Opinions

Making kids a top budget priority

Elementary school students in a California classroom. ((Photo: Monkey Business Images)

A new analysis of the state budget from the nonpartisan Legislative Analysts Office identifies about $1.1 billion in new money available in the budget for discretionary spending. Gov. Jerry Brown and legislative leaders have an opportunity to make spending decisions that will prioritize children, many of whom took the brunt of budget cuts over the last decade.

Letters

On the 7th Senate District race

Democrat Steve Glazer will be sworn in today to the state Senate from the 7th District. Since Steve’s election victory by over 11,500 votes on May 19, I have read comments in news articles that if this was a closed Democratic pimary, Steve would not have won or if it was a regular special, Steve would not have won, and a lot of ifs.

Opinions

Time has come to fix Denti-Cal

A youngster on his visit to the dentist. (Photo: Wavebreakmedia, via Shutterstock)

What if I told you there was a straightforward way to raise kids’ grades, increase funding for schools and cut costly emergency room visits? You’d probably tell me to get my head checked by a doctor. And I’d tell you to see a dentist.

Opinions

Stock market soars — and so do public pension costs

The New York Stock Exchange on Wall Street, New York. (Photo: Wikipedia)

The way our government accounts for public employee pension promises is nothing short of fraud, yet no public official has gone to jail or paid a price for what surely ranks among the largest muggings of citizens in US history. Let me explain. As the stock market reaches record levels, little is heard anymore from public officials who used to blame market declines for rising pension costs.

Opinions

Brain injuries in sports getting attention — finally

Young California football players practice for the big game. (Photo: bikeriderlondon, via Shutterstock)

Over the years, traumatic brain injuries in sports were never really discussed and stories of career-ending accidents were often glossed over. However, the winds are changing. Individuals suffering from serious head injuries are gaining a voice and have begun raising awareness through both the media and legislative efforts. As more and more stories of career-ending injuries pepper the news, the topic is finally getting the attention it deserves.

Opinions

The high road: Dismantle the ‘wall of poverty’

A homeless man in Oceanside. (Photo: David Little)

With news this week that California’s tax revenues came in $6-$8 billion stronger than previous estimates, California now has an undeniable choice: a high road that lifts up all our people and strengthens our state, or a low road that ignores the nearly one in four residents who live below the poverty line in the wealthiest state in the nation.

Opinions

Health care: A basic right for all

Also known as the Health for All Act, the legislation aims to provide access to health care coverage to undocumented individuals who are not covered under the Affordable Care Act. SB 4 would expand Medi-Cal to low-income undocumented individuals and create a private insurance exchange option for those with higher incomes.

Opinions

Progress made on air quality, but much work remains

California motorists in a traffic jam. (Photo: Shutterstock)

As a physician – especially a physician living in Los Angeles – I am deeply concerned about the effects of air pollution on lung health. Southern California is home to some of the most entrenched air pollution in our nation and it affects the millions of our residents living with asthma, heart and lung disease and other chronic health conditions.

Opinions

Carbon pricing safeguards economy

A powerplant at sunset. (Photo: David Crockett)

Last week’s executive order on climate change from Gov. Jerry Brown offers a valuable opportunity to reflect on what Pacific Coast climate leadership is helping us achieve. As someone whose career has spanned both economic and environmental interests, I have a unique vantage point on why reducing carbon emissions is a win-win for both business and the environment.

Letters

Letter: Report on UC staffing lacked context

Editor: The article you reprinted from an online blogger about administrative staff growth at the University of California (“UC administrative staff tripled in two decades,” Capitol Weekly, April 23) lacks critical context and as such, makes inaccurate comparisons.

The increase in UC’s administrator positions is largely due to significant growth in the university’s health enterprise,

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