Capitol Alert

The latest on California politics and government

February 7, 2013
Villaraigosa: Ex-cop suspected of shooting 3 is a 'sick individual'

California Gun Control Antonio Villaraigosa.JPGLos Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa today condemned the actions of a former police officer who is suspected of killing three as part of a plan to avenge his dismissal from the Los Angeles Police Department, calling the suspected shooter a "sick individual."

"There's no beef that someone can have to kill three innocent people in the way that he has," Villaraigosa said. "Whatever problem he has is mental and godspeed to our police officers that we find this individual as quickly as possible."

A widespread manhunt has been launched to capture Christopher Dorner, the alleged shooter. The ex cop published an online manifesto outlining his plan to go on a shooting rampage, listing specific LAPD members as some of his targets.

The Los Angeles Democrat, who was in Sacramento to attend a press conference on new gun-control proposals, called the situation a "very graphic and to-the-point illustration of what mayors have to do every day" in dealing with violent crime caused by firearms.

"This isn't about ephemeral, esoteric public policy issues," he said. "These issues go to the heart of civil society."

Massive manhunt on for ex-cop accused of killing 3

PHOTO CREDIT: Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, in red tie, discusses his support for a package of proposed gun control legislation at a Capitol news conference in Sacramento, Calif., Thursday, Feb. 7, 2013. (AP Photo/ Rich Pedroncelli)

February 7, 2013
Environmental groups, unions team up to oppose CEQA push

CAP1NEW.JPG.JPGThe battle lines are being drawn in the upcoming legislative fight over California's environmental review laws.

More than a dozen environmental, labor and social justice groups announced Wednesday that they are joining forces to oppose an expected push to overhaul the California Environmental Quality Act.

Members pledged to fight "radical reforms that would limit public input into land use planning, threaten public health, and weaken environmental protections."

The group, CEQA Works, includes the California League of Conservation Voters, Planning and Conservation League, Natural Resources Defense Council, Sierra Club California, the California Teamsters Public Affairs Council, State Building and Construction Trades Council, United Food & Commercial Workers and the League of Women Voters of California.

February 7, 2013
If 8th-grader can't read it, rewrite the darn thing

RB Tech Camp 3.JPGCut to the chase.

That's the message from Assemblyman Ed Chau to Web sites that require prospective users to scroll through page after page of privacy policy before they can register and view content.

The Monterey Park Democrat proposed legislation this week to require web sites that collect personal information to make their privacy policies short, sweet - and simple.

Lengthy legalese keeps many consumers from understanding such policies, he said.

"I think many privacy policies actually create a false sense of privacy for the average consumer," Chau said. "They're just so long that people skip over them and click 'accept' without knowing what they're signing onto."

Assembly Bill 242 would require Internet privacy policies to be written at an eighth-grade reading level, use concise wording, and to include a statement indicating what personal information is collected and how it is used.

AB 242 would limit privacy policies to 100 words. Chau practices what he preaches.

His bill is 64 words long.

PHOTO CREDIT: Dominick Lee, 12, works on an audio project with a laptop at John Still Middle School in south Sacramento on Thursday, June 30, 2011. Randall Benton / Sacramento Bee file, 2011

February 7, 2013
California Democratic lawmakers unveil gun control legislation

steinbergvilalr.JPGFlanked by police chiefs, big-city mayors and gun control advocates, a group of California Democratic legislators announced a series of proposals Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg said would "once again make California's gun laws the very toughest in the nation."

Thursday's announcement was the latest gun control push from state lawmakers in the wake of December's mass shooting at a Connecticut elementary school. The massacre, which claimed the lives of 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School, has sparked calls for action across the country. Lawmakers in New York recently enacted measures making its laws the nation's strictest, a title previously held by California.

"We need to lead the way," Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said. "New York has stepped up and stepped forward. California needs to answer the call."

February 7, 2013
Texas Gov Rick Perry heading to California to lure business

perry.jpgTexas Gov. Rick Perry is heading to California to recruit businesses, his office said this morning, after Perry released a radio ad Monday criticizing California's business climate and encouraging businesses to leave.

Perry's radio ad - and California Gov. Jerry Brown's response that the $24,000 media buy is so small it is "barely a fart" - are the latest in a war of words between Brown and Perry about which state is better for business.

Perry, a Republican, has criticized California's tax rate and regulatory environment, while Brown, a Democrat, has criticized Texas for its relatively large percentage of people working at or below the minimum wage.

February 7, 2013
Dan Walters Daily: California's diverse Asian population expands

It would be a mistake to think of California's immensely varied Asian-American population as a monolith, Dan says.

Have a question you'd like Dan to answer? Post it on our Facebook page.

See other Dan Walters Daily clips here.

February 7, 2013
AM Alert: Senate Democrats renew gun control push

20130129_HA_STEINBERG_DE_LEON_GUNS.JPGVIDEO: Dan Walters says it's easy to overlook the extraordinary diversity of Asian Americans, California's fastest growing ethnic bloc.

The concerted push for new gun control laws gets another shove at a press conference this morning, where Democrats led by Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg will be heralding the latest set of proposals. The event starts at 10 a.m. in room 1190 of the State Capitol.

Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee will be there, along with Richmond Police Chief Chris Magnus and Emeryville Police Chief Ken James. So will senators Loni Hancock, D-Berkeley, Marty Block, D-San Diego, Kevin de León, D-Los Angeles, Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara, and Leland Yee, D-San Francisco.

Much of the momentum behind new gun laws has come from Democrats, but we would be remiss if we didn't mention some of the proposals Republicans have floated. They have included a bill from Assemblyman Tim Donnelly, R-Twin Peaks, that would anonymously arm teachers, and a proposal from Assemblyman Dan Logue, R-Marysville, that would protect the personal information of gun owners.


Capitol Alert Staff

Jeremy White Jeremy B. White covers California politics and edits Capitol Alert's mobile Insider Edition. Twitter: @capitolalert

Amy Chance Amy Chance is political editor for The Sacramento Bee. Twitter: @Amy_Chance

Dan Smith Dan Smith is Capitol bureau chief for The Sacramento Bee.

Christopher Cadelago Christopher Cadelago covers California politics and health care. Twitter: @ccadelago

Micaela Massimino Micaela Massimino edits Capitol Alert.

Laurel Rosenhall Laurel Rosenhall covers the Legislature, the lobbying community and higher education. Twitter: @LaurelRosenhall

David Siders David Siders covers the Brown administration. Twitter: @davidsiders

Dan Walters Dan Walters is a columnist for The Sacramento Bee. Twitter: @WaltersBee

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