P.M. Roundup: New Probe of Ed Lee Campaign Group; Occupy SJ Arrests; RAND Retracts Report Showing Crime Rise When Pot Dispensaries Close
We’ve been busy with the Occupy Oakland police action, but here are some other news items of note today…
- Ed Lee’s campaign supporters target of new probe (SF Chronicle)
San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón on Monday opened his second investigation into campaign activity by supporters of Mayor Ed Lee as one of Lee’s main rivals in the race alleged widespread voter fraud in Chinatown and other neighborhoods.
- Seven more arrests at Occupy San Jose; man slept on ledge (SJ Mercury News)
While it isn’t as raucous as it is in the East Bay, there were more arrests of Occupy protesters in San Jose early Tuesday, bringing the total of arrests to about two dozen since Friday, the day the city first began arresting people for camping illegally on city property.
- Two Oakland schools to split from the district (Oakland Tribune)
The faculty at two Oakland elementary schools have voted to break away from the district and convert their schools into independently run charters, a move that could cost Oakland Unified more than $4 million. Teachers and principals at ASCEND and Learning Without Limits say that as charter schools, they will have far more control over who they hire, what they teach and how, and how they spend their money. They said the schools’ founders were initially promised those conditions, but that they have eroded over time.
- Major PG&E gas line ruptures during hydro test (SF Chronicle)
A major Pacific Gas and Electric Co. gas transmission line serving the Bay Area ruptured during a pressure test Monday south of Bakersfield, just as the company was planning to boost gas levels on the pipeline to meet winter demand.
- Bay Area underwater homeowners thrown lifeline by Obama (SJ Mercury News)
President Barack Obama unveiled the latest effort Monday to bolster the troubled housing market, a plan that could help one out of five California homeowners with mortgages — and even more in the Bay Area — refinance at historically low rates. The program is designed to stabilize the housing market by lowering monthly housing payments for homeowners who are underwater or close to it, and stimulate the stumbling economy by giving those homeowners more cash to spend.
- RAND retracts report on pot dispensaries and crime (Oakland Tribune)
One of the nation’s most prominent public-policy think tanks was wiping egg from its face Monday after retracting a study it released last month challenging law enforcement’s oft-advanced claim that medical marijuana dispensaries boost neighborhood crime.
- Variety of protesters outside Obama fundraiser (SF Chronicle)
Hundreds of protesters have gathered in San Francisco’s South of Market area this morning for President Obama’s fundraising luncheon, all speaking out on a variety of the president’s policies.
- Another Hells Angel funeral slated for Oak Hill cemetery, but this one will be private (SJ Mercury News)
Police are gearing up for potential violence at a biker funeral in San Jose’s Oak Hill Memorial Park on Saturday, two weeks after Hells Angel Steve Tausan was gunned down at the very same cemetery while attending a fellow biker’s burial.
- Bank Threatened in Pot Club Crackdown (Bay Citizen)
…U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag has sent letters to the landlords of pot clubs located near schools, ordering the property owners to evict the clubs within 45 days or face possible criminal action. Haag’s office — which covers Northern California — also sent a warning letter to Chase Bank, which owns the mortgage on a building that houses a pot club, the Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana.
- Mammoth bones found in Pacifica (Bay Area News Group)
Ian Butler was picking up trash in a cliffside gorge when he saw it: yellow and calcified, not rock or shell, but bone…Butler had stumbled on a tusk segment belonging to a mammoth, the kind that roamed the earth during the Late Pleistocene period, which ended about 11,000 years ago.