Columns

Why CA has an affordable housing crisis

Saturday, April 12th, 2014
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What a long strange trip it’s been for the Pebble Beach Company since it unveiled its Del Monte Forest development plan all the way back in 1987. In the ensuing 27 years, PBC has revised its plan innumerable times only to have state regulators or local government bodies block the company from b...

CA high-speed rail strikes out at hearing

Friday, March 28th, 2014
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  The state Senate’s Transportation and Housing Committee held a hearing Thursday on California’s quixotic high-speed rail project.  Even Gov. Jerry Brown, who still hopes the bullet train will be the enduring legacy of his third stint as governor, might have been troubled by the conclus...

Rick Perry returns to woo CA businesses

Friday, March 21st, 2014

  Texas Gov. Rick Perry is returning next week to the Golden State. Maybe this time, California Gov. Jerry Brown will take him seriously. Perry made a four-day recruiting trip to California in February of last year, visiting San Francisco, Silicon Valley and Los Angeles. He met up with CEOs a...

Amid Capitol’s gift extravagance, Gatto sets standard for ethics

Friday, March 7th, 2014
Mike Gatto

Mike Gatto's life is an open book. Last January, his daughter, Evangelina, received a $50 gift certificate from a family friend. During the summer recess, he enjoyed dinner with a star of CSI: Miami. In October, one stock in his investment portfolio took a hit. And just before Christmas, Gatto "re-...

California’s culture could slow rush toward e-cig bans

Monday, March 3rd, 2014
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In the biggest "blue state" cities, administrative and regulatory action against e-cigarettes has been swift and fierce. California officeholders -- from the city council level all the way up to the U.S. Senate -- are poised to follow suit. But the West Coast's trendsetting culture may be the first ...

CA massage law: A case study in regulatory failure

Thursday, February 27th, 2014
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  Residents of Los Angeles know that “medical” marijuana shops are not the only gray-market business that’s experienced a recent boom. In a city with a taste for pleasure and an enterprising working class, “massage” parlors are apt to have a significant presence — and L.A. is no ...

Ivanpah solar plant bets on wrong technology

Sunday, February 16th, 2014
Ivanpah solar power

U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz was in the unincorporated San Bernardino County community of Nipton Thursday, where he dedicated the new $2.2 billion, 392-megawattt Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System (SEGS). “The Ivanpah project is a shining example of how America is becoming a world l...

Sacto water deputies patrolling for water wasters

Monday, January 27th, 2014

Sacramento water police are on patrol. If the rule of law isn't enough to control Sacramento's citizens, government officials have turned to deputizing neighbors for help making sure everyone complies with environmental restrictions. For nearly four years, the City of Sacramento has been enc...

Desal can mitigate California’s water woes

Tuesday, January 21st, 2014

In 1961, President John F. Kennedy dedicated the nation’s first saline water conversion plant. A public-private partnership between U.S. Department of Interior and Dow Chemical, the Freeport, Texas plant converted seawater from the Gulf of Mexico into 1 million gallons a day of fresh water. “...

Strikes for higher minimum wage hit CA, USA

Monday, December 2nd, 2013
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Anti-Walmart protests struck across California and the rest of America on Black Friday. The protesters demanded that the giant retailer pay its worker higher wages and benefits. As part of the protests, Robert Reich is pushing a petition on Facebook. The former secretary of labor in the Clinton...