A.M. Splash: Oakland City Council Approves Budget Cuts, Layoffs; 12 From Occupy Oakland Barred From City Hall; Kaiser Strike
- Oakland City Council approves budget cuts, layoffs (Oakland Tribune)
Council members found money to spare several jobs and restore funding to cultural groups in passing an otherwise austere budget plan Tuesday that will result in about 80 layoffs in February. The approved budget rescinds proposed cuts for Children’s Fairyland, Hacienda Peralta Historical Park and the Oakland Zoo. It also saves jobs for neighborhood service coordinators and city council staffers.
- Occupy Oakland: 12 barred from City Hall (SF Chronicle)
In a strategy that Oakland officials hope will calm tensions with protesters downtown, Alameda County prosecutors won stay-away orders Tuesday against 12 Occupy Oakland demonstrators charged in connection with Saturday’s skirmishes with police.
- Thousands of Kaiser workers wage one-day strike (Bay Area News Group)
As striking workers circled outside Kaiser Permanente medical centers throughout Northern California on Tuesday, hospital and union leaders traded allegations about the motivations behind the bitter dispute. Much of the controversy centered around the striking nurses, who have a contract through 2014 but walked out in sympathy with mental health and optical workers who are negotiating a new contract.
- SF supervisors split on plaza restrictions (SF Chronicle)
A San Francisco Board of Supervisors’ narrow vote over new regulations for two Castro district plazas showed the deep political divide over the issue of homelessness in the city.
- Gov. Jerry Brown gets wide array of support for tax-hike initiative (Bay Area News Group)
Early contributions to Gov. Jerry Brown’s tax-hike initiative show a wide span of interests are beginning to line up behind it. In the past two weeks, two business groups — the Occidental Petroleum Corporation and the American Beverage Association — pitched in $250,000 apiece to his ballot committee, Californians to Protect Schools, Universities and Public Safety. The governor has raised $1.7 million as his campaign begins to collect signatures to place the initiative on the November ballot, according to campaign finance reports released Tuesday. No committee has yet been formed to oppose the tax measure.
- Facebook IPO to spark valley economy (SJ Mercury News)
Anticipation of the biggest IPO ever for an Internet company has real estate agents seeing a note of urgency in the local market, Wall Street money managers moving in for a piece of the action, and even state budget analysts factoring in a “Facebook effect” that could top $1 billion.
- America’s Cup Construction Begins amid Growing Doubts (Bay Citizen)
Demolition of an aging cruise ship terminal, needed to clear the way for construction of America’s Cup facilities, began Tuesday during a ceremony that coincided with escalating concerns over the scale of the regatta and the financial benefits that it promises.
- State regulators to vote on PG&E smart meter “opt-out” (SJ Mercury News)
In a move being closely watched by utilities across the country, state regulators are expected to vote Wednesday to give PG&E customers the right to “opt out” of having a smart meter and keep their old meters — for a fee. The opt-out proposal, crafted by California Public Utilities Commission President Michael Peevey after months of discussion and debate, comes after a year of highly organized protests by consumers opposed to smart meters because of concerns about their accuracy, privacy implications and impact on health.
- High-speed rail planners stay course despite new pitch from San Francisco leaders (SF Examiner)
Construction on high-speed rail networks in the Bay Area would start within three years under a proposal being pushed by city officials, including Mayor Ed Lee. Under the current business plan backed by the California High-Speed Rail Authority, the first construction on the line that would eventually shuttle passengers from San Francisco to Los Angeles is slated to start next year in the Central Valley. Train service would not be available in San Francisco until 2034.
- Support flows in for dying father who is illegal immigrant (Contra Costa Times)
An Oakland father who was denied the transplant he needs to live because of his immigration status now has a host of supporters. After reading a story by this newspaper about his plight this week, city leaders, immigration lawyers, advocacy organizations and individual residents began looking for ways to help save the 35-year-old’s life.