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THE Nooner for January 9, 2017

It's noon. It's time for a break. Here's what people are reading on today:

California Budget Questions On Health Care, Taxes | The Sacramento Bee
Jim Miller @
The go-to source for news on California policy and politics

Uncertainty Over Federal Health Care Policy Creates Major Heartburn For California Budget-makers :: Fox&hounds
When C. Duane Dauner, the crackerjack CEO who has headed the California Hospital Association for 31 years, announced last month his intent to retire at the end of 2018, the timing must surely have been bittersweet.

This California Republican Is Hoping He'll Have More Luck With His Immigration Reform Idea Under Trump
Sarah D. Wire @
Rep. Jeff Denham wants to change immigration policy to allow immigrants who serve in the military to become citizens, and he thinks he has a chance because of a single sentence uttered by Trump.

Conservatives Who Oppose U.S. Debt Vote To Raise It As A Step Toward Repeal Of Affordable Care Act | The Sacramento Bee
David Lightman @
By David Lightman

How This Former Aspiring Screenwriter Became One Of California's Campaign Finance Experts After Losing His Day Job
Rob Pyers went from being laid off from his job at Walgreens to becoming the campaign finance data guru at the California Target Book, the state's premier clearinghouse for political intel on races.

Mailing Marijuana Is A Popular Way To Distribute The Drug — But Illegal - The San Diego Union-tribune
Kristina Davis @

Candy Maker Mars Is Buying L.A.-based Animal Hospital Chain For $7.7 Billion
James F. Peltz @
VCA Inc., which consolidated chunks of the pet health industry to grow into a leading chain of animal hospitals, agreed to be bought by candy and pet-care giant Mars Inc. for $7.7 billion in cash.

Scott Wiener Models State Solar Bill On S.F. Law - San Francisco Chronicle
SACRAMENTO — Newly sworn-in state Sen. Scott Wiener, D-San Francisco, plans to introduce legislation Monday requiring all new construction in the state to include solar panels.

California's State Bar Moves To Shed Trade Association Functions | The Sacramento Bee
Dan Walters @
Observations on California and its politics

Judge In Whistleblower Case Orders Sdpd To Hand Over Personnel Records - The San Diego Union-tribune
Jeff McDonald @

Interstate 80 Closed Due To Major Mudslide Near Donner Summit | The Sacramento Bee
Hudson Sangree and Jessica Hice @
By Hudson Sangree and Jessica Hice

Obama White House Veterans Stake Out Spot In Trump Resistance - San Francisco Chronicle
Just for fun during the presidential campaign, President Obama’s longtime former speechwriter Jon Favreau and three other Obama White House veterans — Jon Lovett, Dan Pfeiffer and San Franciscan Tommy Vietor — produced a podcast series called “Keepin’ it 1600.”

Elk Grove Casino Fight Qualifies For Ballot | The Sacramento Bee
Dale Kasler @
By Dale Kasler

Who Are Trump's Friends? One Is Thomas Barrack, A Californian Who Could Shape His Views On The Middle East
Michael Finnegan @
Thomas J. Barrack Jr., chairman of the Presidential Inaugural Committee, emerges as a key Donald Trump adviser on Saudi Arabia and the Mideast.

County Supervisors Add To Their Pension Payouts During Last Term In Office | Kpbs
Alison St John @
This is not simply a pay raise; this is a step-up in the formula by which their pay is raised. In other words, it increases the size of San Diego County supervisors' pay and benefit increases indefinitely into the future.

Rubio Announces Committee Assignments For The 115th Congress - Press Releases - U.S. Senator For Florida, Marco Rubio
In making this announcement, Rubio issued the following statement:

Obama Says He Didn't Underestimate Putin But Did Misjudge The Potency Of Misinformation
Noah Bierman @
President Obama insisted he did not underestimate Russian President Vladimir Putin when he dismissed Mitt Romney’s 2012 campaign assessment that the country was the top U.S. geopolitical foe.

Brennan: Recognize Intel Community's Importance Or Put Country At Risk - Politico
Despite the consensus of intelligence agencies, Trump for weeks had refused to accept that conclusion while offering no alternative evidence. His resistance prompted the dismay of many lawmakers, including prominent Republicans in the Senate, and the rebuke of former intelligence officials who warned that he was sowing distrust in their work among voters.

2 Sonoma County school districts cancel classes due to flooding
Forestville Union School District and Harmony Union School District will be closed Monday, said Jamie Hansen, spokeswoman for the Sonoma County Office of Education. Each district has a school for kindergarteners and first-graders and a charter school for students from second to eighth grades, according to their websites. The Sunday storm hit the North Bay the hardest, with the Napa River reaching flood stage at St. Helena and water spilling onto frontage areas by the Petaluma River.

Donald Trump Couldn't Let Meryl Streep's Golden Globes Speech Go Unanswered
Michael A. Memoli @
Update on 'Trump denies again that he mocked reporter with disability'

California Schools, Courts Working To Make Students Better Informed Citizens Through Civic Engagement | The Sacramento Bee
Diana Lambert @
By Diana Lambert

Lucas Museum Board Deciding Soon Whether To Pursue Treasure Island - San Francisco Chronicle
The Bay Area could soon learn whether billionaire filmmaker George Lucas will try — again — to build a high-profile museum on a prime spot on San Francisco Bay.

How to Drain the Health Care Swamp
Conservative principles, not political posturing, should guide the repeal and replacement of Obamacare.