Voters, by a 63%-37% margin, approved Measure D, capping the city’s wild and wooly medical marijuana marketplace at 135 dispensaries. The new law is expected to receive legal challenges. David Welch, an attorney with Angelenos for Safe Access (creators of Measure F), indicated his group would probably sue the city, on the theory that the 2007 cutoff is arbitrary and unfair. He said that many shops that opened after 2007 would stay open in defiance of the law. Read More
Women with breast cancer who live in the South San Francisco area are seven times more likely to undergo a lumpectomy with radiation than those in the South Lake Tahoe area. Men with prostate cancer are 18 times more likely to receive internal, localized brachytherapy radiation treatment than men in the Oceanside area. Read More
Parents of a 17-year-old high school senior with Asperger’s syndrome, bipolar disorder, Tourette’s syndrome and various anxiety disorders are suing the Temecula Valley Unified School District for trying to expel him after he was busted by an undercover cop for selling the officer a couple of marijuana joints. Read More
The NorCal Tea Party Patriots filed its lawsuit—and asked for class-action status—in Cincinnati, where staffers at an IRS office singled out for scrutiny groups applying for tax-exempt status whose names indicated a political affiliation. Like the Tea Party. Read More
The "one powerful newsroom" will not be covering the Bay Area much. CIR stories will now “transcend geography” and cover national and international issues that “actually make a difference in people’s lives,” so “it doesn’t matter if they are about San Francisco or Sacramento or Washington, D.C.”
Instead of the 1,000 stories covered last year, they are aiming to publish 200 this year. Read More
The bolts, which are actually special galvanized rods up to 24-feet long, were prohibited by Caltrans on bridges in 2000, according to the Chronicle, because of their vulnerability to hardening and cracking. The federal government has warned about using them for decades. But in 2002, Caltrans decided to use them anyway with “eyes wide open,” according to Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty. Read More
Tesoro, the second largest oil refiner in California, received permission to buy the state’s BP refinery and Arco assets, despite anti-trust concerns that further market consolidation will hurt consumers.
Tesoro and Chevron will own nearly half of California’s oil refining capacity, including its three largest refineries. California consistently has the highest gasoline prices in the country, generally attributed to erratic refinery production and low supplies of gasoline. Read More
The law that set up the cap-and-trade program, AB 32, did not earmark exactly how money in the GHGR Fund would be spent. But the legislation’s formal name, the California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, and an accompanying directive that its proceeds support its goals, seemed to indicate that the money wasn’t meant to be dumped in the General Fund. Read More
Some folks in the Bay Area are livid over the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) plan to cut down 85,000 trees in the hills near Oakland and the University of California, Berkeley. The agency has scheduled three public hearings on the controversial proposal in May while students are studying for finals or going home for the summer. Read More
At the Contra Costa West County Detention Facility (WCDF) in Richmond, one of the differences is the cost of making a phone call. A couple of weeks ago, protesters gathered outside the facility that houses 1,100 prisoners to argue that what amounts to upwards of a $20 charge for a 15-minute phone call is cruel and inhumane treatment of inmates. Read More
Wells Fargo placed Delassus into default after the bank incorrectly charged him for back property taxes, which it turned out was really owed by his neighbor, not Delassus. Even after Delassus pointed out the mistake, which Wells Fargo acknowledged, the bank refused to correct the situation or help him bring his account current, resulting in the condo being seized and sold off. Read More
Using a web of overseas subsidiaries, particularly in Ireland, Apple went beyond the common multi-national corporation practice of stashing money in low-tax offshore havens to obtain, in the words of Senator Levin, “the Holy Grail of tax avoidance.”
“It has created offshore entities holding tens of billions of dollars while claiming to be tax resident nowhere,” he said. Read More
Extended benefits for more than 1 million recipients have run out, those still getting benefits are seeing their checks slashed and customer service hours are about to be whacked.
The cuts are a combination of sequester slashing and already existing administrative underfunding by the federal government.
Other financial institutions offer better deals. Only 1,300 loans were issued in 2003, a miniscule 83 in 2012 and 59 so far this year.
Altogether, around $1.1 billion in bonds sits untouched while veterans go begging for other assistance. Activists have long agitated for more job training, mental health counseling and other services. Read More
They established for the first time that the frogs are spreading Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, known as Bd or chytrid, which was first described by scientists in 1999. The disease causes cardiac arrest in amphibians by thickening and hardening the skin, which interferes with their electrolytes.
Frogs are dying en masse in Australia, Europe, Latin America and western U.S. states. The Caribbean has been devastated. Read More
Five of them continued to inform their co-workers, and complain, about what they considered to be a looming, unwarranted invasion of privacy. That drew disciplinary action.
The five appealed the punishment and last week a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) judge ruled (pdf) that JPL had engaged in unfair labor practices and ordered it to remove letters of reprimand it had placed in their files. Read More
The week after a federal judge in California fined a group of lawyers for trolling the Internet looking for downloaders of porn and then suing them, ostensibly, for copyright violations, one of the trolls argued in a Georgia court that the judge should ignore the ruling because the Golden State has gay marriage. Read More
Democratic State Senator Michael J. Rubio surprised his party and the governor when he announced last Friday that he would be resigning his seat to take a job as the manager of California government affairs for Chevron Corporation. Rubio, 35, said he wanted to spend more time with his wife and two young children, one of whom as special needs. Read More
Sentencing reform advocate and former Pennsylvania prisons chief Jeffrey A. Beard was named Secretary of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) Wednesday by Governor Jerry Brown. He replaces Matthew Cate, who left in October after four and a half years to head the California State Association of Cities. Read More
Governor Jerry Brown, reaching outside the park service community, went career military instead and picked retired Major General Anthony L. Jackson, 63, as director of the troubled Department of Parks and Recreation on Tuesday.
Jackson replaces Ruth Coleman, who resigned in July after $54 million was found stashed in department accounts while 70 state parks faced closure because of budget cuts. Read More
Bottlenose dolphins stationed in San Diego and trained to find undersea objects located a torpedo in March near Coronado that was last used in the 19th century. The Howell torpedo, only one of 50 made between 1870 and 1889, was one of the world’s first self-propelled torpedoes. The Howell just found is only the second known to still exist.
Westminster Police Detective Anthony Orban killed himself in jail last year after being convicted of kidnapping, beating and raping a waitress in 2010, but before his victim had the satisfaction of seeing him sentenced for his crimes.
But last Friday, West Valley Superior Court Judge Shahla S. Shabet indicated that she was prepared to sentence a dead man because there were still legal issues that needed to be addressed. Read More
Dr. Christine Daniel pitched her witch’s brew of suntan lotion and beef flavoring, which she promoted as the herbal product C-Extract, on Trinity Broadcast Network, online and at her Sonrise wellness center in Mission Hills.
She charged dozens of terminally-ill patients up to $150,000 for treatments but cured no one. Read More