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THE NOONER for January 15, 2013

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Yesterday, LAO released its preliminary look at the governor's 2013-14 budget, and here are some of the points the nonpartisan fiscal analyst makes:

  • the state has reached a point where its underlying expenditures and revenues are roughly in balance
  • there are still considerable risks to revenue estimates given uncertainty surrounding federal fiscal policy and the volatility inherent in our revenue system
  • there are still considerable risks to revenue estimates given: (1) uncertainty at the federal level over “fiscal cliff” issues related to the debt limit and sequestration, and (2) normal volatility in our state revenue structure. In addition, despite the Governor’s commitment to paying down much of the wall of debt, the state would still have no sizable reserve at the end of 2016–17 under his multiyear plan and would not have begun addressing huge unfunded liabilities associated with the teachers’ retirement system and state retiree health benefits.
  • Given that the Legislature will not be required to deal with addressing huge budgetary shortfalls, we believe addressing the [policy] challenges posed by the Governor would be well worth the time and effort.

Assembly Budget's overviewing hearing on the governor's plan is scheduled for Thursday, January 31, while the Senate will be one week earlier on January 24.

NOTED: Senate summer recess is scheduled to begin on July 12, while the Assembly's summer recess is scheduled for July 3. Sounds like we need a conference committee . . .

THE OTHER CAPITAL: Debt debate: No easy way to avoid chaos [Carrie Budoff Brown and Jake Sherman @ Politico]

911 in the 510: Oakland not ready to declare state of emergency over crime wave [Matthew Artz @ OakTrib] - "City leaders spoke Monday after a brutally violent weekend that saw 15 people shot over the course of 60 hours, four of them fatally in separate incidents on Friday."

In may appear that Oakland needs a bit less subsidiarity, and that Jerry Brown is the person to address it.

GO AGS: UC Davis Ranks among Top Schools for Students Seeking 'Sugar Daddies' [Kimberly Rankin @ Fox40] (Seriously, a reporter bit on a press release from a dating website with 1/10th the traffic of AroundTheCapitol?)



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Jerry Brown Names New Board Of Education Executive Director
Torey Van Oot @
Gov. Jerry Brown has nominated the former advocate for a group that represents school administrators in the Capitol as executive director of the California State Board of Education.

Gov. Brown Gets Good Marks On Budget
Wyatt Buchanan @
Signaling an end to an era of budget gimmicks that masked California's deep financial problems, the state's independent fiscal analyst said Gov. Jerry Brown should be commended for offering a fiscally responsible spending plan for the year starting July 1.

Jerry Brown Sidesteps National Debate Over Gun Laws
David Siders @
In the month following the school shooting in Newtown, Conn., Democratic politicians throughout the country – from President Barack Obama to governors, state lawmakers and mayors – have heightened calls for stricter gun laws. Noticeably absent among those voices is Gov. Jerry Brown's. "No," Brown said last week, when asked at a news conference if he could address the subject.

Jim Brulte: Will Take CA GOP 6 Years To Rebound
Joe Garofoli @
The worst kept secret in California politics will be revealed Monday night in San Diego when former state senator Jim Brulte officially announces his campaign to be state party chair before a gathering of the San Diego GOP.

Gov. Jerry Brown Cheers New CSU Online Pilot Project
SAN JOSE -- Gov. Jerry Brown was on hand Tuesday as California State University officials announced a new partnership with the online education company Udacity to offer three basic-skills courses this semester at San Jose State. Brown has been an...

Jim Brulte Confirms Bid For California Republican Party Chair
David Siders @
Jim Brulte is making it official: The former Senate Republican leader said this afternoon that he is a candidate for chairman of the California Republican Party, a position he is widely expected to win.

Legislative Analyst, Counties Wary Of Governor's Plan To Fund Medi-cal Expansion | 89.3 Kpcc
Julie Small @
California Governor Jerry Brown is looking for ways to fund the state's expansion of Medi-Cal as part of the federal healthcare overhaul.

Budget Plan Ups The Gamble On Wealthiest Taxpayers
John Myers @
Gov. Jerry Brown has railed against the boom-and-bust nature of state government in recent years, but his new budget increases the importance of the root of that volatility: a reliance on the most wealthy.

Barbara Boxer Endorses Chuck Hagel; Schumer On Board
Wyatt Buchanan, Michael Collier, Richard Dunham, Bob Egelko, Joe Garofoli, Marisa Lagos, Carolyn Lochhead, Carla Marinucci, @
California Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer endorsed her former GOP colleague for Defense Secretary late Monday evening. Boxer had withheld support after President Obama nominated the Nebraskan last week, citing questions about his position on Israel, wom...

Jerry Brown's New Big Word -- Subsidiarity
Dan Walters @
Former Catholic seminarian Jerry Brown is prone to including obscure theological references in his political pronouncements, often embellishing them with Latin phrases. So last week, when presenting a new state budget proposal, he used the word "subsidiarity" to describe his intention to continue shifting responsibilities for policymaking from Sacramento to locally elected officials.

Public Health Will Be Main Fracking Consideration Says Conservation Department Nominee
Jeremy B. White @
Ensuring public safety will be the Department of Conservation's main imperative as it moves to regulate the disputed extraction process known as hydraulic fracturing, director Mark Nechodom said in a letter to Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg on Friday.

Third Medical Marijuana Measure Proposed For L.A. Ballot
Kate Linthicum @
In the May municipal election, Los Angeles voters could face not one but three ballot measures geared toward regulating medical marijuana.

San Joaquin Valley Floodplain Coaxed Back
Peter Fimrite @
There isn't much that looks revolutionary at Dos Rios Ranch, a low-lying, 1,603-acre stretch of land at the confluence of the Tuolumne and San Joaquin rivers where corn, wheat and almonds grow.

State Fiscal Analyst Says California Budget 'Roughly In Balance'
Kevin Yamamura @
Though the state still faces financial risks ahead, California's spending and revenues are "roughly in balance," the state's top fiscal analyst confirmed Monday in a new review of Gov. Jerry Brown's budget.

CalPERS' Investments Bounce Back
Dale Kasler @
Boosted by stocks and real estate, CalPERS' investments bounced back strongly last year. The big pension fund said Monday it earned a 13.3 percent profit on its portfolio in calendar 2012.

Analyst calls Brown's budget 'reasonable' but has some concerns
Chris Megerian @
The legislative analyst is a bit less optimistic on how fast California's finances are improving. He says the budget plan doesn't address growing costs for teacher pensions and retiree healthcare.

Laid-off Teachers Launch A Private Nonprofit School In Roseville
Diana Lambert @
A small group of enthusiastic unemployed teachers and a veteran administrator from one of the area's highest-performing schools have teamed up to start a private nonprofit school.

Entertainment executives, unions join to promote Greuel candidacy
Michael Finnegan and Maeve Reston @
The group, Working Californians, is mounting an independent TV ad campaign to promote the Los Angeles mayoral candidacy of City Controller Wendy Greuel, a former exec at the DreamWorks film studio.

SF pizza chain settles health care complaint
San Francisco officials say a restaurant chain has agreed to spend $320,000 to settle a complaint alleging that it collected a surcharge from customers for the city's health care law but did not use the money as it was intended.

Brown Nominates Sue Burr To The State Board She Directed
Susan Frey @
Gov. Jerry Brown nominated Sue Burr to the State Board of Education on Monday, two weeks after she officially retired from her dual role as the executive director of the State Board and as education policy adviser to the governor. Her new job starts Wednesday, when the Board meets to take up an agenda that she helped prepare.

Editorial: Gov. Brown can push universities in right direction
Gov. Jerry Brown plans to attend the University of California Board of Regents meeting this week and the California State University board of trustees meeting next week. His re-engagement with higher education, key to prosperity and quality of life in California, is a good thing.

California legislative analyst commends Gov. Jerry Brown's fiscally disciplined budget
Steven Harmon @
Despite the good news, the analyst said the governor's plan will fall short of needed rainy day funds at the end of 2016-17 and fails to address 'huge unfunded liabilities' of the teachers' retirement system and state retiree health benefits.