Nowadays it’s not only hip for a business to go green, it’s the law. The state of California as well as some Capital Region jurisdictions have ordinances mandating recycling.
In a nation full of hot-button issues, few are as torrid as federal health care reform. More than a year and a half since its passage, the law — officially dubbed the Affordable Care Act but derisively called “Obamacare” by its critics — is still being fought in the courts, Congress and statehouses across the country. But for all the political and legal wrangling, the law is marching forward.
California’s ongoing economic slump has been historically challenging to local governments, even in relatively affluent areas like Folsom, which has one of the highest per capita incomes in the Capital Region. We sat down recently with Folsom City Manager Kerry Miller to discuss the city’s current fiscal condition and plans it has to thrive as the economy improves.
I find myself getting hot under the collar every time I read another story or report on the pitiful state of public education in California.
Yuba County’s infrastructure was crumbling and its budget bleeding red ink when officials came up with a catching solution to their energy problems.
Looking back, it’s easy to see how some local government pension plans wound up underfunded. As described in last month’s issue, much of the blame goes to generous legislation passed during California’s boom cycles.
Builders trying to get plans approved by a city government all know the drill: Make the plans, and bring them to city hall. The city marks them up for revisions. Then you drive back to city hall, pick up the plans, send them off to consultants, make changes, print out hundreds of new pages and drive the new set of plans back to city hall or to another office or agency. Repeat. Repeat again. And maybe again.
In 1970, California’s Legislature was declared the model for America, and it was an honor well deserved.
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.
This month, California voters finally have something to celebrate — a redistricting plan that moves us a small step forward on the long journey to change the state’s dysfunctional political system.