No fewer than 572 San Francisco city workers and executives made more than Gov. Jerry Brown last year. More than 1,500 city workers made more than state Attorney General Kamala Harris. And that’s without overtime. “That’s pretty staggering,” said Tom Dalzell, head of the California Citizens Compensation Commission, which sets pay for state lawmakers.
When Oakland leaders last March announced plans to transform the Coliseum complex into an entertainment center with new homes for all three of its sports teams, there were two big pieces missing: money to build the stadiums and buy-in from the teams. Nearly one year later, little has changed when it comes to the still-unrealized Coliseum City project.
California’s young immigrants who have been granted reprieves to stay in the country stand to gain little from the federal health reform law that the state Legislature is working to implement. The Affordable Care Act excludes illegal immigrants from accessing the law’s benefits, but some immigrant and health advocates are angry that the young people known as Dreamers have been left out, saying the policy contradicts the law’s intent of expanding coverage to more people.
An Oakland watchdog group said Tuesday it is suing major manufacturers and retailers, including Target and Amazon.com, for selling nap mats made with a toxic flame retardant that is also a known carcinogen.
After years of cutbacks, layoffs — and now climbing crime rates — police departments throughout the Bay Area have begun taking on new recruits again. Over the past five years, of the 13 Bay Area police agencies surveyed by this newspaper — including the CHP, Oakland and San Jose — all but one have shed officers, a total of 981 officers, leaving 6,637 cops. That’s a loss of 12.8 percent, forcing some departments to focus on responding to crime rather than preventing it.
The state legislative analyst recommended Tuesday that state auditors probe whether regulators are properly overseeing special accounts for utility projects totaling trillions of dollars, raising the possibility that gas and electric ratepayers may have been overcharged for the programs. In question is how the California Public Utilities Commission manages and audits “balancing accounts” for California’s three biggest utilities — PG&E, Southern Cal Edison and San Diego Gas & Electric.
The popularity of certain majors at San Francisco State University is preventing students from getting classes and graduating on time, but the administration is proposing a plan to clear out the bottleneck and put undergraduates in lectures they need. The proposal would label nine existing majors as “impacted,” which means there isn’t enough room for the number of qualified applicants. As a result, it would be tough for new students to get into the major.
California lawmakers on Tuesday peppered state officials with questions over the latest audit of the troubled parks department. For some, the most troubling issue was the department’s inability to say how much each individual park costs, because officials track expenses by district involving multiple properties. One lawmaker referred to that as “one of the most mind-boggling parts of the report.”