The Northern California wildfires this week have destroyed at least seven marijuana farms just months before the state begins licensing legal sales of cannabis, making it the “worst year on record” for loss of crops, an industry leader said Tuesday.
Many growers lost their homes and farms in the Redwood Complex fire in Mendocino County, the Atlas fire in Napa County and the Stubbs and Nuns fires in Sonoma County, according to Hezekiah Allen, executive director of the California Growers Assn.
“The October 2017 firestorm is having an extremely severe impact on our communities,” Allen said. “It is the worst year on record, and the worst year I can remember, in terms of farms lost. We have been able to confirm seven farms lost, but we expect the number to be much higher as more information comes in.”
Eighteen years after lawmakers agreed that California high school students should prove their skills on a final exam before earning diplomas, Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation Tuesday to permanently repeal the requirement.
The move comes two years after Brown and lawmakers imposed a three-year suspension of the law, which would have expired next spring. It marks the final chapter of a law that was originally promised to ensure students should be able to prove a series of basic reading and math skills before graduating.
But the exam was suspended in 2015, after state officials said it wasn’t aligned with recently adopted Common Core education standards. The suspension, approved later that year, allowed some 32,000 students who failed to pass the test as far back as 2004 to receive diplomas, as long as they had completed their other coursework.
California lawmakers keep passing bills to ease the burden of environmental lawsuits against big developments. And they keep ignoring the fact that the deadline they set for the end of the litigation is never met.
Starting in 2011, state legislators have allowed projects with a price tag of at least $100 million that meet a host of environmental and labor standards to get speedier trials under the California Environmental Quality Act, or CEQA, the state’s primary law governing development. Under the law, which was renewed for the third time this year, any CEQA litigation against such projects is supposed to be wrapped up within nine months. Lawmakers supporting the measures have argued that these developments are too important to the state’s economy to wait.
But one project is now waiting longer than it should: a Frank Gehry-designed, mixed-use development at 8150 Sunset Blvd. in Los Angeles. Neighborhood activists sued over the project, arguing that its environmental review was insufficient and questioning plans to demolish a Midcentury Modern bankbuilding on the site.
Kimberlin Brown, an actress best known for her roles on "The Bold and the Beautiful" and other soap operas, became the first challenger to announce a run against Democratic Rep. Raul Ruiz of Palm Desert on Tuesday.
“For the first time in the history of our great country, we are not leaving something better behind for the next generation,” Brown, a Republican, said in a statement. She criticized Ruiz, saying he hasn't passed any "meaningful" legislation. She promised to work across the aisle and with President Trump to get things done.
Touting them as a way to further loosen California's reliance on automobiles powered by fossil fuel, Gov. Jerry Brown signed a dozen laws on Tuesday aimed at boosting the use and sale of zero-emission vehicles.
State agencies will be directed to buy more clean-burning cars and trucks over the next decade and a half under a pair of bills signed by Brown, in both cases expanding goals that were put in place just a few years ago.
Taking shots at President Trump, sounding the alarm on Russian hackers and doubling down on her call to fight a powerful gun lobby, Hillary Clinton on Monday told advocates and activists in California to get back up and keep going.
“Stand up for you, for our values because there is too much at stake not to speak out against the things that matter most,” she said to cheers and applause from an audience of about 1,700 people at UC Davis.
The stop at the Mondavi Center is the only one scheduled in California on her 16-city tour promoting her new book, “What Happened,” a memoir about her loss to Donald Trump. Her message of resilience seemed to resonate in a state that bills itself as home to “the resistance,” and where supporters handed the former U.S. senator her largest victory.
Vice President Mike Pence toured an industrial machine shop in a Sacramento suburb on Monday evening to pitch President Trump's tax reform plan.
"President Donald Trump is committed to work with the Congress and pass the largest cut in American history," Pence told a gathering at Stroppini Enterprises in Rancho Cordova. "And we’re going to do it this year."
The vice president toured the machine shop with House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield) and held a roundtable discussion with small-business owners about the president's tax plans.