Opinion

Tougher rules to curb vehicle pollution

Rush hour on the Harbor Freeway in Los Angeles. (Photo: Joseph Sohm via Shutterstock)

OPINION: Transportation accounts for the greatest share of greenhouse gas emissions in California, at 41 percent and trending up. So it should come as a relief that California’s Air Resources Board recently approved a suite of clean transportation rules that will not only help reduce carbon emissions from vehicles, but will help consumers who are feeling the pain of rising fuel costs in California.

Opinion

Forget naysayers: Public pension funds doing fine

A photo illustration of putting money aside as the clock ticks. (Image: Cozine, via Shutterstock)

OPINION:   Another round of alarmist commentary is being spread by those who begrudge a secure retirement for those who teach in our classrooms or heroically labor on the front lines of wildfires.  Amidst their negativity Californians may have missed a bit of positive news last month. The state’s two largest pension funds reported end-of-year investment returns that again exceeded their assumed average annual rate of return.

Opinion

Student success: Much more needs to be done

Children at a California public school respond to a teacher's question. (Photo: Monkey Business Images, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: The new comprehensive analysis of California’s PreK-12 education system, Getting Down to Facts II, revealed that the state is moving in the right direction with reforms put in place over the last decade, but more importantly it showed much more must be done to support student success.

Opinion

New administration should focus on consumer protection

An illustration depicting the law and consumer protection. (Image: create jobs 51, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: According to the U.S. Department of Commerce, California today ranks as the 5th largest economy in the world, surpassing the United Kingdom. To flourish, great economies like California’s need consumer protections and oversight of financial markets. California has one single state agency charged with both, the Department of Business Oversight. 

Opinion

For Latino health, funding the LWCF is critical

Visitors at Dolores Park in San Francsico on Memorial Day, 2018. (Photo: FTiare, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: Access to care is not the only problem the Latino Coalition is fighting to remedy. Another acute health inequity facing Latinos: woefully inadequate numbers of accessible outdoor activities and parks. With the already high rates of obesity, diabetes, hypertension and heart disease facing the community, opportunities for exercise and outdoor endeavors become all the more important.

Opinion

CARB’s bait-and-switch on climate change

A natural gas power plant near Ventura. (Photo: Richard Fitzer, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: When California’s signature climate change program was nearing its expiration date, there was serious debate about whether to extend it. This program, called Cap-and-Trade, reduces carbon emissions but it also increases the costs of gas, electricity, and numerous other necessities. That’s a significant problem in a state known for high taxes, onerous regulations, and the worst small business climate in the country.

Opinion

Marina bears heavy burden in desalination dispute

Marina Beach north of Monterey, near the site of a planned desalination plant. (Photo: Marina Coast Water District)

In parched, drought-stricken California, where water is considered liquid gold, the politics of power and wealth are playing out in real-time. The California Public Utilities Commission’s (CPUC) recent decision to allow the California American Water Company (Cal-Am) to proceed with its Monterey Peninsula Water Supply Project desalination plant is great news – that is, if you live in Carmel, Pacific Grove or Monterey.

Opinion

Truth-in-lending law needed now

A photo illustration using stacks of quarters to show rising interest rates. (Photo: Doubletree Studio)

Would you take out a loan for a new home if you didn’t know the interest rate? How about for a car? Or even for a credit card? More than likely, not.

Opinion

Future here now with renewable natural gas

A bus powered by natural gas at the Los Angeles International Airport. (Photo: Digital Media Pro, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: California’s leadership and its commitment to improving air quality has led to the adoption of new clean fuel technologies that have not only dramatically changed the vehicles on our state’s roads but also the air we breathe. I’ve seen first-hand how both the public and private sector have embraced the challenge to put new, clean-fuel vehicles into use.

Opinion

Brown sharpens teeth in HMO regulation

A photo illustration depicting a medicine and regulation. (Image: one photo, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: With Gov. Brown’s attention on landmark legislation to fight climate change, to address financing of wildfire damage and to give legal teeth to the #MeToo movement, a new law governing HMO mergers was bound to get drowned out. But everyone who was party to the California patients’ rights rebellion of the 1990s knows the governor’s signature on the new law is a very big deal.

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