of the last half of the 20th Century by engaging, preparing and inspiring a new generation of governmental leaders for the 21st Century. Its mission is to inspire citizen participation, elevate government performance, provide non-partisan analysis and assist in providing solutions for public policy issues important to the region, state and nation.

                                                     

This document is to be used for informational purposes only. Unless specifically noted, The Maddy Institute at California State University, Fresno does not officially endorse or support views that may be expressed in the document. If you want to print a story, please do so now before the link expires. ​​​​​​​

 

 

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