Morning Splash: 1/11/11, Budget Reaction, PG&E Pipelines
Good morning. It’s January 11, 2011, converted by many to the magical-looking 1/11/11 (or 11.1.11, maybe, if you’re doing dates Euro-style). Significance? You tell us. We’re waiting for 11.11.11, Nigel Tufnel Day, to get excited about date numerology.
In the news and close by:
- PG&E halts intentional gas line pressure spikes (San Francisco Chronicle)
Pacific Gas and Electric Co. said Monday it has suspended the practice of boosting pressure on its natural-gas transmission lines to the legal limit, an announcement it made one day after The Chronicle reported that such a spike might have weakened the San Bruno pipeline before it ruptured.
- Jerry Brown rolls the dice with pain-filled budget plan (Los Angeles Times)
“We’ve had 10 years of gimmicks and tricks,” he said. “All of that puts us in a mess. It’s not honest, and we are now going to make it transparent as possible…. It is better to take our medicine now and get the state on a balanced footing.” Brown put his plan on the table at a time when state government is hamstrung, short on cash and limited in its choices. Fellow Democrats and entrenched interests who for years have fought some of the same cuts and taxes seemed to acknowledge that if Brown fails, the consequences will be dire.
- Brown to Redevelopment: Your Days Are Numbered (newballpark.org)
Brown wants to “phase out” redevelopment agencies and start taking back $1.7 Billion in tax increment annually. Who would this impact? Let’s put together a list: San Jose’s plan for an A’s ballpark; Oakland’s plan for an A’s ballpark; the 49ers’ plan to build a stadium in Santa Clara; and the Raiders’ proposed new Oakland stadium. …”
- California colleges, universities face deep cuts (San Francisco Chronicle)
Hundreds of thousands of students are likely to be turned away from California State University and the community colleges next year, while the University of California won’t rule out raising tuition – again. … Brown’s proposed 2011-12 budget gives UC – for the first time – less money from the state than it gets from student tuition: $2.6 billion versus $2.8 billion. To many, that represents the privatization of the nation’s premier public university system. …
- Five ways the budget could affect you (Sacramento Bee)
The effects of Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposed budget would be felt throughout California. Here are five examples.
Ed Lee: Budget top concern for Newsom mayoral pick (San Francisco Chronicle)
Finding a new police chief, tackling a $360 million budget deficit and fulfilling historic expectations. How’s that for a to-do list for your first day on a job you never sought? City Administrator Ed Lee, expected to be appointed by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors today to serve out the final year of newly sworn-in Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom’s term as mayor, is taking it in stride.
- Chiu, Lee Talk About Repairing Relationship Between Mayor, Supervisors (SF Weekly)
After the meeting with Lee on Monday afternoon, Chiu said he believes the two agree that it’s time to turn a new leaf; they both want the relationship between the mayor and the Board of Supervisors to change for the better. Newsom maintained an acrimonious relationship with some members of the Board of Supervisors during his seven years in office, namely Supervisor Chris Daly and Former Supervisor Aaron Peskin. The two Newsom critics have at times gone out of their way to blast the former mayor publicly. …
- Gascon Moves Into New Office, Explains Why He Wanted to Be DA (SF Appeal)
“The reason why I have accepted this is because I believe that it will offer me an opportunity to continue the work that I have been engaged in for the last six or seven years, and it has to do with the reforming of the criminal justice system,” Gascon said. Until now, Gascon said, he had primarily viewed such reform through the prism of the Police Department. “This will give me the opportunity to bring policing and prosecution closer together,” he said.
- Report targets waste, inefficiency in agricultural water use (Los Angeles Times)
In a report that will be presented next week to the State Water Resources Control Board, Delta Watermaster Craig Wilson wades into a potentially explosive area of water law: the “reasonable use” doctrine in the state Constitution. The principle, reinforced in statute and court decisions, holds that a water right does not include the right to waste water and mandates that “the water resources of the state be put to beneficial use.”
- That’s Why I Came (The Atlantic)
Novelist Michael Chabon on adopted hometowns, Berkeley and Oakland:
For the past couple of years I’ve been working on a novel about–my hometown, I was about to say, meaning Berkeley, California, where I’ve lived since the spring of 1997, where three of my four kids were born, where I wrote most of The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay and every book after that. But the new book–it’s called Telegraph Avenue–is actually set as fully in Oakland as in Berkeley. Each of those cities (Watson and Mycroft respectively to the showboating Holmes of San Francisco) has its own distinct character, or set of characteristics, its unique inheritance of grace and problems. Yet the line between them, a block and a half from my house, ambles. It blurs. At times it all but vanishes–or maybe, generalizing wildly, Oakland with its history of tough-mindedness and Berkeley with its mania for insight, together conspire to expose the arbitrariness of all such hand-drawn borderlines.
- Pants-Free BART Ride Comes Off Well (The Bay Citizen)
In case you missed it, (Sunday) was the annual No Pants Subway Ride event — or, in the Bay Area version, the No Pants BART Ride. The always-amusing Muni Diaries has all the details, well actually all the pictures of public transit riders almost in their altogether.