Aaron Read
Capitol Web Works
Olson Hagel
Capitol Weekly
CA Leg Analyst


Updating . .   

A dark side to the California dream: How the state Constitution makes affordable housing hard to build -- In 1950, Californians voted to put a provision in the state Constitution that makes it harder for poor people to find a place to live. Article 34, which remains in effect, requires voter approval before public housing is built in a community. Liam Dillon in the Los Angeles Times -- 2/3/19

You think Bay Area housing is expensive? Child care costs are rising, too -- Over the past four years, the median cost of childcare in the nine-county Bay Area increased 40 percent, according to research from Oakland’s Insight Center for Community Economic Development. In San Francisco and Marin counties, the median cost rose more than 50 percent. Karen D’Souza in the San Jose Mercury -- 2/3/19

PG&E renewable energy contracts tied up in bankruptcy battle -- As it begins the long process of reorganizing under bankruptcy protection, Pacific Gas and Electric Co. is locked in a related legal fight over renewable power contracts that involves some of the biggest names in the energy industry. J.D. Morris in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 2/3/19

Sacramento police change tracking of misconduct complaints after AG flags inconsistencies -- The Sacramento Police Department has changed the way it tracks complaints of misconduct against its officers, one of the first changes the department is making in response to state Attorney General Xavier Becerra’s sweeping report on the force’s training and policies released last week. Molly Sullivan in the Sacramento Bee -- 2/3/19

Thieves stole architectural gems from USC in a heist that remained hidden for years -- The thieves seemed to know exactly what they were looking for. Harriet Ryan and Matt Hamilton in the Los Angeles Times -- 2/3/19

Anti-Semitism is on the rise in America. The head of the Anti-Defamation League explains why -- When 11 people were killed in the deadliest anti-Semitic attack in modern U.S. history at Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life synagogue in October, many Americans saw it as a shocking one-of-a-kind moment of raw hate. For the Anti-Defamation League, it was part of a larger trend. Jaweed Kaleem in the Los Angeles Times -- 2/3/19

Myers: There's a chance that Trump has altered California politics for years to come, political watchers say -- Delaine Eastin, the former California schools chief and legislator whose longshot bid for governor fizzled last year, has been in enough elections to know the difference between a stormy campaign season and a fundamental shift in the political climate. John Myers in the Los Angeles Times -- 2/3/19

California craving more tax revenue from recreational cannabis sales -- California’s high cash expectations from recreational marijuana are going up in smoke as most people are opting to buy their weed on the cheaper, more available and tax-free black market. Phil Matier in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 2/3/19

Cars still hold No. 1 spot for getting around in San Francisco — and it’s getting worse -- Despite millions of dollars spent on new bike lanes and other transit improvements, people still favor cars when it comes to commuting in and around San Francisco, a new report by the city’s Municipal Transportation Agency concludes. Phil Matier in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 2/3/19

‘Complete Streets’ spreading in California -- The phrase means hundreds of planned street improvements will factor in all people using our streets and not just drivers, which has been the case since the Korean War. Roads may be reduced and lanes narrowed, parking spaces eliminated, bike lanes added and the walk from curb to curb shortened. Gary Richards in the San Jose Mercury -- 2/3/19


California Policy & Politics This Morning  

Camp Fire: When survival means shelter -- On paper, the official wildfire protocol for California communities is explicit: Evacuate. But the Camp Fire, the most deadly and destructive wildfire in state history, revealed that many lives were saved, instead, in spontaneous shelters – a desperate strategy that is triggering fresh debate over how to survive an inferno. Lisa M. Krieger in the San Jose Mercury -- 2/3/19

Walters: Could California pension system be underwater? -- Rolling up big paper profits on stocks and other capital investments during 2017 and most of 2018 was very easy, and the California Public Employees Retirement System, the nation’s largest pension trust fund, took full advantage of the opportunity. Dan Walters Calmatters -- 2/3/19

Black Lives Matter protest outside Sacramento jail in wake of Marshall Miles autopsy report -- Their group was small but their voices could be heard echoing down the street corridors. About 25 protesters gathered outside the Sacramento County Main Jail on Saturday afternoon, a day after the autopsy report was released for Marshall Miles, who died days after going unconscious in custody. Cassie Dickman in the Sacramento Bee -- 2/3/19

Powerful storm hits Southern California, flooding highways -- The second in a string of powerful storms battered California on Saturday, shutting key highways after water and mud rushed into lanes from bare hillsides in wildfire burn areas where thousands of residents were under evacuation orders. Christopher Weber Associated Press -- 2/3/19

Mudflows shut down PCH in Malibu and Highway 101 in Montecito as new storm lashes Southland -- A powerful winter storm that pounded Southern California on Saturday, triggering mudflows that shut down Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu and Highway 101 in Santa Barbara County, will ease into scattered showers for the next few days. Sarah Parvini, Ben Poston, Angel Jennings and Teresa Watanabe in the Los Angeles Times -- 2/3/19

New details emerge about Kevin Limbaugh, the man who killed Davis Officer Natalie Corona -- Kevin Limbaugh was a shy young man who never owned guns. Years later, his friends and family are left struggling to explain why he shot and killed Davis Police Officer Natalie Corona. Sam Stanton in the Sacramento Bee -- 2/3/19

Economy, Employers, Jobs, Unions, Pensions  

Land values are skyrocketing around Sacramento -- Home values have jumped sharply in the Sacramento region – but not as quickly as the value of the land underneath them. Phillip Reese in the Sacramento Bee -- 2/3/19


Dr. Michelle King, the first African American woman to lead L.A. Unified, dies at 57 -- Throughout a long career as a local educator, Michelle King exceeded expectations at every step but never had a chance to leave a defining mark at the peak of her career — as Los Angeles schools superintendent — because of illness that would later claim her life. Howard Blume in the Los Angeles Times -- 2/3/19


Big surge in Coho salmon population, but the endangered species still needs protection -- The winter rains have caused the biggest surge of coho salmon in a dozen years in the celebrated spawning grounds of western Marin County, one of California’s last great strongholds for the embattled pink fish. Peter Fimrite in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 2/3/19

POTUS 45  

Trump appoints Ronny Jackson chief medical adviser -- Jackson, the president's former physician and his nominee to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs before withdrawing after allegations of improper conduct surfaced, was also nominated for a promotion to a two-star admiral in the Navy on Friday. Christian Vasquez Politico -- 2/3/19

In the Pale of Winter, Trump’s Tan Remains a State Secret -- But in a town where not even the longtime operation of the federal government seems certain, Mr. Trump has adhered to one constant: a conspicuously sun-kissed glow, one that has shone like a stoplight against Washington’s graying backdrop. Katie Rogers in the New York Times -- 2/3/19


‘I am who I am’: Kamala Harris, daughter of Indian and Jamaican immigrants, defines herself simply as ‘American’ -- In early 2010, an Indian American couple hosted a fundraiser in their elegant Pacific Heights home for Kamala Harris, then a Democratic candidate for California attorney general. Kevin Sullivan in the Washington Post -- 2/3/19

Congress tunes out Trump’s border wall threats -- Lawmakers and aides from both parties are plowing ahead with negotiations this weekend, ignoring Trump’s growing public disgust for a closed-door process that is increasingly unlikely to deliver a border wall. Sarah Ferris and Heather Caygle Politico -- 2/3/19


-- Saturday Updates 

New storm shuts down Highway 101 in Montecito as Southland braces for floods and mud -- A powerful winter storm moved into Southern California on Saturday, with heavy rain shutting down Highway 101 in both directions in Santa Barbara County as residents throughout the region braced for potential floods and mudflows in areas made vulnerable by last year’s furious wildfires. Hannah Fry and James Queally in the Los Angeles Times -- 2/2/19

Ventura County search-and-rescue team member killed, 9 taken to hospital in crash on Interstate 5 near Gorman -- A Ventura County search-and-rescue team member was killed and nine others were transported to a hospital Saturday morning after a vehicle crash on a rain-slickened Interstate 5 near Pyramid Lake in northern Los Angeles County, authorities said. Sarah Parvini in the Los Angeles Times -- 2/2/19

With women in a supermajority, L.A. County supervisors are no longer the ‘little kings’ -- It’s a shift that has accompanied increasingly progressive stances on a host of issues, including housing policy and criminal justice reform, but especially on issues that specifically affect women. Matt Stiles in the Los Angeles Times -- 2/2/19

Newsom proposes some tax simplification, but at a price -- California still has not conformed to any part of the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, and that is causing extra work for taxpayers doing their 2018 returns. Kathleen Pender in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 2/2/19

This list helps minority students find a college with a solid graduation rate -- To give more guidance to families, Alliance has created a “Power 150” list of colleges most successful at helping students like Nevarez get to graduation. It has just begun making the list widely available. The list ranks colleges — from best to worst — based on the six-year graduation rate for black and Latino students. Howard Blume in the Los Angeles Times -- 2/2/19

Willie Brown: Kamala Harris learns the perils of presidential front-running -- Sen. Kamala Harris’ Rolls-Royce rollout of her presidential run quickly shot her to the front of the Democratic pack, and with it all the troubles that come with being seen as a front-runner. Willie Brown in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 2/2/19

For these BART engineers, it’s all about building a turnstile that stops cheats -- In a small laboratory tucked away in the second floor of BART’s Oakland headquarters, engineers are toiling at a project that has bedeviled the transit agency for years: a fare gate sturdy enough to stop cheaters. No idea is bad, it seems. Rachel Swan in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 2/2/19