Assemblyman Rudy Salas (D-Bakersfield), the sole Assembly Democrat to vote no on the $52-billion transportation bill earlier this month, was stripped of a powerful committee post on Monday.
Salas will no longer chair the Business and Professions Committee, a powerful panel that oversees professional licensing —a leadership role that is typically seen as a prime position for fundraising. Taking over the post will be Assemblyman Evan Low (D-Campbell).
"Some days it's hard to keep your commitments. Today is one of those days," Salas said.
Continuing his tradition of considering the requests of felons for a second chance both at Christmas and Easter, Gov. Jerry Brown on Saturday issued 72 pardons and seven sentence commutations for crimes ranging from burglary to being an accomplice in a murder.
The bulk of the actions by Brown, however, were for nonviolent drug crimes. Former prisoners who served time for those offenses have made up the majority of gubernatorial pardons since Brown took office in 2011.
The governor's seven commuted sentences offer most of those involved a chance to be released from prison by the State Board of Parole Hearings.
We also discuss the aftermath of last week's big legislative vote on the $52-billion package of new taxes and fees for transportation. While legislators scramble to explain the vote to their constituents, the plan could complicate a big proposal waiting in the wings in Sacramento.
The legal battle over California's cap-and-trade program is going to the state Supreme Court.
After suffering a defeat last week, the conservative Pacific Legal Foundation announced Friday that it will appeal the decision.
The cap-and-trade program requires companies to buy permits to release greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, a system designed to provide a financial incentive to reduce pollution. Critics have accused the program of functioning as an unconstitutional tax because it wasn't approved by a two-thirds vote of the state Legislature, the legal threshold for approving taxes.
Police are investigating a Thursday night break-in and vandalism at the Modesto district office of Assemblyman Heath Flora (R-Ripon).
Vandals removed a window at the assemblyman's office and spray-painted a swastika and "SS" outside the building, according to Flora's chief of staff, Dylan Gray. Nothing from the office was stolen.
The Thursday night incident was the latest in a series that has occurred at Flora's Modesto office since he was elected last year. Previously, someone placed a bag with all the material to make a bomb outside the office, and there was an additional bomb threat, Gray said.
Gov. Jerry Brown on Thursday asked state prosecutors to investigate allegations that employees of the state Board of Equalization misused state resources.
He also suspended the board’s ability to approve new contracts, hires and promotions, requiring those actions to be approved by other agencies including the Department of General Services.
In a letter to board members, Brown also said he would ask legislative leaders to come up with new laws to address “serious problems” with the agency that were identified in a recent state Department of Finance audit. The audit uncovered mismanagement in the agency, which is responsible for collecting $60 billion in taxes annually.
California state regulators have given their initial approval to a new set of guidelines that expand the credits inmates can earn for demonstrating good behavior and completing rehabilitation programs behind bars.
The regulations are the first step to overhauling the prison parole system under the widely debated Proposition 57, which is expected to cut the statewide prison population by 9,500 inmates over the next four years.
Under the new rules, inmates will be able to trim their sentences for earning a high school diploma or college degree and successfully completing work skills and self-help programs.