08/25/2019

News

Are Scooters A Transit Solution Or A Trojan Horse For Big Tech To Colonize Our Public Spaces?

Summer is here and the electronic hum of scooters is filling city sidewalks all over the world. From L.A. to D.C., many American downtowns have hit their one-year anniversary with scooters, and European capitals have begun to allow them. The benefit is obvious: Scooters provide on-demand, affordable mobility to any able-bodied smartphone user. As the […]

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California Refuses To Enlist Clean, Cheap Hydropower In Fight Against Climate Change. It Makes No Sense

Is the cleanest, greenest electricity in the world green enough for California? For years, the people of the Northern San Joaquin Valley have been trying to get hydropower recognized for what it is: the original source of clean electricity. Our efforts have been stymied by people who feel entitled to decide what is, or isn’t, […]

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California’s Housing Shortage Is Somewhere Between 2.5 Million … And Zero

California’s housing shortage is nowhere as big as you think. In an age where statistics can be weaponized, pro-development types will toss out the biggest shortfall guestimate they can find to make their point: Only more construction will prune California’s high cost-of-living. Conversely, those who prefer slower growth will quote more modest shortage estimates — […]

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At Home At BART

The average BART rider may not know the term “transit-oriented development,” but when trains enter Oakland’s MacArthur Station, they see it face-to-face. A seven-story building with lime-green accents covers land that five years ago held parking lots. It’s part of a 385-unit apartment complex being marketed as “sleek and modern with a retro vibe … […]

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Educators Learn Early Results Of Gates Initiative To Improve Student Outcomes

It’s been almost two years since Bill Gates announced a major shift to locally driven solutions in the education funding strategy of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the nation’s largest charitable foundation. Gates said he remains “driven by the same guiding principle we started with: all students — but especially low-income students and students […]

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Higher Education Facilities Bond Act Of 2020

California lawmakers are considering whether to place an $8 billion general obligation bond measure on the March 2020 ballot. If approved by voters, the measure would let the University of California and the California State University system improve the seismic safety of their buildings and expand their physical capacity to serve thousands more California students. […]

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Hostile Takeover Of PG&E? Billion-Dollar Hedge Funds Duel Over Bankrupt Utility

Two groups of multibillion-dollar hedge funds are fighting over control of PG&E Corp. in a battle with huge implications for California’s largest electric utility and the thousands of wildfire victims who hold claims against the bankrupt company. What had been a quiet tug-of-war turned into a hostile takeover battle late Wednesday. PG&E’s major bondholders, in […]

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Berkeley Is the First City In America To Ban Gas From New Homes

The fight to kick natural gas out of homes and businesses is intensifying. In a vote late Tuesday, Berkeley — the city near San Francisco long known for its progressive politics — banned the use of the heating fuel in most new buildings. Environmentalists are hailing it as the first city to enact such a […]

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As Airbnb Prepares For Wall Street Scrutiny, Its Hometown Is A Key Case Study

Airbnb, long a flash point for controversy in its hometown, has achieved detente with San Francisco at the cost of slower growth — while pursuing other expansions that could stir new issues. San Francisco is not alone in reining in Airbnb. Cities from South Lake Tahoe to New York to Paris are cracking down on […]

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House Approves Bill That Would More Than Double Minimum Wage To $15

The House of Representatives passed a bill Thursday that would more than double the federal minimum wage to $15 by 2025. The bill, which passed by a 231-199 margin, was sponsored by Rep. Bobby Scott (D., Va.) and was a compromise that progressive Democrats struck with more centrist members of the party. It is unlikely […]

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Oil Price Rises On Mideast Tensions, Stock Markets Cautious

The price of oil rose on Friday after the U.S. said it had destroyed an Iranian drone near the Persian Gulf, where a lot of the world’s oil is shipped through. Stock markets were largely stable as investors monitor earnings and the ongoing trade talks between China and the U.S. Energy prices were ratcheted higher […]

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California’s Child Poverty Hits Coastal Bay Area

When Michele Beserra looks at her 3-year-old granddaughter, she sees a warm, loving girl with light brown curls and a nurturing instinct—the kind of person she hopes will become a nurse or a community advocate. But the 56-year-old Beserra becomes emotional when she thinks about her granddaughter’s new home: a tent on a plot of […]

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SF Office Space Is Expensive. A Ballot Proposal Will Make It Worse, Critics Say

San Francisco would restrict future office development if the city fails to meet its affordable housing goals under a proposed ballot measure. The measure would reduce the amount of office space allowed by a percentage equal to the city’s shortfall in approving affordable housing, based on state-mandated goals. The advocacy arm of South of Market […]

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Just Half Of Californians Believe They Can Afford To Live Here, Poll Finds

Who can afford to live in California? A newly released Quinnipiac University poll found that just slightly more than half, or 53 percent, of Californians believe they can afford to live in the Golden State. Surveyors spoke to 1,125 California voters between July 10-15, with a margin of error of 3.9 percentage points. Pollsters found […]

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Economy Healthy, No Recession Looming For California, Economists Say

When they presented the California Association of Realtors 2019 Mid-Year Market Forecast this month, C.A.R. senior vice president and chief economist Leslie Appleton-Young and deputy chief economist Jordan Levine announced as of July, the U.S. was officially 10 years into its economic recovery period. The country has experienced the longest period of economic expansion on […]

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