News

May 31, 2017

SACRAMENTO – The Senate today passed legislation by Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, to prevent the automatic suspension of driver’s licenses for people who are unable to pay fines or fees for minor traffic tickets and require courts to determine violators’ ability to pay before setting fine amounts.

May 31, 2017

SACRAMENTO – The Senate today passed legislation by Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, to stop schools from publicly shaming or embarrassing students by either denying them lunch or providing a snack instead because their parents haven’t paid lunch fees.

May 31, 2017

SACRAMENTO – The Senate today passed legislation by Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, to reform California’s cash bail system and replace a pretrial process that often forces people of modest means to remain in jail until a court can determine their innocence or guilt but allows the wealthy to go free.

May 30, 2017

SACRAMENTO – The Senate today passed legislation by Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, that jump starts California’s six-year-old, rigs-to-reefs program.

SB 588 establishes a clear process for how the program will be funded by oil companies and how the state will decide if a decommissioned oil rig can be converted into an artificial reef instead of fully removing it from the ocean.

May 30, 2017

SACRAMENTO – The Senate today passed legislation by Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, to improve protections for whistleblowers so they can keep their jobs while retaliation complaints against their employers are being investigated.

May 25, 2017

SACRAMENTO – Legislation by Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, that would reform California’s cash bail system, reduce traffic ticket fines for people who can’t afford them and prevent school lunch shaming passed the Senate Appropriations Committee today.

May 23, 2017

By Marisa Lagos and Sukey Lewis

Every year in California, nearly 1 million people are arrested and booked into jail.

Their freedom before they go to trial often hinges on a century-old money bail system that critics say favors the rich: If you can pay, you’re free — and if you can’t, you’re stuck behind bars.

May 22, 2017

There's a pizzeria in Chicago that prides itself on authentic ingredients. The flour for the dough comes from Italy. The pomodoro and fresh mozzarella? Also from Italy. The olive oil drizzled on top? Straight from Tuscany. Then the pies get cooked in a brick oven that's white with green mosaic tiles, which spell out "recipe for a change."

After all, that's exactly what the cooking program at Cook County Jail aspires to be.

May 15, 2017

SACRAMENTO – Legislation by Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, to encourage transit agencies to set up their own administrative processes for citing and fining juveniles who ride without paying fare was passed today by the Senate.

SB 614 was approved by the Senate on a 38-0 vote and goes next to the Assembly for consideration.

May 15, 2017

Today’s introduction comes from Thomas Fuller, our San Francisco bureau chief.

A bill in the State Legislature would make California the first state to assess traffic fines by income level: The poorer you are, the less you would pay.

The sponsor of the bill, State Senator Robert M. Hertzberg, says California’s traffic fines are “ridiculously high” and unaffordable for low-income families. Many fines don’t get paid.

“It’s like trying to get blood out of a turnip,” Mr. Hertzberg, a Democrat, said. “It doesn’t work.”