Rights and Liberties

CA bans state cooperation with warrantless spying

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014

From new regulations on ride-sharing to a ban on plastic bags, Californians lost plenty of liberty this legislative session. But freedom in the Golden State scored at least one small victory in 2014. Gov. Jerry Brown recently signed into law a bipartisan bill that would ban the state from cooperat...

Gov. Brown rebuilds redevelopment

Tuesday, September 30th, 2014

Reversing his 2011 abolition of redevelopment, on Monday Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law two bills that will revive it, Senate Bill 628 and Assembly Bill 229. He also vetoed a third redevelopment measure, AB2280, he believed went too far by codifying an anti-poverty program into redevelopment la...

Gov. Brown signs bill to expand prisoner DNA testing

Friday, September 26th, 2014

Wrongly convicted prisoners received a glimmer of hope Thursday from a new law that could help prove their innocence. Gov. Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 980, by state Sen. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance, which expands access to DNA testing for prisoners who are searching to prove their innocence. Si...

Bill banning forced arbitration on Gov. Brown’s desk

Monday, September 22nd, 2014
jams logo

A bill that the California Chamber of Commerce warns will drive up litigation costs for California businesses is on Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk. For disputes involving civil rights, currently businesses can provide contracts for customers in which civil-rights disputes are settled by arbitration....

Backlash to CA police militarization extends across political spectrum

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014
NoHo bank robbery (6)

The acquisition of a mine-resistant armored vehicle by the city of Davis has drawn national attention and fueled a statewide outcry over the armament of law enforcement with military-grade equipment. In a detailed history of the so-called militarization of California police, the New York Times ...

Kashkari would veto gun bills

Monday, September 15th, 2014
Dirty Harry eastwood

GOP candidate Neel Kashkari assured gun owners Friday he's opposed to controversial gun-control measures now sitting on the desk of his Nov. 4 election opponent, Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown. The four measures, which include a ban on home-built firearms and the importation of firearms across sta...

Labor-backed bill may force union on farm workers

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014
gerawan

Democratic state legislators passed a bill that could result in thousands of Fresno farm workers paying dues to a union that they may not support and abiding by a labor contract that they might not want. Senate Bill 25, authored by outgoing Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento...

After gamble backfires, L.A. demands refund from banks

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014
interest-rate-swaps-7

  In the San Francisco Bay area, public transit riders are paying $104 million in higher rider fees to cover the cost of exotic financial insurance known as an interest rate swap. In Detroit, the inability of the city to make interest rate swap payments signaled eventual bankruptcy. So the r...

Arrested for DUI, Sen. Hueso voted to ban beach booze

Monday, August 25th, 2014
Ben-Hueso-Mugshot

It could be a case of, "Do as I say, not as I do." State Senator Ben Hueso, D-San Diego, was arrested early Friday morning on suspicion of drinking and driving. He reportedly spent the night drinking wine and tequila in the State Capitol and at a local restaurant with several of his colleague...

Appeals court backs property rights

Saturday, August 23rd, 2014
pasadena trees, city image

Pasadena is known for its famous tree-lined streets. It now also may be known for the trees becoming the key in the first case in California to establish that a city’s urban forestry programs can be subject to “inverse condemnation" lawsuits filed by property owners. The case concerned the wi...