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Does California need a Prison Industries Superintendent II (Coffee Roasting and Grinding)?
That’s one of 125 state job classifications that caught the attention of the state Department of Human Resources during its annual culling of positions that have been vacant for at least two years. They are now on the chopping block before the State Personnel Board, which meets at 10:30 a.m. at 801 Capitol Mall to determine whether or not to give them the heave-ho.
California has already pruned more than 700 obsolete state job titles from its roll of thousands since 2015, part of a broader effort to reorganize and modernize the civil service.
But not everyone is so eager to see the classifications go. Many were bargained by unions or governors as pay raises by another name, while others have been added by departments to control their own hiring. Dozens of letters were submitted to the personnel board by state agencies and unions arguing that their empty positions are still necessary.
The Prison Industries Superintendent II (Coffee Roasting and Grinding), for example, oversees the industrial supervisor in the Prison Industry Authority’s program at Mule Creek State Prison, where inmates package instant coffee for sale to state and local agencies. In its letter, the authority said it is currently hiring to fill the vacancy and has made three formal offers to candidates in the past year, all of whom turned it down.
WORTH REPEATING: “We all know the system is failing black kids. We all know that.” – Margaret Fortune, president and CEO of Fortune School, a Sacramento-based charter school operator, at a Capitol rally in support of charter schools
BY THE NUMBERS: Campaign spending for and against the 17 measures on the November ballot totaled $489.1 million, according to financial disclosure forms filed this week, the most ever for a single election in California. The soaring figure was driven particularly by expensive fights over Proposition 61, the unsuccessful initiative to limit how much the state could pay for prescription drugs, and Proposition 56, which raised the tobacco tax by $2 per pack. Each of those campaigns topped $100 million.
VIDEO OF THE DAY: Former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa weighed in on his potential opponents in the 2018 governor race.
WE DON’T NEED NO EDUCATION: How should schools and teachers be evaluated to determine whether they are giving students a good education? It’s a never-ending battle. Cassandra Guarino, a professor of education and public policy at UC Riverside, will review the evolution of quality assessment efforts from No Child Left Behind to Common Core, noon at the UC Center Sacramento on K Street.
MUST READ: California is trying to figure out how to regulate legal marijuana – and everyone wants a hit of what is expected to be billions of dollars in revenue.