Posts Tagged: officials

News

GOP to take control of powerful SoCal air board

A smog-tinged view in black and white of Century City, Beverly Hills and West Los Angeles. (Photo: Trekandshoot, via Shutterstock)

Last year, the high point of the GOP’s Election Day was the Democrats’ loss of their supermajorities in the Legislature, even though Democrats retained control of every statewide elected office. But in early November, Republicans scored a major victory: a seat on the South Coast Air Quality Management District. For the first time in years, GOP members will control the powerful board that has jurisdiction over four counties and 17 million people.

Opinion

New fracking rules: Too little, too late

Pumpjacks in a Kern County oil field, November 2013. (Photo: Christopher Halloran)

Oil and gas wells are deeply embedded in many California neighborhoods. Because we have no statewide limits on how close such wells can be to homes or schools, millions of Californians live within breathing distance of these polluting oil operations. That’s a huge concern — especially as hydraulic fracturing and other extreme oil extraction techniques spread across our state.

Opinion

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.

Opinion

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.

News

A primer: Lobbyists, ethics, rules and the Constitution

Lobbyists and the legislators they lobby generally act responsibly and in compliance with applicable state and federal laws. However, because there is so much scrutiny on politics and the legislative process, when something improper does occur, it gets into the public domain quickly. As a result, when there is an alleged violation of the law, it becomes a high profile matter that garners public attention and discussion.

News

Brown: All aboard the bullet train

Gov. Jerry Brown at ceremonies in Fresno launching construction of California's bullet train. (Photo: Associated Press)

FRESNO — Amid the debris and grit of a downtown Fresno site, Gov. Brown formally launched construction of California’s $68 billion bullet train, a project that — maybe — will link San Francisco with Los Angeles through the state’s farm belt within two decades.

Opinion

The oil industry and its front groups

OPINION: The fact that the oil industry is using front groups to battle against clean energy progress is no surprise to anyone who has been working in California or around the west to protect clean air laws. This kind of tactic has been used for decades. It was front and center for voters in 2010 when out-of-state oil companies spent millions to derail AB 32.

News

Rod Wright resigns Senate seat

Sen. Rod Wright, D-Inglewood, at a sentencing hearing last week in Los Angeles. (Photo: Associated Press)

State Sen. Rod Wright, who began his state political career nearly two decades ago and rose to chair the powerful Senate committee that targets alcohol and gambling, resigned from the Senate Monday effective Sept. 22, just days after he was sentenced for voter fraud and perjury.

News

Camp 4: Tribal land plan stirs intense dispute

A view of the 1,400-acre Camp 4 parcel in Santa Barbara County. (Photo: Bill Macfayden, Noozhawk)

More than four years after obtaining a broad swath of undeveloped land in rural Santa Barbara County, a local Indian tribe has little to show for it. Development of the property has been stalled by an ongoing and rapidly escalating conflict between tribal authorities, county supervisors and local residents, and the dispute is spilling over into the realms of state and federal agencies.

News

Proposed initiative targets ‘dark money’

The state’s elections officer on Tuesday cleared the way for the measure’s backers, led by organized labor, to circulate petitions for signatures of registered voters. The proposal needs the signatures of 504,760 voters to qualify for the November ballot. The deadline to submit the signatures to election officials is July 10

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