Index
Friday
Jul292016

POLITICS (National): DNC Philadalphia, Hillary Clinton, acceptance speech: "Clinton offers an optimistic vision for the future"; "Hillary Clinton Warns of 'Moment of Reckoning' in Speech Accepting Nomination"; "Hillary's Acceptance Speech Was True to Her -- And That's the Bad News"; "Two conventions, one vast gulf: Republicans and Democrats appear to be speaking to different countries" ....

***2016 presidential election, DNC, Philadelphia, Hillary Clinton acceptance speech....

* Los Angeles Times (David Lauter):  "Two conventions, one vast gulf: Republicans and Democrats appear to be speaking to different countries"

* POLITICO (Jeff Greenfield):  "Hillary's Acceptance Speech Was True to Her--And That's the Bad News" - "Take me or leave me, the Democratic nominee seemed to say. I'm not going to inspire you, but I'm better than Trump."

* Washington Post:  "Clinton offers an optimistic vision for the future"

* New York Times:  "Hillary Clinton Warns of 'Moment of Reckoning' in Speech Accepting Nomination"

Friday
Jul292016

SACRAMENTO: California Assembly, appetitite for "institutional reform"?: Commentary (Dan Walters), "Will California Public Utilitiles Commission get the reform message?" .... 

* Sacramento Bee (Dan Walters):  "Will California Public Utilities Commission get the reform message?" - From the Bee:

The California Assembly has shown a certain appetite for institutional reform this year – noteworthy because it happens so rarely in the Capitol.

One example is the Assembly’s refusal to approve a routine increase in State Bar dues without long-overdue structural changes in the quasi-public agency that licenses and supposedly regulates the legal profession. It passed a fairly strong State Bar reform bill, only to see the legal establishment, including Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye, persuade key senators to stall action.

An even more important example is the Assembly’s strongly bipartisan, 61-9 vote in June to overhaul the California Public Utilities Commission. The PUC, like the State Bar, has become arrogantly insular, riven by scandal and too cozy with the huge utility monopolies it is supposed to regulate. Assembly Constitutional Amendment 11, carried by Assemblyman Mike Gatto, D-Los Angeles, would have authorized the Legislature to reallocate the PUC’s duties, and, as Gallo said, “treat the PUC like any other executive branch agency.”

The Assembly’s overwhelming approval of ACA 11 sent a shock through the utility industry and moved Gov. Jerry Brown to embrace PUC reforms he had previously shunned. Less than a month later, Brown and legislative leaders announced a compromise that will, he said, “change how this commission does its business,” including shifting some of its regulatory duties to other agencies and tightening up the commission’s operational ethics.

While the compromise awaits final action, the PUC itself has a chance to demonstrate that it’s gotten the message ...............

Friday
Jul292016

LOCAL GOVERNMENT (San Gabriel Valley): South El Monte City Hall, bribery case: "Envelopes stuffed with cash: South El Monte mayor admits to taking bribes from a city contractor"; also, "South El Monte mayor admits to 7-year bribery scheme" ....

* Los Angeles Times:  "Envelopes stuffed with cash: South El Monte mayor admits to taking bribes from a city contractor" - From the LAT:

The mayor of South El Monte has agreed to plead guilty to a federal corruption charge, admitting that he accepted at least $45,000 in bribes from a city contractor in a scheme so entrenched that he would call if his payments were late.

Luis Aguinaga, 48, admitted that starting in 2005, he regularly accepted bribes of at least $500, with cash payments left in a bathroom in City Hall or in the passenger pocket of a car, according to the U.S. attorney’s office. The contractor handed over the bundles of cash about twice a month until 2012, when the FBI caught Aguinaga accepting money at a South El Monte hotel bathroom. 

The prosecution of Aguinaga, who was elected to the City Council in 2003 and also serves on the board of a local water agency, suggested deeper graft in the San Gabriel Valley city, with the mayor acknowledging he forwarded payments to another public official ..................

***ALSO:

* San Gabriel Valley Tribune:  "South El Monte mayor admits to 7-year bribery scheme"

Friday
Jul292016

POLITICS/URBAN AFFAIRS: Civil rights activists, generational divide?: Report/analysis, "Why the ap between old and new civil rights activists is widening" ....

* Los Angeles Times:  "Why the gap between old and new civil rights activists is widening" - From the LAT:

As waves of protesters gathered in Atlanta night after night to condemn the fatal police shootings of African American men, civil rights veteran Andrew Young stepped in to provide some encouragement – not to activists, but to police officers. “Those are some unlovable little brats out there,” the 84-year-old former Atlanta mayor and U.S. ambassador said of protesters at a recent pep talk at a police precinct. “They’re showing off. And not even with a clear message.”

Though he later apologized, Young’s remarks underscored the widening generational divide in the social justice fight. Here, in the hometown of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., a younger corps of activists is running up against stalwarts of the civil rights era. Elders have chided millennials for their attitudes, tactics and lack of concrete demands.

Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), who was beaten by Alabama state troopers on the 1965 civil rights march from Selma to Montgomery, drew heat when he tweeted: “I was beaten bloody by police officers. But I never hated them. I said, 'Thank you for your service.'”

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed also lectured protesters, invoking King as he urged the activists not to block the highway. “Dr. King would never take a freeway,” Reed told reporters. Younger activists have reacted with defiance, saying they no longer look to the old guard for leadership or inspiration.

“What does Andrew Young do for black people in Atlanta?” said 18-year-old Aurelia Williams with a shrug, a spokesman for Atlanta Black Lives Matter, standing outside a transit station as protesters gathered for another rally. “A lot of people look to Andrew Young for guidance – or they did. Now he’s just another person we’re fighting in the trenches.” ...................

Friday
Jul292016

LOCAL GOVERNMENT (Orange County): Placentia, embezzlement case, former financial manager: "Placentia recovering about $2 million from suspected embezzlement by fired finance official"; "Placentia recovered more than $4 mllion allegedly embezzled by former financial manager" ....

***Placentia, embezzlement case, former financial manager....

* Orange County Register:  "Placentia recovering about $2 million from suspected embezzlement by fired finance official"

* Los Angeles Times:  "Placentia recovered more than $4 million allegedly embezzled by former financial manager"