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THE NOONER for August 25, 2014
Cleanup continues from this weekend’s 6.0 earthquake in Napa, where more than 100 buildings have been damaged and dozens of people have been injured.
The Merc’s rapid response team reports: In Napa, 33 buildings have been "red tagged," meaning they are not inhabitable, said Rick Tooker, the city's community development manager. An unknown number of other buildings have been yellow-tagged, meaning people should only go inside to gather items or for emergency cleanup.
"Most of the downtown Napa area is cordoned off to assess damage from a health and safety standpoint and from a structural standpoint," said Mark S. Ghilarducci, director of the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services.
Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency in Napa County as the clean-up efforts continue.
Brown will be in Los Angeles Monday to welcome Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto. The two will be in Sacramento tomorrow, where the Mexican president will address a joint session of the Legislature.
Speaking of the Legislature, there’s only one week left in the legislative session. Patrick McGreevy and Melanie Mason set the table for the final sprint.
“By midnight Aug. 31, they must address such contentious issues as whether to ban plastic carryout bags from supermarkets statewide, require employers to give workers at least three paid sick days a year and allow courts to order guns to be confiscated from people deemed dangerous.
“And as California's drought continues, lawmakers will decide the fate of a proposal for state management of underground water supplies. They also will determine whether to ask voters in two years to repeal portions of the state's English-only education law.
“And some plastic-bag makers have aired television and radio ads throughout the state, urging voters to contact legislators and "say no to their bag scam." The ads maintain that the proposed ban would cost the state jobs and is aimed at enriching supermarkets that could charge customers 10 cents for a paper bag or sturdier plastic container.
“Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) last week agreed to amend the plastic-bag bill, which he introduced, to ensure that the fee would be used to pay for the alternate bags and other costs of implementing the measure, SB 270.”
David Siders takes another brave attempt at trying to capture Jerry Brown’s unique political style.
“In the most eclectic administration in California’s modern era, the decision-making apparatus is less a Cabinet than a cerebral orbit around Brown …
“The Brown administration is notoriously unstructured, and the governor’s official schedules are sparse. Many of the telephone calls Brown places to his advisers ring on weekends or nights.”
The AP Sacramento political team puts the Ben Hueso DUI arrest in the context of a string of political embarrassments for Democratic elected officials.
“California lawmakers have taken steps this year to repair their image in the wake of the legal trouble and suspension of the three Democratic senators. Sen. Rod Wright, of Inglewood, was convicted for lying about living in his district, while Sens. Ron Calderon, of Montebello, and Leland Yee, of San Francisco, are fighting unrelated federal corruption charges.
“Hueso was driving a state-owned Ford Fusion available for out-of-town lawmakers alone when officers spotted him heading north on southbound 15th Street, California Highway Patrol Officer Julie Powell said. He made a U-turn and headed in the correct direction before officers pulled him over, Powell said.”
Elsewhere Around the Capitol
TOP HEADLINES ON AROUNDTHECAPITOL.COM AS OF 12:00PM
Image-sensitive CalPERS Has Down Week In Media | Calpensions
Last week was not a good one for CalPERS, which carefully tracks mentions of the giant pension system in the media and gives each story a rating of positive, neutral or negative.
Abortion Foes Threaten Suit That May Cut State's Federal Funds - Sfgate
Antiabortion groups are calling for legal action - and a possible cutoff of nearly $90 billion in federal funding to California - after Gov. Jerry Brown's administration told insurance companies doing business in the state Friday that their policies had to cover all abortions. Brown's Department of Managed Health Care had previously approved insurance plans issued to Santa Clara and Loyola Marymount universities, and possibly other employers, allowing them to deny coverage for "elective" abortions, those not needed to protect a woman's life or health.
Ride-sharing Firms Shift Into Overdrive To Kill Insurance Bill
Get ready for a traffic jam this week in the Capitol as ride-sharing rules lurk as a still unsettled issue in the last week of the legislative session.
Afghans Begin Audit Of Disputed Election, Examining Ballots For Fraud
Afghanistan’s Independent Election Commission on Monday began reviewing ballots for signs of fraud more than two months after the disputed second round of the nation’s presidential election.
Washington Monthly Ranks Four UC Schools In Top Five In Its 2014 University Rankings
Help and Contact Us
Only Los Angeles Politicos Face Prosecution For Not Living In Districts
Dan Walters @ sacbee.com
Ridesharing foe Paul Koretz takes "a few bucks" from taxis
Los Angeles City Councilman Paul Koretz is one of the state's biggest opponents of ridesharing, the relatively new service provided by such companies as Uber, SideCar and Lyft. HeÂs also a leading recipient of campaign contributions from the taxi industry.
Aunt was on cell phone when car hit unattended girl, sources say
The aunt of the 2-year-old girl killed by a hit-and-run driver was talking on her cell phone when she left the toddler unattended in the middle of Mission Street, police sources say. According to our sources, 25-year-old Loyresha Gage had taken Mi'yana Gregory and her twin brother to see "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" at the Metreon, and was crossing Mission Street between Fourth and Fifth streets to the Fifth and Mission city garage, when the incident unfolded just after 10:30 p.m. Aug. 15. Police say Gage never pushed the pedestrian "walk" button at the crosswalk in front of the Westfield San Francisco Centre mall before she began crossing the street against the red light - taking Mi'yana by the hand as she talked with a friend on her cell phone about where they would meet up later. According to street surveillance cameras, that's when a white Toyota Camry or Lexus made between 1992 and 1994, heading east on Mission, struck Mi'yana as she wandered aimlessly in the crosswalk. In a move that signals the changing odds, the Service Employees International Union Local 1021, which represents city workers, has made civil rights attorney Dan Siegel its top pick in the November ranked-choice election, followed by City Councilwoman Rebecca Kaplan and then Quan. [...] in this case, Slighton was nimble enough to help himself to a pair of blue latex gloves used by the screeners before he directed two female passengers at a security checkpoint into a private screening booth for pat-downs, according to surveillance camera footage. State Sen. Jerry Hill's bill calling on the state to negotiate with billionaire venture capitalist Vinod Khosla to buy the public access road to Martins Beach is heading to Gov. Jerry Brown's desk.
California High-speed Rail—more Questions And Concerns - The Atlantic
Early this month, a three-judge panel of a California state appeals court gave the project a significant boost, by overturning a lower-court ruling that had blocked the system's major source of funding. There are still more legal challenges ahead; plus debate about the plan in this fall's California election; plus ongoing sniping between the most influential Democrat in California, Jerry Brown in Sacramento, and the most influential Republican, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy in Washington. For now, California HSR chugs ahead.
The Buzz: California health exchange weighs formal opposition to Prop. 45
Christopher Cadelago and Alexei Koseff @ sacbee.com
Covered California, the agency charged with carrying out the federal health care law, issued an analysis stating that the measure could have a detrimental impact on the exchange’s operations, including its ability to negotiate with insurance companies.
6.0 Quake Rattles Bay Area, Sending About 170 People To Hospitals
The little-known West Napa Fault shook for about 20 seconds early Sunday, enough to leave the San Francisco Bay Area with its biggest earthquake in 25 years — wrecking historic wine country buildings, buckling streets, emptying store shelves, rupturing gas and water lines, and sending about 170 people to the hospital.
Could A Wording 'glitch' Doom Obama's Healthcare Law?
When a federal appeals court ruled last month that a seemingly arcane wording flaw in the Affordable Care Act should invalidate a central part of the law, many of those who drafted the statute five years ago reacted with shock and anger.
Charging For Paper Bags Isn't Justified
There's logic missing in the battle of bags now raging in the California Legislature.
Kansas Lawyer Is 'go To Guy' In Battle Against Obama On Immigration | Reuters
NEW YORK/WASHINGTON Mon Aug 25, 2014 2:35am EDT
Future of Export-Import Bank Splits Candidates in Key Senate Races
The reauthorization of the agency that offers loans to foreign buyers of American products has become a source of friction in high-profile campaigns.
Candidates Are Forced To Wade Through Iraq, Again
The Iraq war was once again front and center on the campaign trail in New Hampshire last week, with a Democratic president under fire.
Endorsement: Attorney General Kamala Harris, all but unchallenged, deserves a second term
the Editorial Board @ sacbee.com
Kamala Harris deserves a second term as California attorney general.
Mexico's President Starts California Visit In La
Small quake strikes off Southern California | Murder suspect arrested in Santa Maria
Should Confederate Flag Be Outlawed On State Property? - The Orange County Register
MATTHEW FLEMING @ ocregister.com
BY MATTHEW FLEMING / STAFF WRITER
Wildfire Threatens 500 Northern California Homes
The fire about 2 miles west of Weaverville was also threatening about 20 businesses and facilities, including the town airport and high school, said Lilly Wyatt, a spokeswoman with the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services.
California Vs. Texas In Fight To Attract And Retain Businesses
As California tries to woo businesses, Texas' experience raises questions about the wisdom of buying jobs with taxpayer dollars.
Roy Choi To Launch Loco'l, A New Healthful Fast Food Chain
Roy Choi is looking to expand his growing culinary empire with a new chain of fast food restaurants called Loco'l. Choi and San Francisco chef Daniel Patterson on Monday announced their plans to open the healthful-food-focused concept together at MAD4, the annual Copenhagen symposium for chefs, cooks and farmers.
Lausd Officials Had Close Ties With Apple, Pearson Execs, Records Show
Los Angeles schools Supt. John Deasy and his chief deputy developed a special relationship with executives from the companies that won a key technology contract, records show, raising new questions about the bidding process in a $1-billion effort to provide a computer to every student in the nation's second-largest school system.
Burger King,tim Hortons Talks Could Turn Up Heat On Tax Inversions
Burger King Worldwide Inc.'s potential acquisition of coffee-and-doughnut chain Tim Hortons Inc. could flame-broil the already simmering debate in Washington about new limits on off-shore tax shifting after the companies confirmed a new merged firm would be based in Canada.