Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Wednesday Must Reads: Court Rejects Brown’s Private Prison Plan; Obamacare Insurance Rates Cheaper than Expected

By Robert Gammon
Wed, Sep 25, 2013 at 9:52 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. A federal court rejected Governor Jerry Brown’s plan to send inmates to out-of-state private prisons, the LA Times$ reports. Brown had submitted the proposal as a backup plan should the court reject his request for a three-year extension to relieve prison overcrowding. But the court nixed Brown’s private-prisons idea, and may deny his request for a three-year extension, too, telling the governor that he has just thirty days to hammer out an agreement with lawyers representing inmates to solve the state’s overcrowding crisis.

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2. The US Department of Health and Human services announced that health-insurance rates for individual coverage under Obamacare will be 16 percent cheaper than Congressional Budget Office estimates, McClatchy reports (via Rough & Tumble). The federal government also announced that 60 percent of uninsured Americans will be able to buy health insurance on the new Obamacare exchanges for less than $100 a month.

3. Governor Brown signed a bill that extends paid family leave benefits in California to workers who need to take care of seriously ill grandparents, grandchildren, siblings, and in-laws, the Chron reports.

4. The governor also signed legislation that calls for the creation of a statewide earthquake warning system — much like the one already in operation in Japan, the Associated Press reports. However, the state must still find $80 million in funding needed to launch the system.

5. And a new study of Alameda Point concludes that much of it will be underwater by 2100 because of rising seas due to climate change, the Chron reports. The study of the former Naval Air Station, which the city plans to redevelop, also concluded that it would cost $109 million to protect the low-lying property from flooding.

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