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THE Nooner for December 31, 2017


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  • AD54 (Culver City): added editor Ashlee Marie Preston (D)

Happy end of 2017! I'm looking forward to observing it this evening at the Buddhist Church of Sacramento and ringing the temple's courtyard bell to close out the year.

THE YEAR THAT WAS: CALmatters gives us a wrap of the major stories of the year from its team.

GOV: Willie Brown passes on the rumor that Congresswoman Jackie Speier (D-San Mateo) is huddling with advisors this weekend to comtemplate a 2018 run for governor. That would make an interesting race even more so. Speier had $1.7 million in her federal account as of September 30, which would allow a quick start even at this late date.

Obviously, Assemblymember Kevin Mullin, a former district director for Speier, and Assemblymember Phil Ting are likely awaiting her decision. Senator Jerry Hill is not up in 2018 (and is termed out in 2020) so could have a free ride.

CADEM: In the Times, Seema Mehta looks at the battle within the California Democratic Party over whether to endorse candidates in next year's primary election. It's a continuation of the battle over the race for state party chair last year. Chair Eric Bauman has asked candidates to not seek the party's endorsement.

[Former party Controller Hillary] Crosby argues that Bauman is trying to aid several candidates from his home base in Los Angeles, including U.S. Senate candidate Kevin de León, who is running against Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a fellow Democrat. De León’s support was crucial to Bauman winning the chairperson’s race in the spring.

CONGRESS: The Bee's Dan Morain writes up how California GOP congressmembers think they can survive 2018:

Now that most of California’s House Republicans have voted for a tax overhaul that will raise taxes for many of their constituents, you have to wonder what more good cheer they’ll bring us in the new year.

I’m thinking roads and other infrastructure.

AFTER MIDNIGHT: The AP's Don Thompson reports on the new laws taking effect after the ball drops tonight. 

SIX THINGS: The LAT's Sarah D. Wire finds six things that you may not know about members of the California congressional delegation.

HORCHER: In his "Where are they now" series for Capitol Weekly, Alex Vassar checks in on former Assemblymember Paul Horcher.

POPULATION: For CALmatters, Dan Walters looks at the state's population trends:

The decline in births, falling immigration from other countries and the outflow of young adults to other states with lower living costs mean that California, whose population traditionally has been relatively young, is now graying markedly.

These trends also pose serious issues for the state’s economy, such as a decline in the working-age population. With unemployment rates now at an historic low, economists universally see shortages of trained and trainable labor as the greatest impediment to continued economic growth in California.




Probolsky Research



#CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Rocky Fernandez and Christian Griffith!



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In Los Angeles, Homicides Are Down, But Violent Crime Is Up For The Fourth Year In A Row
Cindy Chang @
Homicides are down in Los Angeles, but violent crime is up for the fourth year in a row, fueled by increases in robberies and aggravated assaults. Property crime also ticked up for the third year in a row.

Tax cut on booze triggers fears of more abuse and drunken driving

Public-health advocates say the effects of the Republican tax law will be dire.

California High School Football Player Can't Be Forced To Stand For National Anthem, Court Rules
Adam Elmahrek @
The school district set the rules after students from a rival high school in neighboring Arizona yelled racial slurs at San Pasqual Valley High School students and threatened to force the football player at the center of the controversy to stand, the ruling said.

Shark bite at Point Reyes National Seashore prompts water closure
A shark bit a surfer on the foot at a Point Reyes National Seashore estuary on Saturday, prompting park officials to close a section of water. The incident occurred near the mouth of Drakes Estero, a 2,500-acre estuary complex of five branching bays, according to the National Park Service. Park officers did not immediately disclose the identity of the surfer or the severity of the injury. Entering the water around the area was banned following the incident, officials said. There was no estimated date of reopening. Jenna Lyons is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Email: jlyons@sfchronicle.

Trump To Meet With Florida Governor At Mar-a-Lago
Matt Dixon @

President Donald Trump invited Florida Gov. Rick Scott to join him for lunch on Sunday at Trump's Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach, the White House and governor's office announced.

LAPD Officer Wounded By 'coward' In Ambush, Beck Says
Kate Mather, Paul Pringle @
Gunman opens fire on LAPD officers in 'cowardly' ambush, wounding one, LAPD Chief Charlie Beck says.

Graham: Iran Protests Show Obama Failed - Politico
Brent D. Griffiths @

South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham said Sunday the wave of protests in Iran are example of President Barack Obama's failed policies for the country and the region.

Six hospitalized Saturday in Richmond District collision
Two children and four adults were hospitalized Saturday following a crash in San Francisco’s Inner Richmond neighborhood, fire officials said. Firefighters responded to Fulton Street and Arguello Boulevard about 11:20 a.m. in response to a two-vehicle collision, said Lt. Jonathan Baxter, a San Francisco Fire Department spokesman. One car had a family of four inside and the other was carrying two adults. The fire department did not release the ages of the passengers, citing privacy laws. One person sustained a serious injury, two people suffered moderate injuries and three people had minor injuries, officials said. No passengers had life-threatening injuries, Baxter said.

Devin Nunes, targeting Mueller and the FBI, alarms Democrats and some Republicans with his tactics

The Trump loyalist and House Intelligence Committee chair has prompted rare public warnings to tone down his attacks on federal law enforcement.

Mountain biker rescued by helicopter at East Bay park
A mountain biker was rescued by helicopter after suffering several broken bones and a head injury Saturday in Briones Regional Park in Walnut Creek, authorities said. The STARR 1 helicopter was deployed about 3:30 p.m. to the Beacon Ridge Trail after reports that a man was seriously injured, according to the Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Office. The man, whose name was not released, had broken bones and a head injury, police said. A Contra Costa County fire captain, paramedic and flight rescue technician flew near the victim’s location and hiked to a remote trail to reach him, police said.

Informal Dwellers of Puerto Rico

Squatters living on property without deeds are straining an already fragile infrastructure system throughout the island.