Posts Tagged: oversight

News

Stem cell agency seeks to weaken conflict-of-interest rules

Two of the members of the CIRM governing board, Chair Jon Thomas and Vice Chair Art Torres, during an earlier meeting.(Photo: CIRM)

Directors of the $12 billion California stem cell agency have moved to weaken conflict of interest provisions affecting its governing board — eliminating “leave-the-room” requirements that are used by most private nonprofits to assure the integrity of their operations.

Opinion

Robust economy and climate goals can go hand in hand

An aerial, panoramic view of downtown Los Angeles. (Photo: Sai Chan, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: We do not have to sacrifice our prosperity to achieve California’s climate goals. Quite the opposite is true. To put California on an equitable and prosperous path to a carbon neutral economy, Gov. Gavin Newsom is proposing a $750 million Community Economic Resilience Fund.

News

Newsom seeks higher fees on pesticides

Man in a hazmat suit sanitizing an apartment room with chemicals. (Photo: Ljupco Smokovski, via Shutterstock)

The cost of killing bugs in California will start to rise if lawmakers adopt Gov. Gavin Newsom’s plan to reduce toxic pesticide use by gradually increasing fees, a measure that could affect everyone from crop dusters to home gardeners. The fee hike, phased in over four years, is included in the governor’s budget proposal.

News

Those linked to stem cell board received more than $2.1 billion

A medical researcher examines cancer stem cells. (Photo: luchschenF, via Shutterstock)

Over the last 15 years, California’s stem cell agency has spent $2.7 billion on research on everything from cancer to arthritis.  The vast majority of the money has gone to enterprises that have ties to members of the agency’s governing board. Eight out of every ten dollars that agency has handed out have been collected by 25 institutions such as Stanford University, multiple campuses of the University of California and scientific research organizations. Their combined total exceeds $2.1 billion.

Opinion

Oversight urged for 340B drug discount program

A woman shops for medications in a pharmacy. (Photo: Tyler Olson, via Shutterstock

OPINION: Mark Twain once proclaimed, “The government of my country snubs honest simplicity, but fondles artistic villainy, and I think I might have developed into a very capable pickpocket if I had remained in the public service a year or two.” These humorous words may elicit a smile, but clearly ring true more than a century later, and most certainly apply to the 340B drug discount program.

Letters

Letter to the Editor: Transparency

Pharmacy transparency is one of the most vital components of healthcare in this country – sadly, California is severely lagging in this transparency department. In July, the California Senate Health Committee heard Assembly Bill 315 (AB 315) – it passed unanimously with support from both sides of the aisle. 

News

Doctors win in dispute with nurses

A physician and a nurse tend to a patient. (Photo: Tyloer Olson, Shutterstock)

Here’s the diagnosis: It was the doctors versus the nurses, and the doctors won – for now. An effort to allow nurse practitioners limited authority to treat patients without the supervision of a doctor was blocked in the Assembly amid opposition from physicians, who said the plan would hinder high-quality medical care.

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

Diving into groundwater — what’s left of it

An old wind-driven pump that tapped groundwater on a California ranch. Photo: Steven Frame)

As the warm temperatures melt California’s meager snowpack, turning rivers into streams and streams into mere trickles, communities and farmers across the state will be increasingly turning to groundwater to meet customer demand and to keep crops and livestock alive. But there’s a problem: Many will be drawing from aquifers already depleted and long under stress as groundwater levels in many basins across the state are reportedly at historic lows.

News

Schools grab millions of dollars from poorest students’ food funds

California school districts are illegally dipping into student meal funds, misappropriating millions of dollars intended to feed the state’s poorest children, according to a new report by the Senate Office of Oversight and Outcomes.

 

The California Department of Education recently ordered eight districts to repay nearly $170 million to their student meal programs. But

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