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THE NOONER for August 20, 2014
A new Field Poll shows strong support for Proposition 45, the measure which would give the state insurance commissioner new powers to regulate health-plan rates.
Supporters say it will protect consumers from overzealous HMOs. Opponents say, among other things, that the measure could undermine the foundation of the Affordable Care Act in California.
Christopher Cadelego reports: “Nearly 70 percent of registered voters back Proposition 45, while 16 percent say they would oppose it and 15 percent remain undecided ahead of the Nov. 4 election. Support came from 75 percent of Democrats, 73 percent of independents and 58 percent of Republicans.
Meanwhile, a separate initiative mandating random drug testing of doctors and quadrupling the state’s $250,000 limit on medical malpractice awards was out ahead by a smaller majority. Proposition 46, which also would compel doctors to consult a state drug history database before issuing certain prescriptions, is supported by 58 percent, opposed by 30 percent and has 12 percent undecided.
Speaking of Obamacare, the Contra Costa Times reports on a new poll that shows support for the health-care law growing.
From our Can’t Believe This Wasn’t Already Illegal Files, state lawmakers passed a measure yesterday that would make it illegal to sterilize inmates in state prisons.
Sharon Bernstein reports: The measure passed the Senate floor with a unanimous vote of 33-0 and now goes to Democratic Governor Jerry Brown for his signature.
The bill was introduced earlier this year in the wake of allegations, first raised by the non-profit Center for Investigative Reporting, that the state failed to obtain informed consent in cases of women inmates who had their fallopian tubes tied.
An audit released in June showed that errors were made in obtaining informed consent from 39 women inmates out of 144 who had their tubes tied while incarcerated between 2005 and 2011.
Gov. Brown was in Lake Tahoe yesterday, musing about poetry and talking a bit about water, but not much else. Chris Megerian was on duty.
Brown said the state's ongoing drought helped prod lawmakers into action as well.
"A drought gets people's attention," he said.
The governor is seeking reelection this year, and he's often portrayed himself as a successful broker when it comes to negotiating with Democrats and Republicans in the Legislature. While he was unable to gain any Republican support for tax increases earlier in his term, he has locked down their support for the water bond and a rainy-day fund proposal.
David Siders shot this short video where the gov was caught waxing poetic, or at the very least coming up with new ways not to answer any questions.
And for all you lovers of verse, here’s a link to the poem Brown was talking about.
Capitol Weekly published its annual Top 100 list, after an unveiling at the Senator Hotel last night. Spoiler Alert: Anne Gust topped the list again. Find out if you’re on it here.
Cal Newsroom came up with its own list of the 100 most overlooked politicos.
Bonds away – Joan Buchanan confirmed what the rest of the political world already knew – that there will be no school bond on the November ballot. Ben Adler is there to shovel dirt on the grave.
The school bond didn’t get any “no” votes as it moved through the California Legislature. Union, builder, school and business groups all supported it.
But Gov. Jerry Brown did not. He didn’t want the state to add any more debt – especially since he was already negotiating a water bond.
Even a late push from supporters to cut the size of the school bond in half and make its focus more urban wasn’t enough to get the governor on board.
"It's dead," the governor's office said Tuesday morning.
Elsewhere Around the Capitol
Meet the Press – State librarian nominee, and former San Francisco Chronicle Bureau Chief Greg Lucas, comes before the Senate Rules Committee for his confirmation hearing this afternoon.
RIP Grantland Johnson. Read the SacBee obit.
Congrats to Ian Calderon, who proposed to his girlfriend last night. And we’re hoping for everyone’s sake that Assemblyman Isadore Hall simply mistyped when he Tweeted out the news.
TOP HEADLINES ON AROUNDTHECAPITOL.COM AS OF 12:00PM
No School Bond, Lawmaker Suspension Measures On November Ballot - Capradio.org
California’s November ballot is now set. Lawmakers have been pushing to send two more measures to voters. But a school bond and a constitutional amendment allowing the Legislature to suspend lawmakers without pay have both stalled.
Author Of School Bond Measure Says It Won't Make 2014 Ballot
“We’ve come to the end of the road,” Buchanan said in a statement. “The governor made it clear to the speaker of the Assembly ... that he does not want a school bond on the same ballot as the water bond and his Rainy Day Fund proposition. We have no commitment of his support for a future bond.”
The 100 Most Overlooked People in California Politics - Part 1
CalNewsroom.com has assembled the Capitol's 100 best, brightest and most indispensable people in California politics. As this legislative session winds down, we thought it worthwhile to recognize the people who are too often overlooked. Professionals Â at every level Â who consistently do a good job and contribute to the Capitol community. People that donÂt get enough credit.
Obamacare Poll: Californians Of All Political Stripes Show Increased Support Of Health Care Law
Tracy Seipel @ contracostatimes.com
And by a 2-1 margin, they praise the successful way it's been rolled out in the state, compared to the federal government's glitch-ridden system.
From the notebook: The list of government supplemental pays; Jerry Brown’s pension letter to CalPERS
Jon Ortiz @ sacbee.com
cyber Bee looks at a CalPERS proposal that would allow about 100 categories of state- and local-government employees’ supplemental pay to be included in their pension calculations, including temporary promotions that receive upgraded pay. Gov. Jerry Brown opposes including “temporary upgrade pay” in the list of salary enhancements that would factor into pension-benefit calculations.
Immigrant children may get free legal help
State Attorney General Kamala Harris is asking private law firms to provide free legal help to the wave of Central American children pouring into the state. Officials tell us that nine out of 10 children who appear at immigration hearings without a lawyer are sent home - while only about half of those who have an attorney are deported. Just two months after voters overwhelmingly said "no wall on the waterfront," developers of a proposed $100 million housing and office development at Pier 70 have scored the key endorsement of the Sierra Club in their bid to exceed height limits in the area. Out-of-state and international students are an attractive commodity for UC, because they pay $22,878 annually on top of the in-state tuition of $12,972. Former mayor and current Chronicle columnist Willie Brown is being paid $100,000 to represent developers in their fight to roll back the special tax assessment for the new downtown Transbay Transit Center, according filings with the city Ethics Commission. Boston Properties and a half-dozen other developers are paying Brown to try to cut the estimated $1.4 billion assessment they're being asked to pay on the project, thanks to skyrocketing property values.
Backed By Seiu, Franchisees Seek Greater Protection In Contracts
Small-business franchises are fighting in the Legislature for more protection against giant corporations that dictate how they run their fast-food restaurants, convenience stores and a range of other services.
Ex-ambassador Says Honda Camp “refusing” Debate Negotiations - Politics Blog
Jeffrey Bleich, the former U.S. Ambassador to Australia, says that as a diplomat, it's been "easier getting recalcitrant regimes to the table" than getting the campaign of Rep. Mike Honda to talk a...
AM Alert: Field Poll finds support for health care ballot measures
Alexei Koseff @ sacbee.com
A new Field Poll has found strong early support for two contentious health care-related ballot measures.
Opponents Of Medical-malpractice Initiative Take Battle To Airwaves
A ballot-measure battle over medical-malpractice awards and drug testing of doctors arrived on the airwaves Tuesday, with opponents of the initiative rolling out statewide television and radio ads.
California Lawmakers Pass Bill Banning Inmate Sterilizations | Reuters
Sharon Bernstein @ reuters.com
SACRAMENTO Calif. Tue Aug 19, 2014 9:13pm EDT
Former Alaska Attorney General Wins G.O.P. Senate Primary
Dan Sullivan defeated two rivals and will face the Democratic Senator Mark Begich in a closely watched election that could tip the Senate to Republican control.
VIDEO: Among the trees, Jerry Brown's mind 'drawn more to poetry than politics'
David Siders @ sacbee.com
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE – One day after agreeing to debate Neel Kashkari once before the November election, Gov. Jerry Brown suggested Tuesday he may not be the most enthusiastic participant – or at least isn’t inclined to talk about it yet.
Judge Orders Overhaul In Segregation For California’s Mentally Ill Inmates | State Of Health Blog From Kqed News
Julie Small @ blogs.kqed.org
By Julie Small
Bill Would Block Expulsion For 'willful Defiance'
JULIET WILLIAMS @ sacbee.com
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- The state Senate approved legislation Tuesday that would prevent California schools from expelling students for willfully defying school authorities, a punishment that activists say is unevenly applied and disproportionately affects minority students.
California Lawmakers Consider Incentives Package For Tesla Motors - Capradio.org
California lawmakers are considering a package of economic incentives and environmental regulatory waivers to convince Tesla Motors to build a new electric car battery plant in the state.
Lawmakers Expand Carpool Lane Permits For Plug-ins - Sfgate
We have re-imagined our design in a bold new way. Before we roll it out for everyone, we are giving select readers an opportunity to try out the new design. We welcome your feedback.
Uber Hires Ex-obama Campaign Manager David Plouffe In Strategy Role
The upstart rideshare company Uber has hired David Plouffe, a former advisor to President Obama , as senior vice president of quality and strategy, what Uber Chief Executive Travis Kalanick called "a strategic thought partner and a brilliant general."
Late arrival, missing signatures voided many California mail ballots, study finds
Jim Miller @ sacbee.com
Even as voting by mail becomes increasingly common in California elections, more mail ballots are not being counted, according to a study of mail voting in three counties, including Sacramento.