A.M. Splash: Tesla Plans Electric Car Charger Network; 11 Arrested in Hayward Police Shooting Protest; SJ Solar Plant Gets US Funds
- Tesla Motors unveils ‘Superchargers’ at event near Los Angeles (SJ Mercury News)
Addressing a key concern consumers have about electric cars — their range between charges — Tesla Motors (TSLA) on Monday unveiled an aggressive plan to build a nationwide network of high-speed “Superchargers” to make it possible for drivers of its all-electric Model S sedan to go on long road trips without having to make long stops to recharge their batteries. Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who has been dropping hints about Tesla’s foray into electric vehicle charging for months, wore a black “Supercharger” T-shirt and spoke before an enthusiastic crowd at Tesla’s design studio in Hawthorne. Some of the biggest applause came when he announced the charge-ups would be free for Model S drivers.
- Hayward: 11 arrested during protest of police-involved fatal shooting (Daily Review)
Nearly one dozen people were arrested Monday evening at a protest that police say stemmed from an officer-related fatal shooting that took place earlier in the day. Officers were called at about 7:30 p.m. to the intersection of East 13th Avenue and Tennyson Road where about 50 to 60 people had gathered, including some who threw bottles into the street, said Sgt. Mark Ormsby.
- Free Muni ride cheat with smartphone (SF Chronicle)
Getting a free ride on Muni no longer requires boarding through the back door and hoping a fare inspector doesn’t ask to prove you paid. Technologically skilled transit riders with the right type of smartphone can tinker with Muni’s paper limited-use fare cards and restore their values without paying. A firm specializing in security for mobile applications and devices has discovered a flaw that could allow some transit fare cards – including the Municipal Transportation Agency’s limited-use tickets but not plastic Clipper cards – to be abused by fare cheats.
- Chevron says pipe low on key protectant (SF Chronicle)
The pipe that failed at Chevron’s Richmond refinery last month had an abnormally low level of a key protective ingredient, leaving it vulnerable to corrosion caused by the sulfur and high temperatures in crude oil, a refinery official said Monday. When the 40-year-old pipe failed Aug. 6, it spewed hydrocarbon vapor that ignited, destroying part of the refinery and sending a cloud of black smoke over Richmond and nearby communities.
- San Francisco could OK among tiniest apartments in US (Bay Area Newspaper Group)
San Francisco may soon give new meaning to the word “downsizing.” Supervisors are set to vote on Tuesday on a proposed change to the city’s building code that would allow construction of among the tiniest apartments in the country. Under the plan, new apartments could be as small as 220 square feet (a little more than double the size of some prison cells), including a kitchen, bathroom and closet, the Los Angeles Times reported.
- Solyndra takes next step to sell plant (Oakland Tribune)
Fremont-based Solyndra, the solar-panel maker that received a $535 million U.S. Energy Department loan guarantee before going bankrupt, won court approval to hold an auction for its manufacturing plant. A federal bankruptcy judge approved on Monday procedures for handling the auction.
- California to pink slip prison guards, parole officers next week (LA Daily News)
With the state’s prison population shrinking rapidly by order of the U.S. Supreme Court, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation is scaling back operations and issuing pink slips to many prison guards and parole agents next week. The downsizing comes a year after Gov. Jerry Brown’s realignment plan took effect, when the CDCR handed off the supervision of certain low-level inmates and parolees to county sheriff’s deputies and probation officers.
- San Leandro settles Four Square Gospel lawsuit for $2.3 million (The Daily Review)
The City Council on Monday unanimously agreed to a $2.3 million settlement in a lawsuit filed by the International Church of Four Square Gospel, ending a five-year legal battle. The church sued for more than $20 million in 2007 after the city turned down Faith Fellowship Church’s application to relocate to the city’s high-tech industrial core. The city maintained that the move would violate its zoning code.
- U.S. poised to hand over $197 million to San Jose solar panel startup (Oakland Tribune)
A tiny San Jose solar company named SoloPower will flip the switch on production at a U.S. factory Thursday, a major step toward allowing it to tap a $197 million government loan guarantee awarded under the same controversial program that supported failed panel maker Solyndra. SoloPower has initiated a strategy to differentiate it from struggling commodity players in the solar panel industry. Still, there are several similarities between SoloPower and Fremont-based Solyndra — which became a lightning rod in the U.S. Presidential campaign this year after taking in more than $500 million in government loans and then filing for bankruptcy.
- Gov. Jerry Brown signs Election Day voter registration bill into law (Oakland Tribune)
Californians will be able to register to vote as late as Election Day, though not for a few years yet, under a bill signed Monday by Gov. Jerry Brown. The Golden State just last week implemented online voter registration, so as some states enact voter ID laws placing new strictures on voter access, California is heading in the opposite direction.
- BART explains new civilian review of police procedures(Oakland Tribune)
BART will host a community meeting from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Wednesday to explain its new ways for handling public complaints and concerns about transit police. It will take place at the Richmond Recreation Center Complex, 3230 Macdonald Ave.
- Samsung seeks new trial in legal feud with Apple (SJ Mercury News)
Samsung has asked a federal judge to set aside a jury’s $1 billion verdict in favor of Apple in their legal war over smartphone and tablet patents, suggesting in court papers filed in recent days that the South Korean tech giant will allege jury misconduct as one of its legal arguments. In asking for a new trial, Samsung maintains that “no reasonable jury” could support Apple’s sweeping arguments that Samsung copied the designs of the iPhone and iPad in a host of smartphone and tablet products. U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh has set a hearing for December to consider the flurry of post-trial motions filed by both sides.