Investigation

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CA’s road funding plans ‘stuck in traffic’

More than a month after Gov. Jerry Brown called for lawmakers to hold a “special session” on transportation funding, California still doesn’t have a plan for how to close its annual $5.7 billion shortfall for road, bridge and highway repairs.

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DOJ advisory groups violate open meetings requirements

A subcommittee inside the California Department of Justice is accused of meeting in violation of the state’s open meetings act by failing to publicly disclose what actions it will be discussing in its required public meetings notice. A cadre of

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Cap-and-trade funds targeted for high-speed rail project

Bills being introduced that monitor or change terms for the state’s high-speed rail project are a rarity. However, there are two bills brewing in the Legislature. One has a shot at passing. The other doesn’t. Senate Bill 400 would require

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Taxpayer-subsidized companies raking in public contracts

Los Angeles County is hitting 1.000. The county has done business with each of the top 10 recipients of local and state subsidies in California, records show. The practice is common, although hardly in violation of any rules. But across

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Special contracts allow ‘full-time’ teachers to work for both union and district

It’s been called “ghost teaching,” and it thrives in California. Full-time teachers are paid six-figure salaries to work for their union while keeping their school district seniority and pensions afloat. The dual work arrangements are built into union contracts. “This

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Farmworkers resist state agency ‘in cahoots’ with union

In a turnabout for California’s storied history of migrant labor, Latino field hands are fighting to get the United Farm Workers, the union that carries on the legacy of founder Cesar Chavez, out of their lives and pockets. If the

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Lawmakers seek to reform community college accreditation process

The state’s college accreditation process, which reviews academic standards at public and private colleges, could soon undergo a review of its own. A bill working its way through the Legislature would open up the accreditation process for California community colleges to ensure greater

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State Assembly approves plan to bring back Kelo-style redevelopment

Redevelopment agencies would once again have the power to seize private property for big developers under a bill that passed the California State Assembly earlier this month. Assembly Bill 2, authored by Assemblyman Luis Alejo, D-Salinas, would give local governments the

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CA’s history of direct democracy sometimes brings out ‘crackpots’

This week, lawmakers once again loudly proclaimed their outrage at a proposed ballot initiative that would allow voters to decide whether gay people should be shot. The notion is both sickening and unconstitutional, but it’s also part of California’s political

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BOE: New services tax could boost CA revenue by $122 billion

Placing a tax on business services in California has the potential to raise an additional $122.6 billion annually for state and local governments, according to a recent Board of Equalization study. A services tax could become a reality if Senate

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