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California Assembly passes bill to ditch ‘Redskins’ mascots -- A handful of California high schools would need to ditch their “Redskins” mascots under legislation that passed the state Assembly on Monday. Jeremy B. White in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/4/15

California Drought Killed 12 Million Forest Trees Since Last Year -- An estimated 12 million trees across California’s forestlands have died over the past year because of extreme drought conditions, according to an aerial survey conducted April 8-17 by the U.S. Forest Service. Susan Murphy KPBS -- 5/4/15

California Water-Saving Targets Are All Over the Map -- This week local water officials and consumers around California will get the final version of new emergency drought rules ordered by Governor Jerry Brown in early April. The statewide water restrictions go into effect on June 1. Craig Miller KQED -- 5/4/15

Healthcare for those in U.S. illegally could cost California $740 million a year -- Extending state-subsidized healthcare coverage to people in the country illegally could cost California as much as $740 million annually, according to a Senate fiscal analysis released Monday. Melanie Mason in the Los Angeles Times$ Tracy Seipel in the Oakland Tribune Pauline Bartolone Capital Public Radio -- 5/4/15

Surrounding hospitals wonder whether patients will return to King -- When the old King/Drew medical center was forced to close in 2007 after a series of treatment lapses, tens of thousands of South Los Angeles patients scrambled to find somewhere else to go. Soumya Karlamangla, Ryan Menezes in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/4/15

Tobacco tax initiative proposed for California -- Stepping up pressure on the California Legislature to raise the tobacco tax, a coalition of health groups said Monday it will begin circulating petitions to put an initiative on the November 2016 ballot to hike the levy on cigarettes. Patrick McGreevy in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/4/15

California Assembly votes to block e-cigarette sales to minors -- The state Assembly on Monday acted to plug a loophole in the law prohibiting the sale of electronic cigarettes to minors by extending the ban to include devices that don’t include nicotine cartridges. Patrick McGreevy in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/4/15

Fox: You Thought Only Tax Increases would be on the 2016 Ballot -- For months the assumption in Sacramento was that at least one and possibly more tax increase measures would find their way on the 2016 General Election ballot by initiative. The litany of possible tax increases just might have to move over to make room for a tax cut on the same ballot. Joel Fox Fox & Hounds -- 5/4/15

Gavin Newsom could be key to pot legalization initiative -- Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, a candidate for governor in 2018, recognizes his support for legalizing recreational marijuana could backfire on him personally. But as activists prepare a draft legalization initiative for next year’s ballot, it’s Newsom who now appears to have much of the political leverage. Christopher Cadelago in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/4/15

AP Source: Goldberg Died After Collapsing in Gym -- David Goldberg, the SurveyMonkey CEO who also was Facebook executive Sheryl Sandberg's husband, was exercising at a gym in a Mexican resort when he collapsed before he died Friday, a person close to the family says. Barbara Ortutay Associated Press -- 5/4/15

Officer charged with disability fraud after Ice Bucket Challenge video -- Prosecutors said Pasadena police Officer Jaime Robison, 39, was supposed to be on disability for a lower back injury when she participated in the Ice Bucket Challenge. In a video posted online in July 2014, Robison was shown picking up a five-gallon bucket containing ice water and pouring it over a fellow police officer, according to the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office. Veronica Rocha in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/4/15

Corinthian Colleges files for bankruptcy -- Corinthian Colleges Inc. formally filed for bankruptcy Monday, a week after closing its remaining two dozen campuses and leaving 16,000 students scrambling for alternatives. Chris Kirkham in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/4/15

Federal monitor keeps Oakland police in compliance on most reforms -- Despite a recent report that condemned the city's frequent mishandling of police discipline cases, the Police Department remains in good standing with its federal overseers. Mike Blasky in the Contra Costa Times$ -- 5/4/15

Consumer Watchdog attacks San Francisco Airbnb restrictions as 'unwarranted intrusion into users' privacy' -- Consumer Watchdog, one of the state's best known consumer advocacy groups, is raising a ruckus about proposed rules it says would violate privacy rights by requiring Airbnb and similar companies to report about users' rental activities. Patrick Hoge San Francisco Business Times -- 5/4/15

Dan Walker dies at 92; ex-Illinois governor worked to regain reputation -- In Illinois, Dan Walker was a star: a campaigner for civil rights, a reform-minded governor, a possible presidential candidate, a populist Democrat unafraid to stand up to the political machine of Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley. But by the time he returned to San Diego, where he had grown up, it was all different. Tony Perry in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/4/15

Giants reliever Sergio Romo honored at California Capitol -- The San Francisco Giants entered Monday with a losing record, but relief pitcher Sergio Romo won plaudits from California lawmakers for his service. Jeremy B. White in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/4/15

Carly Fiorina fails to register website, gets whacked -- Fiorina’s campaign apparently neglected to register the domain http://carlyfiorina.org/ -- but someone else did and that person is hammering the former Hewlett-Packard chief on the number of layoffs she oversaw during her tenure at the company. Lesley Clark McClatchy DC Sam Frizell TIME -- 5/4/15


California Policy & Politics This Morning   

Dozens of agencies seek to alter reports on how much water residents used -- Now, as the board prepares to finalize its conservation targets for each community, its staff is busy sifting through scores of inconsistencies in the way water agencies have reported that figure to the state. At stake is exactly how much water millions of Californians will be allowed to use this year. Phillip Reese in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/4/15

Edison alliances led to San Onofre deal -- Among the documents released this past week regarding closure of the San Onofre nuclear plant was an email showing executives with majority owner Southern California Edison cooperating with traditional adversaries with an eye toward “getting our money back.” Morgan Lee UT San Diego$ -- 5/4/15

'Tired of prayer vigils': California debates 20 bills aimed at police force -- As last week's protests in Baltimore renewed the national debate on the use of force by police, California lawmakers have been grappling with how to address the fractured relationship between law enforcement and minority communities. Melanie Mason in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/4/15

Walters: Power moves back and forth from capital as California reconfigures government -- Since becoming governor for the second time, Jerry Brown has preached the virtues of what he calls “subsidiarity” – reversing the concentration of governmental finances in Sacramento that began when he was governor the first time. Dan Walters in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/4/15

Skelton: Venture capitalist Tim Draper takes another swing at reform -- Maybe the third time will be the charm for Tim Draper. He already has swung twice and missed. George Skelton in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/4/15

Decker: Why don't more women run for office? -- No congressional seat is owned lock and stock by a family, particularly given public antipathy to those who hold office. But it was tempting to think that might be the case for the Capps family of Santa Barbara. Cathleen Decker in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/4/15

Candidates get early start for state Senate race -- It typically takes a high-profile race like those to replace termed-out President Barack Obama or retiring U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer to make headlines more than a year before the primary. But candidates in down-ticket races have begun staking out their territory as well. Martin Wisckol in the Orange County Register$ -- 5/4/15

City (Los Angeles) is paying heavily for LAFD bias suits -- The Los Angeles Fire Department has been hit with a steady stream of personnel lawsuits over the last decade, some of them extraordinarily expensive. David Zahniser in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/4/15

Tenants in building cited for housing violations settle for $2 million -- Tenants who lived in a Los Angeles apartment building that was repeatedly cited for health and housing violations have settled a negligence lawsuit with their property manager for more than $2 million. Laura J. Nelson in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/4/15

Economy, Employers, Jobs, Unions, Pensions    

Uber and Lyft face legal test to sharing economy -- Uber and Lyft drivers have raised a major legal challenge to a key component of the sharing economy, arguing that they should be labeled employees entitled to greater protections than independent contractors. Howard Mintz in the San Jose Mercury$ -- 5/4/15

California ‘automatic IRA’ study part of big trend -- A quest to help workers save for retirement begun by Senate President Pro Tempore Kevin de Leon, D-Los Angeles, seven years ago may finally have entered the home stretch of a long journey. Ed Mendel Calpensions.com -- 5/4/15

Sacramento streetcar plan up for vote this month -- Sacramento city leaders have talked for years about bringing streetcars back downtown. The trolleys, they say, would enliven the city and be an economic catalyst. This month, downtown voters get to decide. Tony Bizjak and Ryan Lillis in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/4/15

California tribes bulk up on amenities to attract casino customers -- The amenities also are designed to generate more profit from each customer’s visit and create new revenue streams that could shield tribes from threats to the long-established tribal-gaming monopoly in the state, threats that include the possible legalization of online gaming and increased competition from card rooms and racetracks in California. The item is in the Orange County Register$ -- 5/4/15


Dams & reservoirs: The 'dinosaurs' of CA water storage? -- The construction of dams and reservoirs has slowed dramatically in California over the past 40 years due to stronger environmental regulations, the lack of remaining suitable sites and growing momentum for more cost-effective methods of storing water. Chris Nichols UT San Diego$ -- 5/4/15

Drought prompts cities to step up water enforcement -- Facing a state mandate to reduce water use, North County water agencies are looking for ways to limit waste, boost enforcement and promote conservation — but they’re worried those efforts may not be enough. Edward Sifuentes UT San Diego$ -- 5/4/15

Innovation by one crane-testing unit shows the drought-driven challenges businesses face -- David Shultz had a 625,000-pound problem on his hands. Or, to be more precise, a 71,650-gallon problem. Lauren Williams in the Orange County Register$ -- 5/4/15


Bill inspired by student passes Senate -- Senate Bill 200 -- inspired by this newspaper's reports on an Orinda elementary school student improperly deemed to be living outside her district's boundaries -- would update state school residency laws to ensure live-in workers, such as nannies, caregivers, maids and gardeners whose children live with them could attend school in that district. Matthias Gafni in the Oakland Tribune -- 5/4/15

Budget surplus, Prop. 30 sunset lead tax reform talks -- California Forward, the nonpartisan governmental change agent based in Sacramento, is quietly pushing lawmakers as well as regional and local leaders into what might be the first steps toward restructuring the tax system. Tom Chorneau Cabinet Report -- 5/4/15

Sondheimer: LAUSD coaches work for less than minimum wage, panel hears -- After hearing an overview of the state of athletic programs in the Los Angeles Unified School District, audience members at a presentation to a Board of Education panel didn't know whether to laugh or cry. Eric Sondheimer in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/4/15

Google embeds engineers as professors -- Howard University freshman Alanna Walton knew something was different about the professor teaching her introduction to computer science course. Martha Mendoza Associated Press -- 5/4/15

Heald students must decide whether to stay the course or seek loan forgiveness -- Displaced Heald College students in Roseville are stressing over a difficult choice after their school abruptly closed a week ago. Loretta Kalb in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/4/15

Immigration / Border 

Illegal immigrants would get Medi-Cal under California bill -- The backbreaking work in California's chili pepper fields and cherry orchards wasn't so noticeable when farmworker Antolin Gonzalez was young. But the 49-year-old south Santa Clara County farmworker now suffers from dizziness, allergies from dust and pesticides, swollen feet and throbbing backaches -- even eyesight problems from prolonged exposure to ultraviolet light. Tracy Seipel in the Contra Costa Times$ -- 5/4/15


Stanford University wants to keep controversial dam -- Stanford University plans to keep a 19th century dam that environmental groups and water officials say is endangering local populations of steelhead trout and other species. Associated Press -- 5/4/15

Baldwin Hills-area quakes not linked to oil operations, experts say -- Despite concerns from some residents, scientists say two recent earthquakes centered in the Baldwin Hills area — including one Sunday morning — do not appear to be connected to drilling operations at nearby oil fields. Zahira Torres and Laura J. Nelson in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/4/15


Ben Carson, famed neurosurgeon, running for president -- Carson, who has never run for public office, is expected to be the only high-profile African-American to enter the GOP's presidential primary as he tries to parlay his success as an author and speaker into a competitive campaign against established politicians. Steve Peoples and Bill Barrow Associated Press -- 5/4/15

Carly Fiorina expected to announce run for president Monday -- Fiorina, 60, has pitched herself as an outsider who can bring a business mentality and global contacts to the White House -- and who is not afraid to attack the Democratic frontrunner, Hillary Rodham Clinton. Jenna Johnson in the Washington Post$ -- 5/4/15

Hollywood bundlers are losing the spotlight -- Power shifts to those who write giant checks, rather than collect many smaller ones. Todd S. Purdum Politico -- 5/4/15