In the nation's socially conservative heartland, Minnesota voters were the first to reject a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, which had passed in 30 states. Opponents of same-sex marriage had won every popular vote until then, including in California.
Unable to match the salaries of private and some public utilities, California cannot retain enough skilled employees to maintain and operate its complex and vital water delivery system.
Gov. Jerry Brown made a call for "prudence, not exuberance" in his revised May budget Tuesday. While Democrats in the Legislature call for more spending, Brown is taking the right stance given a one-time revenue surge as a result of tax changes, the slow economic recovery and major policy changes being contemplated in education funding.
In recent years, Vallejo has been known mostly and sadly for the fact that it went bankrupt in 2008. Today, the beleaguered city on San Pablo Bay is making news for something innovative and exciting.
Under Proposition 13, the 1978 initiative that slashed property taxes in California, the sale of property is supposed to trigger a reassessment for tax purposes. Because residential property turns over more frequently than businesses, home property values are reassessed more frequently. But even when a business is sold, new owners often avoid higher taxes.
Important legislation is emerging that would significantly improve care for the most severely mentally ill people in California.
The water infrastructure of the United States is aging, and aging fast. Yet Congress hasn't enacted a Water Resources Development Act, authorizing U.S. Army Corps of Engineers projects and providing policy direction, since 2007.
Assembly Speaker John A. Pérez has reintroduced a pared-down version of a bill that Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed last year that would expand the statute of limitations for death benefits for police and firefighters injured in the line of duty. Even in its more modest incarnation, cities and counties oppose the measure. They fear it will impose unspecified additional costs on local governments that could add up to hundreds of millions of dollars. Despite those concerns, the speaker's Assembly Bill 1373 went flying out of the Assembly earlier this month on a 60 to 12 vote.
We have fewer than five months until the October enrollment launch when uninsured Californians will be able to apply for coverage through the state.
Gov. Jerry Brown and the Legislature did a heavy lift in reducing California's 33 overcrowded state prisons from 141,000 inmates to 119,000 in two years. But the effects of Brown's public safety realignment have plateaued.
The Sacramento Municipal Utility District is weighing a rate increase that will cost the typical residential customer between $2 and $4 more a month by 2015. That may grab people's immediate attention. But what is far more significant is the farsighted change in the way SMUD is proposing to charge for electricity in future years.
It's hard to fathom that such a tiny creature can have so large an impact on our food supply.
Former Fish and Game Commission President Dan Richards denounces what he calls a "perverted agenda" being advanced through the Legislature by "enviro-terrorist groups."