Morning Splash: CSU, UC Students Face Tuition Hikes; SF Cabbies Plan Strike; Alleged Picasso Thief Speaks

  • CSU, UC students brace for another round of tuition hikes (San Jose Mercury News)

    On Tuesday, CSU’s board of trustees votes on a 12 percent hike for a semester that starts in less than three months…University of California students are facing an increase as well — their ninth in eight years — if the board of regents approves a 9.6 percent hike at Thursday’s meeting.

  • San Francisco cabbies still upset with new policies plan strike (SF Examiner)

    Despite potential changes that could lower credit card fees and improve The City’s cab-tracking methods, San Francisco taxi drivers are still planning for a 24-hour strike Aug. 2. Drivers have been up in arms for months about city taxi policies. One is an initiative that allows cab companies to charge drivers up to 5 percent for each credit card transaction. The second is the installation of electronic waybill systems — technology that records all movements of city taxi drivers — that many cabbies find intrusive.

  • Divers could start searching for missing fishermen Monday (Contra Costa Times)

    While most of the survivors of a deadly fishing trip are returning home to Northern California, efforts continue to comb the Sea of Cortez for the seven who remain missing. Divers from the U.S. Navy are being brought in from Hawaii to search the submerged vessel Erik to determine if the missing men are inside, said Alfredo Escobedo Ortiz, civil protection director for Baja California, Mexico. The dive team was scheduled to arrive Sunday and could begin their work Monday, barring any complications with customs, he said. Search and rescue efforts continued throughout the weekend, to no avail.

  • Bay Area housing market reflects different rebounds (Bay Area News Group)

    Bay Area cities are rebounding from the housing crash in wildly different ways, confirming the adage that the three most important rules for home buying are location, location, location. Many affluent cities are nearing the stratospheric prices reached during the housing bubble, but others, primarily middle-income and working class, are far from recovering from the depths of the crash. That disparity can be seen even in communities next door to one another. East Palo Alto’s median home price is $246,000 in the current quarter, down 62 percent from $650,000 in the second quarter of 2007. But just across 101, leafy Palo Alto, home to many high-tech companies and entrepreneurs, has a median house price of $1.4 million, just 12 percent below the peak reached in 2008.

  • The ups and downs of meter rates (SF Chronicle)

    The first batch of data is in and analyzed under San Francisco’s experimental SFpark parking-management program, which ties meter rates to demand. The changes will be a mixed bag for drivers..The price will go down at 32 percent of the meters, dropping to as low as $1.75 an hour on a handful of streets. The price will stay the same at 37 percent of the 7,000 meters in the eight test neighborhoods. Now for the bad news. The price will go up at 31 percent of the meters in the closely watched pilot program, with hourly rates going as high as $3.75.

  • Jerry Brown signs bill imposing fire fee on rural properties (Sacramento Bee)

    Gov. Jerry Brown announced Friday he signed a controversial budget bill to charge rural property owners up to $150 each for fire protection. But the Democratic governor said in a signing message that lawmakers must clean up the proposal in subsequent legislation, though he didn’t specify what needed to be changed. The state is counting on Assembly Bill X1 29 to raise $50 million.

  • California labor groups moving to control tax debate (Contra Costa Times)

    Labor leaders were never overly enamored with Gov. Jerry Brown’s plan to extend taxes on purchases, income and auto fees, but were willing to go along with it to give the newly elected Democratic governor a chance to find revenues his way. But with Brown’s plans now smoldering in ruins, his labor allies are moving to gain control of the debate over tax initiatives they hope to pursue in November 2012.

  • Residents square off over proposals for Lake Merritt -area dog park (Oakland Tribune)

    Canine owners near Lake Merritt seem to agree on one thing: A dog park is long overdue. But they do not agree on where it should go. The Oakland Dog Owner Group wants to build the Lakeview Dog Play Area in a grassy area now used by toddlers and soccer players along MacArthur Boulevard and Lakeshore Avenue. Their opponents — a group called “Save Astro Park” — want to block the plan.

  • Jaycee Dugard tells harrowing story of horror and survival in TV special (Contra Costa Times)

    …ABC News’ exclusive interview by Diane Sawyer aired Sunday was occasionally revealing — many details surfaced in two years’ worth of media reports and Dugard’s own grand jury testimony — but it added the seldom-heard Dugard’s voice to a story of survival that gripped the world.

  • Biking on busy streets linked to heart risks (Environmental Health News)

    …A new study published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives showed a link between biking in heavy traffic and heart health risks, with cyclists having heart irregularities in the hours after their exposure to a variety of air pollutants on busy roads.

  • Picasso theft suspect speaks from San Francisco jail (SF Examiner)

    The New York City sommelier accused of stealing a pricey Pablo Picasso sketch from a Union Square art gallery on Tuesday says he’s stunned by the global media attention his case has garnered. “This has been completely blown out of proportion,” Mark Lugo exclaimed in a brief jailhouse interview with The San Francisco Examiner on Friday.

  • Activist talks about failed mission to reach the Gaza Strip (Bay Area News Group)

    Henry Norr, a passenger on the Audacity of Hope and part of the “Freedom Flotilla,” returned to the Bay Area late Friday after a failed mission to reach the Gaza Strip. Norr, of Berkeley, along with poet and author Alice Walker, of Anderson Valley, and Kathy Sheetz, of Richmond, were among the Northern California residents on the Audacity of Hope that was intercepted by the Greek Coast Guard about 30 minutes after leaving a Greek port July 1. “Only a fool thought we’d get to Gaza given what happened last year,” said Norr, a 65-year-old former San Francisco Chronicle reporter turned activist. “We knew we’d be stopped, so it’s not a surprise we didn’t make it to Gaza. We got stopped sooner than we had thought.”

Author

Jon Brooks

Jon Brooks writes mostly on film for KQED Arts. He is also an online editor and writer for KQED's daily news blog, News Fix. Jon is a playwright whose work has been produced in San Francisco, New York, Italy, and around the U.S.

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