In the News

June 10, 2015

Facing long political odds, state Sens. Loni Hancock and Holly Mitchell introduced on Wednesday a constitutional amendment to overhaul portions of Proposition 13, California’s landmark tax-limiting measure.

Under current law, property tax reassessments occur only after changes in ownership or new construction. SCA 5 would introduce annual assessments of commercial and industrial properties to more closely tie their tax rates to current market value.

June 10, 2015

Thank you all for being here today.

We’re here to talk about SCA 5, new legislation that will finally reform our commercial property tax system and make it fair.

The problems are thirty plus years in the making:

We have large corporations and wealthy commercial property investors that have used loopholes in the law to avoid paying their fair share.

We have large, multi-billion dollar corporations that actually have a competitive advantage over smaller start-ups simply based on when a property was purchased.

June 09, 2015

Now is the time to rebalance the scale so that homeowners and big businesses are all invested in their community’s success. It’s also a chance to make government more accountable.

Source: http://www.sacbee.com/opinion/op-ed/soapbox/article23600287.html

 

May 19, 2015

Advocates for the state's poor and disabled said Governor Jerry Brown's revised budget doesn't do enough to help the state's most vulnerable.

During the recession, welfare programs in California lost about $15 billion according to Peter Woiwode of the California Partnership, a group that advocates for the state's poor.

May 19, 2015

California will have to invest millions of dollars to better protect its 63,000 foster children from the excessive use of powerful psychiatric medications in a state where prescribing physicians, caregivers and the courts have long supported the drugging of as many as 1 in 4 foster teens.

May 11, 2015

Here's a law we should not need, especially here in the Bay Area. But we do. Now. Yesterday, really, but we'll settle for now.

SB359 will require a set of objective measures like test scores and grades to determine whether students need to repeat eighth-grade math.

That's about it. Obvious, right? But thanks to groundbreaking work by the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, the Noyce Foundation and others, we know it's not happening.

May 08, 2015

The California state Senate is advancing legislation to end the use of grand juries to investigate police shootings or cases of alleged excessive force by police.

The move comes after high-profile cases nationwide in which grand juries decided against bringing criminal charges against law enforcement officers who killed unarmed black men.

May 08, 2015

Ending poverty must be a “sustained and broad-based effort,” according to testimony this week at a state Senate hearing examining child poverty in California.

The goal of the Senate Select Committee on Women and Inequality is to develop a “tangible, measurable plan to reduce if not end poverty for California’s children,” said state Sen. Holly Mitchell (D-Los Angeles), select committee chair.

May 07, 2015

Grand juries would be prohibited from investigating police shootings and cases where an individual dies from excessive force during an arrest under a bill passed Thursday by the California State Senate.

Source: http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article20444133.html#storylink=cpy