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THE NOONER for April 30, 2013

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Have I told you lately how much I adore Nooner subscribers? They pay for a server that is being upgraded to deal with the growing subscriber base, newspaper paywalls, Spotify, and my coffee habit that keeps me writing before the sun emerges from the horizon.

I also adore Nooner advertisers, so today's content -- including a huge announcement from me -- follows this special message:



Some of you who have known me awhile remember that I ran for the Davis City Council as a student in 1996. I have always longed for public service, while also knowing that timing is everything in politics. The first time I heard John Kennedy's "Ask not . . . " quote, I was sold. 

I love my job at the Community College League of California, where I have worked for 18 years and have served as CEO for 7 years. Nevertheless, I have always looked for opportunities to serve the broader community. 

Recently, many people have asked me whether I was interested in running in AD04, the seat being vacated by my friend Mariko Yamada. I initially blew it off as silly talk, thinking why I would want to give up the opportunity to offer you this daily rant, but then gave it more serious thought. Our state has so many challenges, and like any would-be candidate, I have lots of ideas about how to fix them (big ego).

It would be a challenge, though, particularly running against my good friend Dan Wolk and, possibly, other friends who are mulling runs. Further, I hate raising money. And, of course, like most state candidates, I'd only be doing it as a bridge to congress. That could be 12 long years waiting for John Garamendi to head back to the ranch.

However, timing is everything, and an open seat like this will be rare with the new term limits law. Carpe diem! Si se puede! E pluribus unum!

Thus, as an exclusive to my Nooner readers, I today declare my candidacy for the Davis Food CO-OP Board of Directors. For those of you who live in Davis and are members, or who know folks who are, please cast your ballot by May 24. 

THE REAL JOB I WANT: Supervisor's aide clocked in just 13 hours a week [Tony Saavedra and Kyle Keegan @ OCR] - "Supervisor Janet Nguyen's highest ranking aide collected $105,420 a year while spending an average of 13 hours a week at the county office – far fewer than the other 36 executive assistants working for the county's supervisors, public records show. Nguyen's deputy chief of staff, Tam "Nick" Lecong, showed up at the county hall an average of three days a week and spent only a few hours there on each of those days, according to an analysis of access cards for the county garage between February 2012 and February 2013. The card data, showing both entrances and exits, was obtained through the California Public Records Act."

RECHARGED: Yesterday was a great day in the Rhee-Johnson household, as the Sacramento Kings date with the executioner was postponed, and StudentsFirst received an $8 million gift card from the Wal-Mart family.

LA-LA LAND: Now that the Lakers season is done, attention turns to the other playoffs--the May 21 runoff election that few people care about. Three weeks from today and with record amounts being spent, the average Angeleno has no clue an election is approaching. If the last contested mayoral (between Villaraigosa and James Hahn in 2005) is used as a barometer, turnout will be around 34%, but I'd be willing to bet it is even lower.

As of today, the favorites (not my endorsements!) are as follows:

  • Mayor: Eric Garcetti
  • City Attorney: Mike Feuer
  • Controller: Dennis Zine
  • Council 1: Gil Cedillo
  • Council 9: Current Price
  • Council 13: John Choi

There are also runoffs in for one LAUSD seat and one LACCD seat, but I will hold back, since I don't comment on community college races.

ON THE FIELD: A's beat the Angels in 19 innings, the longest game in the franchises histories. Of course, nobody cares, as it's early in the season, the Warriors are about to bounce the Nuggets, and Jason Collins came out as the first openly gay professional athlete.



  • LAO (April 26): Month-to-Date Collections and Refunds: $13.038 billion. (98.0% of budgeted projection for the month)
  • Controller (April 26): $12.41 billion   


PIT on Track to End April Somewhere Around $4.5 Billion Above Year-to-Date Projections. Today's collections were consistent with expectations, and month-to-date collections now are over the $13 billion mark. Specifically, as of this afternoon, month-to-date collections total $13.04 billion, net of refunds (all funds). As of now, our best estimate is that the state will end April with PIT collections for the fiscal year to date, as of that time, somewhere around $4.5 billion ahead of the administration’s estimates. As day-to-day collection trends can vary, this figure is subject to change and could go down slightly if, for example, refund activity accelerates.



  • Capitol Weekly and UC Center present a conference on Online Gaming - May 7, 2013 in Sacramento. Register here.
  • California League of Bond Oversight Committees: Second Annual CaLBOC Statewide Conference - May 10, 2013 in Sacramento - Keynote speakers Bill Lockyer and Assemblymember Joan Buchanan - More info and registration
  • Common Cause FREE Screening & Panel Discussion - Bill Moyer's "The United States of ALEC" Crest Theatre May 1st RSVP
  • Join Mayor Christopher Cabaldon, Councilman Steve Hansen, Supervisor Phil Serna, the Rev. Faith Whitmore and Dr. Claire Pomeroy as they are honored as recipients of Four Freedoms Awards at the Sacramento Stonewall Democrats' 9th Annual Gala, Wednesday, May 15 at the Red Lion Hotel Woodlake Conference Center, Sacramento. Purchase tickets @


California Lawmakers OK More Cash To Process Business Filings
Jon Ortiz @
The state Assembly has sent a bill to Gov. Jerry Brown that would give $1.6 million from the current year's budget to Secretary of State Debra Bowen's office.

Union For Patient-care Workers At UC Hospitals To Take Strike Vote
Anna Gorman @
The union representing nearly 13,000 University of California patient care workers plans to take a strike vote beginning Tuesday. The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, or AFSCME 3299, will hold the strike vote through Thursday and announce results next week. The vote comes after nearly a year of negotiations between the workers and the University of California over staffing, pay and pension reforms. The contract expired in September.

California's Health Turf War Should Cause Fear
Dan Walters @
Senate Bills 491, 492 and 493 won approval of a Senate committee Monday and we should all be afraid – very afraid – because once again, state legislators are voting on "scope of practice."

Washington And Sacramento Must End Cold War On Education
Louis Freedberg @
Some high level diplomacy is called for to end the Cold War between Sacramento and Washington that has frozen out the state from benefiting from the major education initiatives of President Obama’s education reform agenda.

City Beat: Sacramento Budget: More Cops, But Only With Pension Help
Ryan Lillis @
The Sacramento city manager has proposed hiring dozens of new police officers - but only if the city's existing cops agree to pay into their pensions.

Sacramento City Manager: Pension Costs Causing Budget Shortfall
Bob Moffitt @
The budget has a $8.9 million shortfall. City Manager John Shirey says the City can balance the budget with a combination of position elimination and union concessions.

Health Care: Bills Would Expand Powers Of Optometrists, Pharmacists And Nurse Practitioners
The measures considered Monday, April 29, are the most far-reaching of several bills pending in the Legislature this year that pit different groups of health care professionals against each other in scope-of-practice fights.

Bill To Protect Dependent Adults In California From Excessive Fees Wins Unanimous Approval In The State Senate
Karen de Sa @
Legislation inspired by a disabled San Jose man whose court-appointed trustee and team of lawyers nearly gutted his estate with their high fees passed the Senate floor unanimously Monday and now heads to the Assembly.

California Officials Split On How To Divvy Up $500 Million In Clean-Energy Funds
Torey Van Oot @
The fight over Proposition 39 didn't end at the ballot box. Six months after voters overwhelmingly approved a change in the corporate tax code that's expected to net the state an additional $1 billion in revenue for five years, lawmakers are wrangling over how to spend an estimated $500 million a year the measure earmarks for energy efficiency projects.

Head Of Conservative Group Defeated In Election Following Remarks About Rape
David Siders @
Celeste Greig, the Republican activist who said this spring that rape rarely results in pregnancy, has lost her position atop the California Republican Assembly, organizers of the conservative group said.

Assembly Panel Backs Halt To Fracking
SACRAMENTO -- Plans to halt fracking in California advanced in the Legislature on Monday, when a key committee approved three measures that would prohibit the practice until the state can study it further.

Assembly Committee Passes Three Bills To Impose Fracking Moratorium
Timm Herdt @
Sending the strongest signal yet that state lawmakers plan to take strong action this year to regulate hydraulic fracturing, an Assembly panel Monday passed three bills that propose to halt the oil drilling practice for up to five years while more studies on its environmental safety are conducted.

Nevada Governor: Staffers Fired In Patient Busing Probe - Nevada Patient Busing - The Sacramento Bee
File-In this Sept. 25, 2011 file photo Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval speaks during a memorial service in Reno, Nev.

Budget Cuts Nix $90 Million In Federal College Aid
Philip Elliott @
Schools near military bases and tribal lands will face a $60 million shortfall between now and September and aid to college students will be cut by almost $90 million, according to the Education Department’s plan to carry out the automatic spending cuts mandated by Congress.

Candidates Debate Role Of Outside Spending In Elections
Kate Linthicum and Laura J. Nelson @
Garcetti criticizes the $3.5 million spent on Greuel's behalf by the union representing DWP workers.

Editorial: More cops on city streets, if union plays ball
The city of Sacramento's budget picture is a bit brighter. Yet even with the recovering economy and a big boost from a voter-approved sales tax, City Hall is certainly not out of the woods yet.

Lawmakers approve health insurance protections
Lawmakers have sent Gov. Jerry Brown a pair of consumer protection bills that prevent health insurance companies from discriminating and overcharging customers.

Felon's Contribution To L.A. Mayoral Candidate Wendy Greuel Draws Attention
Dakota Smith @
A week after criticizing rival Eric Garcetti for receiving campaign funds from a convicted felon, Los Angeles mayoral candidate Wendy Greuel said she has returned money given to her by a felon.

Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson: Too Early To Celebrate NBA Panel's Vote To Keep Kings From Moving To Seattle
Kelly Johnson @
Don’t dance yet was the message Monday evening from Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson and other leaders who have fought to keep this community’s pro basketball team.

Handful Of Lawmakers Wants To End 'Gut-and-Amend' Bills
Laurel Rosenhall @
A bipartisan handful of legislators is trying to stop the Sacramento tradition known as the "gut-and-amend" bill -- the last-minute, late-night law-making that has become the summertime norm in the Capitol.

Health Insurance Overhaul Bills Headed To Governor Brown
Pauline Bartolone @
Two California bills that would overhaul the health insurance market for individuals are on their way to the Governor’s desk today.

Former California First Lady Maria Shriver Returning To Nbc
David Siders @
Former first lady Maria Shriver is returning to NBC News as a special anchor, the network announced today.

Obama Says Health Care Law Is 'Working Fine'
Robert Pear @
At a news conference, the president also said most Americans would not be affected by changes taking effect next year.

New CalPERS Letters Detail Long-term Care Rate Hikes, Options
Jon Ortiz @
The California Public Employees' Retirement System today is mailing some 150,000 official notices to long-term care insurance policyholders that a rate hike is coming.