There is no firm estimate on the number of people who live in vehicles in Silicon Valley, but the problem is pervasive and apparent to anyone who sees RVs lining thoroughfares; not as visible are the cars tucked away at night in parking lots. Advocates for the homeless say it will only get worse unless more affordable housing is built. The median rent in the San Jose metro area is $3,500 a month, yet the median wage is $12 an hour in food service and $19 an hour in health care support, an amount that won’t even cover housing costs. The minimum annual salary needed to live comfortably in San Jose is $87,000, according to a study by personal finance website GoBankingRates. So dilapidated RVs line the eastern edge of Stanford University in Palo Alto, and officials in neighboring Mountain View have mapped out more than a dozen areas where campers tend to cluster, some of them about a mile from Google headquarters.
California’s governor and legislative leaders on Wednesday proposed raising $52 billion to fix the state’s roads through a big gasoline tax increase, higher car registration fees and a charge on emission-free vehicles.
The 10-year plan would boost gasoline excise taxes for the first time in more than two decades, raising them 12 cents per gallon — a 43 percent increase. The tax would rise automatically with inflation.
While Brown expects revenue to be up 3 percent next year, the governor and lawmakers assumed revenues would be even higher when they planned the current budget, and they spent accordingly. . . Lower revenue and higher costs mean the state has approved spending money that Brown doesn’t think it will collect.
Federal judicial orders are mostly to blame for a $3 billion drop in the budget savings that California prison officials promised four years ago, corrections officials said Wednesday. . . But instead there is a $3 billion annual difference between the promised savings and the $10.5 billion corrections department budget Gov. Jerry Brown proposed earlier this month, in part because the state also chose to boost the number of prison beds available.
Sales rose from a year earlier for the fourth straight month to an estimated 46,095 homes despite unusually tight supplies. It marked an increase of 10.8 percent from 41,612 sales in May and 16.8 percent from 39,460 sales a year earlier.