CALMatters | Mountain View Online |

CALmatters is a Sacramento-based nonpartisan, nonprofit journalism venture committed to explaining how California's state Capitol works and why it matters. It works with more than 130 media partners throughout the state that have long, deep relationships with their local audiences, including Embarcadero Media (publisher of the Palo Alto Weekly, Mountain View Voice, Pleasanton Weekly and The Almanac in Menlo Park and their websites.)

Here are the most recent stories reported by CALmatters' team of journalists:


My turn: The Legislature must make hard choices to avert PG&E bankruptcy

Gov. Gavin Newsom needs legislators to begin the uncomfortable work of making changes to our infrastructure, our policies, and yes, our liability laws, so that we can build a state meets the current challenges of climate change while reducing its impact in the future.

Mon, Jan 21, 2019 8:30 am
My turn: What I learned from the last time PG&E went bankrupt

PG&E's bankruptcy in 2001 and the one to come are at once similar and very different. But we did learn lessons the hard way in 2000 and 2001. Having lived through the last bankruptcy, my suggestion to policymakers is to slow down and conduct a thorough analysis to fully understand the nature of the problem.

Sun, Jan 20, 2019 8:30 am
Two crises point to a larger societal ill

A strike by Los Angeles Unified School District teachers and Pacific Gas and Electric's announced intention to declare bankruptcy are symptoms of a larger malady of arrogance and irresponsibility by large institutions.

Sun, Jan 20, 2019 12:01 am
My turn: What Trump could have said from the Oval Office

What if Donald Trump had used those nine minutes, or even a portion of them, to convey a different message, one that reminded us of what binds us rather than what separates us, reminded us to help those, as the song says, who are walking on the boulevard of broken dreams? What if?

Sat, Jan 19, 2019 8:30 am
My turn: Air board’s plan to raise fees threatens our economy and climate goals

The California Air Resources Board has adopted an aggressive regulation, baking in higher consumer and industry costs in the hope of squeezing out more emission reductions. This approach not only flouts the express will of the Legislature, but undermines the moral authority for engaging in state-level greenhouse gas regulation.

Fri, Jan 18, 2019 11:59 am
A PG&E bankruptcy, climate change and the shutdown

Good morning, California. Gov. Gavin Newsom and Jennifer Siebel Newsom, their four kids, two dogs and one rabbit won’t live in the Governor’s Mansion after all, The Sacramento Bee reports.  Instead, they’ll move a few miles from downtown Sacramento to what Realtors called a “sophisticated Santa Barbara Montecito styled home” with a wine cellar, pool, […]

Fri, Jan 18, 2019 4:30 am
California’s thriving LGBT caucus: Because sometimes, lawmaking is personal

A quarter-century after California elected Sheila Kuehl as its first openly gay or lesbian legislator, its LGBT caucus has a series of successes and a to-do list for the future. Said Kuehl: “You don’t get any respect unless you’re in the room where it happens. And that is symbolic sometimes but it is noticed by society—because you’re making policy for your community as well as for everybody else.”

Thu, Jan 17, 2019 3:57 pm
My turn: Finally, California seems determined to end homelessness

If our government is going to truly prioritize housing all Californians, cities and counties must be required to put a significant portion of any incentive funding from the state toward directly supporting the production of homes at levels affordable to people most in need.

Thu, Jan 17, 2019 9:47 am
Report for America Enables a Unique Journalism Collaboration

Report for America, the national service program that places journalists in under-covered communities, is funding three reporters for an ambitious effort focused on California’s worst-in-the-nation poverty rate and the growing divide between the state’s rich and poor. The project brings together CALmatters, McClatchy’s five California news organizations and the 25 Digital First newsrooms across the […]

Thu, Jan 17, 2019 8:25 am
Gig economy, independent truckers and #MeToo claims

Good morning, California. “In broad terms, this is about much more than pay. This is about the soul of our schools and the way L.A. does or does not build a culture to collectively invest in our future.”—Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, as a strike by teachers continued against the Los Angeles Unified School District. […]

Thu, Jan 17, 2019 4:30 am
Should California revive redevelopment?

Seven years ago, Jerry Brown and the Legislature abolished redevelopment. There are efforts to bring it back, but Brown's successor as governor, Gavin Newsom, has thrown cold water on the idea.

Thu, Jan 17, 2019 12:01 am
State tax reforms or state tax increases?

California's budget is dangerously dependent on taxing a relative handful of wealthy people. Newly inaugurated Gov. Gavin Newsom says he will work on tax reform.

Wed, Jan 16, 2019 12:01 am
About that giant, surplus-plus budget surplus

The governor put the surplus into three buckets: $3 billion for education and social services, $8.5 billion in one-time spending and $10 billion to build what he is calling “budget resiliency.”

Tue, Jan 15, 2019 4:12 pm
Fixing the strike, keeping PG&E’s lights on and selling weed

Good morning, California. “It’s why I took the job. By the way, we will get through this and we will come out stronger on the other side.”—Gov. Gavin Newsom, asked how he’s feeling about dealing with the L.A. teachers’ strike and the impending bankruptcy of the state’s largest utility. Newsom: Bankruptcy doesn't mean blackoutsNewsom tackles […]

Tue, Jan 15, 2019 4:30 am
VIDEO Breakdown: Does California’s new class of legislators reflect the state?

After a political "Year of the Woman," what percentage of California's new legislature is made up of women? With Latinos a plurality of California, are they a plurality among state legislators? Who's over-represented compared to their share of the adult population? Who's under-represented by the same metric? Watch to see how these lawmakers' demographics stack up agains the state as a whole.

Mon, Jan 14, 2019 5:39 pm
PG&E bankruptcy, LAUSD strike—and it’s only Gavin Newsom’s second week

Good morning, California. Choose your crisis. California’s largest school district is set to strike, California’s largest utility is signaling bankruptcy and President Trump is threatening to divert emergency aid from California to fund his border wall. Can PG&E be saved?PG&E crews remove fire-damaged power lines in Paradise.Expect Gov. Gavin Newsom to respond quickly if, as […]

Mon, Jan 14, 2019 4:30 am
My turn: The federal shutdown could have cost me my life

Yosemite was a refuge where I could momentarily escape thoughts of petty politics and news of the day that typically consume most of my waking hours as a journalist. This time, though, a political stunt encroached into this natural refuge.

Fri, Jan 11, 2019 1:59 pm
A cautious budget with a bold housing plan

Newly inaugurated Gov. Gavin Newsom proposes his first budget, takes cautious approach to spending and outlines assault on housing shortage.

Fri, Jan 11, 2019 12:01 am
My turn: Why we must expand California’s child care system

As California looks to build the ramp that will help young people from disadvantaged backgrounds cross the opportunity gap, it is critically important that early educators fighting to give our kids a stronger future have a voice in building the system that best serves children and families. That’s why this year we at Service Employees International Union will continue our fight for legislation allowing us to form a union.

Thu, Jan 10, 2019 2:25 pm
Budget hopes, shutdown fears, Trump tweets

Newsom reveals his budget, Republicans slam Trump on FEMA threats, shutdown could worsen wildfires, CA vs. Big Pharma, DMV reinvention and why tiny toilets matter.

Thu, Jan 10, 2019 4:30 am
Newsom’s got an idea even Trump likes—will it lower California’s drug prices?

In one of his first official actions, Gov. Gavin Newsom has directed that state agencies, including the one that oversees Medi-Cal, negotiate as a block to demand prescription drug makers lower their prices. The move will make California the nation’s largest negotiator against pharmaceutical companies and could become a model for other states—if it works.

Wed, Jan 9, 2019 8:45 pm

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