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Jury: Mexican man not guilty in San Francisco pier killing -- A jury on Thursday found a Mexican man not guilty of murder in the killing of a woman on a San Francisco pier that touched off a national immigration debate two years ago. Jose Ines Garcia Zarate had been deported five times and was wanted for a sixth deportation when Kate Steinle was fatally shot in the back while walking with her father on the pier. Associated Press -- 11/30/17

Exclusive: Steinle family speaks: ‘Justice was rendered, but it was not served’ -- As they awaited the verdict in the trial of Kate Steinle’s accused killer, her parents and brother had one overriding wish. It had nothing to do with the severity of the defendant’s conviction. John Diaz in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 11/30/17

'This will mean more traffic': Southern California transportation officials rail against the GOP tax bill -- The Republican-sponsored tax legislation moving through Congress has sparked alarm among Southern California transportation officials, who say changes to several lesser-known tax deductions could slow the renovation of Los Angeles International Airport and L.A. County’s ambitious plan to build more than a dozen new rail lines over the next four decades. Laura J. Nelson in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 11/30/17

Key senator says tax bill likely to keep property tax deduction — a partial win, but still a big loss for Californians -- But the bill would still axe the current deduction for state and local income or sales taxes. That is a bigger loss for California, which has the highest top state income tax rate in the nation, but ranks in the bottom third by one measure for property taxes. Efforts to restore all state and local tax deductions to the legislation in the House and Senate have gone nowhere. Jim Puzzanghera and David Lauter in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 11/30/17

Hiltzik: Sen. Rubio tells a secret: After giving a tax cut to the rich, GOP will cut Social Security and Medicare -- Advocates for seniors and the middle class have been warning for weeks that the Republican drive to cut taxes for the wealthy is the prelude to a larger attack on Social Security and Medicare. Michael Hiltzik in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 11/30/17

Regulators: Utility shareholders to pay $379M in fire costs -- The California Public Utilities Commission has voted to have San Diego utility shareholders, not ratepayers pay $379 million in costs from three 2007 deadly blazes ignited by power lines. Regulators on Thursday voted unanimously to uphold an August decision by two administrative law judges who concluded that San Diego Gas & Electric did not act reasonably in managing its equipment and thus could not pass along costs to ratepayers. Associated Press Rob Nikolewski in the San Diego Union-Tribune$ -- 11/30/17

For California attorney general, suing Trump again and again is a team sport -- For a man who has alternatively been called the face, the leader, and the speartip of the progressive “resistance” to the Trump administration, Xavier Becerra seems comfortable working outside the spotlight. Ben Christopher Calmatters.org -- 11/30/17

Amazon workers sue, claiming denied overtime pay, rest breaks -- Workers at Amazon.com’s California distribution centers, including the recently opened Sacramento fulfillment center at Metro Air Park, have filed a class-action complaint that contends they have been denied rest breaks, overtime pay and appropriate payment of wages. Mark Glover in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 11/30/17

Dianne Feinstein isn’t letting up on probe into Trump-Russia investigation -- As revelations over alleged sexual misconduct by powerful men dominate legislative discussions in Sacramento and Washington, Sen. Dianne Feinstein isn’t letting up on another investigative bombshell – the congressional probe into Russian meddling in last year’s presidential election. Angela Hart in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 11/30/17

Foes of California gas tax increase launch television ads seeking repeal initiative -- The ads have started running on broadcast and cable television stations in the San Diego area and on YouTube. They are part of a $400,000 first-week launch for a drive to collect more than 587,000 signatures to qualify a measure for the November 2018 ballot that would repeal the increase in gas taxes and vehicle fees approved by the Legislature in April. Patrick McGreevy in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 11/30/17

California GOPers Ed Royce and Mimi Walters more vulnerable, according to one election handicapper -- Analysts for Larry J. Sabato’s Crystal Ball at the University of Virginia Center for Politics moved the 39th Congressional District held by Rep. Ed Royce (R-Fullerton) and the 45th District held by Rep. Mimi Walters (R-Irvine) from the “likely Republican” category to the “leans Republican” category, signaling they think Democrats have a better chance of winning them. Sarah D. Wire in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 11/30/17

House Democrats Target Most California Republican Districts -- The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has indicated the party will actively compete in 10 of the 14 California districts currently held by Republicans. In 2016, the DCCC listed four Republican-held districts as battlegrounds. Ben Bradford Capital Public Radio -- 11/30/17

Shared electric vehicles, charging stations on way to low-income communities in the Bay Area -- Car-sharing companies like Zipcar, Maven, Getaround and Gig have peppered Bay Area communities with on-demand vehicles for short-term rentals, but many of those companies — and their vehicles — are in still in short supply in low-income neighborhoods. Erin Baldassari in the San Jose Mercury$ -- 11/30/17

Tom Steyer is leading a campaign to impeach Trump. Why does that annoy so many Democrats? -- From its very founding, California has been a land of reinvention. The creed is practically written in the state Constitution: If you don't like who you are, or your place in life, start over. Mark Z. Barabak in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 11/30/17

Sessions hints at crackdown on recreational pot, affecting California, other states -- Attorney General Jeff Sessions hinted Wednesday that the Justice Department may take a tougher stance on recreational marijuana in the near future, a change in policy that would have a significant impact on the five states plus the District of Columbia that already allow the drug to be used for more than medicinal purposes. Kate Irby and Emily Cadei McClatchyDC -- 11/30/17

White House readies plan to replace Tillerson with Pompeo at State, install Cotton at CIA -- The White House has readied a plan to oust embattled Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and replace him with CIA Director Mike Pompeo, who has become one of the most personally loyal and politically savvy members of President Trump's national security team, two administration officials confirmed Thursday. Philip Rucker, Ashley Parker and Anne Gearan in the Washington Post$ -- 11/30/17

McManus: Mike Pompeo would be a more effective secretary of State than Rex Tillerson. That may not be a good thing -- It should come as no surprise that President Trump is thinking about replacing Rex Tillerson as secretary of State—or that CIA director Mike Pompeo is the leading candidate. Tillerson’s early exit has been talked about openly for months, Pompeo’s rise as a likely successor for several weeks. Doyle McManus in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 11/30/17

Walmart Pulls T-Shirts That Hint At Lynching Journalists -- Walmart has removed a controversial T-shirt with a simple message — "Rope. Tree. Journalist. SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED" — from its website, after the Radio Television Digital News Association sent the largest retailer in the U.S. a note flagging the shirt's message. Bill Chapell NPR -- 11/30/17

Fox: Is it About Sexual Harassment or About Getting a “Vote?” -- Could Senator Tony Mendoza’s situation lead to California’s Roy Moore moment when politics and the need for legislative votes overshadow the moral concerns dealing with sexual harassment? Let’s hope not. Joel Fox Fox & Hounds -- 11/30/17


California Policy & Politics This Morning  

California Assembly setting up confidential hotline for sexual harassment complaints -- As advocates and some lawmakers urge the California Legislature to overhaul its sexual harassment policies, the Assembly may soon establish a confidential hotline for reporting misconduct and begin tracking complaints. Alexei Koseff in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 11/30/17

Why sexual predators endure in the political world -- The political world — from Washington to Sacramento — is wired to protect its own, conducting ethics investigations in private and shelling out tax dollars to make harassment complaints go away. It rides in its own private elevator. Joe Garofoli in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 11/30/17

California Law Doesn’t Require Employers to Keep Track of Sexual Harassment Complaints -- At Tuesday’s California Assembly hearing on sexual harassment prevention, chief administrator Debra Gravert stunned observers when she was asked how many victim complaints have come in during her three-and-a-half years on the job. “We do not track complaints. We only track investigations,” she responded. Ben Adler Capital Public Radio -- 11/30/17

Skelton: It's time to unmask abusers in the Legislature and hit them where it hurts — their pocketbooks and careers -- How can powerful men be stopped from sexually harassing vulnerable young women? One way: Make the men vulnerable by making them pay. George Skelton in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 11/30/17

Pelosi's daughter: California lawmakers enable harassment -- While U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi faced criticism for not being more strident in responding to sexual harassment allegations, back in her home state of California her daughter is throwing verbal hand grenades, alleging state lawmakers are protecting rapists at the Capitol. Kathleen Ronayne Associated Press -- 11/30/17

Gov. Brown tells environmentalists in San Francisco to ‘live lean and lightly’ -- Technology alone isn’t going to be enough to save the world from the very real dangers of climate change, Gov. Jerry Brown told an audience of environmentalists in San Francisco on Wednesday night. John Wildermuth in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 11/30/17

California’s emissions dip—but climate policies get less credit than the weather -- As Gov. Jerry Brown was making his way through Europe last month, striking an evangelical tone about the global peril represented by climate change, California’s Air Resources Board released good news about emissions reported by companies covered under the state’s cap-and-trade system. Julie Cart Calmatters.org -- 11/30/17

Walters: UC’s Napolitano gets scolded, but keeps her job -- Let’s say you are the CEO of a Fortune 500 company that’s under scrutiny by the Securities and Exchange Commission for accounting irregularities. Dan Walters Calmatters.org -- 11/30/17

LA Weekly staff is slashed as Semanal Media finishes buying the publication -- LA Weekly's staff was gutted Wednesday as Voice Media Group completed its sale of the alternative newsweekly to a newly created company, Semanal Media. Nine of the 13 members of the editorial staff lost their jobs, including all the top editors and all but one of the staff writers. Lauren Raab in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 11/30/17

In San Francisco, Russian ambassador to US speaks of cooperation -- In remarks alternately restrained and vividly frank, Anatoly Antonov, the new Russian ambassador to the United States, told a San Francisco crowd Wednesday that the two countries must put the past behind them and learn to at least work together again, if not quite embrace friendship, so that “the whole world can sleep well.” Erin Allday in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 11/30/17

San Francisco set to become first US city to price all metered parking based on demand -- Under the proposal, each of the city’s 30,200 meters would be subject to hourly rates that vary depending on demand. The charges would fluctuate block by block and by time of day. Michael Cabanatuan in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 11/30/17

Sacramento eyes new bike, pedestrian paths -- Sacramento residents may see new and wider pedestrian and bicycle paths on local streets over the next few years, courtesy of a major infusion of state funding intended to improve safety and air quality, and encourage people to leave their cars in the garage. Rin Carbin Capitol Weekly -- 11/30/17

Economy, Employers, Jobs, Unions, Pensions  

2018’s new laws: California businesses brace for changes -- A slew of new laws that address unpaid parental leave, new hiring restrictions and other workplace issues will have an impact on California businesses in the coming year. Kevin Smith in the Riverside Press Enterprise$ -- 11/30/17


GOP bill letting out-of-staters pack hidden guns in California clears hurdle -- The first congressional action on guns since a rash of recent mass shootings had a distinctly pro-firearms flavor Wednesday, as a House committee approved a bill to allow nearly anyone with a permit to carry concealed weapons across state lines — even into states such as California that tightly restrict them. Carolyn Lochhead in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 11/30/17

Feinstein’s bump stocks ban moves back into the spotlight -- A week ahead of a long awaited Senate hearing on bump stocks, the district attorney from Las Vegas issued a powerful call to ban the firearm accessory, which enabled a gunman to kill 58 people in just minutes at an Oct. 1 concert along the city’s famed Strip. The renewed spotlight on the issue provides some much needed momentum for California Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s legislation to ban the device, which has languished in the Senate as Washington’s attention drifted on to other matters. Emily Cadei McClatchyDC -- 11/30/17


San Francisco Chinatown tenants protest landlord they accuse of trying to push them out -- More than 100 Chinatown tenants took to the streets Wednesday to protest what they characterize as the latest attempt by real estate speculators to drive out low-income Chinese immigrants and replace them with more affluent renters willing to pay over $1,100 for an 80-square-foot room with no bathroom or kitchen, roughly double what existing residents pay. J.K. Dineen in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 11/30/17


California regulators to decide who pays SoCal wildfire costs -- California regulators on Thursday may finally decide whether an electric utility sued over wildfire damage can pass those costs on to its customers. But the long-running and closely watched case — which took on new relevance after October’s deadly Wine Country fires — may not set much of a precedent. David R. Baker in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 11/30/17


Hundreds of UC Berkeley students say GOP tax bill will jeopardize their education -- Hundreds of UC Berkeley graduate students gathered at Sproul Plaza on Wednesday to loudly protest a piece of the Congressional Republican tax bill that they say would push many of them into higher tax brackets and jeopardize their education. Nanette Asimov in the San Francisco Chronicle$ Sam Harnett KQED -- 11/30/17

Graduate students stage walkout at UCI, USC and across country over GOP tax plan -- Graduate students and their supporters walked out of their classrooms and research labs at campuses in Southern California and across the nation Wednesday to protest a GOP plan that would classify their tuition waivers as taxable income. Roxana Kopetman in the San Bernardino Sun$ -- 11/30/17

California sues for-profit Ashford University over 'false promises' -- California's attorney general on Wednesday sued San Diego-based Ashford University and its parent company, Bridgepoint Education, alleging that they made false promises to entice students and engaged in unlawful practices to collect overdue debt. Lori Weisberg in the San Diego Union-Tribune$ -- 11/30/17

Teaching LGBT history complicated by historical figures who didn't 'out' themselves -- By next fall, millions of K-8 students in California schools may be learning from history textbooks that astronaut Sally Ride was a lesbian, Walt Whitman was gay, and a Gold Rush era stagecoach driver named Charley Parkhurst was born a woman, but lived as a man. Theresa Harrington EdSource -- 11/30/17


Sacramento is one step closer to having recreational pot sales on Jan. 1 -- The council voted 9-0 to allow medical marijuana dispensaries to apply for permits to sell marijuana commercially to adults 21 and older. The ordinance also allows for a new type of business – delivery dispensaries, which will be able to store cannabis and bring it to customers but will not have storefronts. Brad Branan in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 11/30/17

Immigration / Border 

Rialto landscaper, a U.S. citizen, to get $20,000 after ICE agents arrested, detained him -- Sergio Carrillo was shopping at The Home Depot in Rialto when immigration officials arrested him outside the store and held him for about three days in July 2016. There was one problem, though. Carrillo, who lives in Rialto, has been a U.S. citizen since 1994. Alejandra Molina in the Riverside Press Enterprise$ -- 11/30/17

Young DACA Immigrants Grapple With What’s Next as Hope of Federal Fix Dwindles -- As Congress begins wrapping up its work for the year and hope fades for action to resolve the status of young unauthorized immigrants, the possibility is dawning for many of them that they could face deportation. Leslie Berestein Rojas KQED -- 11/30/17


Risk of Shark Attacks in California Has Plummeted, Researchers Say -- If you fear shark attacks, you’re not alone. Even though accidents involving toasters kill more people each year, there’s something unnerving about the thought of being in the water with a predator. Danielle Venton KQED -- 11/30/17

Also . . . 

Commander says he's been banished to 'broom closet' for daring to run for San Diego County sheriff -- Dave Myers, a commander who is campaigning for the top post in the Sheriff’s Department, said he has been unceremoniously transferred to a new assignment in a “broom closet” and stripped of his usual duties in retaliation for running against incumbent Sheriff Bill Gore. Joshua Stewart in the San Diego Union-Tribune$ -- 11/30/17

POTUS 45  

Trump Shares Inflammatory Anti-Muslim Videos, and Britain’s Leader Condemns Them -- President Trump touched off another racially charged furor on Wednesday by sharing videos from a fringe British ultranationalist group purportedly showing Muslims committing acts of violence, a move that was swiftly condemned by Britain’s prime minister as well as politicians across the spectrum. Peter Baker and Eileen Sullivan in the New York Times$ Louis Nelson Politico -- 11/30/17

Denounced as racist but retweeted by Trump: What is Britain First? -- The tiny but virulent anti-Muslim group Britain First was virtually unknown in the United States until Wednesday, when President Trump retweeted a trio of inflammatory videos posted by one of its leaders. Laura King in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 11/30/17

Four Pinocchios: President Trump says the tax bill will ‘cost me a fortune.’ That’s false -- There have been many times when we have thrown patently ridiculous claims made by the president into our database of false and misleading claims, only to decide later that we need to do a full fact check because the president keeps repeating the falsehood. Glenn Kessler in the Washington Post$ -- 11/30/17


It Started as a Tax Cut. Now It Could Change American Life -- The result is a behemoth piece of legislation that could widen American economic inequality while diminishing the power of local communities to marshal relief for vulnerable people — especially in high-tax states like California and New York, which, not coincidentally, tend to vote Democratic. All of this is taking shape at such extraordinary velocity, absent the usual analyses and hearings, that even the most savvy Washington lobbyist cannot be fully certain of the implications. Peter S. Goodman and Patricia Cohen in the New York Times$ -- 11/30/17


-- Wednesday Updates 

House committee set to pass bill to dramatically ease concealed gun laws -- In the first congressional action on guns since the nation’s worst ever mass shooting in Las Vegas last month, the House Judiciary Committee was prepared to approve legislation Wednesday that would allow nearly anyone to carry concealed weapons across state lines, even into states such as California that tightly restrict weapons concealment. Carolyn Lochhead in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 11/29/17

How a U.S. citizen was mistakenly targeted for deportation. He’s not alone -- The arrest last year was the start of a perplexing and frightening ordeal for Carrillo, who said in an interview with The Times that immigration officials scoffed at his repeated claims of citizenship and instead opened a case against him in immigration court to have him deported. It would take four days for government officials to concede their mistake and release Carrillo. Joel Rubin and Paige St. John in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 11/29/17

California regulators to decide who pays SoCal wildfire costs -- California regulators on Thursday may finally decide whether an electric utility sued over wildfire damage can pass those costs on to its customers. But the long-running and closely watched case — which took on new relevance after October’s deadly Wine Country fires — may not set as much of a precedent as previously expected. David R. Baker in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 11/29/17

What happens if Congress doesn't fund the health insurance used by almost 2 million kids and pregnant women in California? -- Unless Congress comes to an agreement fast, federal funding for a program that provides health insurance to 2 million California children and pregnant women will run out around the end of the year. After that, California could be on the hook for hundreds of millions of dollars because the state is required to offer the insurance even if the federal funds don't show up. Sarah D. Wire in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 11/29/17

Apple rushes out software update to fix major MacOS security bug -- In less than 24 hours after the discovery of a major security bug in its new Mac operating system, Apple released a software update Wednesday morning to fix the bug. Seung Lee in the San Jose Mercury$ -- 11/29/17

De León’s uphill journey toward a U.S. Senate seat -- The contrast between Kevin de León and his political opponent Dianne Feinstein is stark. De León, the leader of the state Senate, grew up in the San Diego barrio of Logan Heights. His mother cleaned houses and did odd jobs to support the family. Chuck McFadden Capitol Weekly -- 11/29/17

Sacramento one big step closer to Major League Soccer -- Major League Soccer has formally named Sacramento one of four finalists for expansion, and a contingent representing the city’s bid will make a final pitch to a committee of league owners next week in New York. Ryan Lillis in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 11/29/17

Huge new Bay Area open space preserve opens to public Friday -- For the past 175 years, it’s been a Mexican land grant, a dairy farm, a hideout for members of Jesse James’ outlaw gang, an oil field, a redwood logging mill, a cattle ranch and a retreat for heirs to the Weyerhaeuser lumber and Folgers coffee fortunes. Paul Rogers in the San Jose Mercury$ -- 11/29/17

Southern California home prices rose 6.5% in October -- The sales increase comes despite a shortage of listings on the market and underscores the strong demand for housing as employers add jobs in the region. Andrew Khouri in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 11/29/17

Downtown L.A. developer could receive $103.3 million in public financial assistance -- A developer seeking to build 1,130 hotel rooms across from the Los Angeles Convention Center could receive $103.3 million in public financial assistance over 25 years under a proposal heading to the City Council. David Zahniser in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 11/29/17

Recreational Pot Dispensaries Will Be Allowed In Sacramento -- The Sacramento City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to allow businesses to sell recreational marijuana in the city. People will be able to apply for permits for recreational pot dispensaries, delivery services and distribution centers. Sally Schilling Capital Public Radio Brad Branan in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 11/29/17

San Francisco Approves Rules on Recreational Pot Stores -- San Francisco will not be ready for sales on New Year's Day but if the mayor signs the legislation quickly, the city could be ready in the first week of the new year. Janie Har Associated Press -- 11/29/17

Trump’s Muslim retweets draw fire from US and abroad -- President Donald Trump retweeted inflammatory videos from a fringe British political group Wednesday that purported to show violence being committed by Muslims, drawing quick condemnation from civil rights groups as well as a spokesman for British Prime Minister Theresa May. Trump retweeted videos from Jayda Fransen, deputy leader of Britain First, a far-right British group whose profile was elevated by Trump’s attention. Catherine Lucey and Jim Lawless Associated Press -- 11/29/17

Trump Wanted a Bigger Tax Cut for the Rich but Lost to Ivanka -- President Trump urged senators this month to repeal the Affordable Care Act’s requirement that most Americans have health insurance and use the proceeds to slash the top tax rate paid by the richest Americans, a suggestion that pitted him against his daughter and Republican senators intent on helping the middle class. Jim Tankersley in the New York Times$ -- 11/29/17