Index
Friday
Aug012014

POLITICS/ENVIRONMENT: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, fine, Allenco Energy Inc., release of toxic emissions: "South L.A.'s Allenco fined $99,000 over toxic emissions" ....

* Los Angeles Times:  "South L.A.'s Allenco fined $99,000 over toxic emissions" - From the LAT:

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday fined an oil operation in a South Los Angeles neighborhood $99,000 for failing to take steps to prevent release of toxic emissions. Allenco Energy Inc., which owns the 2-acre site in the University Park community near USC, was given 70 days to pay the penalty.

The fine follows an EPA investigation into the facility prompted by hundreds of complaints of noxious odors and related health effects, including respiratory ailments and chronic nosebleeds in children. The investigation found that Allenco violated federal environmental laws by failing to prepare and execute a spill prevention and control plan, and failing to submit chemical inventory forms for hazardous substances stored at the facility.

The EPA's four-month investigation ended in April after Allenco agreed to spend about $700,000 on upgrades, including certification that all flame and combustible gas detectors, fire suppression systems, atmospheric tanks, pressure vessels and piping were up to code. It also agreed to fully enclose a 30-foot-long open trench in order to prevent noxious mixtures of mostly oil and water from being exposed to the atmosphere. The company must notify the EPA that it has completed all the improvements at least 15 days before opening.

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In a separate action, the Los Angeles city attorney has filed a lawsuit accusing the company of willfully disregarding violation notices issued by oversight agencies............

Friday
Aug012014

SACRAMENTO: State Superintendent of Public Instruction, fundraising info, November runoff, Tom Torlakson, Marshall Tuck: "Fundraising is competitive in schools chief race" ....

* Los Angeles Times (PolitiCal):  "Fundraising is competitive in schools chief race" - From the LAT:

The Democrat-on-Democrat contest to be the state’s top schools official is competitive, at least from a fundraising perspective. Incumbent Tom Torlakson and challenger Marshall Tuck reported similar sums raised, spent and in the bank, in campaign finance reports filed with the state on Thursday.

Torlakson, the teachers-union-backed incumbent, reported $194,550 in the bank, with $7,611 in debt. He raised a total of $778,335 this year, and spent $1.1 million. Tuck, who bills himself as the “reform” candidate, also spent $1.1 million this year, and raised $814,580. He reported $179,913 in the bank, with $31,898 in debt.

The post of state superintendent of public instruction is officially a nonpartisan, but Torlakson and Tuck are both Democrats, albeit from different wings of the party. Torlakson almost hit 50% in the June primary election, which would have allowed him to escape a runoff in November. Even if their finances stay similar, the race could hinge on outside spending by teachers’ unions and those who question their power.

Friday
Aug012014

SACRAMENTO: Sacramento lobbying income, top California lobbying firms, $$$, first half of 2014: "Top California lobbying firms bring in big dollars in 2014" ....

* Sacramento Bee:  "Top California lobbying firms bring in big dollars in 2014" - From the Bee:

Business was good for California lobbying firms during the first half of this year. They brought in $92.6 million between January and June, disclosure reports released today show, an uptick of nearly 7 percent over the same period last year. Fights over legislative proposals to put health warnings on sodas, give a tax break to the Lockheed Martin aerospace company, further regulate ride-sharing companies and allow Californians to play poker online helped drive income for Sacramento lobbying firms.

KP Public Affairs nabbed the top spot for the first half of the year. . . . . . . .

The Sloat Higgins firm retained its position as the seventh-highest earning firm for the first half of this year. . . . . . . .

The California Strategies firm jumped from number 19 on the list last year to number 13 this year. . . . . . . .

Other firms that edged up from their positions during the same period last year include Carter Wetch & Associates, Gonzalez Quintana & Hunter, Political Solutions and Mercury Public Affairs. . . . . . . .

Interest groups spent a total of $141.5 million on lobbying during the first half of this year, an increase of 1 percent over last year. The chart above shows the 20 firms that made the most money during the period and the chart below shows the 20 interest groups that spent the most.

Friday
Aug012014

MORNING MEMOS: Oakland mayor's race, "Oakland Mayor Jean Quan lags in re-election fundraising"; Downtown Los Angeles, "Arts District's changng landscape is worrisome to longtime residents"; Sacramento County, "Sacramento Sheriff acknowledges, possession, use of cellphone surveillance technology" ....

***Various items this morning from across the spectrum of politics and/or public policy....

* San Francisco Chronicle (Matier & Ross):  "Oakland Mayor Jean Quan lags in re-election fundraising"

* Sacramento Bee:  "Sacramento Sheriff acknowledges, possession, use of cellphone surveillance  technology"

* Los Angeles Times:  "Arrts District's changing landscape is worrisome to longtme residents"

Friday
Aug012014

SACRAMENTO: November elections, fundraising: "GOP candidates for controller, secretary of state end June in debts"; also, "In little-scrutinized state races, Chiang and Jones bank millions"; "GOP, Democratic leaders pouring money into key state Senate contests" ....

***Various reports, fundraising, November elections....

* Los Angeles Times (PolitiCal):  "GOP candidates for controller, secretary of state end June in debt"

* Los Angeles Times (PolitiCal):  "In little-scrutinized state races, Chiang and Jones bank millions"

* Los Angeles Times (PolitiCal):  "GOP, Democratic leaders pouring money into key state Senate contests"