Industry: Economy
News
Sept. 21, 2017

Fresno City Council members say they’ve received complaints for years from residents and businesses about recycling centers operating from shipping containers in shopping center parking lots, providing a few cents in cash for each can or bottle that people bring in for redemption.

On Thursday, the council approved a new ordinance to seriously restrict how and where such recyclers – called CRV (California Redemption Value) recycling centers – can operate. The 7-0 vote is the first step toward final approval, most likely in two weeks. The law, sponsored by Councilmen Paul Caprioglio and Oliver Baines, would take effect 30 days after a final vote.

Once that happens, the law will effectively put 16 of Fresno’s 22 CRV recycling centers out of business within six months to a year. The centers are where people can get back the nickel that grocers charge for every can or bottle of soft drink, beer or other beverages that carries a California Redemption Value stamp.

News
Sept. 21, 2017

An Oakland nonprofit group founded by Y Combinator’s Sam Altman is raising funds to launch what could become the nation’s largest basic-income research project.

In a detailed proposal unveiled late Wednesday, Y Combinator Research said it wants to give 1,000 low- and moderate-income people $1,000 a month with no strings attached for three to five years and compare them to a control group of 2,000 people who get $50 a month.

News
Sept. 20, 2017

Labor influence over climate policies occasionally made Democrats uncomfortable last week. One late addition to state budget legislation, Assembly Bill 134, directs regulators to develop a process for determining whether automakers are “fair and responsible” in their treatment of workers.

If lawmakers approve the process next year and companies fall short of that standard, their electric cars could become ineligible for California rebates that are crucial to making zero-emission vehicles more cost competitive. Tesla, the state’s only automaker, has resisted efforts to unionize the workforce at its Fremont factory.

The provision was supported by the California Labor Federation, a coalition that includes the United Auto Workers, as a way to ensure public money doesn’t flow to companies that mistreat employees. But these kinds of rules could end up “undermining our own goals” of fighting climate change with more electric cars, said Sen. Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco).

News
Sept. 20, 2017

Germany will miss a European Union renewable energy target by a wider margin than previously predicted, a study showed on Wednesday.

The BEE renewable energy association’s analysis found that energy from green sources would account for 16 percent of German power consumption by 2020, short of an EU target of 18 percent for Germany.

News
Sept. 20, 2017

California’s legislative session, which completed its work in the wee hours Saturday morning, was one of the more controversial ones in years, given the degree to which the Democratic majority was able to secure various tax and fee increases. It was also one of the more divisive recent sessions from a partisan standpoint.

. . .Finally, California’s politically powerful unions got many of their priorities through this year’s legislative session. The most far-reaching measure, Assembly Bill 1513, would provide the names and personal information of home-care workers who work for private companies. That would enable unions to contact private-sector workers for organizing purposes.

The Legislature also passed Senate Bill 63, which expands the state’s family leave law, applying it to companies with at least 20 employees. It also passed AB1461, which would require employees at some companies that provide meal-delivery services to get a “food-handlers’ card.” Similar to the home-care bill, unions would then have access to these workers’ private information for organizing purposes.

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