CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 16, 2013 |
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. - Gov. Jerry Brown blasted the notion of government-imposed standards for public schools, saying he opposed efforts from Washington and Sacramento to dictate education policy. Using "data on a national or state level I think misses the point - that learning is very individual, very personal," Brown said during an on-stage interview Monday with the Atlantic magazine's James Bennet at the Computer History Museum. "It comes back to the teacher and the principal.
November 28, 2013 |
LAS VEGAS - Mayor Carolyn Goodman has a visitor. Impeccably dressed in a pricey blue suit, he gazes smugly past the mayor and her oversized desk inside the new City Hall - admiring commanding views of downtown and ocher-hued hills on the horizon. "This used to be my office," he announces. "No, you never worked here," she says dismissively. "Well, I designed the balcony. As my refuge for a martini and a cigar. " The mayor eyes this cross-to-bear caller. Over the next hour, she alternately describes him as a "big buffoon and phony," a "narcissist" and a "snake-charmer," along with "outlandish" and "brilliant.
November 13, 2013 |
At least one prominent state senator is throwing cold water on the idea of expanding California's film tax credit. “I'm not a fan of tax credits in general," Sen. Lois Wolk (D-Davis), chair of the Senate committee on governance and finance, said in a statement. "In fact, I'm a real skeptic of all of them and have done everything possible to limit their size and duration and to build in as much accountability as possible. " Industry advocates and city officials, including Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, have called on state lawmakers to strengthen and expand California's film tax credit, contending it is not doing enough to keep productions from fleeing Southern California.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 8, 2013 |
SACRAMENTO -- In a rare break from silence, state Sen. Ronald S. Calderon (D-Montebello) on Friday criticized another lawmaker for repeatedly calling on him to resign in the face of an FBI investigation into corruption in the Capitol. Calderon does not plan to resign, said spokesman Mario Beltran. Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens) said on Nov. 1 that Calderon should resign from office “to allow this black cloud to be removed from over the Capitol and over the state of California.” Garcia repeated her call a couple of more times, most recently on Wednesday when she said a recommendation by Senate Democratic leader Darrell Steinberg that Calderon be suspended from his committee assignments did not go far enough.
October 31, 2013 |
Will the federal probe into the activities of state Sen. Ronald S. Calderon delay or derail efforts to expand California's film tax credit program? That's the question many in the film industry were privately asking after reports emerged that federal investigators were examining Calderon's role in seeking tax credits on behalf of the film industry. Gov. Jerry Brown signed a Calderon bill last year that extended for two years California's $100 million in annual tax breaks for films and TV shows made in the state.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 30, 2013 |
SACRAMENTO -- Federal investigators probing the activities of state Sen. Ronald S. Calderon (D-Montebello) have asked other lawmakers about proposals he made to expand tax credits for the film industry, officials said Wednesday. Calderon pushed to extend tax breaks to productions of less than $1 million. He and family members received a total of $10,800 in campaign contributions from an independent producer who could have benefited from the change Calderon advocated. FBI agents raided Calderon's Capitol office in June and seized documents as part of an investigation into his finances.
October 25, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - The government's troubled health insurance website will be running smoothly for the “vast majority” of users by the end of November, administration officials said Friday, for the first time setting a public deadline for fixing the problematic centerpiece of President Obama's healthcare law. “Healthcare.gov is fixable,” Jeffrey Zients, an economic advisor brought in to manage the repair project, told reporters on Friday....
October 24, 2013 |
WASHINGTON -- Nearly 700,000 applications for health insurance coverage under the Affordable Care Act have been completed, administration officials said Thursday, although they would not release data on how many people successfully enrolled in insurance plans despite problems with the online marketplace. The updated figure comes as administration officials tried to respond to complaints and finger-pointing from the contractors who built the troubled website, www.healthcare.gov . Testifying before a House committee Thursday, the contractors blamed the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which essentially was project manager, for not conducting complete “end-to-end” testing of the site until two weeks before the Oct. 1 launch date.
October 9, 2013 |
A group of entertainment industry executives and labor leaders called on state lawmakers to beef up California's film incentives -- or risk losing a homegrown industry to rivals. At a state committee hearing held at SAG-AFTRA headquarters in Los Angeles, industry officials praised California's film and TV tax incentives, which were adopted in 2009 to stop the migration of film and TV work. They cited the Oscar-winning film "Argo" and the TV series "Teen Wolf" as examples of projects that have been filmed in California specifically because of the tax credits they received.
October 4, 2013 |
California needs a new and improved film tax credit program to prevent more productions from leaving the state, the industry's chief lobbyist said Friday. Speaking at a luncheon in Burbank hosted by the Valley Industry and Commerce Assn., Chris Dodd, chairman of the Motion Picture Assn. of America, called for an expansion of the state's film tax credit program, which allocates $100 million annually but excludes large feature films with budgets greater than $75 million. The program also exempts TV pilots.