Regulations

CA editorial boards cool to anti-Uber power play

Friday, August 22nd, 2014
Uber

The editorial pages of the state's largest newspapers largely agree about Tom Torlakson's being undeserving of a second term as state superintendent of public instruction. Given the breadth of ideological views among these papers, that's pretty rate. Now, rarely enough, we're seeing a second unif...

Immigration: Feinstein acts like Chicago Dem, not CA Dem

Tuesday, August 19th, 2014
feinstein-obama

California Sen. Dianne Feinstein won't put up with the CIA spying on lawmakers. Her repeated denunciations of the agency this year have been remarkable, considering her decades as a leading figure in the national security establishment. But Feinstein isn't so forthright when it comes to the polit...

Geothermal: New front in CA fracking war

Monday, August 18th, 2014
geothermal_resource2009-final

The war over fracking in California could soon have a second front. The Economist has become the latest publication to document how the newly refined and improved energy exploration technique using precisely aimed underground water cannons works not just to free up previously inaccessible oil and...

Moody’s raises questions about teacher pension funding fix

Friday, August 15th, 2014
moodys

Soon after the CalSTRS funding fix crafted by the Legislature and Gov. Jerry Brown took effect on July 1, Moody's Investors Service raised CalSTRS' bond issuer rating. But six weeks later, Moody's has put out another release that examines how much strain the law meant to stabilize funding for Ca...

Feds abdicate on own rules for CA bullet train $

Thursday, August 14th, 2014
mercy.bake

The Obama administration has given the state $3.5 billion in funds for its bullet train project. But the 2009 stimulus funds that were the source of most of the federal bequest came with lots of strings attached, as is common with federal grants. Those rules were formally published in the Federal...

Minimum wage boost already killing jobs

Monday, August 11th, 2014
NEW: Minimum wage already killing jobs

California's minimum wage jumped to $9 an hour from $8 on July 1, and further will rise to $10 in 2016. People who still have minimum-wage jobs are enjoying a raise. But the imposition is slamming others. Watchdog.com reported: In a survey of 163 restaurant owners in San Jose, 66 percent sai...

Prop. 26 shows teeth, kills San Diego hotel tax hike

Thursday, August 7th, 2014

One of the few recent big triumphs of the small-government, low-tax movement in California came in 2010, when state voters approved Proposition 26.  The constitutional amendment cleared up loopholes that allowed governing bodies to pass tax hikes on simple majority votes if they asserted the taxes ...

CA on sidelines as brown energy revolution unfolds

Wednesday, August 6th, 2014
gas-prices2

In the 41 years since the OPEC cartel begin throwing its weight around, U.S. consumers have gotten used to fluctuations in the price of gasoline. The dynamics have gotten pretty stable in recent decades as OPEC has deradicalized. In the summer, the price goes up because demand increases. And when th...

State peddles idea that bullet train contractors are investors

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014
vinci.2

On Jan. 11, 2010, the Legislative Analyst's Office issued a report on the latest iteration of the business plan for the California High-Speed Rail Authority. It contained a game-changing conclusion -- a predictable conclusion but still a crucial one. Here's what I wrote in a Union-Tribune editorial ...

Speed promises for bullet train? CA says ‘never mind’

Sunday, July 20th, 2014
bullet.train.trust

In 2008, California voters narrowly approved $9.95 billion in funds for a statewide high-speed rail network. When they voted for Proposition 1A, they didn't think there was much doubt about what they were getting -- a "safe, reliable, high-speed passenger train" was the mantra of Gov. Schwarzene...