Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife scored the No. 2 spot on a list of the biggest charitable givers in the United States last year, thanks to their record $499 million donation to the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, according to a report Monday that points to a growing interest among the super-rich in giving away money before they grow old.
Among the arguments that supporters of same-sex marriage in California plan to make to the U.S. Supreme Court is that the sponsors of Proposition 8, the 2008 initiative that defined marriage as a male-female union, have no right to defend the state law in federal court. It's an argument they might come to regret. If it succeeds, some legal analysts say the ruling may be so narrow that it benefits only the two couples who filed the suit, leaving Prop. 8 in effect for the rest of the state.
Next month's First Friday festival will end earlier and involve fewer street closures, Oakland officials announced Monday after meeting with event organizers and local businesses. Changes to the monthly festival in Oakland's Uptown District had been expected after this month's festival was marred by a gunbattle that killed 18-year-old Oakland student Kiante Campbell and wounded three others.
Netflix is buffing up its credentials as a popular way for parents to keep their kids entertained. The subscription video provider said Tuesday that it will team up with DreamWorks Animation SKG to create its first original cartoon series for kids. The series will be based on DreamWorks' upcoming movie, "Turbo," which is about a snail who gets the power of super speed after getting in a freak accident.
Federal officials say they are open to suggestions from the public that more of the North Coast should be protected from offshore oil drilling under a proposed expansion of two marine sanctuaries. "We want to know the scope of the area we should be looking at," said Maria Brown, superintendent of the Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary.
Marinwood and Lucas Valley residents on Monday opposed the county's plan to rezone Grady Ranch as a site for affordable housing, joining other Marin residents who raised concerns about building low-cost housing on 16 sites across the county.
Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk isn't used to bad reviews. Tesla's all-electric luxury sedan, the Model S, makes most auto reviewers gush like smitten teens. Introduced last year, the Model S even won Motor Trend's Car of the Year award. So when the New York Times this weekend ran an extremely harsh review of the car's performance in cold weather - complete with a photo of the car getting towed - Musk didn't take it lightly. In a spat that played out via Twitter and TV, Musk on Monday called the review "fake" and accused the author, John M. Broder, of writing a hit piece.
Silicon Valley has the nation's second-highest concentration of wealthy people, according to a U.S. Census Bureau report released Monday. Sixteen percent of Santa Clara County households make at least $191,000 each year, putting them in the nation's top 5 percent of income-earners.
Oakland's unemployment rate is far above the state and national average -- around 13 percent. It's much higher in heavily African-American neighborhoods. In other words, there are a lot of desperate people looking for gainful employment. Because there are so many people in such dire straits, Oakland was able to get a $725,462 National Emergency Grant in 2010 for on-the-job training for the unemployed. Yet the city was forced to return $644,000 of it because city officials failed to take the required actions necessary to comply with the federal guidelines. So, the state Employment Development Department, which administers the grants for the federal government, demanded the money back. And back it went. First, $400,000 on Dec. 27, 2011. Another $125,462 on May 7, 2012. Then a final installment of $119,150.72 on Nov. 2, 2012.
Casino M8trix has filed a lawsuit against city officials, alleging a "long history of unreasonable, harassing and malicious conduct" that delayed and interfered with the card club's ability to do business in a new, eight-story tower. In a 31-page complaint filed Friday in federal court, the casino owners say the city's unreasonable and unlawful conditions delayed the opening of the new casino by four months.