The Roundup

Jun 18, 2019

Fuel costs up

California's latest gas tax increase is about to kick in. Here's what you can expect


Sacramento Bee's ANDREW SHEELER: "Traveling by car this summer? Better budget more for gas."


"Beginning July 1, California’s gas tax increases from 41.7 cents to 47.3 cents per gallon, a 5.6 cent increase in the price of fuel."


"The tax increase is an annual adjustment to the tax the state applies to a gallon of gas. In 2016, Californians paid about 28 cents in state taxes for a gallon of gas."


Legislation would ratchet down on charter schools


LISA RENNER in Capitol Weekly: "California’s charter schools could face tighter restrictions if a pair of bills making their way through the Legislature is approved."


"Assembly Bill 1505 would give school districts the right to deny charter schools if they believe they would negatively impact neighborhood schools’ finances, academics or facilities. It would also effectively eliminate the appeal process, allowing charter schools to appeal a denial only if there was a procedural violation. Assembly Bill 1507 would prohibit school districts from approving a charter school outside their boundaries."


"The bills are necessary because charter school growth is out of control, said Julian Vasquez Heiling, chairman of the California National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Education and a professor at Sacramento State University."


3 of 4 Californians want to restrict housing in wildfire-prone areas, poll says


LA Times's LIAM DILLON: "Three quarters of California voters believe the state should restrain home building in areas at high risk of wildfires, a new survey has found."


"The UC Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies Poll, prepared for the Times, shows bipartisan support for such restrictions after deadly fires wiped out tens of thousands of homes across the state in the last two years."


"The voters think there should be limits,” said Mark DiCamillo, director of the Berkeley IGS Poll."


SF leaders say US Census changes will result in undercount of SF's seniors, low-income households


The Chronicle's DOMINIC FRACASSA: "

San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera and Assemblyman David Chiu are calling on the U.S. Census Bureau to reconsider its decision to limit paper copies of the 2020 census to only English and Spanish, a move they said will lead to a “significant undercount” of the city’s seniors and low-income households with other primary languages."


"In a letter sent Monday to U.S. Census Bureau Director Steven Dillingham, Herrera and Chiu said that nearly half of San Francisco households speak a language other than English at home. Over 26% of the city’s residents speak an Asian language at home; another 12% speak Spanish and 7% speak another language."


"Herrera and Chiu expressed serious concerns about the risk of overlooking thousands of San Franciscans who would struggle to navigate the digital version of the census in their native languages or lack the resources to do so."


OP-ED: Feds' proposed rules would erode tribal culture, history


SHERRY TREPPA in Capitol Weekly: "Federally recognized tribes are sovereign governments – many of which have undoubtedly contributed vast, significant cultural contributions to the diverse tapestry of American social, economic and political life."


"Despite this recognition and contributions to society, tribes like mine unfortunately must fight hard to be remembered, respected and included in policy discussions at all levels of government—even when those policies could have significant impacts on our communities and our culture."


"The latest example of this is a set of rule changes proposed by the National Park Service (NPS). As written, the rules would give unprecedented power to the U.S. government and big business by allowing them to prevent a site from being considered worthy of preservation and protection for its historical and cultural significance by listing it in the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP)."


A Pride Flag is flying over California's Capitol. Newsom says it's sending a message


Sacramento Bee's ANDREW SHEELER: "For the first time in state history, the flag of LGBTQ Pride flies above the California Capitol."


"The Rainbow Flag, which sits below the U.S. and California state flags, will fly til July 1."


"It’s no coincidence that this historical act — mirroring similar ones in Colorado and Wisconsin – comes amidst a President Donald Trump administration ban on the flying of such flags at U.S. embassies."


Pelosi faces a tough summer trying to keep Democrats away from impeachment talk


LA Times's CHRISTINE MAI-DUC: "House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) tried again this week to shift focus away from a divisive debate over impeachment and move it to a signature issue that Democrats credit with helping them win back a majority in that chamber: healthcare."


"After a panel discussion on the Democrats’ health policy agenda in Monterey Park on Monday, Pelosi deflected questions about impeachment from reporters and said the news media were placing “a great deal of attention” on the topic."


"What we’re doing is legislating. We’ve sent bills to the Senate that talk about our Dreamers, we’ve sent bills to the Senate that talk about gun violence prevention,” Pelosi said, adding that she believes those issues are “unifying, they’re not dividing for our country."


Nunes hired a longtime supporter with little experience to handle 2018 campaign ad buys


LA Times's SARAH D WIRE: "For 13 years, Rep. Devin Nunes relied on a trusted, experienced political consultant, Tim Orman, for his campaign advertising."


"But as Nunes (R-Tulare) faced what would become his toughest-ever reelection last year, Orman was no longer available. In 2016, he ran the successful campaign of Fresno Mayor Lee Brand and became Brand’s chief of staff. Government rules limited his ability to continue consulting on campaigns."


"Nunes didn’t look far for a replacement. He turned to Tal Cloud, a longtime political supporter who also is Orman’s brother-in-law. Ultimately, one-fifth of Nunes’ campaign budget flowed through Cloud’s firm, federal campaign finance records show."


OPD protected Kamala Harris' campaign rally -- now they'd like to get paid for it.


Sacramento Bee's ANDREW SHEELER: "Here’s one thing California Sen. Kamala Harris has in common with President Donald Trump: Both of them owe money for campaign events."


"The 2020 presidential candidate and former state attorney general still owes $122,327.87 to the city of Oakland for police security at her January campaign kickoff rally which drew 20,000 people, according to a report from the nonpartisan Center for Public Integrity, published in partnership with NBC News."


"The money is due next week, according to the report."


'No evident justification' for California prison guard raises in contract, analyst warns


Sacramento Bee's WES VENTEICHER: "The 3 percent raise Gov. Gavin Newsom has agreed to give state prison correctional officers has “no evident justification” based on the state’s hiring and retention needs, according to a new report from the Legislative Analyst’s Office."


"The report echoes one the analyst’s office issued a year ago when former Gov. Jerry Brown struck a deal with the 27,000-member California Correctional Peace Officers Association for a one-year-contract with a 5 percent raise."


"Now, lawmakers are considering designating $138 million for the new contract as part of the budget process this week. The state human resources department posted the tentative agreement, which includes changes to other benefits including holiday, night and weekend pay, two weeks ago."


Ghost Ship defendant Max Harris testifies: Warehouse was not a tinderbox


The Chronicle's MATTHIAS GAFNI: "A defendant accused of running the un-permitted warehouse in Oakland where 36 people died in a 2016 fire told a jury Monday that he did not believe the Ghost Ship was a death trap or tinderbox, as investigators have testified."


"“No, I wouldn’t have been there if that’s what I thought,” said Max Harris, who took the stand in his own defense and downplayed his responsibilities overseeing the illegal artists collective in the weeks and months before the horrific fire."


SF Mayor London Breed struggles to build consensus with supervisors on housing plan


The Chronicle's DOMINIC FRACASSA: "With stratospheric rents and home prices threatening to exile all but the most affluent from San Francisco, officials and advocacy groups agree on one thing: creating affordable housing for low- and middle-income residents is critical."


"But at a time when City Hall is brimming with champions of such projects, why is Mayor London Breed having such a hard time persuading the Board of Supervisors to support her sweeping plan to make them happen?"


"Breed wants voters to amend the City Charter in a way she says would speed up approvals — by at least a year — for buildings where 100% of apartments are considered affordable, and for housing reserved for educators."


A month later, its city manager still missing, small-town McFarland tries to move on


Sacramento Bee's DARRELL SMITH: "Manuel Cantu has a tough time talking about his city manager in the present tense."


"John was well-known in the community, he said. John turned the city around. John, he said, was a great guy."


"Cantu is the mayor of McFarland, a short drive from Bakersfield in rural Kern County. John Wooner, Cantu’s city manager, missing since May 14, remained just that on Monday. Missing. Friday marked a month since Wooner was last seen, driving his city-issued Dodge into a Bakersfield cemetery to visit the gravesite of his estranged father."


Trump threatens to deport millions beginning next week


AP: "President Trump is threatening to remove millions of people in the country illegally."


"In a late-night tweet Monday, Trump said U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement would begin the removal process next week. He told his Twitter followers, “They will be removed as fast as they come in."


"An administration official said the effort would focus on people who had been issued final deportation orders by federal judges but remained at large in the country."


Kaiser Permanente to build giant, new $900M Oakland HQ


The Chronicle's ROLAND LI: "Health care giant Kaiser Permanente plans to construct a 1.6 million-square-foot headquarters in Oakland, creating one of the largest new buildings in the Bay Area — larger in space, though not height, than San Francisco’s Salesforce Tower."


"Kaiser, already Oakland’s largest private employer, said Monday it will consolidate 7,200 East Bay employees from seven offices into a new, 29-story tower at 2100 Telegraph Ave. Construction is expected to start next year, and the building is set to open in 2023."


"The project, formerly branded as Eastline, is a block from the 19th Street BART Station. The site is currently a parking garage and vacant lots. It will be named the Kaiser Permanente Thrive Center — “Thrive” is Kaiser’s slogan — and includes a health clinic, community meeting spaces, art gallery and retail space."


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