News

Oakley, headed to nonprofit, departs community college system

Community Colleges Chancellor Eloy Oakley speaking at a state Capitol hearing. (Photo: EdSource)

California Community Colleges are hanging out the “help wanted” sign, as Chancellor Eloy Oakley steps down from the helm of the country’s largest college system to head an education advocacy group.

News

Tiny budget piece could have huge impact on $12B stem cell agency

An illustration of the molecular structure of human cells and a researcher with vaccine. (Image: Billion Photos, Shutterstock)

A crack opened last week for the first time in 17 years in the firewall between state politicians and the $12 billion California stem cell agency. It involves only $600,000 — at least for now — and is buried deep in the 1,069-page state budget bill that was introduced June 8. But its implications are far-reaching. They range from opening the agency to major changes — wanted and unwanted — to creating a basis for the agency’s currently dubious, long-term financial sustainability.

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Memorial service set for Vic Fazio

The late Congressman Vic Fazio.

The public is invited to attend a “Celebration of Life” for former California Congressman Vic Fazio, who died of cancer on March 16 at the age of 79.  The event will take place on Friday, June 17, from 11:00am to 1:30pm at the UC Davis Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts.

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Bottoms up: Should California bars serve booze until 4 am?

The scene at the Last Kind Words Saloon in Furnace Creek, in Death Valley. (Photo: Thomas Trumpeter, via Shutterstock)

Jerry Brown said the bill would cause “mayhem” and vetoed it, now its author has another plan to extend bar closing hours from 2 a.m. to 4 a.m. – this time limiting it to cities that already want it. “There is no mayhem,” Sen. Scott Wiener, D-San Francisco, said of Brown’s memorable phrase. “That was our grumpy governor. And I love him to death, but he was wrong about this.”

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Lawmaker fights insurers, gets personal about his health

State Sen. Scott Wiener at a a San Francisco rally last year. (Photo: Sheila Fitzgerald, via Shutterstock)

 Scott Wiener made a startling revelation at a spring legislative committee hearing: “I was in the hospital. I experienced the most intense abdominal pain that I could even imagine.” The Democratic state senator recalled crawling up the stairs to his landlord’s apartment last July to get a ride to the hospital.

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CA120: Numbers showing sparse turnout for the primary

Signs at a site in San Francisco show the way to the polls. (Photo: Kevin McGovern, via Shutterstock)

Going into this gubernatorial primary election, one could have rightly expected to see a pretty good turnout. There are more than 30 open legislative seats for the first time in nearly a decade and competitive congressional races after the shakeup of redistricting. But with just a few days to go, we are at just 13% total turnout statewide. In some key battlegrounds, like the hot L.A. Mayor’s race, turnout is even lower at just 10%,

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Lawmaker moves to oust Assembly Speaker Rendon

Assemblyman Robert Rivas, left, and Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon. (Images: State Assembly and video screen capture, YouTube)

Assemblymember Robert Rivas, a Salinas Democrat who grew up in a farm worker family, moved Friday to capture the Assembly speakership. A formal transfer of authority may come as early as next week. He told Rendon that “I have the votes,”  adding that he hoped for an “orderly transition.”

News

Governor’s budget good for higher education — mostly

UCLA students at graduation ceremonies.(Photo: Joseph Sohm, via Shutterstock)

Times are flush in the Golden State, fiscally speaking. With a total budget surplus of $97.5 billion, Gov. Gavin Newsom’s May budget revision prioritizes the funding of higher education. Just ask Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley, who helms the California Community Colleges.

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“Killer cells” and conflicts at California’s stem cell agency

A laboratory pipette with fluid and test tubes for cancer research. (Photo: CI Photos, via Shutterstock)

Call it “The Case of the Killer Cells.”  It is an $8 million matter involving an effort by  California’s ambitious stem cell agency to develop cures for particularly tenacious and fatal cancers. The cash is snarled in an “embarrassing” conflict of interest, however, not to mention an irregular vote on the application for research funding from the stem cell agency.

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Historic state budget blueprint faces crucial hurdles

Gov. Gavin Newsom at a San Francisco event. (Photo: Jana Asenbrennerova, via Shutterstock)

Gov. Gavin Newsom is proposing a multi-billion-dollar package of monetary goodies for Californians, but how much of it will become reality is now up to legislators. The clock ticks: Lawmakers have less than a month to approve the 2022-23 budget, an unprecedented, nearly $300 billion document, and send it to Gov. Gavin Newsom.

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