Change In Accounting Rule Forces Governments To Disclose Liabilities

John Hrabe
Writer and Communications Strategist

State and local governments will no longer be allowed to hide the true costs of the long-term benefits provided to government workers. A recent change by the Governmental Accounting Standards Board, known simply by the acronym GASB, forces government bodies to be more transparent in reporting pension liabilities and long-term commitments for retiree heath care. […]

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State Assembly Approves Plan To Bring Back Kelo-Style Redevelopment

John Hrabe
Writer and Communications Strategist

Redevelopment agencies would once again have the power to seize private property for big developers under a bill that passed the California State Assembly earlier this month. Assembly Bill 2, authored by Assemblyman Luis Alejo, D-Salinas, would give local governments the power to create new entities that would have the same legal authority as redevelopment agencies. These new Community […]

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Lorena Gonzalez Leads Party Into Workers’ Comp Fight

John Hrabe
Writer and Communications Strategist

Lorena Gonzalez doesn’t shy away from a fight. After less than two years in the state Assembly, the former San Diego labor organizer has established herself as the state’s leading advocate for workers. Last year, Gonzalez successfully authored legislation to force companies – large and small – to provide paid sick leave to nearly all of their employees. This year, […]

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CA Democratic Convention: Democrats Divided on Economic Issues, Trade Pact

John Hrabe
Writer and Communications Strategist

Sen. Elizabeth Warren staked her claim as the progressive choice for president Saturday, with a rousing speech to delegates at the California Democratic Party’s state convention. The first-term Democratic Senator from Massachusetts earned a rousing applause and standing ovation from convention delegates as she blamed the country’s income inequality and decline of the middle class on Ronald […]

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Lawmakers Dismiss Efforts To Protect Property Rights From High-Speed Rail

John Hrabe
Writer and Communications Strategist

State lawmakers are forcing property owners “all aboard” the state’s high-speed rail project – whether they like it or not. This month, two state legislative panels blocked efforts by Central Valley Republican lawmakers to guarantee the property rights of those caught in the path of the the $68 billion transportation project. State Senator Andy Vidak […]

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DeMaio, Reed Team Up for 2016 Pension Fight

John Hrabe
Writer and Communications Strategist

The dynamic duo of California pension reform are teaming up in 2016. Former San Diego City Councilman Carl DeMaio and former San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed, both of whom successfully passed pension reform in their respective cities during their time in office, announced Wednesday their plans to work together on a statewide pension reform measure […]

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Veteran Lawmakers Embrace New Committee Assignments

John Hrabe
Writer and Communications Strategist

As the new class of state lawmakers settles in to their jobs, Sacramento’s old hands are getting a jump start on the 2015-16 legislative session. Each session brings a biennial reshuffling of committee assignments. But some lawmakers aren’t waiting to get acquainted with their new perches. New committee chairs have already introduced legislative proposals to increase privacy rights, change the way transportation projects are […]

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The Year the Woman Retires: California’s Aging Congressional Delegation

John Hrabe
Writer and Communications Strategist

1992 was “The Year of the Woman.” 2016 could be “The Year the Woman Retires.” U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer‘s retirement announcement earlier this month kicks off a major demographic shift in California’s congressional delegation — as aging Democratic women move closer to retirement. The numbers don’t look good for Democratic women, who, after achieving parity with […]

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Chiang Launches Program to Reclaim Lost Wages

John Hrabe
Writer and Communications Strategist

John Chiang may be gearing up for his move to the state treasurer’s office. But that doesn’t mean he’s taking an early vacation from his job as state controller. Late last month, Chiang launched a new pilot program to aid victims of wage theft in California. The new program will use the state’s Unclaimed Property Law to recover […]

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The Upside of Low Turnout

John Hrabe
Writer and Communications Strategist

This election, your vote counted double. “When it’s 50 % turnout, your voting power is doubled #math,” Paul Mitchell of Political Data Inc., the state’s top political data firm, tweeted on Election Day. Increased voting power — it’s one of several upsides to the state’s record low turnout in this month’s gubernatorial election. With fewer than […]

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