Morning Splash: SJ City Council Caps Pot Clubs at 10; SJ Dog Park Closed Due to Possible Poisoning
- San Jose City Council limits pot clubs to 10 (San Jose Mercury News)
A sharply divided San Jose City Council voted Tuesday to limit the number of medical marijuana dispensaries to 10, after more than two hours of debate that seesawed between calls for an outright ban and proposals to permit a larger number of clubs… The council must take a final vote to approve the new regulations. And city administrators said a decision on which collectives make the cut is probably at least six months off.
- Proposed sewage plant not ‘gold plated’ say city officials – Plan gets go-ahead from SJ Council (San Jose Mercury News)
The San Jose City Council voted Tuesday to move forward on a $1.8 billion project to rebuild the city’s aging wastewater treatment plant, even as city officials sought to assure the public that the plan is not an excessively expensive overreach of public money. “I have to ask the question: Is this the gold-plated version?” San Jose City Councilman Don Rocha asked during an afternoon council meeting at which the project was discussed. “There is absolutely nothing gold-plated about this plan,” responded John Stufflebean, director of the city’s Environmental Services Department.
- Obama turns Facebook Live into a political stage (San Jose Mercury News)
Facebook’s live streaming video channel began almost by accident, as a way for software programmers stranded last year by the Icelandic volcano eruption to watch the social networking site’s annual gathering for developers. Since then, the service — now called Facebook Live — has become one of the Web’s largest video channels, with a record 1.2 million people watching a session with pop singer Katy Perry. On Wednesday, it becomes the biggest political stage of all, as Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg moderates a town hall event with President Barack Obama at the company’s Palo Alto headquarters that will stream live over both Facebook and the White House website.
- Mercury climbing in food chain, new study shows (SF Chronicle)
Levels of mercury have risen dramatically in some Pacific seabirds in the past 120 years, suggesting that industrial emissions containing the poisonous metal associated with fetal and brain damage may be climbing the food chain and endangering sensitive species, according to a new study. While the study did not specifically address human-mercury exposure, there is rising concern among scientists that more people are consuming the heavy metal through tainted seafood, where the compound is known as methylmercury.
- David Campos pushes garbage-deal competition in San Francisco (SF Examiner)
An effort is under way to open up San Francisco’s garbage hauling business to competition for the first time in 80 years. Recology has for decades operated as a monopoly hauling San Francisco garbage, and the company is on the verge of expanding its hold on The City’s trash business. The company is expected to win approval of a $112 million 10-year contract to dispose of The City’s trash in a landfill it owns 130 miles away in Yuba County. Currently the trash ends up in the Altamont landfill, operated by Waste Management.
- GOP’s big push to protect Defense of Marriage Act (SF Chronicle)
House Republicans have hired an Atlanta law firm to defend the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, risking their budget-cutting message to support a law that denies same-sex couples benefits given to heterosexual married couples. Rep. Dan Lungren, R-Gold River (Sacramento County) and chairman of the House Administration Committee, signed the contract Thursday with Paul Clement, a partner in the King and Spaulding firm who was solicitor general under President George W. Bush. The contract, which caps the total cost at $500,000, does not require a House vote.
- Judge allows large portions of video mocking journalist’s death to be played for jurors (Oakland Tribune)
Large portions of a secretly recorded police video on which former Your Black Muslim leader Yusuf Bey IV laughed about the 2007 killing of journalist Chauncey Bailey, threatened to kill a police officer and implicated himself in a kidnapping and torture case can be shown to jurors, a judge ruled Tuesday. The jury in Bey IV and co-defendant Antoine Mackey’s triple murder trial could see the video as early as Wednesday, after other witnesses testify in the case.
- San Jose dog park closed while awaiting tests (San Jose Mercury News)
A popular San Jose dog park has been closed until tests determine whether a dog that got sick there Saturday afternoon and died within an hour was poisoned at the park. Park officials said there were no other reports of dogs getting sick at the Roy M. Butcher Dog Park on Camden Avenue over the weekend. But until the necropsy on Jennifer Tian’s beloved Colin, a Shiba Inu, is completed, they wanted to be cautious.
- S.F. summer school program saved by windfall (SF Chronicle)
Summer school is making a comeback in San Francisco this year thanks to an unexpected $250,000 from the city’s coffers. The money will cover the summer salaries of 30 teachers and give 900 ninth-grade students who failed English or algebra a second chance to keep up with classmates.
- Richmond officer implicated in scheme leaves force (Contra Costa Times)
An officer accused of arming teens employed by his unauthorized private security business left the force this week while a fellow officer and alleged conspirator remains on leave and awaits a hearing with the city, police said. Danny Harris, who officials said was set to be fired, parted ways with the Richmond Police Department, avoiding the disciplinary “Skelly hearing” that Officer Ray Thomas is scheduled to have, police said. The officers were implicated in a scheme to supply guns to members of the department’s youth volunteer corps while employing them as security guards in a side business at city apartment complexes.
- Oakland zoo plan – environmentalists see irony (SF Chronicle)
The Oakland Zoo is on the verge of getting approval for a decades-old dream to build an exhibit to celebrate California’s native wildlife and terrain. But environmentalists say the zoo’s plans to expand and build bigger buildings than the ones approved in the 1990s would ruin the idyllic landscape of Knowland Park.
- Public To Test New (Cleaner) BART Seats (Bay Citizen)
BART riders will get a chance to sit in the possibly much cleaner seats of the future. A “seating lab” with different types of seats, ranging from hard plastic and vinyl to soft fabric, will be open to the public on Monday, according to BART spokesman Linton Johnson.
- Mayor Johnson to brief Sacramento regional officials on Kings issue (Sacramento Bee)
Elected officials from across the region will get their first taste of the latest fight to keep the Kings in town today. Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson has called a morning meeting with officials from across the six-county region to update them on what is being done to prove the area is a viable market for the NBA.
- Sonoma County Supes approve disputed fee hikes (Santa Rosa Press Democrat)
Over the objections of onlookers Tuesday, the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors approved two controversial items — higher rental rates for the county’s seven veterans buildings and fee increases for planning and engineering activities. Supervisors also approved fee hikes and new fees across seven different departments, including Regional Parks, the Sheriff’s Office, Probation and Health Services departments. The fees take effect July 1.
- Schwarzenegger defends Nuñez sentence reduction, slams Whitman (LA Times)
Former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger justified his eleventh-hour sentence reduction for the son of a fellow Sacramento politician, saying “of course you help a friend” and that he felt good about the decision. Schwarzenegger came under heavy fire for the move, which took place hours before he left office in January. In May, former Assembly Speaker Fabian Nuñez’s son Esteban accepted a plea deal in the death of Luis Santos, a 22-year-old college student. Schwarzenegger decided to reduce the sentence from 16 years to seven years, which infuriated prosecutors as well as the victim’s family, which was not notified beforehand.
- San Jose Sharks rally from 4-0 deficit to stun Los Angeles Kings in overtime, 6-5
Who says they don’t have shootouts in the playoffs? Trailing by four goals early in the second period Tuesday night, the Sharks became only the fourth team in NHL history to overcome that big a deficit to win a Stanley Cup playoff game when Devin Setoguchi’s goal at 3:09 of overtime gave San Jose a near-miraculous 6-5 victory over the Los Angeles Kings.