News Stories

August 21, 2015

California consumers have more choices than ever to go green when flipping the switch. But that’s not true for big energy users such as businesses and institutions looking to buy renewable power in a major way.

A pending state bill would give these major customers more freedom to buy green power, a change that should stimulate California’s widening energy market as policy makers hunt for more answers to climate change. The measure, SB286, would loosen the state’s energy market that now largely runs through three major utilities.

August 20, 2015

By Bob Hertzberg
Special to the Mercury News

This is an exciting time for government openness. Open data policy, like making public
information more accessible on department websites, has come slowly to government.
However, there is a growing understanding that there's great value in improving data
practices.

By Kyle Glazier

August 19, 2015

PHOENIX - The players at the table working to boost California's transportation funding began showing their cards Wednesday, when lawmakers in Sacramento began consideration of several bond-related propositions aimed at raising infrastructure revenue.

Gov. Jerry Brown in June called a special legislative session on transportation funding in a proclamation that cited $5.7 billion of annual unfunded road infrastructure repair requirements.

Gas taxes, the traditional source of road project funding, bring in only $2.3 billion a year.

By Sen. Bob Hertzberg

August 19, 2015

NOTE: This op--ed ran in the Los Angeles and San Francisco Daily Journals, California's largest legal news provider. Link to their main Web site HERE:

Assembly Bill 1100 would raise filing fee for ballot measures to $2,000

August 18, 2015

BY ALEXEI KOSEFF

akoseff@sacbee.com

Opponents of the higher fee called it an attack on direct democracy.

August 18, 2015

By Patrick McGreevy

State lawmakers on Monday voted to increase the cost of filing a proposed ballot initiative in California from $200 to $2,000, in response to a failed bid for an anti-gay measure to appear before voters next year.

The state attorney general rejected as unconstitutional the "Sodomite Suppression Act" proposed by a Southern California attorney. It would have called for the execution of gays and lesbians.

August 14, 2015

Legislators return from recess next week to consider sweeping environmental laws, a $13 minimum wage and fundamental changes to the tax code. The Legislature has until Sept. 11 to move bills to the governor. Gov. Jerry Brownthen has one month, until Oct. 11, to approve new laws. 

Fee would go from $200 to $2,000

August 8, 2015

For $200, Californians with varying ideas can propose a measure that might wind up on the ballot.

One current proposal would call California’s chief executive president instead of governor. Another would mandate displaying the state flag more prominently at a variety of events and public buildings, including above the U.S. flag when they are flown together on the same flagpole. A third would create a panel of officials to explore the possibility of California claiming its autonomy from the country.

Air National Guard unit is in Sen. Hertzberg's district

August 4, 2015

Inside a darkened armory at the Air National Guard Station in Van Nuys, Calif., – in a space the size of a gymnasium — there's a horseshoe of computers. A projector casts an image on a concrete wall. It's a real time cyberattack map.

"These are attacks that are happening across the globe, back and forth cyberattacks," says Airman Christopher Watkins. "As you can see, we kind of get attacked a lot."

State Senator Robert Hertzberg is a scheduled guest speaker

August 4, 2015

Public safety officials across the country are taking time to reach out to the communities they serve as part of today’s National Night Out.

Communities are holding block parties, barbecuing and organizing caravans around local neighborhoods, with police officers and firefighters bringing out SWAT equipment and fire trucks for the kids to explore. And homeowners are encouraged to leave their porch lights on to promote neighborhood safety.

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