04/24/2019

News

Rising Housing Costs and Re-Segregation in the San Francisco Bay Area

Between 2000 and 2015, as housing prices rose, historically Black cities and neighborhoods across the region lost thousands of low-income Black households. These areas include the Bayview in San Francisco, flatland neighborhoods in Oakland and Berkeley, and the cities of East Palo Alto, Richmond, and Vallejo. Low-income Asian and Latinx households decreased in several neighborhoods […]

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Do Early Polls on Split Roll Tell Us Anything?

Once again, PPIC tested the value of Proposition 13 with voters. And, once again likely voters declared Prop 13 worthy. Asked if Proposition 13 was mostly a good or a bad thing, 64% of likely voters said it was a good thing, only 24% responded it was mostly bad. The margin was larger than the […]

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Union schemes, scams and some pushback

As the Janus case (which ultimately would give public employees a choice whether or not to pay money to a union as a condition of employment) was headed to the Supreme Court, many unions saw the writing on the wall and cooked up “trap language” schemes. This chicanery only allows dissenting workers to quit a […]

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California’s Nursing Schools Need to Up Enrollment by 60 percent to Avoid Shortage

As reported by ABC’s local Los Angeles affiliate, the main grievances of the nurses union were that LA County had violated a law requiring minimum nurse to patient ratios and failed to retain nurses. The inadequate staffing leading to these grievances might be attributed to a shortage of nurses, but apparently that is a controversial […]

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More errors at the DMV: Thousands of customers can’t get licenses after paying early

Bogged down by long customer wait times, California’s Department of Motor last fall tried to ease the pressure in its offices by sending license renewal notices much earlier than usual. It backfired. The DMV sent renewal notices to Californians 120 to 150 days before their licenses were scheduled to expire. But the department’s technology could […]

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Not-so-free college: The limits of California’s Promise program

The problem, according to Youngblood, is who isn’t eligible: part-time students, who make up more than two thirds of the community college population. While research shows students taking 12 units or more per semester are more likely to earn a degree or certificate, Youngblood says many low-income students are simply too busy working to handle […]

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Tesla details Bay Area layoffs, with sales and service taking hit

The sprawling Fremont campus where Tesla makes its cars will take the brunt of the company layoffs, Tesla said in public notices filed with the state of California. The electric carmaker will terminate more than a thousand positions from its workforce in Northern California, as part of an announced round of layoffs affecting more than […]

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Cyber-Sabotage, Wildfires, Weather — A Web Of Threats To The Power Supply Could Leave Californians In The Dark

Russians hack Ukraine’s electricity network, turning lights off and on at will, rendering the country’s best tech hands helpless to intervene. North Korea takes over the controls of a South Korean nuclear power plant. Snipers with high-velocity rifles unleash a fusillade on a transmission station near San Jose, inflicting $15 million in damage. It’s not […]

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Tesla Cuts the Model 3 Price Again

Tesla Inc. cut the price of its mass-market Model 3 sedan for the second time this year, another step in Chief Executive Elon Musk’s quest to drive the sticker price—not counting tax credits and fuel savings—down to $35,000. The Silicon Valley auto maker shaved another $1,100 off the cheapest version of the Model 3, lowering […]

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Do California Cement Factories Pollute More Than Those In China Or India? Study Suggests Time To Further Reduce Carbon Emissions.

California’s cement industry could be overhauled if Sierra Club California and a Bay Area Assembly member get their way. A new Sierra Club study says cement production is responsible for 5 percent of carbon pollution globally. “This is one industry that has managed to keep the status quo even though the science is showing we […]

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‘It’s the Human Way’: Corruption Scandals Play Out in Big Cities Across U.S.

A senior aide to a former mayor of Atlanta collapses on a courtroom floor after hearing that she is headed to prison. F.B.I. agents in Los Angeles haul away computers and documents during a raid of a veteran councilman’s office. News cameras trail the most powerful alderman in Chicago as he walks to court to […]

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What delaying a big rate increase cost CalSTRS

To show the importance of acting quickly, the report to the Legislature will have a calculation of where CalSTRS funding would be if the rate increases enacted in 2014 had been promptly adopted after the 2008-09 financial crisis. “If we had been able to raise the rates, we would now be about 70 percent funded […]

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A bold new plan to tackle climate change ignores economic orthodoxy

Green New Dealers reckon the secret lies in making the economy both greener and more equitable. Their plan remains ill-defined, though Democrats are expected to release draft legislation that may provide more details soon. But its primary aims are clear. It proposes a move to 100% clean and renewable energy within a decade or two, […]

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The Methuselah Annuity

The second-longest bull market in American history hasn’t stopped the deterioration of state and local pension funds, whose unfunded debt has almost quadrupled—by their own accounting—from about $360 billion in 2007 to $1.4 trillion today. Having relied on overly optimistic and inaccurate financial assumptions for decades, public pension administrators are now forced to acknowledge that […]

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Dan Walters: Could California pension system be underwater?

Very quietly, CalPERS officials told its governing board last month that the trust fund actually lost 3.9 percent during 2018, apparently due to the sharp stock market decline late in the year, pushing its funded level back down to about 67 percent. Having just two-thirds of the assets needed to cover pension promises should be […]

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