News

It's past time for lawmakers to reform the state's volatile, unpredictable tax system

June 8, 2015

By the Times Editorial Board

The California tax code is like a handyman's rickety stepladder, as untrustworthy as it is essential. It's also proving to be hard to fix. Two blue-ribbon commissions have proposed sweeping reforms to shore up the tax code's weaknesses in recent years, only to get lost amid the Legislature's struggle to make ends meet during the downturn. Nevertheless, there may be no time like the present for lawmakers to try to make the state's revenue more reliable.

By Josh Richman/Bay Area News Group/Los Angeles News Group

June 8, 2015

California drivers can now appear in court to challenge their traffic tickets without paying a fine first, under a new rule adopted unanimously by the state's Judicial Council on Monday.

San Diego Democrat earns praise for inclusive approach

June 6, 2015

By Chris Nichols

In her first year as Speaker of the California Assembly, San Diegan Toni Atkins has won praise from colleagues both inside and away from the Capitol as a leader who seeks substance over style and teamwork rather than “high drama.”

Atkins, 52, a former San Diego City Council member, hasn’t escaped criticism in Sacramento. She dealt earlier this year with conflict-of-interest questions tied to her support for affordable housing and the controversial removal of a fellow San Diego Democrat from an Assembly committee.

Measures are priorities for end of session

June 4, 2015

SACRAMENTO – Cutting traffic fines, helping the poor and turning around abysmal voter turnout will be among the key proposed laws Sen. Bob Hertzberg will be pushing after their passage this week by the state Senate.

SB 350 by Senate Pro Tem Kevin de Leon passes Senate

June 4, 2015

To watch, listen to Sen. Hertzberg's testimony, click on the link below.

By a MetNews Staff Writer

June 4, 2015

A bill that would allow the State Bar to collect donations from members to fund a student loan repayment program for public interest attorneys was unanimously approved yesterday by the state Senate.

SB 134, by Sen. Robert Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, was previously approved by the Judiciary and Appropriations committees, also without a dissenting vote. The bill next moves to the Assembly.

If the bill becomes law, an option to donate to the Public Interest Attorney Loan  Repayment Program could be added to State Bar dues statements as soon as next year.

Sen. Hertzberg: “Markets change. We transform. That’s who we are. Welcome to America, baby.”

June 4, 2015

By Jessica Calefati/Bay Area News Groups/Los Angeles News Group

Sen. Bob Hertzberg seeks to boost civic participation

June 3, 2015

SACRAMENTO – In an effort to improve turnout, all registered voters in Los Angeles County would receive vote-by-mail ballots under a Sen. Bob Hertzberg bill that today received Senate approval.

Sen. Hertzberg: "There is not honor in going out and working hard and then you got to go beg for" help.

June 3, 2015

As labor unions lead a nationwide push for a higher minimum wage, the California Senate on Monday approved raising the state's required hourly rate to $11 in 2016 and $13 in 2017.

Under Senate Bill 3, which passed by a vote of 23-15, California's minimum wage would also begin increasing annually in 2019 based on inflation. The measure heads next to the Assembly.

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