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February 24, 2014 | By Melanie Mason
SACRAMENTO -- A measure to block California's transgender students rights law failed to qualify for the November ballot Monday, according to the secretary of state's office. The referendum would have repealed a law passed last year that requires school districts to let transgender students participate in school programs and use school facilities, such as bathrooms and locker rooms, based on their gender identity instead of their biological sex.  The measure was backed by a coalition called Privacy for All Students.
February 20, 2014 | By Melanie Mason
SACRAMENTO - A healthcare workers union will launch its signature-gathering effort for a hospital pricing ballot measure Thursday, marking the latest front in a looming initiative fight that will pit labor against hospitals.  Thursday's event in Sacramento is the latest in a series of kickoff events SEIU-United Healthcare Workers West has held throughout to state to start its signature drive. This time, they're gathering right at their adversary's front door: outside the headquarters of the California Hospital Assn.
February 18, 2014 | By Melanie Mason
SACRAMENTO - A protracted political battle over California's medical malpractice law may be coming to a new front: the voting booth. For decades, trial lawyers and consumer groups have railed against limits on certain damages in malpractice cases, arguing that such restrictions deny victims fair compensation for grisly medical mistakes. Insurance companies, doctors and other healthcare providers have been equally vigorous in defending the law, saying it is crucial to controlling costs and maintaining the availability of care.
February 9, 2014 | By The Times editorial board
If lawmakers could send voters a November bond measure that would guarantee 150 inches of winter snow in the Sierra every year, Californians would certainly pass it, even if it cost a few billion dollars. The snowpack feeds the reservoirs and aqueducts that slake the thirst of Northern and Southern California, water the crops that power the economy in the Central Valley, and sustain the state's essential but sensitive heart and lungs in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. But our state senators and Assembly members can't write such a bond, so they're instead reworking a 2010 water measure that they keep polishing but pulling off the ballot in the quite reasonable belief that voters weathering a deep recession would reject a package larded with spending for pet projects.
February 9, 2014 | By Marc Lifsher
SACRAMENTO - California's minimum wage is pegged to go up $1 an hour to $9 on July 1 and by another buck in 2016. But that isn't high enough or fast enough for Ron Unz, a Silicon Valley software entrepreneur who has dabbled in state politics over the years. The 52-year-old multimillionaire hopes to put a measure on the November ballot raising the minimum wage to $10 an hour March 1, 2015, and to $12 a year later. Unz said he's confident he will get the needed signatures of 504,760 registered voters by the June deadline.
February 4, 2014 | By Lee Romney
SAN FRANCISCO -- A coalition of San Francisco supervisors will move today to place a tax of two cents per ounce on sodas and other sugar-sweetened beverages on the November ballot, triggering what is expected to be a costly fight with opponents who aim to defeat it. If the measure were to pass, as much as $31 million in estimated annual proceeds from the "unified soda tax measure" would go to city and public school nutrition, health and physical activity...
February 1, 2014 | Sam Farmer
NEW YORK - Peyton Manning has singular focus … and double vision. The Denver Broncos star has a chance Sunday to become the first starting quarterback to win Super Bowls with two different NFL franchises, having already won one ring with the Indianapolis Colts. "He's a living legend right now," said Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman, whose Seahawks will play the Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII at MetLife Stadium. "He's been a living legend for years. " Regardless of which team wins, Manning joins Craig Morton and Kurt Warner as the only quarterbacks to lead two franchises to Super Bowls.
January 30, 2014 | By Patrick McGreevy
SACRAMENTO - Californians who use their credit cards for online purchases would gain some protection, and voters would decide whether the state's public universities could consider race and gender for admissions, under measures passed by the state Senate on Thursday. The Assembly has yet to act on either measure. Responding to cases in which hackers stole personal financial information on millions of credit card users, Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson (D-Santa Barbara) proposed limiting the details that online merchants may collect from their customers.
January 28, 2014 | By Seema Mehta
The two main Republicans hoping to take on Gov. Jerry Brown in the fall have failed to vote in many elections, according to documents and interviews. Assemblyman Tim Donnelly has cast a ballot in about half of the elections held since 1995, while former U.S. Treasury official Neel Kashkari has voted in roughly 60% of elections since he turned 18. Spotty voting records have dogged previous unsuccessful gubernatorial candidates, including 2010 Republican nominee Meg Whitman and 1998 Democratic candidate Al Checchi.
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