August 22, 2012
Re "Chevron's refinery, Richmond's peril," Opinion, Aug. 14 The Op-Ed article by activist Antonia Juhasz mischaracterized the Aug. 6 incident at Chevron Corp.'s Richmond refinery and our commitment to the health and safety of our workers and neighbors. Refineries in the San Francisco Bay Area operate under the most stringent air pollution controls in the world. Chevron complies with rigorous health, environmental and safety regulations from numerous local, state and federal agencies that oversee the refinery; in many cases, the company goes above and beyond.
July 8, 2012
Southern California's most important lake is located in a distant part of the state and has a name most of us wouldn't recognize. Clifton Court Forebay, between Oakland and Stockton, forms the manufactured headwaters of the manufactured river known as the California Aqueduct, which over four decades has supplied millions of residents from the Bay Area to the Mexican border with drinking water and thousands of growers from Santa Clara to Santa Maria...
June 5, 2012 |
Voters are avoiding the polls in droves Tuesday, probably because it's hard to get too excited about a measure to tweak legislative term limits or choose a presidential candidate in a primary whose outcome has already been decided. Things should heat up in November, but there's at least one hot-button issue that won't be appearing on the ballot: an initiative to turn California's Legislature into a part-time body. Ted Costa of People's Advocate , who led the successful recall of Gov. Gray Davis, has been trying since 2004 to mount an initiative that would cut the legislative session to three months a year and slash lawmakers' pay. On Tuesday, he announced the end of his campaign's paid signature-gathering effort, which means he has essentially given up trying to obtain the 800,000 signatures needed to put the measure on the ballot.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 1, 2012 |
SACRAMENTO - State lawmakers have advanced measures that would institute the country's first ban on gay "conversion" therapy for minors, regulate the state's booming medical marijuana industry and bar legislators from accepting spa treatments, golf outings, concert tickets and some other gifts from special interests. Legislators also are seeking to make college more affordable, passing separate bills that would give students free access to popular textbooks online and establish a scholarship program for middle-class Californians whose families make less than $150,000 a year.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 16, 2012 |
SACRAMENTO - Jerry Brown told voters he was different - that only he, a septuagenarian government veteran with no aspirations to higher office, could fix the cycle of swelling budget deficits that has plagued California for more than a decade. But the release of Brown's updated budget plan Monday shows that he is being trapped by the same partisanship and dysfunction that hobbled his predecessors when they tried to repair the state's finances. "No governor, under the system we have in California, really has the ability to deal with the mess we've created," said Mark Paul, a former deputy state treasurer and the coauthor of a book about the state's financial quandary.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 26, 2012 |
Sometimes an old movie line says it best. Such a line came to mind when I read the Assembly speaker's assertion that political money doesn't influence legislative voting. "I know people love to try to create that impression," Speaker John A. Pérez (D-Los Angeles) was quoted as saying in a Times article Sunday about AT&T's wide-ranging lobbying operation. "But the reality is, that's not the way things happen. People give money because of whatever reasons motivate them, and we evaluate legislation regardless.
April 17, 2012 |
This post has been updated. See below. It takes a certain amount of chutzpah to name a group that opposes government oversight of health insurance premiums " Californians Against Higher Healthcare Costs . " Especially when the group includes the trade associations for doctors and hospitals, two sets of Californians who've contributed mightily to the high cost of healthcare. But it takes at least twice that amount of nerve, plus no small amount of irony, for the group to put out a press release accusing the other side of being funded by "special interests that will directly benefit from its passage.
April 5, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - As a candidate in 2008, Barack Obama vowed to squelch the role of special interests in financing the party conventions - so he barred corporations and lobbyists from contributing money to this year's national convention in Charlotte, N.C. But even as Democrats tout the three-day event in September as a populist gathering, organizers have found ways to skirt the rules and give corporations and lobbyists a presence at the nominating convention....
February 23, 2012 |
Mitt Romney hit rival Rick Santorum on Thursday for his debate performance the prior night, saying his explanations for why he voted in opposition to his principles showed he was a creature of Washington who sided with special interests rather than the American people. "We saw in this case Sen. Santorum explain most of the night why he did or voted for things he disagreed with, and he talked about this as being taking one for the team. I wonder which team he was taking it for," Romney said, speaking to a trade group of builders and contractors.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 9, 2011 |
Reporting from Sacramento -- With temperatures dropping in Sacramento, some state lawmakers are migrating to the sunny beaches of Hawaii this week for a conference at a luxury resort, subsidized and attended by special interests that lobby the Legislature. About 15 lawmakers are scheduled to attend the annual gathering in Maui, where they will stay at the Fairmont Kea Lani hotel on the tab of the Independent Voter Project, a nonprofit policy group largely funded by business and labor interests.