In summary

Highlighting all of CALmatters’ work over the past week

Recent Articles

What happens when the next big wildfire hits?

By Judy Lin

As political pressure mounts with every disaster, California is scrambling to prepare for the coming fire season, from firefighting to utilities to the law.

What could be worse than the next big fire? The next big fire caused by PG&E

By Judy Lin

Customers will likely pay more and victims will get less should PG&E be liable for another major wildfire while the company is in bankruptcy.

Should California buy disaster insurance?

By Judy Lin

Hoping to save California taxpayers some money after spending nearly $1 billion to fight wildfires last year, Napa Democratic Sen. Bill Dodd, Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara and Treasurer Fiona Ma say it’s time to look at purchasing disaster insurance for the state.

California’s Supreme Court has thrown cities—and citizens—into chaos over local taxes

By Ben Christopher

San Francisco, Oakland, and Fresno are getting sued—all because the California Supreme Court has yet to answer a simple question: How many votes does it take for a new tax to become law?

California’s ‘smart’ energy future glows on the horizon—but how to get there?

By Julie Cart

In a redesigned electricity system, people may choose where to get power—even cars will be able to charge up their homes. Fossil fuels will be gone.

Five ways Gavin Newsom made it clear he’s not Jerry Brown

By Laurel Rosenhall

The new governor used his State of the State speech to make his strongest showing yet that Jerry Brown is no longer in charge.

Newsom’s State of the State, Annotated

By CALmatters

Gov. Gavin Newsom’s 2019 State of the State address, annotated by CALmatters reporters.

Live analysis of Gov. Gavin Newsom’s State of the State address

By CALmatters staff

How future-proof is Gavin Newsom’s master plan for California?

By Matt Levin

As the governor delivers his first State of the State speech, how do his plans prepare California for that dream—not just next year, but 5, 20, 30 years from now?

Huntington Beach legislator: Newsom housing lawsuit “seemed like selective prosecution”

By Matt Levin

A conservative Huntington Beach legislator called a state lawsuit aimed at compelling the Orange County city to build more housing a “literal cannonball” from Gov. Gavin Newsom and said it “seemed like selective prosecution” when dozens of other California cities could be blamed for not doing their fair share to alleviate California’s housing shortage.


My turn: California votes will be wasted in 2020 presidential primary. Here’s why

By Larry Levine

By moving the presidential primary election date to March 3, 2020, the Legislature sought to hit the moving target of relevance based on circumstances that can neither be controlled or known. If the past is any guide, hundreds of thousands of voters will waste their ballots on candidates who no longer will be running by primary election day.

Long alliance of Democrats and police union erodes

By Dan Walters

The decades-long alliance between Democratic politicians and police unions has been eroded, as two legislative battles illustrate.

Another take: Online lenders provide innovative and much needed financial services

By Mary Jackson

Online lead generators and lenders provide innovative financial services that reach Californians who aren’t being served by banks and credit unions. Ensuring laws are modernized, embrace innovation and protect consumers should be the Legislature’s top priority.

My turn: Here’s how rooftop solar can combat wildfires

By Audrey Lee

We have a short period of time until the next fire season hits us. PG&E’s troubles have Californians demanding better solutions from their utilities, now. Sustainable business models and partnerships with solar leaders looking to protect fire-prone communities are a start.

Newsom downgrades Brown’s pet projects

By Dan Walters

Gov. Gavin Newsom lays out ambitious agenda that sets a high mark for his political future.

My turn: Gov. Newsom can confront climate change by restoring what we once had

By Julie Rentner

Floodplain reforestation projects are biodiversity hotspots and climate-protection powerhouses that cost far less than old-fashioned gray infrastructure of levees, dams and reservoirs. They provide highly-effective flood safety by strategically spreading floodwater.

My turn: ‘Green chemistry’ makes products safer. Here’s how California can do better

By Gina M. Solomon and Martin Mulvihill

California’s green chemistry program can protect families and the environment from hazardous chemicals, and stimulate economic innovation. But after 10 years of progress, California legislators must expand this important effort with a stronger Safer Consumer Products Program.

Newsom wants more accountability for schools

By Dan Walters

Jerry Brown’s unwillingness to monitor how local school districts are educating their students is giving way to successor Gavin Newsom’s pledge to increase accountability.

My turn: We must protect California from Trump’s war on women

By Crystal Strait

As President Trump works to undermine access to health care, we’re counting on the Legislature to join Gov. Newsom in making a new $100 million investment in reproductive health care a reality. Lives are depending on it.

School districts set poor example for students

By Dan Walters

California school districts set poor example for their students when they overspend revenues and then seek bailouts from Sacramento and/or voters.

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