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Should California look to Massachusetts to fix its housing crisis?

While California tops the list of states with insane housing costs, it’s by no means a uniquely Golden State phenomenon. Building affordable housing—and particularly getting cities and other localities to permit its construction—is a tough endeavor that has bedeviled state policymakers across the country. So where should Californians look to solve a problem that feels so intractable? Affordable housing experts suggest legislators find inspiration in Massachusetts. For more than 40 years, the state’s signature affordable housing policy—Massachusetts “40B”—has served as a model for how states can motivate and sometimes bully reluctant localities into meeting their fair share of affordable housing.
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Here we go again: California does the Taxes Two-Step

At this point, it’s practically a California tradition. First, state judges find a loophole in California’s constitutional bulwark against new, higher taxes. Then conservative legislators and anti-tax activists rush in to patch the hole with a new ballot proposition. This week, the state Supreme Court made the first move in this familiar two-step by issuing a ruling that both anti-tax crusaders and proponents of more local investment say could make it much easier for city and county governments to raise new taxes. Now California conservatives are counter-punching.
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Drinking lead—why California may force all schools to test their water

When a therapy dog refused to drink at a San Diego grade school, it was the first clue that something was wrong with the water. Tests revealed why the pup turned up its nose—the presence of polyvinyl chloride, the polymer in PVC pipes that degrade over time. But further analysis found something else that had gone undetected by the dog, the teachers and students of the San Diego Cooperative Charter School, and the school district: elevated levels of lead. Nor is this an isolated situation. Tests have turned up harmful levels of lead in water fountains and taps at other schools in San Diego and Los Angeles.
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Paying doctors more—now will they treat more poor Californians?

It seems like a simple solution. Raise what you pay doctors for treating low-income patients, and they’ll treat more of them. All those waits for appointments and physician shortages that have long plagued the state’s low-income health insurance program—a program that one out of every three Californians now relies on—could be remedied with a simple dose of economics.  But in health care, nothing is that simple.
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Beyond Confederacy: California confronts its legacy of slavery and genocide

California has its own Civil War history, but it also has a painful colonization history—one academics believe ought to be told more in schools. It’s a tale of a state founded by white colonists who wiped out much of the Native American population by bringing disease, forcing relocation, imposing starvation, and carrying out what its more severe critics describe as a forgotten, state-sanctioned genocide of a people.
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