,, Around The Capitol
Around The Capitol
Around The Capitol

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THE NOONER for July 14, 2011

SAVED BY THE BELL: Upon adjournment today, legislative recess begins.  The Legislature returns on August 15, the same day the Citizens Redistricting Commission is scheduled to adopt new district lines.   Speaking of, Paul's team has been spinning out maps of the visualizations like crazy, and he debated Tony Quinn on Which Way LA yesterday about whether the whole Commission has failed.

Before leaving, olive branches were extended...  The governor signed SB 48 (Leno), which requires the inclusion of contributions of gays and lesbians in social science curriculum, and the Senate began confirming the governor's appointments, which had been put on hold after the governor vetoed the first budget passed by Democrats.

TRIGGER READY: The Department of Finance reporting that revenues were $230 million below expectations at the June 30 year end.  However, the number was inflated by somebody forgetting to make a deposit of unclaimed property revenues, and so we're only $85 million below where we should be.  However, the clock is ticking on the ambitious $3 billion needed to avoid budget-cutting triggers on January 1.

SOME GUYS WILL STARVE: Carl's Jr. is celebrating its 70-year anniversary at the State Capitol today and doling out free grub from its mobile Star Diner.  Now word on whether the Maloofs will be handing out their $6,000 combo meal.  (BTW...time to update that "$1 billion net worth" in the ad.) 

DON'T MOVE MY COFFEE: The Bee's Bob Schallit writes that Temple Coffee, my 10th Street office, is considering a move to the CIM lofts on J Street between 8th and 9th.  The landlord of the current location, however, is crying foul because the CIM project received city subsudies and can thus offer lower rent.  All I can say is that extra block from the Capitol would suck...

LET THERE BE LIGHT: Not to be outdone by its little brother, the University of California Board of Regents are increasing fees and executive compensation today.  The governor stayed quiet on this one.

Speaking of, the Bee slaps CSU:  "Have they no sense of proportion? Have they no decency?"  Apparently, the same editorial will be run tomorrow for UC.  (Side note:  The CEO of McClatchy made $3.7 million last year, which, with this performance, is probably worthy of the same editorial.  That performance actually make the UC and CSU budget look stellar...)

TWEET OF THE DAY: @salladayCW: "White Lexus plate # S16r (state Senate retired), your lights are on in the 10th & L parking lot."

DEPT OF CORRECTIONS: Okay, really, I know "hefe" is spelled "jefe"...let's just say I was hooked on phonics yesterday.

On to the headlines...

Political Fallout From The Amazon Tax Referendum - Joel Fox @ foxandhoundsdaily.com
A potential split within the business community over Amazon.com's referendum on a new sales tax law could have larger repercussions for business entering an unpredictable election year. The referendum, should it qualify, would likely be on the June primary ballot, which will be the first, full-blown test for the top two primary system. The tax issue and the primary candidates make an unstable mixture. Amazon.com filed a referendum to overturn the newly signed law requiring that online sellers collect sales tax on products sold to Californians. Should the referendum qualify for the ballot, it will set up a business versus business campaign battle, with state retailers who must collect sales taxes versus out of state online sellers who do not collect sales taxes and their California affiliates. The split in the business community could affect candidate races during the 2012 primary election. The California Retailers Association supported the law requiring that taxes be paid on online sales, as they put it, to level the playing field. Sales taxes are added to the cost of their products making similar products purchased online that much less expensive. The sales tax could increase the total cost of an item up to 10% in some jurisdictions.

Repeal The Death Penalty - George Skelton @ latimes.com
Every execution costs taxpayers $308 million, a colossal waste.

Redistricting's Final, Controversial, Push - John Myers @ blogs.kqed.org
As California's bold experiment with independent redistricting enters the homestretch, it's clear that drawing political boundaries is neither simple nor without controversy.

Bid Filed To End Collective Bargaining For Public Employees - Paresh Dave @ blogs.sacbee.com
A group looking to abolish collective bargaining rights for all of California's public sector employees filed three proposed ballot initiatives this week that would hit the pocketbooks of state and local government workers.

State Treasurer Says Taxes On Rich High Enough - Brian Joseph @ totalbuzz.ocregister.com
Democrat Bill Lockyer, the state treasurer, echoed Republicans today when he said that California has to be concerned about raising taxes on the rich.

Redistricting Panel Still An Improvement - John Wildermuth @ foxandhoundsdaily.com
If you want some chuckles, watch the various pundits reel in horror from the news that the state's new citizens' redistricting commission won't be releasing a second draft set of maps for California's legislative and congressional districts.

State Board Of Education Tentatively OKs 'Parent-Trigger' Rules - Paresh Dave @ blogs.sacbee.com
The State Board of Education today gave tentative approval to rules outlining how parents may petition to dramatically restructure their children's low-performing schools.

"South California" Secession Effort Recedes - Martin Wisckol @ totalbuzz.ocregister.com
A Riverside County supervisor backed off of his call for 13 counties to secede from the state when fellow supervisors threw cold water on the idea Tuesday night.

Redistricting Commission Holds Off On Publishing Maps - Matt Drange @ californiawatch.org
While the commission continues to tinker with the state's 120 legislative, 53 congressional and four Board of Equalization districts, it is likely to be only the more urban areas that see significant changes from the first draft, said Commissioner Stanley Forbes, a longtime farmer and bookstore owner in Yolo County.

Janice Hahn Savors Victory As She Looks Forward To 2012 - Jean Merl @ latimes.com
The L.A. councilwoman defeated Craig Huey in Tuesday's election in the South Bay, but redistricting could change the makeup of her constituency before the 2012 election.

State Board Of Education Gets Tough With Sig - toped.svefoundation.org
SIG is a competitive federal program providing $3.5 billion in Title I grants over three years to improve the nation’s persistently low-achieving schools.

Regulations Approved For Schools' 'Parent Trigger' Law - Teresa Watanabe @ latimes.com
After months of controversy, the state Board of Education sets out a clear road map to allow parents unparalleled rights to force major changes at low-performing schools.

Green Jobs Flourish In Sacramento Area - sacbee.com
The green economy accounts for about one of every 22 jobs in the Sacramento area, according to a report by the Brookings Institution.

Order In The Court - Greg Lucas @ capitolweekly.net
California's $3.7 billion court system is another of this year's budget victims, grappling with its highest single-year reduction since the state began paying trial court costs 14 years ago. Overall, California's judicial branch -- the largest in the nation with nearly 1,700 judges -- must reduce costs by $350 million in the fiscal year that began July 1. And continue doing so each year thereafter.

Los Angeles Slows Down Football Stadium Deal - Hannah Karp @ online.wsj.com
Los Angeles officials have put the brakes on a plan to build a National Football League stadium in the city amid concerns over taxpayer dollars.

California's Adult Smoking Rate At A Record Low - Local @ mercurynews.com
California hits a milestone as the adult smoking rate drops to half of what it was in 1988, when voters passed the Tobacco Tax Initiative, which funds tobacco prevention programs throughout California.

Number Of Homeless Students In Sacramento County Schools Jumps 50%-plus - sacbee.com
In yet another stark measure of the region's difficult economy, Sacramento County schools have seen a marked increase in the number of students whose families do not have a stable home.

Candidates Line Up For Janice Hahn's L.A. Council Seat - Kate Linthicum @ latimesblogs.latimes.com
Even before Janice Hahn declared victory in Tuesday’s special election for a South Bay congressional seat, candidates eager to replace her on the Los Angeles City Council were making their intentions known. The crowded field includes Assemblyman Warren Furutani (D-Gardena), who won his current seat in a special election in 2008; LAPD officer Joe Buscaino; and former City Councilman Rudy Svorinich. Svorinich, who served on the council from 1993 to 2001 before being forced out because of term limits, now runs a lobbying firm.

Stripping Vernon Of Cityhood Making Headway - Mandy Honeychurch @ capitolweekly.net
Vernon, a southern California city with a tiny population, a history of corruption and a vast industrial base, is one step closer to losing its cityhood. But it’s not going without a fight: In the first quarter this year alone, it has spent more than $560,000 on lobbying. The second-quarter tally is likely to be even higher when the final reports are filed at the end of this month.

How Much Will California Fundraisers Bundle For Obama? - Chase Davis @ californiawatch.org
The next federal deadline for candidates to submit their campaign finance reports will be upon us at the end f this week, and in this quarterly ritual of political posturing, it seems President Barack Obama is flexing the biggest fundraising muscles by far.

E-mail feedback to scott@scottlay.com. It may take me a bit to get back to you, as my days belong to community colleges and this is a nightime project.