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THE NOONER for March 19, 2016
Happy Saturday! It's the first Saturday of March Madness, and the Shockers are playing as I write. Normally, that has a totally different meaning. Damn, Withita State. I had Arizona going three rounds.
UPSWING: Unemployment rates fall in Sacramento, statewide [Dale Kasler @ SacBee] - “California and Sacramento’s unemployment rates fell last month to their lowest levels since 2007, suggesting the state’s economy is continuing to improve despite signs of a global slowdown.
Statewide unemployment fell by two-tenths of a point, to 5.5 percent, the Employment Development Department reported Friday. Employers added 39,900 jobs during February. It’s the lowest California unemployment rate since August 2007.”
All the metrics were good. Jobs added, unemployment rate dropping 0.2%, and labor force participation increasing by 26,000. While a certain loudmouth presidential candidate says that the numbers are fake, you can't ignore the facts. Leading the way were the constuction and leisure and hospitality sectors, with the latter largely credited to the great ski season that has drawn Californians and travelers from around the country.
IN THE RED (BUT BETTER THAN BEFORE): California’s pension debt puts it $175.1 billion in the red [Dan Walters @ SacBee] - “Although its 2014-15 budget was balanced, California’s state government ended the fiscal year $175.1 billion in the red, thanks largely to state retirement obligations that had to be included in its balance sheet for the first time.”
DO NOT CONSUME DNC - U.S. steps up fight over Yosemite names, asking trademarks be canceled [Michael Doyle @ SacBee] - “The battle over Yosemite National Park trademarks is now sprawling across multiple fronts, and it could take more than a year to sort out.
Going on the offensive, the National Park Service has formally urged the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board to cancel the Yosemite-affiliated trademark registrations secured by the famed park’s former concessionaire.”
I've written about this before, but again, Delaware North Companies is being totally absurd. These names are national treasures and aren't portable simply because the idiotic Trademark Office issued you a license for your coffee mugs based on long-held public names and because you're upset that you lost a contract to Aramark.
US SENATE: Republicans and the House race for Sanchez's seat [Martin Wisckol @ OCR] - “I’d never heard of Bob Peterson until March 10, the day before the candidate filing deadline, when the commander with the Orange County Sheriff’s Department took out papers to run for the House of Representatives. He’s one of eight candidates for the vacancy being created by Rep. Loretta Sanchez’s bid for U.S. Senate.”
CH-CH-CH-CHANGES: SeaWorld CEO: Why our orca breeding ended [Joel Manby @ SDUT] - “SeaWorld takes seriously its responsibility to preserve marine wildlife. That’s why we are partnering with the Humane Society of the United States, the nation’s largest and most effective animal protection and advocacy organization. Together, we will work against commercial whaling and seal hunts, shark finning and ocean pollution.”
STUDENTS GONE WILD[LY SLEEPING]: Protesters outside Katehi’s office plan to stay during spring break [Brenna Lyles @ SacBee] - “One week after occupying the space outside UC Davis Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi’s office, students remained camped out Friday in protest of her involvement with several private corporate boards. They say they have no plans of leaving.”
March has been a miserable month for the University of California, specifically Berkeley and Davis, and we're not just talking basketball. Both campuses have editorial demands for their chancellors to resign--one for a casual status toward sexual harrassment and the other for serving on corporate boards (one without approval) that are perceived to conflict with the interests of students.
#CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to LA councilmember Mike Bonin, BCF's Andrew Campbell, Lake County supervisor Anthony Farrington, former Assemblymember Adrin Nazarian, and consultant four waters!