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July 21, 2013 | By Marc Lifsher
SACRAMENTO - Professional athletes from out-of-state teams soon could be out of luck if they seek money through the workers' compensation system for injuries suffered at California sporting venues. A bill to scale back the lucrative benefits that California has awarded the athletes in recent years is moving swiftly through the Legislature and is likely to be on Gov. Jerry Brown's desk next month. Supporters said they expect Brown to sign it into law. Backed by football, baseball, basketball, hockey and soccer team owners, the legislation would close what they call a loophole that allows athletes, who sometimes played only a few games in California, to win six-figure payouts for so-called cumulative trauma injuries.
October 20, 2008 | Marla Dickerson, Times Staff Writer
Tough state mandates requiring Californians to reduce their carbon footprints and use more homegrown renewable energy will create more than 400,000 jobs, help consumers save on their lighting bills and boost the state's economy by $76 billion by 2020. Those are some of the findings of a study to be released today by Next 10, a nonprofit organization that promotes environmental innovation in California. The report contrasts sharply with the views of some business groups, which have been critical of the state's commitment to cut its global warming emissions to 1990 levels by 2020.
March 9, 2014 | By Marc Lifsher
SACRAMENTO - California lawmakers for years have been battling ravenous metal thieves, who pull copper wires out of street lights, grab rebar from construction sites, and steal pumps and other costly equipment from farmers' fields. Now, a bipartisan group of legislators led by Assemblyman Brian Nestande (R-Palm Desert), is trying to put more manpower and money into the fight. Nestande's bill, AB 2313, would create a metal theft task force within the attorney general's office that would provide grants to local police and prosecutors.
July 28, 2013 | By Marc Lifsher
SACRAMENTO - In the closing days of the Legislature last year, Gov. Jerry Brown helped forge a compromise on a sweeping overhaul of the workers' compensation insurance system and persuaded Democratic and Republican lawmakers to pass it into law. Now he is taking on another big challenge: He wants to fix the state's financially ailing unemployment insurance program, which pays jobless Californians up to $450 a week. With one of the nation's highest unemployment rates for several years, the state has had to borrow money from the feds to keep the program going.
April 9, 2010 | By Anthony York and Michael Rothfeld
The California Chamber of Commerce on Thursday said it would stop airing an ad attacking Jerry Brown amid objections from members of the organization, some of whom received calls from Brown and his wife demanding that the spot be removed. The commercial, which the chamber labeled an "issue" advertisement, expresses alarm over runaway spending but mostly focuses on attacking Brown, the presumed Democratic nominee for governor, accusing him of decades of overspending. In a letter Wednesday, four board members complained to Allan Zaremberg, the chamber's president and CEO, that the ad is a hit job that "undermines the chamber's credibility."
April 29, 2013 | By Marc Lifsher, Los Angeles Times
SACRAMENTO - California's $8-an-hour minimum wage needs to go up, says Watsonville Democratic Assemblyman Luis Alejo. And he may be getting the votes he needs to make it happen. But don't count on it; Alejo has tried this before. Alejo is the author of AB 10, which would give the Golden State its first minimum wage increase since 2008. The bill would raise it 25 cents an hour next year, 50 cents in 2015 and an additional 50 cents to $9.25 an hour in 2016. In 2017 and annually thereafter, hourly pay would be adjusted upward automatically, based on the state's inflation rate.
April 22, 2013 | By Marc Lifsher, Los Angeles Times
SACRAMENTO - California's air quality officials soon may be adding a new phrase to their bureaucratic vocabulary: " le rechauffement climatique . " That's French for global warming. The California Air Resources Board on Friday linked its program for cutting greenhouse gas emissions and curbing climate change with one in the French-speaking, Canadian province of Quebec. The merger starts Jan. 1. On April 8, Gov. Jerry Brown certified the two cap-and-trade systems as compatible.
April 16, 2010
They've had enough Re "Arizona passes strict border rule," April 14 The recent killing of prominent rancher Robert Krentz by an illegal alien blew the lid off a boiling caldron of illegal activity that is killing Arizonans and bankrupting the state. Illegal aliens are ruining Arizona's educational system and overburdening jails, hospitals, emergency rooms and indigent social services -- which are supposed to be for Arizona citizens only. Mexican President Felipe Calderon pays lip-service to our politicians while enjoying billions annually flowing into Mexico from illegal workers and drug cartels.
October 25, 2007 | George Skelton
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger recently vetoed a dozen bills that the California Chamber of Commerce alleged were anti-business "job-killers." In the chamber's view, the governor's action will create jobs. Fine. How is this deficit-plagued state going to pay for the jobs? Yes, of course, they're private-enterprise jobs, not government. But who's going to pay for the roads and transit to get these people to work? To educate their kids? To provide police protection?
July 28, 2009 | Shane Goldmacher
Beyond the mind-numbing numbers, the partisan bickering and the all-night legislative sessions was a web of forces that helped shape the state budget package Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is expected to sign today. Some scenes from behind the scenes: Whatever you call it, it worked Schwarzenegger has long attacked lawmakers for fundraising during budget season, but that didn't stop him from slipping away to the headquarters of the state's big-business lobby earlier this month.
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