Thursday, February 7, 2013

Thursday Must Read: Two Councilmembers Push to Curtail First Fridays; Barbara Lee Challenges Obama’s Assassination Memos

By Robert Gammon
Thu, Feb 7, 2013 at 10:48 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. Oakland Councilmembers Larry Reid and Desley Brooks are pushing to downsize or eliminate the city’s wildly popular First Friday events. Reid and Brooks contend that the large street parties, which now regularly draw more than 10,000 people to downtown Oakland on the first Friday night of each month, drain too many police resources from their violence-plagued East Oakland districts, the Chron and Trib report.

  • Lee
2. Congresswoman Barbara Lee of Oakland is challenging the Obama administration’s authority to target and assassinate Americans it considers to be terrorists, SF Gate reports. Leaked secret memos obtained by NBC News earlier this week revealed that Obama Justice Department contends that the administration can kill American citizens without due process under certain circumstances.

3. Environmental groups and unions are joining together to battle proposed changes to California’s environmental laws, the LA Times reports. Governor Jerry Brown, moderate Democrats, and business interests say the state’s environmental laws are too burdensome and unnecessarily block development.

4. Numerous school districts across the state have misspent millions of dollars in funds that were supposed to pay for lunch programs for low-income students, the Chron reports. Los Angeles Unified appears to have misspent the most — $158 million. No East Bay school districts have been implicated in the scandal.

5. And the new eastern span of the Bay Bridge is set to open on September 3 — but before it does, it will be open for people to walk across the new structure on Labor Day weekend, the Chron and CoCo Times report.

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