(courtesy of Delta Stewardship Council)

Changing Tide

Turf and money battles continue over California water reform

It’s been about 20 months since lawmakers and former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger breathlessly announced a historic agreement called the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Reform Act of 2009, an ambitious plan to overhaul the state’s antiquated water system. Much has changed since then, but much more is still on the way.

Jun 30, 2011 Rich Ehisen

Party Planning

Setting the table for the capital cluster

State trade groups generate nearly $90 billion in annual spending nationwide through education and training programs, meeting products and services, and local, state and federal taxes, according to the California Society of Association Executives. Roughly 15 percent of that is spent right here in California, and much of it winds up in the till of the hospitality industry.

May 31, 2011 Christine Calvin

Been and Jerry

The new adventures of an old governor

We’ve had several months of the new administration of Gov. Jerry Brown. There are remarkable similarities — and a few notable differences — between the Gov. Brown of 2011 and the governor Californians first saw 36 years ago.

Mar 31, 2011 Tony Quinn

Halls of Justice

Crumbling courthouses create construction opportunities

Since the founding of our state, courthouses have been the focal point of many communities. They are at once tangible symbols of the rule of law, monuments to our democratic ideals and the primary point of contact between the citizens and the judicial system. And, they are all but falling apart.

Mar 31, 2011 Bill Romanelli

Stockton Record

A city manager on budget shortfalls and solutions

Bob Deis has been Stockton city manager for less than a year. Since coming on board last June, Deis has faced numerous challenges, most notably finding a solution to the city’s enormous budget shortfall and looming pension obligations. We sat down with him recently to discuss some of those issues and his plans to revitalize Stockton’s business climate.

Mar 1, 2011 Rich Ehisen

Recovering From Fiscal Disaster

Listen up, Governor Brown

At the end of 2010, I asked several dozen of our region’s business and thought leaders what advice they would like to give our new governor. Last month, in an open letter to Gov. Jerry Brown, I summarized their thoughts on how the new administration should change important areas of state governance. This month, the same group of local leaders offer ideas on how to recover from our current fiscal disaster.

Feb 1, 2011 Winnie Comstock-Carlson

Worker Roulette?

Local attorneys sit tight, await recession's end

Many outsiders watching the Capital Region legal scene may feel like they need a scorecard to keep track of attorneys. But, save for a few notable shifts and a historic closure, local lawyers are following suit of other businesses in a recession: hunkering down and staying put.

Feb 1, 2011 Anne Gonzalez

A Look at 2011

It will be the best of times, and the worst of times

Economically, 2011 may go down as a year with a split personality. Sacramento is looking at a much different year than most of the country. Small businesses face a more divergent climate than large companies. Even among small businesses, many have more confidence in their own prospects than in the economy as a whole.

Feb 1, 2011 Robert Celaschi

Red Rover, Red Rover

Population shifts call for redistricting

The most important political event for the Central Valley in 2011 will be the April release of new California population figures by the U.S. Census Bureau. For the first time in our history, the state is growing no faster than the nation.

Jan 1, 2011 Tony Quinn

Safety Knot

Cities scrape for police, fire funding

Cities nationwide have welcomed hoards of elected officials who will have little time to celebrate their appointments before confronting daunting financial challenges. Among Capital Region cities, public safety budgets and all they encompass — cuts, swollen pensions, potential new fees, layoffs and department closures — have become the most contentious load to bear.

Jan 1, 2011 Christine Calvin

United We Sit

Designers pull government agencies together under one roof

If you’ve ever had to plan an office move, or even live through one, consider the challenge of doing 10 to 20 at the same time. That’s the task facing architects, construction companies and interior designers when governments consolidate far-flung operations under a single roof.

Dec 1, 2010 Robert Celaschi

Growing up Urban

The political climate of land-use planning

For decades, devising a clear solution for California’s suburban sprawl and ensuing car culture has been the Holy Grail for smart-growth advocates. One trip on any of the Golden State’s perpetually clogged roadways during peak hours shows how ineffective most of those efforts have been.

Oct 31, 2010 Rich Ehisen