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  • California Forbids U.S. Immigration Agents from Pretending to be Police

    Thursday, July 27, 2017
    ICE agents have reportedly claimed to be police officers to gain consent to enter a person’s home – a tactic that is viewed as unethical, but within the powers granted to the officers. Civil rights groups supported Kalra’s bill, looking to stymie the Trump administration’s promise to use any and all available tools to deport undocumented immigrants who have committed crimes. Many groups fear Trump will expand deportations to include all undocumented immigrants, their families and relatives.   read more
  • Assembly Rejects John Wayne Day Proposal Because of Racist Comments by “Duke”

    Saturday, April 30, 2016
    The state Assembly defeated the official ode to John Wayne on Thursday after several legislators described statements he made about racial minorities and his support for the anti-communist House Un-American Activities Committee and John Birch Society. Republican State Assemblyman Matthew Harper of Huntington Beach sought to declare May 26, 2016, as John Wayne Day to mark the day the actor was born.   read more
  • Giant California Solar Farm will threaten Endangered Species, Claims Lawsuit against Federal Agencies

    Friday, April 22, 2016
    "The project will affect more than 26,000 acres of sensitive habitat," according to the complaint. "The Panoche Valley is one of only three core areas left in California necessary for the survival and recovery of the highly endangered San Joaquin kit fox, the endangered blunt-nosed leopard lizard, and the endangered giant kangaroo rat." Solar Valley says the project will power 70,000 homes, create 1,500 jobs and bring nearly $40 million in revenue to San Benito County.   read more
  • California Appeals Court Overturns Historic 2014 Ruling on Teacher Tenure

    Thursday, April 21, 2016
    The state argued that teacher tenure attracts and retains the best teachers in the state. At issue are state laws that students say unfairly grant teachers permanent employment, prevent removal of ineffective teachers from classrooms and during economic downturns lead to layoffs of teachers based on seniority rather than merit. Under those laws, poor and minority schools end up with a disproportionate amount of "lemon" teachers who secure tenure in as little as 16 months, the students claim.   read more
  • Dam Destruction Agreement Will Allow Endangered Salmon to Finally Swim Home

    Sunday, April 17, 2016
    Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, who signed agreements with the governors of both states, said the plan would bring about one of the largest river restoration projects in the history of the U.S. The landmark deals also protect farmers and ranchers from rising power and water prices. The dams now block fish from migrating to their historic spawning grounds and also degrade water quality, spreading fish diseases and algae blooms.   read more
  • School District Allows Scholarships from Scientology but not from Atheists

    Saturday, April 16, 2016
    A California school district refused to include scholarship offers from two atheist groups in the lists they distribute to students, the groups claim in court. Both say the district and Palmdale High refused to make their scholarship offers available to students. The high school does, however, announce a scholarship named after L. Ron Hubbard, founder of Scientology. The refusal suppresses speech and denies equal access to the school's scholarship distribution system, according to the complaint.   read more
  • Outdated State Tax Program Costs California Billions

    Friday, April 15, 2016
    As tax day approaches, the California state auditor said Tuesday that the state doesn't monitor and hasn't updated its corporate tax program. Lax oversight over the state's six largest corporate income tax expenditures cost it more than $2.6 billion in forgone revenue in 2012-13 alone. The audit found that the state's popular research and development credit has essentially been ignored by regulators and that there isn't enough evidence to conclude if it's cost-effective.   read more
  • California's Marijuana Regulator Admits She Doesn't Know How it Affects People or "What it Does"

    Monday, April 11, 2016
    California’s medical marijuana czar says she believes there’s a need for weed, although she’s never smoked pot herself. “Unlike regulating alcohol, I’m not a user of marijuana, so I am not familiar with how that affects people or what it does,” Lori Ajax said. “But from the outreach I’ve done since I got here, it appears there is a medical need, and I’m tasked with doing this, and I’m going to do it.”   read more
  • Judge Bars L.A. County From Restoring Cross to Seal

    Sunday, April 10, 2016
    U.S. District Judge Christina Snyder sided with seven religious leaders in granting their motion for permanent injunction in her long-anticipated 55-page order keeping the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors from restoring a cross to the county seal. The lawsuit came after a 3-2 vote by the supervisors in January 2014 to include an image of a cross on the county seal. The cross would have been placed atop a depiction of the San Gabriel Mission featured in the center-right side of the seal.   read more
  • Have a Seat! Court Ruling Allows More Cashiers and Tellers to Sit on Job

    Friday, April 08, 2016
    The court's opinion stemmed from lawsuits brought by cashiers at the CVS and tellers at Chase Bank who said they were wrongly denied a place to sit while working. Experts called the opinion a victory for the cashiers and tellers. "The burden of proof is going to be on employers in most situations to determine why a seat would not be reasonable," said labor lawyer Hirschfeld. Companies likely will err on the side of providing a seat after Monday's opinion, Hirschfeld said.   read more
  • Chemical Seeding of Clouds to Produce Rain Used to Fight California Drought

    Wednesday, April 06, 2016
    Efforts to make snow and rain virtually out of thin air were once the realm of science fiction. Even today, they're dismissed by some as fanciful and hardly worth the time. But after four historically dry years in California, the practice has been on the uptick. Stormy skies that came with El Nino provided ideal conditions for cloud seeding, which requires enough water vapor in the air so that the introduction of silver iodide can coax the clouds to crystallize and send droplets to the ground.   read more
  • Report Claims California Watchdog for Judicial Ethical Violations is Too Lenient, Secretive

    Tuesday, April 05, 2016
    The Commission on Judicial Performance dismisses nearly 90% of the public complaints it receives and imposes discipline much less often than similar agencies, the report said. ``California has fallen behind its peers in judicial accountability'' and ``fails to protect the public from judicial misconduct,'' claimed Court Reform LLC. The report called for an end to private disciplinary actions and for a state audit of the commission.   read more
  • Poor Barred from San Jose Libraries Due to Inability to Pay Hefty Late Fees

    Monday, April 04, 2016
    In impoverished neighborhoods, where few residents have broadband connections or computers, nearly a third of cardholders are barred from borrowing or using library computers. Half of the children and teenagers with library cards in the city owe fines. Around 187,000 accounts, or 39% of all cardholders, owe the library money. “The kids who are barred from the door of the library are the ones we most desperately want to reach,” said Mayor Liccardo.   read more
  • California Legislature Approves Landmark Minimum Wage Increase

    Saturday, April 02, 2016
    After the Assembly and Senate votes, dozens of supporters gathered on the lawn outside the Capitol for a labor-organized rally. Many waved signs saying "$15 California." Art Pulaski, executive secretary-treasurer of the California Labor Federation, hailed what he called a historic day for California and the country: "California takes a massive leap forward today in the fight to rebalance our nation's economy."   read more
  • Dangerous Inmates Kept in Jail Longer, Prison Populations Cut by 9% in California Counties

    Friday, April 01, 2016
    A Nov. 2014 ballot measure that reduced punishment for drug possession and low-level crimes lowered county jail populations by 9% in its first year, an effect that could increase public safety by allowing more serious criminals to be kept behind bars longer. The report by the Public Policy Institute of California gives supporters of Proposition 47 a counterargument against police and prosecutors who blamed the ballot measure for a statewide increase in crime last year.   read more
  • UC System Profited by Denying In-State Applicants in Favor of Less-Qualified Nonresidents

    Wednesday, March 30, 2016
    Over the last few years, University of California's out-of-state student enrollment increased by 82% while resident enrollment sunk by 1%. The report claims UC lowered its nonresident admission standards and admitted nearly 16,000 students with academic scores below the average of admitted residents over the last three years. Qualified Californians were often turned away. Additionally, diversity has suffered on the UC's 10 campuses as a result of the boom in nonresident undergraduate students.   read more
  • California Will Delay Toxic Chemical Warnings on Canned Foods to Avoid Scaring Poor Consumers

    Saturday, March 26, 2016
    The decision and rationale of the California EPA are angering some community and public-health groups. It's "ridiculous. It's paternalistic," said Martha Dina Arguello, executive director of Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles. "I just can't imagine that it's a better idea not to let us know what's in our food." Jose Bravo said that ""California is willingly ... excluding a whole sub-population of people from protection."   read more
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