<![CDATA[NBC Southern California - Politics]]> Copyright 2014 http://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/politics http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/NBC4_40x125.png NBC Southern California http://www.nbclosangeles.com en-us Sat, 25 Oct 2014 05:10:55 -0700 Sat, 25 Oct 2014 05:10:55 -0700 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Race for Calif. Education's Top Spot]]> Fri, 24 Oct 2014 08:25:39 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/211*120/10-20-2014-torlakson-tuck-education-election.jpg

With the midterm elections less than two weeks away, an unlikely race is heating up — the one for the California Department of Education’s top spot.

Former president of Green Dot Public Charter School Marshall Tuck and incumbent Tom Torlakson are vying for the position of state superintendent of schools.

Both candidates are Democrats with strong backing behind them.

Torlakson has the support of mainstream Democratic Party officeholders and the California Teacher’s Association, which is spending heavily on TV and radio advertisements.

Tuck, meanwhile, is the renegade Democrat, who ran then-Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s partnership for L.A. schools to improve the most underperforming schools in the city’s poorest areas.

He’s drawn support from education reformers, high-tech executives and even Hollywood stars. Celebrities Joel McHale, Dax Shepard and Kristen Bell, for example, starred in a web ad with Tuck.

Tuck says he wants to evaluate teachers based on merit and rid the state of the seniority system.

"That’s a piece of policy that doesn’t make sense for kids," Tuck said.

Torlakson, on the other hand, supports the tenure system and touts accomplishment during his own tenure as state superintendent.

"Our graduation rate went up to 80 percent, the highest in the state’s history for our high schools," Torlakson said. "Our eighth grade reading scores in California are higher than reading scores in any other state in the nation."

And while the position doesn’t hold much power, the race for the state’s schools chief is being watched around the nation.

The most recent poll has Tuck leading 31 to 28.

Photo Credit: KNBC-TV]]>
<![CDATA[Newsom, Critical of Lieutenant Governor Role, Seeks 2nd Term ]]> Wed, 22 Oct 2014 23:53:54 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/208*120/lafile-lieutenant-governor-gavin-newsom.jpg

He has called the job powerless and ceremonial, and told the Los Angeles Times he visits the state capitol in Sacramento at best once per week.

The state economic development commission he is to chair has not met in four years.

But Gavin Newsom says despite it all, he still wants another four years as lieutenant governor of California.

What is perhaps the most unique race this election features Newsom, the incumbent who has long expressed displeasure for the job he holds but wants to keep, and Republican challenger Ronald Nehring, who likes the job as it is.

"We've been trying to make the case that this office should be reformed," Newsom told NBC4 in an interview Wednesday.

"It's been widely reported that Gavin Newsom the incumbent spends much of his time on his personal business, he owns three wineries in Napa County," Nehring said.

As a member of the University of California Board of Regents, Newsom campaigned against tuition hikes and got the board to dump its newly proposed logo. Newsom also did a series of statewide job development summits.

But Gov. Jerry Brown has failed to delegate any authority to Newsom's office, and hasn't appointed members to the economic development commission the lieutenant governor is supposed to chair.

"I have been very aggressive on this and as a consequence of being aggressive, the governor has exercised his right not to," Newsom said.

Nehring, who polls show 20 points behind in the race, says that is not a good excuse.

"At a time when we're in the type of economic condition we're in now with companies and employers leaving our state, taking jobs with them, we need that commission up and running," Nehring said.

Newsom, the former mayor of San Francisco, has used some of his time for a talk show on the now defunct Current TV cable channel. He also wrote a book on citizen participation in the digital world.

Newsom said he has been doing more than lieutenant governors in the past, which has included endorsing legalization of marijuana and opposition to the governor's high speed rail plan.

"I'm concerned about the financing, I'm concerned it will have an impact on commuter rail investments," Newsom said.

Nehring also opposes the bullet train, but that's a topic they won't debate, because Newsom has not agreed to one.

<![CDATA[Rivals Debate in NH Senate Race]]> Wed, 22 Oct 2014 10:06:59 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/214*120/vlcsnap-2014-10-21-21h11m54s10.jpg

Scott Brown continued to hammer away at Democrat Jeanne Shaheen's record in Washington as the incumbent repeatedly accused her Republican opponent of fear mongering during a debate in New Hampshire's U.S. Senate race Tuesday.

Brown accused Shaheen of "outsourcing independence" by voting for policies backed by President Barack Obama. Shaheen, meanwhile, sought to distance herself from the president, who has low approval ratings in New Hampshire.

"In some ways I approve, in some ways I don't approve," of the president's decisions, Shaheen said when asked to answer "yes or no" if she approves of Obama's job in office.

The latest efforts to contain and prevent the spread of the deadly Ebola virus in the United States also became a hot topic, as Brown pushed for a travel ban from West Africa. Shaheen reiterated a comment from a day earlier that she would consider one if it would make a difference. That position was a reversal from last week, when she said she didn't think the idea "makes sense." 

The Democratic incumbent accused her rival of fear mongering on the Ebola virus, border security and the threat of terrorism posed by ISIS.

The two rivals remain locked in a close race as they headed into Tuesday's televised debate, which was hosted by New England Cable News, the Concord Monitor and the University of New Hampshire. A recent WMUR Granite State poll showed Shaheen leading her GOP challenger 44 percent to 38 percent among likely voters at the start of the month. Seventeen percent remained undecided.

The competitive race has attracted campaign cash and headlines from across the country, as one of several competitive seats Republicans are targeting in their bid to win control of the U.S. Senate in the Nov. 4 midterm elections.

Chuck Todd, NBC's "Meet the Press" host, moderated the debate from the Capitol Center for the arts in Concord.

Shaheen said she was proud of her vote for the Obama's landmark heath care overhaul, the Affordable Care Act, while Brown insisted Granite Staters wanted to repeal Obamacare.

Sparks also flew on the topics of immigration and border security.

"The border is secure when people don't come across it," Brown said to the applause of supporters after Todd asked him to define a secure border.

Shaheen attacked Brown's record on abortion rights, which he says he supports; Brown, while senator for Massachusetts, supported the Blunt Amendment, which would have allowed any employer with moral objections to opt out of requiring to cover birth control in 2012.

When Brown said Shaheen was anti-nuclear as the subject of rising energy costs came up, she countered, "No, I'm not!"

Brown suggested repeatedly that Shaheen backs a new national energy tax, an assertion PolitiFact has deemed "mostly false."

In a final lightning round, Shaheen said her priority after being re-elected would be to refinance student loans; Brown said he would push the U.S. Senate to come up with a budget. Both declined to say they'd back their respective party heads in the Senate, Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, for another term in leadership. 

Barbs were also thrown after Brown defended his decision to run in New Hampshire this year instead of seeking to win back the Massachusetts seat he lost to Democrat Elizabeth Warren in 2012 by saying he didn't run "because I live here." 

"I don't think New Hampshire is a consolation prize," Shaheen said.


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<![CDATA[Death Threat Made to Daughter of Prop 46. Co-Author]]> Tue, 21 Oct 2014 11:49:31 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/lafile-proposition-prop-46-bob-pack-carmen.jpg

The co-author of a California ballot proposition says he will continue to support the initiative despite receiving a death threat against his young daughter.

Bob Pack confirmed to NBC4 that he and his wife, Carmen, recently received a phone call at their San Francisco Bay Area home in which the caller warned the couple that if they didn't withdraw their support for Prop. 46 serious harm would come to their 8-year-old daughter.

Prop 46 would increase the cap on pain and suffering damages in medical negligence lawsuits from $250,000 to over $1 million.

The measure would also require California doctors to undergo drug and alcohol testing and would force health care practitioners to look at a state prescription drug history database before prescribing some controlled substances.

"I absolutely believe in Prop 46 and we will keep fighting right to the end for it despite these kinds of episodes taking place," Pack said. "The sheriff's and Attorney General's Office is currently handling it and we will go on with our march of Prop. 46 and do what we need to do."

The Contra Costa County Sheriff's Department said they have identified the caller as a 41-year-old man from Concord. He has not been arrested, but sheriff's officials have sent their report to the district attorney's office for possible prosecution.

Pack and his wife got involved in Prop. 46 as a result of a crash that took place a decade ago, when a woman addicted to prescription drugs blacked out while driving and struck and killed the couple's two young children.

Among other provisions, Prop. 46 would require doctors to check a database before prescribing drugs to a patient.

The ballot measure has received the support of Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-California).

"There isn't one part of this initiative that isn't common sense," Boxer said.

Opponents of Prop. 46 argue that it will add millions of dollars in costs to health coverage in California.

"We join with the Pack family in condemning this act by clearly a troubled individual," said Michael Bustamante, the No on 46 campaign spokesman. "This has no place in any campaign, it certainly has nothing to do, no connection whatsoever with our campaign."

<![CDATA[Murrieta Mayor Resigns After Arrest on Suspicion of DUI]]> Mon, 20 Oct 2014 21:23:34 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/204*120/10-17-2014-murrieta-mayor-book.jpg

Alan Long announced Monday that he will step down as mayor of Murrieta just days after his arrest on suspicion of DUI in a crash that injured four high school students.

Long made the announcement during a Monday afternoon news conference at which he expressed "concern" for the four teens injured in Thursday night's crash at Jefferson and Lily avenues in Murrieta in southwestern Riverside County. Long, 44, was booked on suspicion of DUI causing bodily injury, according to Riverside County jail records.

"I am well aware that being involved in such a high profile accident in my position as mayor and as a member of the City Council will be a distraction," Long said in a statement at the news conference.

The resignation is effective immediately, but Long said he plans to remain a candidate in the Nov. 4 election.

Long was arrested Thursday night after officers determined that a "full-size" truck had rear-ended a passenger vehicle carrying four Murrieta Valley High School students, ages 14 to 17. The students' injuries were described as "moderate to major," according to a police department statement.

"Officers contacted the driver of the truck who was the sole occupant of his vehicle," police said in a statement. "The driver had signs and symptoms consistent with alcohol impairment. The driver participated in some standardized field sobriety tests, and officers determined that the driver was in fact impaired."

Long's blood alcohol content was .07, just below the legal limit of .08, but investigators were also waiting for blood test results, police said.

The girls had just attended a pep rally ahead of Friday night's football game. Three of the four victims were released from a hospital Friday, but details regarding the fourth victim's condition were not immediately available.

Long was speeding and driving recklessly, according to an attorney for two of the victims, L Wallace Pate.

"I understand from the witnesses that I talked to that he ran a stop sign," Pate said

An attorney for Long, who is running for re-election on Nov. 4, said he helped the victims at the scene, talked to their parents and cooperated with police.

Long, also serves as a battalion chief for Anaheim Fire and Rescue, was booked into jail on $50,000 bail at the Southwest Detention Center in Murrieta.

A court date was scheduled for Dec. 11.

Supporters say they will still vote for Long in November's election, including some who have already voted for him by absentee ballot. 

"He showed respect for every individual," Murrieta resident Joan Padberg said. "That's the type of man he is."

Long was in the national spotlight earlier this year when a busload of undocumented immigrants, bound for the Murrieta Border Patrol Station for processing, was blocked by protesters.

Long criticized the federal government's handling of the immigrant transfer, part of a plan to alleviate what the Obama administration as a humanitarian crisis of unaccompanied minors in federal custody along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Photo Credit: Murrieta Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Rival Gets Hands on Campaign Book]]> Mon, 20 Oct 2014 10:40:34 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/carl+demaio+scott+peters.JPG

A new bombshell dropped Friday in the race for California’s 52nd Congressional District when both candidates confirmed a Carl DeMaio campaign strategy book, allegedly stolen during an office break-in, found its way into the hands of incumbent Scott Peters’ staff.

It is the latest revelation in an already ugly race peppered with attack ads and sexual harassment allegations.

The two had a chilly meeting Friday morning at a taping of NBC 7’s Politically Speaking, as DeMaio walked right by Peters’ hand outstretched for a handshake.

During the session, DeMaio discussed the burglary and vandalism at his campaign headquarters on May 28. Cords and cables were cut, water was poured over laptops and printers, computer screens were smashed in and one important item was taken: DeMaio’s campaign playbook.

The candidate confronted Peters about the book on “Politically Speaking.”

“And Mr. Peters, I just want to ask a very simple question. Did your campaign come into possession of our strategy book, all of our direct mail pieces in the last five months?” asked DeMaio.

Peters responded with: “In early June, information was forwarded to our campaign which we immediately turned over to the police.”

DeMaio pressed the issue, asking Peters why he did not let his opponent’s campaign know that he had seen DeMaio’s playbook all along.

“I’ve obviously never seen it,” said Peters. “We turned it directly over to the police within 24 hours of getting it because what was contained in it was potentially part of a criminal investigation.”

He added his campaign manager “looked at it enough to know what it was.”

On Friday evening, Peters' Communication Director Alex Roth sent out the following statement about the revelation:

"To clarify, we do not know what a campaign playbook is; nor has our campaign ever received anything that could be characterized as 'a campaign playbook' as Mr. DeMaio called it. To reiterate, our campaign staff received information in early June that we immediately transmitted in its entirety to the police.This is nothing more than an attempt by Mr. DeMaio to divert attention away from the Filner-esque sexual harassment allegations that have been made against him.”

During the show's taping, Peters said he felt as if he had been cast as the perpetrator of the break-in, which was portrayed with Watergate-like overtones when it first happened.

DeMaio told his opponent he does not believe Peters had anything to do with the burglary.

Instead, he blames former aide Todd Bosnich.

Bosnich has publicly accused DeMaio of sexually harassing him while he worked for the former San Diego City Councilman, releasing the results of a polygraph test that he says support his claims.

Called the allegations “outrageous lies,” DeMaio said Bosnich is trying to get revenge for being fired as a suspect in the break-in.

However, the candidate said he will not take a polygraph exam to rebut Bosnich’s allegations.

CNN reports Bosnich's lawyers sent the news outlet the results to a second polygraph test Friday in which Bosnich was asked if he broke into the campaign headquarters last May. The test shows Bosnich's "no" answers were "truthful and found "no deception."

Bosnich confirmed the story to NBC 7 via text message.

DeMaio's spokesman David McCulloch defended the candidate, saying in a statement, "Both Carl DeMaio and Tommy Knepper — named in a series of vile smear attacks — have taken lie detector tests that have shown these smears are baseless. Meanwhile, Mr. Peters admitted on NBC7/39 this morning that his campaign received stolen property from our campaign — begging the question: who provided this sensitive campaign material?"  

McCulloch later clarified that statement that the lie detector test taken by DeMaio was one in August 2013 after a former colleague accused DeMaio of lewd acts in San Diego's City Hall.

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<![CDATA[Campaign Ad Featuring James Foley Pulled]]> Fri, 17 Oct 2014 09:58:35 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/tlmd_james_foley_ejecucion_isis_syria.jpg

A conservative ad campaign that featured James Foley, the New Hampshire journalist slain by ISIS, moments before his execution, will be pulled, the group responsible for the ad said.

Secure America Now President Allen Roth said in a statement that his group didn't intend to upset Foley's family with the ad attacking Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen and that they "apologize for any pain we inadvertently caused.“

“It has been brought to our attention that a news report image of American hostage James Foley that appeared in a Secure America Now video has upset his parents, so we have decided to take the video down," the statement continued. “The purpose of the video was to draw attention to Washington’s failure to secure our borders from real threats by terrorists. That remains our objective and we will continue to engage in this public debate.”

Foley, a Rochester native, was beheaded by Islamic State militants in August, nearly two years after he was kidnapped in Syria. His parents say the ad was "deplorable" and told NECN in an emotional interview that they were demanding that the ad be pulled from New Hampshire.

Secure America Now used the image in a 15-second Internet ad attacking Shaheen, who is locked in a tight race against Republican Scott Brown, and other Democratic incumbents in critical Senate races nationwide.

"It makes me very sad that people would use the brutality of our son's death for their own political purposes," Mrs. Foley said.

Shaheen issued a statement on Wednesday afternoon condemning the ad.

"This is a disgraceful ad that dishonors the memory of a respected journalist and New Hampshire native," she said. "It hurts all who loved and knew Jim, and the people behind this ad owe the Foley family and apology."

According to Elizabeth Guyton, communications director for Scott Brown, Brown said, "This is completely inappropriate and disrespectful to the Foley family.”

Roth says the group did not contact the Foley family before making the ad public.

Secure America Now emphasized that the Foley execution video and the image have been used in other campaigns across the country several different times.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Manure Used to Protest Health Insurance Rate "BS"]]> Tue, 14 Oct 2014 19:28:48 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/10-14-14-prop45manure.png

Supporters of Proposition 45, the ballot initiative that would require health insurance companies to publicly disclose rate changes, brought a truckload of steer manure outside the El Segundo offices of Blue Shield on Tuesday to protest the insurance company’s stance against the ballot measure.

Supporters say the company has given $9.5 million to campaign against Proposition 45, and they wanted to "return to Blue Shield the B.S. that it has been spreading around California."

"The voters need to know that they’re being deceived by fraudulent advertising," said Jamie Court, a campaigner for the ballot measure.

A message left for Blue Shield spokespeople was not immediately returned.

In addition to requiring public disclosure of rate changes, Proposition 45 would allow California’s insurance commissioner to control rates for health insurance. Supporters say this initiative will stem skyrocketing healthcare costs.

Opponents of Proposition 45 say Covered California has already helped keep rates under control.

"We’ve already solved the problem. Let’s not add another layer of bureaucracy which really gives power to one person and enriches trial attorneys," said Dr. Sam Fink, an opponent of Proposition 45.

Proposition 45 is sponsored by Consumer Watchdog, which has spent $3 million on the campaign compared with the $38 million spent by insurance companies and medical groups opposed to the measure.

Photo Credit: Consumer Watchdog]]>
<![CDATA[California Ballot Measures]]> Tue, 14 Oct 2014 07:43:14 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/voters-02.jpg

Use the guide below to view the 2014 California ballot measures. Mobile users, click here to view ballot measures or use your address to view your sample ballot.

Photo Credit: AP
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.]]>
<![CDATA[NH Lawmaker Calls Congresswoman "Ugly as Sin"]]> Tue, 14 Oct 2014 16:22:59 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/214*120/Steve+Vaillancourt.jpg

Candidates for New Hampshire's 2nd Congressional District are speaking out after a state lawmaker described one of them as "ugly as sin."

The story has gained national attention and has both candidates denouncing the remarks. Republican state Representative Steven Vaillancourt wrote a blog post on Friday after he says he saw a poll that claimed more attractive candidates have the upper hand with voters.

In the blog, he wrote, "Does anyone not believe that Congressman Annie Kuster is as ugly as sin?"

Vaillancourt then compared her to a drag queen.

"Look, it's rude and offensive," Congresswoman Kuster said. "But I have a thick skin."

Kuster's Republican challenger, Marilinda Garcia, said the post was just plain mean.

"She doesn't deserve to be treated that way," Garcia said.

Congresswoman Kuster said Vaillancourt's comments reflect a broader issue with the Republican Party.

"I am more frustrated with the positions they stand for, and frankly, that leads to an environment where people say disrespectful things," Kuster said.

Garcia said she is frustrated that exactly three weeks before the election, the conversation has turned to this.

"Looks and appearance seem to supersede commentary and observation and the other things that are more important," Garcia said.

In Vaillancourt's blog, he called Garcia, "One of the most attractive women on the political scene anywhere."

Garcia, who has worked with Vaillancourt during her four terms as a state representative, said the comments are not surprising and she is not at all flattered.

"He certainly is an equal opportunity offender," Garcia said.

NECN tried to reach Vaillancourt for comment, but no one answered when crews knocked at his Manchester home. He later sent an email referring NECN to his latest blog entry, which was posted Monday evening. Vaillancourt answers reporters' questions about whether or not he stands by his statements, writing, "Stand by the fact that Ms. Garcia is better looking than Ms. Kuster? If the reporters themselves don't see that, then they should question their own abilities to function."

In that same blog, Vaillancourt makes it clear, none of this is about supporting his party affiliation. In fact, he went on to criticize Republican gubernatorial candidate Walt Havenstein and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.

"Anyone who has followed what I've written (more than 500 posts this past year) knows that neither looks nor race nor sexual orientation nor sex matters a whit to me," Vaillancourt wrote.

As for the 2nd Congressional District Race, the most recent poll shows Kuster with a two point lead over Garcia.

Photo Credit: NECN]]>
<![CDATA[LA County Sheriff]]> Tue, 14 Oct 2014 13:59:57 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/210*120/tanaka+mcdonnell+la+county+sheriff+twoshot.png

Use the guide below to view information about the 2014 Los Angeles County Sheriff candidates. Mobile users, click here to view ballot measures or use your address to view your sample ballot.

This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.]]>
<![CDATA[CPUC President Will Not Seek Reappointment]]> Thu, 09 Oct 2014 18:43:42 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/peevy-mug.jpg

The president of the California Public Utilities Commission said Thursday that he will not seek reappointment when his term ends at the end of the year. Michael Peevey made the announcement amid criticism of improper and unethical dealings with Pacific Gas & Electric Co. while the CPUC was deciding the penalty for the deadly PG&E pipeline explosion in San Bruno four years ago.

Peninsula senator Jerry Hill and San Bruno Mayor Jim Ruane have long maintained that the CPUC is too cozy with utility companies it is supposed to regulate. On Thursday they held a press conference on the steps of the CPUC building in San Francisco to announce that Hill would introduce a measure to remove Peevey from his post should he be reappointed by Gov. Jerry Brown. 

Moments after the news conference concluded, Peevey announced he would not seek a new term as the CPUC president and issued the following statement:

“I originally planned to make the following announcement at the CPUC’s regularly-scheduled Voting Meeting on October 16th, but instead I am moving the announcement to today to state that I will not seek reappointment to the CPUC when my term expires at the end of this year. Twelve years as President is enough. The Governor, of course, will make a decision as to my successor in due time.” 

Peevey said he will address this decision at the Dec. 18 commission voting meeting—his last as president. 

“Now we can try to build the Public Utilities Commission back to what it was designed to be and what its intended mission is and that’s public safety, safe utilities at a reasonable rate,” Hill said. “That’s their mission and they got sidestepped from that.” 

A new batch of emails released this week by PG&E disclosed apparent quid pro quo arrangements between Peevey and a PG&E executive who was fired last month after a first set of emails showed improper communications between the CPUC and PG&E over the San Bruno case. The U.S. attorney’s office is now formally investigating the series of email exchanges detailing the discussions between the CPUC and PG&E. 

“As far as I’m concerned it’s an arrogant situation that existed at the Public Utilities Commission,” Ruane said. “The head of that arrogance is gone and hopefully we’ll be able to go forward with an arm’s length relationship between the utility and the regulator.” 

In a series of reports over the past two years the NBC Bay Area Investigative Unit has exposed the cozy relationship between the CPUC and regulated utility companies.

Last April NBC Bay Area cameras caught Peevey at a conference in wine country with representatives from utility companies instead of at a senate hearing in Sacramento. Hill requested Peevey’s presence at the hearing to answer questions about a confidential, internal report that criticized CPUC leaders for maintaining a too-close relationship with regulators and failing to make safety a priority. 

In June 2013, before the CPUC was set to vote on the San Bruno penalty, the Investigative Unit uncovered that Peevey accepted an honor from a union that represents employees from PG&E and other utility companies. And, late last year NBC Bay Area found that Peevey accepted more than $165,000 worth of gifts and travel in six years from nonprofit and special interest groups funded by utility companies. 

Hill said the issues exposed by NBC Bay Area, the pressure San Bruno city officials and lawmakers put on Peevey to step down and the recent email communications paint a very clear picture. 

“The conclusion when you connect all the dots,” Hill said, “is the man had to go one way or another.”

NBC Bay Area's cameras found Peevey at a public speaking engagement in Los Angeles late Thursday afternoon where he said he had no comment.

If you have a tip for the Investigative Unit email theunit@nbcbayarea.com or call 888-996-TIPS. 

<![CDATA[LA County District 3 Supervisor]]> Tue, 14 Oct 2014 13:57:52 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/198*120/shriverkuehldebate1.JPG

Use this guide to view details about the race for Los Angeles County District 3 Supervisor. Mobile users, click here to view ballot measures or use your address to view your sample ballot.

This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.]]>
<![CDATA[Routes to Avoid During President's Visit]]> Thu, 09 Oct 2014 05:28:10 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/456552512.jpg

Police are advising drivers to avoid portions of  Santa Monica, Brentwood, Westwood and Beverly Hills Thursday because of President  Barack Obama's visit.

The President is scheduled to arrive aboard Air Force One at Los Angeles  International Airport from Joint Base Andrews Thursday afternoon, then head to  Cross Campus, described by the White House as a collaborative space in Santa  Monica that brings together freelancers, creative professionals, entrepreneurs,  and venture capitalist-funded startup teams.

The following areas should be avoided from 1:30-3:30 p.m.:

  • Centinela Avenue between Ocean Park Boulevard and  Olympic Boulevard.
  • Lincoln Boulevard between Pico Boulevard and Wilshire  Boulevard.

The following areas should be avoided from 3:30-5 p.m.:

  • Santa Monica Boulevard between 26th Street & Ocean  Avenue.
  • Ocean Avenue between Pico Boulevard and San Vicente  Boulevard.

The following areas should be avoided from 5-7:30 p.m.:

  • San Vicente Boulevard between Ocean Avenue and Bundy  Drive.
  • Sunset Boulevard between Allenford Avenue and  Barrington Avenue.
  • Sunset Boulevard between Allenford Avenue and Roxbury  Drive.

The following areas should be avoided from 7:30-9 p.m.:

  • Beverly Glen Boulevard between Sunset Boulevard and  Santa Monica Boulevard.
  • Wilshire Boulevard between Sawtelle Boulevard and  Santa Monica Boulevard.

Hilgard Avenue in Westwood will be closed between Le Conte Avenue and  Weyburn Avenue from 8 a.m. Thursday to 6 p.m. Friday. Service on Metro Bus  Lines 2 and 302 on Hilgard Ave between Le Conte Avenue and Weyburn Avenue will  be canceled from 11 a.m. Thursday through 4 p.m. Friday.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Former Mayor Talks About New Book]]> Sun, 05 Oct 2014 12:50:41 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/10-5-14-riordan.JPG

Former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan has bared all about his leadership philosophy and the ups and downs of his eight-year tenure in his new book.

In “The Mayor: How I Turned Around Los Angeles after Riots, an Earthquake and the OJ Simpson Murder Trial,” Riordan discusses his accomplishments in problem-solving while serving as the Republican leader in a predominantly Democratic city.

“All my life I’ve been a problem-solver,” Riordan told NBC4 in a sit-down interview at his home. “Surrounding myself with strong people and empowering them.”

Riordan said this was his key to success as a maverick millionaire during his eight-year run as mayor of LA.

Between 1993 and 2001, Riordan oversaw the aftermath of the LA riots, the devastating Northridge earthquake and the murder trial of OJ Simpson, which drew headlines nationwide.

The day Simpson was acquitted, Riordan said he immediately took the first flight back to LA, in case of trouble.

As for the Northridge earthquake, Riordan recalls it quite simply.

“Our city came back and people had confidence in us,” he said. “And the rest was sailing.”

He also struck up an unlikely friendship with Democratic President Bill Clinton, who wrote the foreword to the new book.

“He’d be up, talking to me until four in the morning, and I’m dead tired, saying how the hell do I get to sleep,” Riordan said of Clinton with a laugh.

When Riordan was elected, he recalls the shockwaves it sent across city hall. But after his first four years, he was so popular he was reelected in a landslide.

He shared his thoughts on the city’s current mayor, Eric Garcetti, who last year defeated the candidate Riordan endorsed, Wendy Greuel.

“He talks a great game and a beautiful game and but he doesn’t bring the right people around him and empower them to make things done,” Riordan said.

Riordan is also the former Calif. education secretary, and the co-founder and namesake of the Riordan Programs at the UCLA Anderson School of Management, which provides leadership and management training. He currently teaches leadership, emphasizing his problem-solving-over-politics mentality.

He will be at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Library in Simi Valley Thursday for a book signing.

Photo Credit: Mike Tauber]]>
<![CDATA[NewsConference "EXTRA" A Sneak Peek at the Renovated Hall of Justice]]> Tue, 07 Oct 2014 12:04:29 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/TLANCXTRAHALLOFJUSTICESUN1005_1200x675_337746499837.jpg The L-A County Hall of Justice...which has been closed since the Northridge earthquake..will formally re-open on Wednesday. It was built in 1925. A Historic building. Part of Los Angeles' majestic past. NBC4's Conan Nolan talks with D.J.WALDIE author and historian.]]> <![CDATA[NewsConference: The New Hall of Justice]]> Wed, 08 Oct 2014 11:35:57 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/NCSEG3HALLOFJUSTICE100514_1200x675_337745475831.jpg NBC4's Conan Nolan conversation with J.D. Waldie, author, historian, and a contributor writer for the LA Times. The historian talks about the newly renovated LA County Hall of Justice closed since the Northridge earthquake now re-opening this coming week. Some amazing history here...Charles Manson, Bugsy Siegel, Sirhan Sirhan, Marilyn Monroe and Bobby Kennedy are just few of the names associated with this historic building.]]> <![CDATA[NewsConference: Proposition 45 Pros and Cons]]> Mon, 13 Oct 2014 12:32:41 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/NCSEG1PROP45COURTGALLEGOS_1200x675_337745987887.jpg NBC4's Conan Nolan moderates a debate on Prop. 45. Jamie Court of Consumer Watchdog represents the Yes on Prop. 45. Dr. Martin Gallegos with the Hospital Association of So. California represents the No on Prop. 45. This proposition would give new powers to the California Insurance Commissioner.]]> <![CDATA[NewsConference: Proposition 45]]> Mon, 13 Oct 2014 12:32:41 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/NCSEG2PROP45COURTGALLLEGOS_1200x675_337745987742.jpg Jamie Court of Consumer Watchdog, represents the Yes on Prop. 45 campaign and Dr. Martin Gallegos with the Hospital Association of So Cal, represents the No on Prop. 45. NBC4's Conan Nolan moderates.]]> <![CDATA[Clinton Recommends Grandmotherhood]]> Thu, 02 Oct 2014 17:39:16 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/tlmd_hillaryclinton7.jpg

Thousands waited hours in the sun to see Former First Lady and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Thursday in South Florida.

Clinton was signing copies of her new book "Hard Choices" at Books & Books at 265 Aragon Ave. in Coral Gables.

There, she spoke about her book and about becoming a grandmother just a few days ago, saying, "I highly recommend it!"

Earlier on Thursday, Clinton spoke at the Crew Network Convention & Marketplace at the Loews Hotel in Miami Beach.

Her message for the 1,200 professional women at the event was one of empowerment.

"You can't get tied into knots by what others say and think, because we all know women sometimes get judged by different criteria -- even powerful women in powerful positions," she said.

Karyl Argamasilla, with the Miami Crew chapter, said she took Clinton's message to heart.

"At the end of the day, she's someone who has broken all the glass ceilings," Argamasilla said.

At one point, a woman in the audience shouted out, "2016!" -- the only mention of a possible presidential run during Clinton's Miami stops. But those in attendance said they don't doubt she'll be joining the race.

"She's already been to Iowa," said Steve Sails. "She's running."

<![CDATA[Voter's Guide: 2014 Statewide Races]]> Mon, 13 Oct 2014 12:45:46 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/california-state-flag.jpg

Use the guide below to view the 2014 election statewide races in California. Mobile users, click here to access the ballot lookup feature.

Photo Credit: Getty
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.]]>
<![CDATA[Gun Violence Bills Inspired by Shooting Rampage Cheered]]> Thu, 02 Oct 2014 20:20:27 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/224*120/guns15.JPG

Returning to Isla Vista is never easy for Bob Weiss, not since his daughter Veronika died here last May during a disturbed gunman's rampage.

But returning Wednesday, something was different: a sense that determination tempered by tragedy had led to progress in reducing the risk of gun violence.

For the first time since Veronika's death, Weiss was able to smile again as he stood in the same park where only four months ago a vigil had been held for Veronika and the other victims.

"It's a happy day today in Isla Vista because we did something," Weiss told a group that had gathered to mark Gov. Brown's signing of Assembly Bill 1014. It enables courts to order guns be taken from individuals seen by family or law enforcement to be in such a mental state that they pose a threat to themselves or others.

Much like the process for domestic violence restraining orders, the ruling could be made initially without the subject being present, but for the order to remain in effect, a hearing would have to be held within three weeks.

"We're gathered here because California has taken a major step forward in protecting families," said Richard Martinez, whose son Christopher, 20, was also slain in the May 23 rampage. He, like Veronika, 19, and the four others slain, were students at UC Santa Barbara.

The perpetrator, who authorities said also used his BMW as a weapon to strike bicyclists and pedestrians, was identified as Elliot Rodger, 22, who died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

In personal videos he posted on YouTube, and in an autobiography he distributed through the internet, Rodger ranted about the unhappiness in his life, blaming women for not dating him, and vowing "retribution."

Rodger's family had become concerned about his mental state and asked the Sheriff's department to check on his welfare.

Rodger convinced them there was no problem.

In his call for retribution, he wrote of his relief deputies did not search his room, for they would have found the firearms he had acquired.

Within hours of the shooting, Martinez had traveled to Isla Vista, and in his grief, demanded "not one more," and challenged a society that has become victimized by mass shootings in recent decades, many of them targeting students, to shake off its complacency about such tragedies.

Lawmakers responded with AB 1014, and a second bill, SB505 that would require law enforcement to check gun registration when asked to check on an individual with mental health concerns.

Both Martinez and Weiss traveled to the state capital and worked tirelessly to encourage passage of the bills. Their authors -- Assemblyman Das Williams, D-Isla Vista, and state Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara -- both gave credit to Martinez and Weiss.

"Their participation has been enormously helpful," said Jackson. "I expect going forward that
they're going to keep banging the drum that we need sensible gun laws."
Weiss and Martinez both spoke of their intention to keep working with the advocacy group,
Everytown for Gun Safety, and to push for similar legislation in other states.
Passage of AB 1014 was also hailed by the father of Elliot Rodger.
Peter Rodger has met with Martinez and supported his efforts to reduce gun violence.  "California today is a safer state because of this legislation," Rodger wrote in a statement.
The bills had faced opposition from the National Rifle Association and others who see infringement on the Second Amendment.
"AB 1014 is one of the most egregious violations of civil liberties ever introduced in the California legislature," wrote Charles Cunningham on behalf of the NRA's Institute for Legislative Action.
"America's worst gun control bill" is how it was described by Robert Farago, publisher of The Truth About Guns website.
Martinez and Weiss disagreed.
"A 22 year old kid who's mentally ill being able to buy three guns and shoot people in cold blood and stab them to death -- that's in nobody's interest. The NRA should be on our side." said Weiss.
Even as they spoke in Anisq'Oyo' Park, UC Santa Barbara students were preparing to begin the new academic year Thursday. Some stood in the park watching the news conference.
The fathers who have been through so much offered encouragement.
"Don't be afraid," said Weiss.  "Fight for what you believe in."

<![CDATA[Bills Signed, Vetoed by Gov. Jerry Brown]]> Tue, 30 Sep 2014 14:01:19 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/tlmd_jerry_brown_gobernador_california_mexico.jpg

Gov. Jerry Brown signed the following bills:

•AB 26 by Assemblymember Susan Bonilla (D-Concord) – Construction: prevailing wage.
•AB 155 by Assemblymember Luis Alejo (D-Salinas) – Monterey County Water Resources Agency: design-build.
•AB 288 by Assemblymember Marc B. Levine (D-Rafael) – California Coastal Commission: meeting notices.
•AB 296 by Assemblymember Donald P. Wagner (R-Irvine) – Trusts.
•AB 510 by Assemblymember Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco) – Political Reform Act of 1974: advertisement disclosures.
•AB 617 by Assemblymember Adrin Nazarian (D-Sherman Oaks) – California Health Benefit Exchange: appeals.
•AB 802 by Assemblymember Bob Wieckowski (D-Fremont) – Private arbitration companies: disclosures.
•AB 948 by Assemblymember Kristin M. Olsen (R-Modesto) – Charter schools: school facilities: Charter School Facility Grant Program.
•AB 1014 by Assemblymember Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley) – Gun violence restraining orders.
•AB 1440 by Assemblymember Nora Campos (D-San Jose) – Elections: district boundaries: public hearing.
•AB 1517 by Assemblymember Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley) – DNA evidence.
•AB 1537 by Assemblymember Marc B. Levine (D-Rafael) – General plan housing element: regional housing need.
•AB 1539 by Assemblymember Curt C. Hagman (R-Chino Hills) – Content standards: computer science.
•AB 1607 by Assemblymember Steve Fox (D-Palmdale) – Sexually violent predators.
•AB 1609 by Assemblymember Luis Alejo (D-Salinas) – Firearms.
•AB 1643 by Assemblymember Joan Buchanan (D-Alamo) – Pupil attendance: school attendance review boards.
•AB 1650 by Assemblymember Reginald Jones-Sawyer (D-Los Angeles) – Public contracts: bidders: employment practices.
•AB 1666 by Assemblymember Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens) – Political Reform Act of 1974: campaign funds: bribery fines.
•AB 1673 by Assemblymember Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens) – Political Reform Act of 1974: contributions.
•AB 1690 by Assemblymember Richard S. Gordon (D-Menlo Park) – Local planning: housing elements.
•AB 1692 by Assemblymember Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens) – Political Reform Act of 1974.
•AB 1717 by Assemblymember Henry T. Perea (D-Fresno) – Telecommunications: prepaid mobile telephony services: state surcharge and fees: local charges collection.
•AB 1723 by Assemblymember Adrin Nazarian (D-Sherman Oaks) – Employees: wages.
•AB 1752 by Assemblymember Paul Fong (D-San Jose) – Redistricting: incumbent designation.
•AB 1764 by Assemblymember Kristin M. Olsen (R-Modesto) – School curriculum: mathematics: computer science.
•AB 1792 by Assemblymember Jimmy Gomez (D-Los Angeles) – Public benefits: reports on employers.
•AB 1870 by Assemblymember Luis Alejo (D- Salinas) – Public works: prevailing wage: multiemployer apprenticeship program grants.
•AB 1943 by Assemblymember Wesley Chesbro (D-Arcata) – Tidelands: City of Eureka.
•AB 2018 by Assemblymember Raul J. Bocanegra (D-Los Angeles) – Real estate licensees: fictitious business names.
•AB 2039 by Assemblymember Al Muratsuchi (D-Torrance) – Real property sales: auctions.
•AB 2040 by Assemblymember Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens) – Compensation of elected officials, officers, and employees: reporting and disclosure.
•AB 2048 by Assemblymember Brian Dahle (R-Bieber) – Fire prevention fees: state responsibility areas.
•AB 2056 by Assemblymember Matt Dababneh (D-Encino) – Insurance: pet insurance.
•AB 2141 by Assemblymember Isadore Hall III (D-Compton) – Pupil attendance: truancy: referrals for prosecution.
•AB 2195 by Assemblymember Katcho Achadjian (R-San Luis Obispo) – Juveniles: truancy.
•AB 2243 by Assemblymember Shirley N. Weber (D-San Diego) – Elections: voting rights guide: incarcerated persons.
•AB 2272 by Assemblymember Adam Gray (D-Merced) – Public works: prevailing wage.
•AB 2276 by Assemblymember Raul J. Bocanegra (D-Los Angeles) – Pupils: transfers from juvenile court schools.
•AB 2320 by Assemblymember Paul Fong (D-San Jose) – Political Reform Act of 1974: campaign funds.
•AB 2351 by Assemblymember Richard S. Gordon (D-Menlo Park) – Political party qualification.
•AB 2369 by Assemblymember Curt C. Hagman (R-Chino Hills) – Elections: voter-requested recounts.
•AB 2382 by Assemblymember Steven Bradford (D-Gardena) – CalWORKs: eligibility: truancy.
•AB 2530 by Assemblymember Freddie Rodriguez (D-Pomona) – Ballot processing.
•AB 2539 by Assemblymember Phillip Y. Ting (D-San Francisco) – Certified farmers' markets.
•AB 2551 by Assemblymember Scott T. Wilk (R-Santa Clarita) – Local ballot measures: bond issues.
•AB 2562 by Assemblymember Paul Fong (D-San Jose) – Elections.
•AB 2617 by Assemblymember Shirley N. Weber (D-San Diego) – Civil rights: waiver of rights.
•AB 2631 by Assemblymember Matt Dababneh (D-Encino) – Elections: voting machines.
•AB 2646 by Assemblymember Philip Y. Ting (D-San Francisco) – Civil rights: political structure equal protection.
•    AB 2747 by the Committee on Judiciary – Civil law: omnibus bill.
•AB 2755 by Assemblymember Raul J. Bocanegra (D-Los Angeles) – Nonprofit corporations: directors.
•SB 199 by Senator Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) – BB devices.
•SB 266 by Senator Ted W. Lieu (D-Torrance) – Prevailing wages.
•SB 486 by Senator Mark DeSaulnier (D-Concord) – Department of Transportation: goals and performance measures.
•SB 505 by Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson (D-Santa Barbara) – Peace officers: welfare checks: firearms.
•SB 785 by Senator Lois Wolk (D-Davis) – Design-build.
•SB 838 by Senator Jim Beall (D-San Jose) – Juveniles: sex offenses.
•SB 844 by Senator Fran Pavley (D-Agoura Hills) – Elections: ballot measure contributions.
•SB 926 by Senator Jim Beall (D-San Jose) – Crimes: statute of limitation: felony sex crimes.
•SB 968 by Senator Jerry Hill (D-San Mateo) – Public lands: Martins Beach property: access road.
•SB 971 by Senator Bob Huff (R-Diamond Bar) – School finance: categorical programs.
•SB 1018 by Senator Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) – Pest control: citrus disease prevention.
•SB 1172 by Senator Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento) – Pupil health: vision appraisals.
•SB 1211 by Senator Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) – Emergency services: Next Generation 911.          
•SB 1235 by Senator Stephen T. Knight (R-Palmdale) – Prepackaged food.
•SB 1395 by Senator Marty Block (D-San Diego) – Public beaches: inspection for contaminants.
•SB 1433 by Senator Jerry Hill (D-San Mateo) – Local Agency Public Construction Act: transit design-build contracts.
•SB 1441 by Senator Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) – Political Reform Act of 1974: contributions.

Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed the following bills:


  • AB 47 by Assemblymember Mike Gatto (D-Los Angeles) – Emergency services: hit-and-run incidents. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 913 by Assemblymember Ed Chau (D-Arcadia) – Charter schools. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 1431 by Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego) – Campaign contributions: school district and community college district administrators. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 1532 by Assemblymember Mike Gatto (D-Los Angeles) – Vehicle: accidents. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 1574 by Assemblymember Richard Pan (D-Sacramento) – Personal services contracts: prohibitions. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 1575 by Assemblymember Richard Pan (D-Sacramento) – Personal services contracts: reports and termination of contracts. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 1646 by Assemblymember Jim L. Frazier Jr. (D-Oakley) – Vehicles: electronic wireless communication devices: prohibitions. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 1665 by Assemblymember Brian W. Jones (R-Santee) – Automotive repair. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 1672 by Assemblymember Chris Holden (D-Pasadena) – Pupil attendance: truancy. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 1716 by Assemblymember Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens) – Political Reform Act of 1974: Postemployment activity restrictions. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 1728 by Assemblymember Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens) – Political Reform Act of 1974. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 1744 by Assemblymember Cheryl Brown (D-San Bernardino) – California Department of Aging. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 1866 by Assemblymember Raul J. Bocanegra (D-Los Angeles) – Pupil attendance: California Longitudinal Pupil Achievement Data System. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 1948 by Assemblymember Kevin Mullin (D-South San Francisco) – Counties: officers: qualification for office. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 2032 by Assemblymember Rob Bonta (D-Alameda) – Civil service: employee hearings. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 2062 by Assemblymember Roger Hernández (D-West Covina) – Health facilities: surgical technologists. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 2126 by Assemblymember Rob Bonta (D-Alameda) – Meyers-Milias-Brown Act: mediation. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 2155 by Assemblymember Sebastian Ridley-Thomas (D-Los Angeles) – Nurses and certified nurse assistants: overtime. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 2380 by Assemblymember Shirley N. Weber (D-San Diego) – School plans: consolidated application for categorical programs: single plan for pupil achievement. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 2398 by Assemblymember Marc B. Levine (D-Rafael) – Vehicles: pedestrians and bicyclists. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 2520 by Assemblymember Brian Maienschein (R-San Diego) – Parole: primary mental clinicians. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 2661 by Assemblymember Steven Bradford (D-Gardena) – Political Reform Act of 1974: conflicts of interest: Energy Commission. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 2673 by Assemblymember Steven Bradford (D-Gardena) – Civil compromise: hit and run. A veto message can be found here.
  • AB 2692 by Assemblymember Paul Fong (D-San Jose) – Political Reform Act of 1974: expenditures. A veto message can be found here.
  • SB 170 by Senator Lois Wolk (D-Davis) – Bale Grist Mill State Historic Park. A veto message can be found here.
  • SB 792 by Senator Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) – Administrative regulations: corrosion prevention and mitigation projects. A veto message can be found here.
  • SB 808 by Senator Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) – Firearms: identifying information. A veto message can be found here.
  • SB 831 by Senator Jerry Hill (D-San Mateo) – Political Reform Act of 1974. A veto message can be found here.
  • SB 923 by Senator Fran Pavley (D-Agoura Hills) – Educational apprenticeships: Educational Apprenticeship Innovation Act: EdPrize. A veto message can be found here.
  • SB 924 by Senator Jim Beall (D-San Jose) – Damages: childhood sexual abuse: statute of limitations. A veto message can be found here.
  • SB 969 by Senator Mark DeSaulnier (D-Concord) – Public works. A veto message can be found here.
  • SB 975 by Senator Ted W. Lieu (D-Torrance) – Personal services contracts: legal compliance. A veto message can be found here.
  • SB 1138 by Senator Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) – Fish and shellfish: labeling and identification. A veto message can be found here.
  • SB 1365 by Senator Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) – California Voting Rights Act of 2001. A veto message can be found here.
  • SB 1442 by Senator Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) – Political Reform Act of 1974: campaign statements. A veto message can be found here.
  • SB 1443 by Senator Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) – Political Reform Act of 1974: gift limitations. A veto message can be found here.

<![CDATA[CA Plastic Bag Ban Approved]]> Tue, 30 Sep 2014 15:23:45 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/212*120/Plastic+Bag+Ban+Store+Counter+copy.jpg

California Gov. Jerry Brown signed the nation's first statewide ban on single-use plastic bags Tuesday.

The measure, first proposed by Democratic Sen. Alex Padilla of Los Angeles, would prohibit single-use plastic bags at grocery stores and large pharmacies in 2015 and at convenience stores in 2016.

It includes $2 million in loans to help manufacturers shift to producing reusable bags and lets grocers charge 10 cents each for paper and reusable bags.

The bill had sparked one of the most contentious debates in the last weeks of the legislative session, with aggressive lobbying by environmentalists and bag manufacturers.

Moments after Brown signed the measure, the American Progressive Bag Alliance called it a “back room deal between grocers and union bosses to scam California consumers out of billions of dollars without providing any public benefit – all under the guise of environmentalism.”

The group plans to launch a referendum effort for the November 2016 ballot to repeal the measure.

San Diegan Laura Quinn-Stalker had mixed feelings about the news.

“Although I reuse my plastic bags constantly and will miss that,” she posted to NBC 7’s Facebook page, “I think this is important to do.”

“Won't see a dime saved in my pocket. Now, I have to buy garbage bags,” Oxnard resident Wade Wilson posted.

For years, a statewide plastic bag ban has been an elusive goal for lawmakers trying to reduce the buildup of plastic waste in oceans and waterways that costs millions of dollars to cleanup.

About 100 local jurisdictions in California already have adopted similar bans, including Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Kamala Harris Says She's Not Interested in Eric Holder's Job]]> Thu, 25 Sep 2014 17:15:33 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/181*120/Kamala4.jpg

California Attorney General Kamala Harris waved off speculation Thursday that she might be next in line to replace U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who announced Thursday that he will resign after leading the Justice Department for nearly six years.

Harris issued a statement after her name surfaced on lists of possible replacements for Holder’s job, along with candidates such as Solicitor General Don Verrilli, Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick and Deputy U.S. Attorney General James Cole.

“I am honored to even be mentioned, but intend to continue my work for the people of California as Attorney General,” Harris, who is is on the Nov. 4 ballot running for a second term, said in a statement. “I am focused on key public safety issues including transnational gangs, truancy and recidivism.”

Patrick also downplayed his interest, saying the job is "not one for me right now."

President Barack Obama has not yet made a final decision about a replacement for Holder. Holder, the first African-American U.S. Attorney General, bade an emotional goodbye Thursday, thanking the president and his family for their support during his time in office.

Obama said Holder has agreed to stay on until his replacement is confirmed.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Los Angeles County Supervisor Debate Part 1]]> Mon, 13 Oct 2014 12:32:41 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/web_county_supervisor_debate_1_1200x675_332559427575.jpg Los Angeles County Supervisor candidates Sheila Kuehl and Bobby Shriver met in a debate Sept 16 at UCLA. The 3rd District seat has been held by Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky since 1994.]]> <![CDATA[Los Angeles County Supervisor Debate Part 2]]> Mon, 13 Oct 2014 12:32:42 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/web_county_supervisor_debate_2_1200x675_332883011834.jpg Los Angeles County Supervisor candidates Sheila Kuehl and Bobby Shriver met in a debate Sept 16 at UCLA. The 3rd District seat has been held by Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky since 1994.]]> <![CDATA[Los Angeles County Supervisor Debate Part 3]]> Mon, 13 Oct 2014 12:32:42 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/web_county_supervisor_debate_3_1200x675_332882499900.jpg Los Angeles County Supervisor candidates Sheila Kuehl and Bobby Shriver met in a debate Sept 16 at UCLA. The 3rd District seat has been held by Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky since 1994.]]> <![CDATA[Los Angeles County Supervisor Debate Part 4]]> Mon, 13 Oct 2014 12:32:42 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/web_county_supervisor_debate_4_1200x675_332882499938.jpg Los Angeles County Supervisor candidates Sheila Kuehl and Bobby Shriver met in a debate Sept 16 at UCLA. The 3rd District seat has been held by Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky since 1994.]]> <![CDATA[NewsConference EXTRA: American Cancer Society Worried Over Money Going to Politicians]]> Tue, 07 Oct 2014 13:21:15 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/217*120/10-07-2014-newsconference-2.jpg Jim Knox with the American Cancer Society is the Vice-President of Government Relations, Cancer Action Network. He tells NBC4"s Conan Nolan there's a lot more the state can be doing in anti-smoking prevention. California used to be a leader, now we have fallen behind, he says. He believes he knows why...and it all deals with money, lots of money.

Photo Credit: KNBC-TV]]>
<![CDATA[NewsConference: Gov. Brown Signs New Tax Credit for Film Industry.]]> Sun, 21 Sep 2014 07:50:35 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/ncseg1bocanegragatto92114_1200x675_331448899792.jpg Is the new bill signed by CA. Governor Jerry Brown this week to keep film jobs in the state enough to stop runaway procution? NBC4's Conan Nolan talks to two assemblymen behing this legislation..Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-LA) and Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra (D-LA).]]>