Immigration Reform

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Alameda County Sheriff Ends Detention Holds of Undocumented Immigrants

by Ali Winston
Wed, May 21, 2014 at 4:19 PM

Alameda County Sheriff Gregory Ahern issued a department-wide memorandum today barring his deputies from enforcing immigration detainer requests from the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Ahern's memorandum, which is in effect as of today, is a landmark in local law enforcement and brings Alameda County in line with San Francisco and Santa Clara counties, where local authorities are also choosing not to enforce immigration detainers. However, Sheriff Ahern's order is the most sweeping refusal to abide by federal immigration detainers in the Bay Area.

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Friday, November 22, 2013

Friday Must Reads: California Kills Cheap Insurance Policies; Unions Say BART Board Vote Was Illegal

by Robert Gammon
Fri, Nov 22, 2013 at 10:06 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. Covered California — the state’s version of Obamacare — has denied the president’s request to allow people to keep health-care policies that are to be canceled this year, the Chron reports. The five-member board of Covered California noted that allowing about 1 million residents to keep inexpensive plans that fail to meet the minimum requirements of the Affordable Care Act could seriously damage the new health-care system, because it would keep too many young, healthy people out of the Obamacare pool. The success of Obamacare is predicated on the need to have as many young, healthy people sign up as possible in order to finance the costs of treating seriously ill patients. But the president requested that states extend the deadline for ending cheap insurance plans after it became clear that his promise that people would be able to keep their insurance under his plan was untrue.

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Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Tuesday Must Reads: GOP Poll Numbers Tank Because of Shutdown; BART Unions Decide Not to Issue Strike Notice

by Robert Gammon
Tue, Oct 8, 2013 at 9:54 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. An overwhelming majority of Americans are blaming Republicans for the federal government shutdown, with 70 percent saying that they now disapprove of the GOP, according to a Washington Post-ABC News poll. Nonetheless, a core group of Tea Party Republicans, who have seized effective control of the House of Representatives, are pushing forward with their threat to also force the US government to default on its debts unless President Obama agrees to roll back his signature health-care law. Meanwhile, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Carl Bernstein of Watergate fame is criticizing the mainstream media for its coverage of the shutdown, contending that it has failed to tell the truth about the Tea Partiers who are holding the country hostage to their demands.

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Monday, October 7, 2013

Monday Must Reads: Republicans Threaten to Cause Global Economic Crisis; Governor Signs Bill to Block Deportations

by Robert Gammon
Mon, Oct 7, 2013 at 9:57 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. Republican House Speaker John Boehner yesterday threatened to force the federal government to default on its debts this month — a move that would likely trigger a global economic crisis — unless President Obama agrees to roll back his signature health-care law. Boehner also is refusing to allow a vote on a bill that would end the federal government shutdown, even though the legislation appears to have enough votes to pass the House, the Washington Post reports. And The New York Times reported that the GOP-sponsored shutdown and the government default threats are part of a Koch brothers-funded plan hatched earlier this year to kill Obamacare.

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Friday, October 4, 2013

Friday Must Reads: Governor Signs Bill Allowing Undocumented Workers to Get Driver’s Licenses; Brown Also Okays Legislation that Relaxes Drug Laws

by Robert Gammon
Fri, Oct 4, 2013 at 10:32 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation that will allow undocumented workers in California obtain driver’s licenses, reversing his previous opposition to it, the SacBee$ reports. Brown said he changed his mind about the bill because of Congressional foot-dragging over immigration reform. The driver’s license legislation is viewed as a key victory for immigration reform advocates.

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Monday, September 16, 2013

Monday Must Reads: Brown to Sign Immigrant Drivers’ License Bill; Bad Year for Environmental Legislation

by Robert Gammon
Mon, Sep 16, 2013 at 9:45 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. Governor Jerry Brown said he will sign a bill that will allow undocumented immigrants to obtain driver's licenses in California, the LA Times$ reports. Brown, who had previously opposed such legislation, said he changed his mind because of “foot-dragging” in Congress on immigration reform. "Because Congress has been so slow, I think they need a good push, and that's what I think this Drivers License bill does," Brown said. "It says California recognizes these human beings are very important to our communities, to our economy and hopefully the people in Washington will get the message."

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Monday, September 9, 2013

Monday Must Reads: Mt. Diablo Fire Prompts Evacuations; Big Oil and Gas Try to Further Weaken Fracking Bill

by Robert Gammon
Mon, Sep 9, 2013 at 9:33 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. A wildfire burning on the northeastern side of Mount Diablo grew to 1,500 acres over night and prompted more evacuations of neighboring homes, the CoCo Times and Chron report. The fire is only 10 percent contained and conditions for fighting the blaze will be difficult again today with area temperatures reaching triple digits as the wildfire burns through ultra-dry vegetation in Eastern Contra Costa County.

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Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Wednesday Must Reads: PG&E Faces $300 Million Fine as Part of $2.25 Billion Penalty; Opposition to Napolitano Grows

by Robert Gammon
Wed, Jul 17, 2013 at 7:08 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. PG&E could be fined after all for the deadly San Bruno blast in 2010 under a new proposal from California Public Utilities Commission officials, the CoCo Times reports. The $300 million fine, which PG&E would be prohibited from passing on to ratepayers, would be part of a $2.25 billion total penalty. PUC officials had come under intense criticism for originally proposing to not fine PG&E and only require the utility to spend $2.25 billion on pipeline upgrades. That proposal also prompted turmoil and protests within the PUC. But then the agency changed course and decided to recommend a fine — after staff attorneys who had worked on the San Bruno investigation and had objected to the no-fine proposal were put back on the case.

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Monday, April 22, 2013

Monday Must Reads: ALCO Sheriff to Stop Patrolling Oakland Streets; Gov. Brown OK’s $25.6 Million in Redevelopment Funds for Oak to Ninth

by Robert Gammon
Mon, Apr 22, 2013 at 6:58 AM

News stories that East Bay progressives and environmentalists shouldn’t miss:

1. Alameda County Sheriff Greg Ahern is pulling his deputies off Oakland streets because the city has refused to pay workers’ comp for his staffers who are injured in the line of duty, the Trib reports. Ahern’s announcement followed the injury of a sheriff’s deputy who was shot in the foot during a traffic stop in the Fruitvale district. The city had hired sheriffs’ deputies to patrol Oakland streets as a temporary stopgap measure until OPD can hire and train more recruits.

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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Tuesday Must Reads: Statewide Ban on Plastic Bags Moves Forward; Feds Blame Lax Oversight for Massive Chevron Fire

by Robert Gammon
Tue, Apr 16, 2013 at 6:49 AM

News stories that East Bay progressives and environmentalists shouldn’t miss:

1. Legislation that would ban the use of plastic bags throughout California got a big boost when the powerful California Grocers Association announced its support for the bill, the LA Times$ reports. SB 405 is headed to a state Senate committee on Wednesday. If it becomes law, it would supersede local plastic bag bans currently in place throughout the state. A ban on single-use plastic bags in Alameda County went into effect on January 1.

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