California Policy and Politics This Morning

Bill would strip PUC's oversight of land lines, critics say -- A coalition led by AT&T Inc. and Verizon Communications Inc. is backing legislation that critics contend would strip the state Public Utilities Commission of its last vestige of regulatory power over basic land-line telephone service. Marc Lifsher in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 4/14/12

State releases list of top 500 income tax delinquents -- Halsey M. Minor, the CNet co-founder and high-tech business pioneer of the 1990s, tops the state of California's latest list of its 500 biggest income tax delinquents. Marc Lifsher in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 4/14/12

State revenues fell short $236 million in March -- The state Department of Finance confirmed this afternoon State Controller John Chiang’s earlier announcement that state revenues once again came in below projections for the month of March. BRIAN JOSEPH in the Orange County Register -- 4/14/12

Jerry Brown says lawmakers need to 'man up' and cut California's budget -- Gov. Jerry Brown urged the Legislature on Friday to "man up" and make spending cuts, acknowledging the state budget deficit is likely larger than he previously thought. David Siders in the Sacramento Bee Anthony York in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 4/14/12

California lawmakers face obstacles to limiting many city pensions -- As state lawmakers consider proposals to reduce pension costs in California, they face legal obstacles to restricting the retirement benefits enjoyed by many local officials, including some city council members, experts warned Friday. Patrick McGreevy LA Times PolitiCal$ -- 4/14/12

Advice from politicians who know: Nadia Lockyer's future is up to her -- John Burton was well on his way to becoming a political icon when he resigned from Congress in 1982 to battle an alcohol and cocaine addiction, but he won't deign to say Alameda County Supervisor Nadia Lockyer should follow his example and step down. Josh Richman in the Contra Costa Times -- 4/14/12

Tea Party aims to show spirit of '10 still rages -- They were dismissed as "Astroturf" political activists with funny hats and they had their revenge: The rise of America's rebellious Tea Party movement grabbed headlines and scores of congressional seats during the 2010 midterm elections. Carla Marinucci in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 4/14/12

Maxine Waters to tea party: Go to Hell -- Rep. Maxine Waters has four words for the tea party: Go straight to Hell. At a community summit on Saturday, the California Democrat, who has been increasingly critical of President Obama, as well, had tough words for the other side. Nia-Malika Henderson in the Washington Post -- 4/14/12

Reader owner bankrolls pro-life Democrat -- Jim Holman, the famously reclusive publisher who bankrolled three failed parental-notification initiatives for minors seeking an abortion in California, has surfaced in the race to replace Democratic Rep. Bob Filner. Christopher Cadelago UT San Diego -- 4/14/12

Oakland to consider term limits, repeal of ranked-choice voting -- Oakland City Council members will soon decide whether to give voters the opportunity to limit their terms in office and end ranked-choice voting for at least two top citywide posts. Matthew Artz in the Oakland Tribune -- 4/14/12

CalBuzz: How Geena Davis Hopes to Save Women’s Panel -- Oscar-winning actor Geena Davis was recently elected chair of the California Commission on the Status of Women. Susan Rose CalBuzz -- 4/14/12

   High-Speed Rail

Riggs: Are "Wimps" Blocking High Speed Rail? -- Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger once famously compared California legislators to "girly men" during a budget fight. Gov. Jerry Brown's labor supporters are now employing similar language, suggesting that opposition to the state's embattled high speed rail system is a matter of spinelessness. Kevin Riggs NBC LA Prop Zero -- 4/14/12

   Economy - Jobs

In California, Economic Gap of East vs. West -- For decades, California has been seen nationally and by its own residents as a state divided into north and south, urbane tree-huggers versus car-obsessed beach hoppers. But the more meaningful division, it turns out, may be between east and west. JENNIFER MEDINA in the New York Times$ -- 4/14/12

Kings arena deal crumbles as Maloofs back away from plan -- Sacramento's arena deal is dead. And the Kings' reign in the city is once again clouded by uncertainty. Dale Kasler, Ryan Lillis and Tony Bizjak in the Sacramento Bee -- 4/14/12

Silicon Valley smartwatch maker raises more than $2 million in just three days on Kickstarter -- A Mountain View entrepreneur's smartwatch, which works alongside a user's smartphone, has won $2 million worth of orders through an Internet-based funding venture that offers cash-starved companies a way to both test their ideas and raise funds. Alastair Sharp Reuters -- 4/14/12

Cargo traffic jumps at L.A., Long Beach ports -- Combined, the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach handle more than 1.1 million cargo containers in March, up 9.8% from a year earlier. Much of the strength comes from strong growth in imports. Ronald D. White in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 4/14/12

'Cash mobs' mobilize to boost small businesses — and to socialize -- Bringing together strangers, often through social media, the events aim to support locally owned merchants. The upshot: stores get a windfall, and 'mobsters' learn more about their city and meet new friends. Ricardo Lopez in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 4/14/12


CSU may pull cash grants to half its grad students -- California State University is withholding financial aid for about 20,000 needy graduate students - money that pays their tuition - pending a decision that could permanently end the cash grants, The Chronicle has learned. Nanette Asimov in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 4/14/12

Katehi outlines steps for UC Davis police, administration reforms -- UC Davis' embattled chancellor said Friday the university is "moving swiftly" to enact major reforms to campus police and administration operations following the release of a scathing report on last November's pepper-spraying of students by campus police. Darrell Smith in the Sacramento Bee -- 4/14/12

Saunders: Mind-numbing protests meet pepper spray -- You have to really work at it to get arrested at a University of California campus protest. University administrators look at protest as part of the education process - and they frequently issue memos stating how much they agree with left-wing causes. Debra J. Saunders in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 4/14/12

USC hopes slayings won't hurt foreign enrollment -- Officials are mourning the school's two slain students while trying to reassure families and hold its place as a top global draw. The university has more foreign students than any other U.S. college. Larry Gordon in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 4/14/12


California braces for a deadly stalker of citrus -- A graft of pomelo — a symbol of good fortune in many Asian cultures — was the likely source of the state's first documented case of huanglongbing, a citrus disease with no known cure that is spread by the Asian citrus psyllid. Rosanna Xia and Diana Marcum in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 4/14/12

Miles of California coastline to be preserved, opened to public -- A spectacular stretch of Northern California coastline that includes ocean-side bluffs, beaches, rolling hills and redwood groves will be permanently protected from development under a landmark deal approved this week by the state Coastal Commission. Tony Barboza in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 4/14/12

Birds and Blades: Are Condors and Wind Turbines Compatible? -- Wind is a growing industry in the Tehachapi Mountains in Southern California. Kern County welcomes new wind projects, and Google has gotten in on the action. But some environmentalists say that developers and officials are ignoring the elephant — or, in this case, the enormous bird — in the room. Molly Samuel KQED Climate Watch -- 4/14/12


Recent raid no damper on interest in Oakland's medical marijuana business -- Despite the recent federal crackdown on medical marijuana dispensaries and last week's raid on Oaksterdam University, it appears that the four groups approved last month to open dispensaries in Oakland still want to get into the medical marijuana business. Matt Artz and Eric Kuhi in the Oakland Tribune -- 4/14/12

Mayor Villaraigosa wants to bring General Services cops into LAPD -- Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is expected to propose merging two of the city's law enforcement agencies in a cost-cutting move that would also let him fulfill a campaign promise to expand the LAPD to 10,000 officers. Dakota Smith in the Los Angeles Daily News -- 4/14/12

Family of Peter Cukor Criticize Police Response -- Son says Berkeley police bear partial responsibility for his father's death. FRANCES DINKELSPIEL Bay Citizen -- 4/14/12

   POTUS 44

Secret Service scandal rocks Obama trip -- Up to a dozen Secret Service agents in Colombia for President Barack Obama’s trip there have been relieved of their duties amid allegations of misconduct. DONOVAN SLACK and JOSH GERSTEIN Politico -- 4/14/12

Obamas report earnings of $790K in 2011 tax returns; Romneys ask IRS for filing extension -- On the same day that President and Michelle Obama reported that they earned $790,000 in 2011 and paid just over 20 percent in federal taxes, Mitt Romney and his wife asked the Internal Revenue Service for an extension in filing their returns. David Nakamura and Tom Hamburger in the Washington Post -- 4/14/12


Treasury predicts all federal bailouts likely will turn profit -- The Obama administration expects to recoup all the bailout money spent on banking and insurance firms, auto companies, mortgage finance companies and struggling homeowners during and after the 2008 financial crisis -- and likely turn a profit. Jim Puzzanghera in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 4/14/12

Larger women's issues loom over Romney campaign -- When a Democratic strategist said stay-at-home mom Ann Romney shouldn't advise her husband about women's economic issues, it set off a debate that glossed over the candidate's obstacles to winning over moderate female voters. Maeve Reston in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 4/12/12

Mitt Romney requests extension for filing 2011 tax return -- The campaign released a copy of the extension request and an accompanying statement noting that “earlier this year, Gov. Romney released his 2010 tax return and an estimate of his 2011 income and taxes.” Tom Hamburger in the Washington Post -- 4/14/12

Mystery donor gives $10 million to Crossroads GPS group to run anti-Obama ads -- An anonymous donor gave $10 million late last year to run ads attacking President Obama and Democratic policies, escalating the money race that is defining the 2012 presidential campaign. And in the new, free-wheeling environment of independent political giving, the identity of this donor, like many others, is likely to remain a permanent mystery. T.W. Farnam in the Washington Post -- 4/14/12