State lawmakers are asking what the California Public Utilities Commission is doing to rein in back-channel communications with the utilities they regulate. The issue of behind-the-scene e-mails between regulators and utility companies has raised questions about whether there’s an inappropriately cozy relations between utility companies and the officials who are supposed to oversee them. Christopher Martinez reports from Sacramento.
Tuesday, March 3, 2015
A pioneering, new concept for homeless housing was officially launched in Fresno Sunday. The Eco-Village Project is headed by a world renowned architect and powered by local volunteers. The project promotes humane housing in a green and sustainable setting for people who might otherwise inhabit the streets. The project also aims to facilitate vocational training and access to health services. There are several thousand homeless people in Fresno. A city program provides housing units for a few hundred of them. Last year the city dismantled the last of the unofficial homeless encampments. Pacifica’s Vic Bedoian Reports from Fresno.
Monday, March 2, 2015
Community colleges students from across the state gathered at the state capitol for their annual “March in March”, a gathering to advocate on behalf of the 2.1 million students in the nation’s largest higher education system. They’re calling for budget restorations, support for undocumented immigrant “dreamers”, and for more tax support for public higher education, including changes to California’s Prop 13 property tax law. Christopher Martinez reports from Sacramento.
Supporters of the San Francisco Mission district's housing collective Station 40 gathered today in support of residents and the soul of the neighborhood. Scott Baba reports.
Saturday, February 28, 2015
Around 80 people gathered at the Albany Bulb today to survey the many art installations built by former residents of the Bulb and to engage with the location's history. Participants in the "Refuge in Refuse" tour used their smartphones to uncover the stories of the Bulb's numerous makeshift dwellings and towering sculptures, which now lack people to maintain them. In May of 2013, the Albany City Council voted to turn over the East Bay peninsula, a former landfill that became the living space of dozens of people for twenty years, to the California State Park system. In April of 2014, around thirty Bulb residents were evicted from their self-made homes and placed in temporary housing scattered across the Bay Area or simply left to fend for themselves on the streets. Almost a year after the eviction, the legacy of the Bulb clearly lives on. KPFA's Andrew Klein has more.
Thursday, February 26, 2015
State lawmakers are looking at proposals to re-invest state money in workforce training programs that have been slashed since the great recession. Governor Jerry Brown has proposed putting 800 million dollars in new money toward programs aimed at training workers to meet future workforce needs. It’s a complex debate that includes issues affecting public schools, community colleges, and local programs aimed at tailoring education programs to meet future job needs. Christopher Martinez reports from Sacramento.
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
State lawmakers are looking at ways California can prepare for the impacts of global warming. Many of the state’s actions on global warming have focused on preventing or reducing climate change, but the state will also have to deal with effects that will impact air quality, food, and public health, especially affecting low-income communities that are most vulnerable to climate change. Christopher Martinez reports from Sacramento.
Tuesday, February 24, 2015
The family of a Stockton man killed by police in January has filed a 10 million dollar lawsuit alleging unreasonable use of force. 36-year-old Matautu Nuu was shot and killed by Stockton police after he waved a hammer at a police dog sent to subdue him. The lawsuit says Stockton police puts “a greater value on the life of a dog than on the life of another human being.” Christopher Martinez reports.
Monday, February 23, 2015
San Francisco needs to improve transportation for workers who have jobs outside the traditional 9 to 5 workday. That’s according to a new report called “The Other 9 to 5” submitted to a Board of Supervisors committee. It’s an issue that affects almost 60 thousand people who work in hotels, restaurants and bars, and other late night jobs in the city. Christopher Martinez reports from San Francisco.
Tenants at risk of eviction joined with housing activists on the steps of San Francisco city hall on Monday to ask city supervisors for protection from building owners looking to turn their residences into more profitable commercial spaces. Scott Baba reports.