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Assemblywoman Autumn Burke (D-Marina del Rey) has introduced a bill that would create a tax-credit system.
Assemblywoman Autumn Burke (D-Marina del Rey) has introduced a bill that would create a tax-credit system. (Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press)

A new proposal from a Los Angeles lawmaker has emerged aiming to help Californians evade a key provision of the federal tax overhaul passed last year.

Assembly Bill 2217 from Assemblywoman Autumn Burke (D-Marina del Rey) would create a tax-credit system linking charities, educational institutions, the state treasury and individual taxpayers in an effort to allow Californians to sidestep the new $10,000 federal cap on state and local tax deductions.

Under Burke’s plan, taxpayers could make a contribution to nonprofits, universities, community colleges or K-12 public school districts, and those entities would transfer 90% of that donation to the state. In turn, the state would lower a taxpayer’s state income tax liability by issuing a credit equal to 80% of the original donation. And by making a charitable donation, California taxpayers would be able to deduct that entire amount from their federal taxes, Burke said.

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(Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press)

A former aide to a California legislator sued the state Senate on Thursday, alleging it failed to accommodate her emotional disabilities following what she said was a sexual assault by an Assembly staff member, and instead wrongly fired her for “pre-textual minor” work performance issues.

The lawsuit filed in Sacramento Superior Court lists the plaintiff as “Jane Doe” because the law allows victims of sexual assault to use a pseudonym in civil cases to protect their privacy, said Micha Star Liberty, the woman’s attorney.

When asked, Liberty acknowledged that her client worked for Sen. Bob Wieckowski (D-Fremont) previously and she said he wasn't named in the lawsuit "because this office does not know whether or not he has any information about her circumstances or what had occurred."

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  • Ballot measures
The proposed California Consumer Privacy Act would require companies to disclose the data they collect from consumers.
The proposed California Consumer Privacy Act would require companies to disclose the data they collect from consumers. (Patrick Semansky / Associated Press)

Proponents of a measure that would require companies to disclose the data they collect from consumers have submitted signatures on petitions to qualify the initiative for the November ballot, paving the way for a heated battle over privacy. 

The initiative would require businesses to inform customers of what personal information they are gathering from them and give them the option to opt out of having that data sold or shared to third parties. It also would increase fines and penalties for companies that fail to protect the data against breaches.

Rick Arney, co-author of the proposed California Consumer Privacy Act, said support for the measure widened when federal officials opened an investigation into how a data firm, Cambridge Analytica, accessed the personal information of millions of Facebook users without their knowledge to help elect President Trump.

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan, flanked by House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy and House Majority Whip Steve Scalise.
House Speaker Paul D. Ryan, flanked by House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy and House Majority Whip Steve Scalise. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan of Wisconsin is among the Republicans from outside California who have contributed to the campaign to repeal the state’s gas-tax increase, showing the effort has national interest from GOP leaders who see it as a way to boost their party’s chances in the Golden State for this year's election.

Ryan’s congressional campaign committee gave $50,000 to Give Voters a Voice, the main group behind an effort to qualify a repeal measure for the November ballot, according to documents filed by the campaign. The campaign also received $25,000 from a political account of House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.). House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield) has also donated $300,000 to the Give Voters a Voice campaign.

Carl DeMaio, a leader of the repeal campaign, recently acknowledged in an email to supporters that the initiative is seen as a way to boost the chances for Republican candidates in California, where Democrats dominate the electorate. The contributions from Republican leaders come in a year when the GOP is fighting to keep its majority in Congress.

With California and the Trump administration locked in a legal battle over immigration policies, a state Republican leader and an illegal immigration critic are quietly offering to help communities fight the state’s new “sanctuary” law.

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  • California in Congress
  • U.S. Senate race
(Gary Coronado / Los Angeles Times)

Sen. Dianne Feinstein said Tuesday she “strongly supports” a federal law keeping the government from interfering in states like California that legalize marijuana use.

Long an opponent of legalized marijuana, Feinstein told the Sacramento Bee that her stance on marijuana shifted through conversations with constituents, particularly those with young children who benefited from its medical use.

“Federal law enforcement agents should not arrest Californians who are adhering to California law,” Feinstein said.

California Atty. Gen. Xavier Becerra
California Atty. Gen. Xavier Becerra (Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)

Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday announced a lawsuit by California and 17 other states against the Trump administration to protect national vehicle emission standards from being rolled back by the federal government.

The lawsuit filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, seeks to set aside and hold unlawful the Environmental Protection Agency’s effort to weaken the existing clean car rules.

The states argue that the EPA acted arbitrarily and capriciously, failed to follow its own regulations and violated the Clean Air Act.

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  • Congressional races
  • 2018 election