Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Tuesday Must Reads: CHP Agrees to Step Up Patrols of Oakland; Quan Pushes to Block Warriors from Moving to SF

by Robert Gammon
Tue, Apr 23, 2013 at 6:56 AM

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

1. The California Highway Patrol has agreed to increase its presence in Oakland, following the decision by the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office to stop patrolling the city, the Trib and Chron$ report. The CHP will step up its patrols from two to four days a week under a new agreement. Late last week, county Sheriff Greg Ahern said his department would stop its two-days-a-week patrols because Oakland refused to pay workers’ comp to deputies injured on the job. The city hired the CHP and the Sheriff’s Office to patrol Oakland as a stopgap measure until OPD can hire and train more officers.

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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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Friday, April 19, 2013

A Reading Guide to What Has Been Going on in Boston

by ProPublica
Fri, Apr 19, 2013 at 2:58 PM

The hunt for suspects in Monday’s Boston marathon bombing is ongoing.

The news today has been like being thrown into a sea of breaking updates, emergency warnings, and more than one conspiracy theory. To help you catch up, we’ve pulled together some of the best reporting so far, and who to follow for breaking news:

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Friday Must Reads: One Boston Marathon Bombing Suspect Is Dead; Massive Manhunt for His Brother

by Robert Gammon
Fri, Apr 19, 2013 at 9:45 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. Authorities shot and killed one of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects earlier today, and are conducting a massive manhunt for his younger brother as the Boston area remained on lockdown this morning, The New York Times$ reports. The suspects are identified as Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, and Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev, 19, and are said to be of Chechen descent. Police shot and killed Tamerlan after the brothers had allegedly killed an MIT campus police officer late last night. The young men’s motive for setting off the bombs at the marathon remains unclear.

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Thursday, April 18, 2013

Thursday Must Reads: Quan’s Budget Would Add More Police, Cut City Staff; Liberal Groups Vow to Defund Dems Who Voted Against Background Checks

by Robert Gammon
Thu, Apr 18, 2013 at 6:51 AM

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

1. Oakland Mayor Jean Quan yesterday unveiled her budget for the next two years, and proposed to steer tens of millions of dollars to the police department, adding dozens of new officers and bringing the force up to about 700 cops by 2015, the Trib and Chron$ report. Quan would effectively pay for the new officers by eliminating at least 87 jobs elsewhere in the city. The mayor’s budget also would restore some of the temporary givebacks made by city-employee unions. The budget, however, does not address the unsustainably high salaries and benefits given to cops.

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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Wednesday Must Reads: Caltrans Failed to Properly Test Bridge Bolts; Report Says State Regulators Are Not Focused on Safety

by Robert Gammon
Wed, Apr 17, 2013 at 7:03 AM

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

1. Caltrans failed to properly test the giant bolts that snapped on the new Bay Bridge and ignored concerns voiced by its own engineers about the bolts five years ago, SFGate reports. If Caltrans had conducted the tests, it might have discovered that the bolts were defective. More than thirty of the big bolts broke earlier this year, but it’s too late to replace them because the bridge’s roadbed has already been installed. The bolts are considered integral in helping the new bridge withstand a major earthquake, and Caltrans has yet to decide on a plan to fix the problem.

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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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Monday, April 15, 2013

Former Oakland Blight Official Admits to Breaking Law

by Robert Gammon
Mon, Apr 15, 2013 at 6:18 PM

State investigators disclosed Monday that they plan to fine former Oakland blight enforcement official Antoinette Renwick $6,500 for approving and signing public contracts with her former brother-in-law after he loaned her $50,000. Gary Winuk, chief enforcement officer with the California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC), also stated in public records filed with the FPPC that Renwick has admitted to violating state conflict-of-interest laws and has agreed to pay the fine.

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State Regulators Say Ex-Oakland Mayoral Candidate Marcie Hodge Broke Election Laws

by Robert Gammon
Mon, Apr 15, 2013 at 5:39 PM

Investigators for the state’s political watchdog agency have concluded that former Peralta colleges trustee Marcie Hodge violated election laws during her campaign for mayor of Oakland in 2010. Gary Winuk, chief of enforcement for the California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC), also stated in public records filed with the FPPC that Hodge and her mother, Yvonne Hodge, admitted to violating the law and agreed to pay fines totaling $5,000 to the state. The state’s investigation was prompted by news reports (presumably by the Express and other news media) that Hodge had repeatedly failed to disclose her donors prior to the 2010 November election. The Express published several reports about Hodge’s actions during and after the mayoral campaign.

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Monday Must Reads: Lawmakers Seek to Reform Payday Lending; Yosemite Valley May Get Major Facelift

by Robert Gammon
Mon, Apr 15, 2013 at 6:56 AM

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

1. Lawmakers in Sacramento this week will consider legislation that would reform payday lending in California in an effort to curb triple-digit interest rates that exploit low-income residents, the Mercury News reports. The Democratic-sponsored bill would limit the number of payday loans that any one person can take in a year, and would require payday lenders to more closely scrutinize the finances of their customers. The powerful payday loan industry is vowing to fight the bill.

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