Plastic Bags and the Recycling and Reuse Scam

By Edward Ring
Back in 2014, the California Legislature passed Senate Bill 207, which banned grocery stores from offering customers “single use” carryout bags. Permanent implementation was delayed by a November 2016 voter referendum, Prop. 67, that unsuccessfully attempted to repeal the measure. Today it is well established law. The only way SB 207 was sold to the grocery industry...

TAGS: Edward Ring, environmentalists, Jerry Brown

Why Jerry Brown bears considerable blame for PG&E’s deadly incompetence

By Chris Reed
When Gov. Jerry Brown left office in January 2019, most of the reviews of his second eight-year stint as leader of the nation’s richest, most populous state were effusive. Citing his restoration of fiscal stability after the Capitol chaos seen in the last three years of the Schwarzenegger administration, Brown biographer Narda Zacchino declared he...

TAGS: "bullet train", California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), Chris Reed, Jerry Brown, PG&E

California Dystopia Update, February 2020 edition: Going backwards on housing

By Chris Reed
A decade ago, when the U.S. Census Bureau began issuing a measure of poverty that included the cost of living, Californians found out something that had somehow eluded the thousands of journalists, authors and academics who chronicled life here. Because of the cost of housing, California — not West Virginia or Mississippi — had the...

TAGS: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Chris Reed, Gavin Newsom, Jerry Brown, Los Angeles Times, SB 50, Scott Wiener

California officials knew all along bullet train wouldn’t attract investors

By Chris Reed
After being discussed for decades, a privately funded 170-mile high-speed rail link through the desert between Las Vegas and Victorville — 90 miles east-northeast of Los Angeles — could get final approval in coming weeks from the Federal Railroad Administration. After that happens, the California and Nevada state governments are expected to give final approval...

TAGS: "bullet train", Arnold Schwarzenegger, California High-Speed Rail Authority, Chris Reed, Federal Railroad Administration, Gavin Newsom, Jerry Brown

Surplus masks deep fiscal problems, especially in school districts

By Steven Greenhut
Sacramento As Gov. Jerry Brown heads into the sunset, he leaves California’s general-fund budget in remarkably sound shape, according to an analysis last month from the nonpartisan Legislative Analyst’s Office. “It is difficult to overstate how good the budget’s condition is today,” the LAO reported, pointing to a $14.5 billion reserve by the end of next...

TAGS: Jerry Brown, Pension liabilities

Under guise of ‘affordable housing,’ abusive agencies might be making a comeback

By Steven Greenhut
Sacramento – In the seven years since Gov. Jerry Brown shut down California’s redevelopment agencies, their defenders have managed to resuscitate their image. Never mind that these controversial agencies ladled out corporate welfare, wantonly abused eminent domain on behalf of developers and diverted $5 billion annually from public services. A new bill would bring them...

TAGS: Jerry Brown

Gas-tax repeal gets closer to vote as train spotlights state’s misplaced priorities

By Steven Greenhut
Sacramento Almost everyone agrees that California’s infrastructure is shockingly decrepit, yet public anger over a 12-cent-a-gallon gas tax to address that problem has not subsided. Although an effort by GOP gubernatorial candidate Travis Allen to repeal the tax never got traction, a separate effort led by the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, former San Diego Councilman...

TAGS: gas tax, high speed rail, Jerry Brown