Brown vetoes hospital merger bill

As a deadline loomed, Gov. Brown struck down legislation to grant state Attorney General Kamala Harris more authority over nonprofit hospital mergers. The attorney general — a position he once held — already has sufficient authority, he said Monday in his veto message.

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News

DWR: Progress on delta tunnels

Islands in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, an aerial view. (Photo: Worldislandinfo.com

California’s top water official told a key gathering of south state water interests that “hard-earned progress” is being made on the Brown administration’s controversial plan to build twin tunnels through the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. The comments by Mark Cowin, director of the state Department of Water Resources, were aimed in part at dispelling rumors that the project had run aground, perhaps permanently.

Opinions

In eye surgery, the doctor’s experience, training are key

OPINION: Simply put, learning to do surgery requires actually doing procedures on live human patients in sufficient numbers to develop competence. Indeed, sufficient numbers are vital to develop the judgment to choose the right procedure and – particularly important — manage complications (including rare ones) that may arise.

News

A rise in voters who shun party affiliation

Voters in Ventura County cast ballots. (Photo: Spirit of America, Shutterstock)

California voters increasingly are giving a thumbs down to both major parties when they register to vote, with those who decline to state a party affiliation that now approaches nearly a fourth of the electorate. Some 23.1 percent of California’s 17.63 million registered voters declined to state a party preference, up nearly 3 percentage points from 2010, according to figures released by the secretary of state’s office.

News

Weed backers target 2016 ballot

The Marijuana Policy Project, a national group that seeks to legalize recreational marijuana use, says it intends to put the issue before California voters on the 2016 general election ballot. The group’s decision to file a committee with California Secretary of State Debra Bowen on Wednesday means it may start raising funds to help finance signature gathering and qualify the measure in California.

Opinions

Hospitals: Pending merger bill would hurt public’s access

OPINION: At a time when Californians need more access to hospital services, SB 1094 should be equipped with flashing lights and sirens. The bill politicizes transactions involving the sale or transfer of non-profit hospitals, and deserves to be vetoed by the Governor.

News

PPIC: Water bond up, Brown way up, Prop. 45 divided

Jerry Brown holds a 21 point lead over Neel Kashkari among likely voters in the governor’s race, and there is majority support both for a state water bond.Likely voters are more divided on two other statewide ballot initiatives, one that would establish a budget stabilization account—or rainy day fund—and another that would give the state insurance commissioner authority over changes in health insurance rates.

News

Democrats divided: The race for state schools superintendent

Tom Torlakson, left, and Marshall Tuck, candidates for state schools superintendent, debate the issues. (Photo: Frame capture, calchannel.granicus)

For an obscure elective office that is often ignored, unknown or regarded as superfluous in California’s convoluted education bureaucracy, the November election for state Superintendent of Public Instruction is shaping up as one of the most contentious — and costly — races among statewide candidates. It has become a lightning rod for widespread dissatisfaction with schools in California, which have consistently been ranked among the lowest-performing and poorly funded in the nation.

Opinions

Voter Registration Day: A reminder to participate in Democracy

OPINION: Today is National Voter Registration Day and it falls between two historic legislative anniversaries this year and next year that remind us how so many people struggled for the voting rights that too many fail to use now. You can either cast a ballot, or cast a shadow over our democracy by not voting at all this November.

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