May 26, 2013 |
SACRAMENTO - At the state Capitol, no bill is ever dead. Even the most moribund measure can be resurrected and sent to the governor, especially if leaders want to pass something without holding a bunch of hearings. That's when a sneaky technique called "gut and amend" comes into play. That's legislative lingo for taking an idle bill, stripping its contents and inserting all-new language. In a flash, a bill that dealt with community college transfer students turns into one that eases environmental reviews to build a Los Angeles football stadium.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 17, 2013 |
SACRAMENTO - California's financial picture is much brighter than Gov. Jerry Brown suggested in his latest spending plan, according to the Legislature's top budget advisor, who said the state will have $3.2 billion more at its disposal than the governor estimated. Improvements on Wall Street and in the state's housing market will mean about $4.4 billion in extra cash through the next budget year, rather than the $1.2 billion the governor has projected, nonpartisan Legislative Analyst Mac Taylor said in a report Friday.
May 2, 2013 |
President Obama has much to discuss with Mexico's new president, Enrique Peña Nieto, when they meet in Mexico City this week. No issue, however, is more urgent than the search for peace, justice and dignity for and between our peoples. For seven years, Mexico has been living a nightmare. More than 70,000 people, by some estimates, have been killed and thousands more have been disappeared in the wave of criminal and institutional violence of Mexico's war on drug cartels. The collateral damage is a humanitarian tragedy that requires our leaders to have deep and frank discussions about how to transform the failed policies exacerbating the violence.
April 30, 2013 |
Curb Records is making a federal case out of its beef with country star Tim McGraw, moving its 2-year-old complaint in state court in Tennessee to the federal level in arguing that he breached his contract with Curb and signing in 2011 with Big Machine Records. Curb's suit alleges copyright infringement and breach of contract, Billboard reports. The case began in 2011 with a disagreement between McGraw and Curb over his album “Emotional Traffic,” which he said completed his contractual commitment to Curb, the label for whom he'd recorded for the previous 20 years.
April 23, 2013 |
New York City officials, with the blessing of Mayor Michael Bloomberg, announced Monday that they will seek to raise the minimum age to buy tobacco products in the city's five boroughs from 18 to 21 years of age. Although the proposed rule might seem to target the older teenagers who will no longer be able to buy cigarettes, much of its effect would trickle down to high school students 14 to 17 years old, said John Billimek, a health policy researcher...
April 22, 2013 |
A new study attributes a slowdown in U.S. healthcare spending to the recent recession and predicts more rapid growth as the economy strengthens. The report issued Monday by the Kaiser Family Foundation seeks to shed light on the reasons behind the recent drop-off. The analysis found that economic factors related to the recession accounted for 77% of the reduced growth in national healthcare spending, which totaled an estimated $2.8 trillion in 2012. The remaining 23% resulted from changes in the healthcare system, such as higher patient deductibles and other changes made by insurers and medical providers, the study said.
April 22, 2013 |
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, 2013 |
It may come as a disappointment to Gov. Jerry Brown - but it certainly should not come as a surprise - that a panel of federal judges rejected his request that they return control of California's still-overcrowded prison system to the state. The network of 33 state prisons continues to hold more than 9,000 inmates beyond the court's mandated cap, and Brown's administration has not presented a realistic plan to eliminate that excess, even though the court has extended the deadline for compliance from June 30 to the end of the year.
April 10, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Gun control efforts in Congress cleared a significant hurdle Wednesday as the Senate prepared to open what could be a weeks-long debate, even as opponents plotted a shift in strategy aimed at undermining a comprehensive package of legislation. Gaining enough support simply to open the debate has required extensive negotiation and legislative maneuvering, testimony to the difficult politics of gun control. If the Senate proceeds as scheduled Thursday, it will mark only the third time in a generation that a significant gun measure has come to the floor.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 21, 2013 |
This post has been updated. See the note below for details. California corrections officials are seeking help from other state agencies before moving on recommendations to divert large numbers of inmates from valley fever-stricken prisons. “The health and safety of our employees and of the inmates housed in our prisons is of the utmost importance," the state corrections department said in a statement. It was released after lawyers for inmates on Wednesday asked a federal judge to order California to stop sending at-risk inmates to the two San Joaquin Valley prisons where valley fever has been tied to 43 inmate deaths.