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  • By the numbers

    California spent an average of $9,183 each on its 6 million K-12 public school students in 2012, about $1,500 below the national average and the 16th lowest level among the states, according to a new Census Bureau report. The number does not count substantial increases in California school spending since 2012 – or changes in other states. The national number in 2012 was $10,608, and the states ranged from a high of $19,552 in New York to a low of $6,659 in Idaho.

    – Dan Walters

The Buzz: Bill to extend health care to undocumented immigrants stalls

Published: Friday, May. 23, 2014 - 11:43 pm

A bill to extend subsidized health benefits to undocumented immigrants stalled in the state Senate on Friday, but it could be revived if its supporters identify a way to pay for the expansion.

Senate Bill 1005 aims to close a gap in the federal health care overhaul, which makes insurance plans available only to those in the country legally. Authored by Sen. Ricardo Lara, D-Bell Gardens, the measure would open Medi-Cal to undocumented immigrants as well as create a marketplace for new plans.

California counties provide health care to undocumented immigrants, but the coverage varies greatly.

Health advocates contend the legislation is needed to fully achieve the promises of the federal Affordable Care Act in California. Sen. Kevin de León, D-Los Angeles, and chairman of the upper house’s fiscal committee, described a “two-tiered” system that discriminates against millions of people that but “for lack of paperwork are Americans.”

He gave Lara the summer to develop a funding mechanism for the expansion. Lara said he respected the decision.

“Expanding health care for all Californians is not a question of if but ... a matter of when,” he said.

– Christopher Cadelago

Worth repeating

“I think when a billionaire gets involved, that changes the whole scope of things.”

ROBERT MARTIN, chairman of the Morongo Band of Mission Indians, on how casino magnate Sheldon Adelson could influence the debate over online poker legislation in California.

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