California shakes, but many go without quake insurance

Richard M. Allen, director of the Berkeley Seismological Laboratory, points out the American Canyon Quake. (AP Photo/Alex Menendez)

California is known as much for earthquakes as it is Hollywood or surfers, but relatively few homeowners have bothered to buy earthquake insurance. A little better than one in every 10 residential properties is covered throughout California. In Napa, where Sunday’s 6.0 magnitude quake caused an estimated $1 billion in damage, the coverage level is even lower than that – perhaps 5 percent, according to the California Earthquake Authority

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News

Cheers: Homebrew fetes are back in California

Local homebrew festivals are back on tap for California in 2015. A law approved by the Legislature and signed by the governor this week makes it legal, once again, for homebrewing associations to host homebrew events in California.

Opinions

Flame retardants: Chemical industry uses scare tactics

OPINION: It’s the end of August and, like the rest of California, Sacramento is seeing temperatures rise. But over at the Capitol, legislators are sitting in the middle of a blizzard of alarmist rhetoric from the chemical industry about legislation to disclose the use of toxic flame retardants on furniture.

Opinions

Needed: Fewer roadblocks for electric vehicles

Electric BMWs charging at a Google complex. (Photo: Roman Boed)

OPINION: There are over 220,000 electric vehicles (EVs) on America’s roads today – more than double this time last year – and about a third of those are in California. EVs are exploding in popularity; they’re cheaper to drive and fuel, better for the environment and are a more thrilling drive.

News

Senate leader: No delay in cap-and-trade plan

A motorist pumps gas at a Costco station in South San Francisco. ((Photo: Broken Sphere)

An attempt to delay inclusion of transportation fuels in California’s program to fight greenhouse gases has been blocked by the leader of the Senate, who said any delays would harm the public’s health and diminish air quality. Senate Leader Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, said the bill, AB 69 by Assemblyman Henry Perea, D-Fresno, would not receive a hearing before the legislative session adjourns on Aug. 31, a move that virtually assures the measure’s demise.

News

A tough week at CalPERS

CalPERS' governing board during a meeting. (Photo: CalPERS board)

Calpensions: Last week was not a good one for CalPERS. Wednesday, Gov. Brown said CalPERS adopted regulations that undermine the anti-spiking provisions for new hires in his pension reform. Thursday, the state Fair Practices Political Commission rejected a proposed $1,000 fine for CalPERS board member Priya Mathur, suggesting a $4,000 fine for a serial offender who has repeatedly failed to file campaign funding reports.

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