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Updating . .   

Rep. Mark DeSaulnier has cancer and plans to seek re-election -- Rep. Mark DeSaulnier has leukemia. But his cancer has responded well to treatment. His prognosis is good. And he has even felt well enough to resume his meditative 8-mile runs on Mount Diablo. Daniel Borenstein in the East Bay Times$ -- 5/5/16

Mexico’s top diplomat goes silent on Donald Trump -- Two months ago, Mexico’s top diplomat made international headlines for calling Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump’s policies “ignorant and racist.” Alexei Koseff in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/5/16

Former federal prosecutors to lead UC probe of Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi -- Melinda Haag will head up the independent probe, according to an announcement from UC President Janet Napolitano’s office. As U.S. attorney for the Northern District of California, she oversaw high-profile prosecutions that included Giants star Barry Bonds and former state Sen. Leland Yee. Diana Lambert and Sam Stanton in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/5/16

Assembly buries Aliso Canyon relief bill deemed ‘job killer’ -- Following late-blooming resistance from business groups, a bill giving Porter Ranch residents more tools to seek legal redress for a gas leak fell far short in the California Assembly on Thursday. Jeremy B. White in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/5/16

California Supreme Court seems likely to allow parole ballot measure to move ahead -- During a hearing, several justices of the state high court suggested that the plan by Gov. Jerry Brown was properly amended into an initiative that dealt solely with juvenile justice. State law requires that amendments to a ballot measure be “reasonably germane” to the purpose of the original measure. Maura Dolan and John Myers in the Los Angeles Times$ David Siders in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/5/16

'You want a description of hell?' OxyContin's 12-hour problem -- The drugmaker Purdue Pharma launched OxyContin two decades ago with a bold marketing claim: One dose relieves pain for 12 hours, more than twice as long as generic medications. But OxyContin's stunning success masked a fundamental problem: The drug wears off hours early in many people. Harriet Ryan, Lisa Girion and Scott Glover in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

3 patients died in a Pasadena outbreak possibly caused by medical scopes -- At least three patients died last year at Huntington Hospital in Pasadena in an outbreak suspected to have been caused by tainted medical scopes, according to a newly discovered regulatory report. Melody Petersen in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

Apple slammed over taxes by mayor of Cupertino, its hometown -- Apple has had to defend its tax practices all over the place — from Washington to Europe — throughout the years. Now it’s facing accusations of not paying enough taxes in its own backyard. Levi Sumagaysay in the San Jose Mercury$ -- 5/5/16

San Jose rent freeze abandoned -- When a divided City Council two weeks ago mustered the votes to lower maximum rent hikes in 44,000 apartments from 8 percent to 5 percent, there was concern that landlords would jack up rent before the rule goes into effect next fall. Ramona Giwargis in the San Jose Mercury$ -- 5/5/16

Borrego Springs water crisis begins and ends with farming -- It's not that Borrego Springs is running out of water. There are, in fact, three aquifers beneath the valley, one atop the other. But as the water table drops, it becomes more and more expensive to pump water out of the ground. J. Harry Jones in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

Just say yes: Some California law enforcement leaders support legalizing recreational pot -- As the movement to legalize pot for recreational use heads closer to a November ballot initiative, California law enforcement leaders are taking some very different positions on the matter. Richard Winton in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

Urth Caffe owner hires lawyer to fight Muslim women's discrimination allegations -- The owner of Urth Caffe has hired a law firm to counter allegations by a group of Muslim women that they were thrown out of his Laguna Beach restaurant because of discrimination. Anh Do in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

Fox: Is Shakespearean Tragedy Brewing for the State Budget? -- Double, double, toil and trouble; Fire burn, and cauldron bubble—The Witches of Macbeth The state budget cauldron is boiling with forces approaching that could doom California’s bottom line. Joel Fox Fox & Hounds -- 5/5/16

Long-Term Drought Persists In California -- The U.S. Drought Monitor released May 5 shows some minor improvement in California drought conditions. But looking ahead to the dry season shows drought persisting for a fifth consecutive year in the Golden State. Ed Joyce Capital Public Radio -- 5/5/16

El Niño rains added fuel to California's upcoming fire season, experts say -- As he drove east of Fresno to the next Wildfire Awareness Week event in Kern County on Wednesday, Cal Fire Chief Ken Pimlott turned his gaze toward the browning landscape. Joseph Serna in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

Fight brewing over new schools accountability system -- A tug of war over what and how many measures a new accountability system should use to judge schools is brewing between legislators and state policy officials. Adolfo Guzman-Lopez KPCC -- 5/5/16

Debate Erupts in California Over Curriculum on India’s History -- Victors are said to write history. But in California, history is being written by a committee that finds itself at the center of a raging debate over how to tell the story of South Asia as it tries to update textbooks and revise curriculums for grades six and seven. Jennifer Medina in the New York Times$ -- 5/5/16

Oakland Retains Consultant to Study Impact of Coal Shipments -- The City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to approve a contract with Environmental Science Associates to help city staff investigate the health impacts of a project that could lead to the shipment of millions of tons of coal every year through the planned West Oakland port facility. Ted Goldberg KQED -- 5/5/16

How The Absence Of Cruz And Kasich Could Affect Other California Races -- The departure of Texas Senator Ted Cruz, Ohio Governor John Kasich and a competitive Republican primary in California could depress what was expected to be a surge in voter turnout. That could be a problem for Republicans in other state races, but an expert in voter turnout says it likely won't be. Ben Bradford Capital Public Radio -- 5/5/16

Loretta Sanchez Touts D.C. Credentials in a Year of the Outsider -- In the race to replace retiring U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer, only one candidate has any experience in Congress, and that’s Democratic Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez. But in a recent Senate debate, Sanchez denied she’s the insider. She said she’s not the status quo. Kitty Felde KQED -- 5/5/16

Bill Clinton stumps for Hillary, takes veiled swipe at Trump -- Former President Bill Clinton made the case for sending his wife to the Oval Office during a speech in Los Angeles on Wednesday that referred to the San Bernardino terrorist attack and avoided direct attacks against Republican Donald Trump. Jeff Horseman in the Los Angeles Daily News$ -- 5/5/16

Trump and California’s GOP Latinos -- For Latino voters in California, presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s anti-immigration pronouncements present a dilemma. But for Latino Republicans, the challenge is especially difficult. Alex Matthews Capitol Weekly -- 5/5/16

Thanks a lot, Indiana: Here's what California Republicans could have had -- You can't say it doesn't sting. California's role as the closing prize of the primary campaign season has been sundered by little Indiana, where a sweeping victory handed the title "presumptive Republican nominee" to Donald Trump. Cathleen Decker and Seema Mehta in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

Schnur: Distancing itself from Trump's toxicity could be the California GOP's salvation -- For the Republican Party nationally, presumptive nominee Donald Trump is the political version of Chernobyl. Dan Schnur in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

McCain on tape: Trump damages my reelection hopes -- Publicly, John McCain insists Donald Trump will have a negligible effect on his campaign for reelection. But behind closed doors at a fundraiser in Arizona last month, the Republican senator and two-time presidential hopeful offered a far more dire assessment to his supporters. Burgess Everett and Seung Min Kim Politico -- 5/5/16

 

California Policy & Politics This Morning   

California ponders expanding cap and trade to Brazil -- But under a plan state air regulators are considering, industries that emit greenhouse gas pollution in California could form multimillion dollar relationships with indigenous communities like Kuntanawa’s by paying them to preserve trees deep in the Amazon rainforest of Brazil. Laurel Rosenhall Calmatters.org -- 5/5/16

Porter Ranch homebuyers not told of gas field risk until after leak -- People buying homes in Porter Ranch signed documents saying they'd been advised of many potential hazards in the community before closing their deals -- high winds, wild animals, fire danger, even distant airport noise. But none of those disclosures warned prospective residents they were moving next door to one of the nation's largest underground natural gas storage fields. Sharon McNary KPCC -- 5/5/16

LAPD hacked into iPhone of slain wife of 'Shield' actor, documents show -- Los Angeles police investigators obtained a method to open the locked iPhone belonging to the slain wife of "The Shield" actor Michael Jace, according to court papers reviewed by The Times. Matt Hamilton and Richard Winton in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

State Supreme Court to weigh Gov. Brown's prison release initiative -- California's highest court is slated to hear arguments Thursday on whether Gov. Jerry Brown may ask voters in November to allow an early release from prison for some who were convicted of nonviolent crimes. Maura Dolan and John Myers in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

Gov. Brown signs bills to raise smoking age to 21, restrict e-cigarettes -- Gov. Jerry Brown on Wednesday signed a pack of bills that will raise the smoking age in California from 18 to 21, and restrict the use of electronic cigarettes in public places. Patrick McGreevy in the Los Angeles Times$ Alexei Koseff in the Sacramento Bee$ Melody Gutierrez in the San Francisco Chronicle Alison Noon Associated Press Lisa Aliferis KQED Ben Adler Capital Public Radio -- 5/5/16

Vaping will soon be banned in many public places in California -- California has applied the brakes to slow the vaping craze after Gov. Jerry Brown on Wednesday signed legislation to prohibit electronic cigarette use in restaurants, theaters, schools and other public places where smoking is already banned. Patrick McGreevy in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

Measure to legalize pot headed for November ballot -- California voters will decide this November whether to decriminalize the recreational use of marijuana by adults, Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Wednesday, calling the looming vote a "pivotal moment" in the national debate around pot legalization and the 45-year-old war on drugs. Aaron Kinney in the San Jose Mercury$ Christopher Cadelago in the Sacramento Bee$ Kurtis Alexander in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 5/5/16

California lawmakers kill bills pushed by dissident union members -- Dissident public union members left the Capitol unhappy on Wednesday after lawmakers rejected legislation to crack open their unions’ books. Jeremy B. White in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/5/16

Progressive groups say annual 'job killer' list is killing good legislation -- The groups, which include large labor, environmental and social justice organizations like the Service Employees International Union California, California Labor Federation, Sierra Club and Planned Parenthood, said at a Wednesday press conference that the chamber's annual "job killer" list of legislation opposed by the business lobby has too much influence over lawmakers' decisions. Liam Dillon in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

San Andreas fault 'locked, loaded and ready to roll' with big earthquake, expert says -- Southern California’s section of the San Andreas fault is “locked, loaded and ready to roll,” a leading earthquake scientist said Wednesday at the National Earthquake Conference in Long Beach. Rong-Gong Lin II in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

Pain doctor Prince sought help from speaks out -- Dr. Howard Kornfeld, the Bay Area pain specialist whose help a representative for Prince sought before the legendary musician’s death, has long been an advocate of using a painkiller that’s less addictive than many of the opioids that have led to an epidemic of abuse. He spoke exclusively to The Chronicle on Wednesday. Victoria Colliver in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 5/5/16

Renters’ secondhand pot smoke targeted in new California bill -- Susan, a 53-year-old Santa Rosa apartment dweller, smokes marijuana every day to alleviate chronic pain from a variety of conditions, including herniated discs, spinal curvature and tendinitis. She also uses the drug to relieve her anxiety and depression. Guy Kovner in the Santa Rosa Press -- 5/5/16

Skelton: How did Trump become the presumptive nominee? Blame broadcast and social media -- So California’s Republican presidential primary will be a dud after all. Fantasizing about playing kingmaker — or crown denier — was fun for a while. But reality reared its head in Indiana. George Skelton in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

Some Orange County Republicans wary of jumping on the Trump train -- Mission Viejo’s Nancy Brown has voted for the Republican nominee for president ever since casting her first ballot, for Dwight Eisenhower, in 1956. But the erstwhile Ted Cruz supporter is ambivalent about her choices this November, now that Donald Trump is the only GOP candidate left. Martin Wisckol in the Orange County Register -- 5/5/16

Can California Republicans say yes to Trump? -- Fresno resident Jonathan Keller epitomizes the challenge facing presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump as he seeks votes in California and beyond: Can Trump attract enough alienated Republicans to win? Michael Doyle and William Douglas in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/5/16

Why you should be extra careful voting for California's next US senator -- Voter information guides are now being mailed by the secretary of state across California ahead of the June 7 primary election. When you get yours, one thing you’ll notice is a very long list of candidates running for California’s open U.S. Senate seat. Mary Plummer KPCC -- 5/5/16

Rep. Cardenas spends 40% of reelection fund on legal fees, but his lawyer denies federal probe -- U.S. Rep. Tony Cardenas (D-Los Angeles) has poured more than $300,000 from his reelection campaign fund into legal services with five Los Angeles law firms in the last year, but his attorney says there is no indication the congressman is the subject of a rumored federal investigation. Sarah D. Wire in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

Protesters interrupt San Francisco Police Commission meeting -- Protesters calling for the firing of San Francisco Police Chief Greg Suhr brought Wednesday’s Police Commission meeting to a standstill, delaying the discussion on proposed changes to the department’s use-of-force policies. Vivian Ho in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 5/5/16

Calbuzz: Kasich Out, GOP = Grandiose Odious Perversity -- The record will show that Calbuzz prophetically picked John Kasich, who quit the Republican presidential race Wednesday, as the #3 candidate in the field eight months ago, after first touting him as a #5 dark horse a month before he even got in: Jerry Roberts and Phil Trounstine CalBuzz -- 5/5/16

Taxes, Fees, Rates, Tolls     

Fighting obesity, Oakland puts soda tax on ballot -- The Oakland City Council voted unanimously to place a soda tax on the November ballot, a penny-per-ounce revenue stream expected to raise up to $12 million per year to aid in efforts to fight obesity. Jill Tucker in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 5/5/16

Economy, Employers, Jobs, Unions, Pensions      

LA County homelessness up 6 percent over last year -- The population of unsheltered homeless, meaning those living on the streets, in makeshift shelters or in cars, went up 11 percent over the last year, according to the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority. Josie Huang and John Ismay KPCC Susan Abram in the Los Angeles Daily News$ Gale Holland and Peter Jamison in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

Tribune Publishing rejects Gannett's $815-million offer to buy the company -- Tribune Publishing's board voted unanimously to reject Gannett's $815-million unsolicited offer to buy the Chicago-based newspaper company, which owns the Los Angeles Times. Robert Channick in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

Cheap gas means Southern California travelers burning more of it -- Low gasoline prices mean that a lot of travelers will be hitting the roads of Southern California this summer, according to a AAA survey. Nationally, 69 percent of families are planning road trips within the next year, according to the national automotive and travel organization. Fielding Buck in the San Bernardino Sun$ -- 5/5/16

California exports continue to lag last year’s figures -- The state’s merchandise exports had a total value of $13.75 billion in March, down 8.2 percent from $14.98 billion a year earlier, according to Wednesday’s report from Beacon Economics, a consulting firm with offices in the Bay Area and Los Angeles. Mark Glover in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/5/16

Comcast-DreamWorks merger expected to give San Fernando Valley economic boost -- While Comcast Corp. will likely profit from its $3.55 billion purchase of Glendale-based DreamWorks Animation, the San Fernando Valley is expected to get an economic boost as well, industry analysts said. The only question is how big it will be. Gregory J. Wilcox in the Los Angeles Daily News$ -- 5/5/16

After weeks of complaints, Frontier could be headed to hearings with Sacramento lawmakers -- A Southland lawmaker said he's prepared to hold hearings if Frontier Communications customers continue to face problems over equipment outages that have persisted since the company took over Verizon's landline-related assets on April 1. Kevin Smith in the Los Angeles Daily News$ -- 5/5/16

Education 

Some UC majors see balance shift toward out-of-state students -- Over the past five years, the number of out-of-state and international students in UC Berkeley’s engineering majors surged by 79 percent, while California enrollment fell by 13 percent. Some 350 miles to the south at UCLA, an 18-percent tumble in Californians majoring in engineering offset a 28-percent jump in nonresidents. Alexei Koseff in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/5/16

Students Call For SDSU President’s Resignation -- The San Diego State University Muslim Student Association and several other student and off-campus groups this week are asking university President Elliot Hirshman to quit. Hirshman has been under fire for his response to fliers connecting students to "Palestinian terrorists" that were posted on campus last month. Erik Anderson KPBS -- 5/5/16

State moves to make school accountability plans more user-friendly -- In response to critiques from a range of sources, the state is moving toward making the Local Control and Accountability Plans that districts are required to draw up more understandable and user-friendly. Louis Freedberg EdSource -- 5/5/16

Environment 

San Diego County’s methane problem visible for first time -- Researchers have identified dozens of methane hotspots, including a series of hits near the Miramar landfill, with the gas apparently drifting to the end of the pier at La Jolla’s Scripps Institution of Oceanography, where a different group of scientists has an air intake connected to some of the world’s most sensitive atmospheric analyzers. Ingrid Lobet inewsource.org -- 5/5/16

San Joaquin Valley achieves decades-old ozone standard -- Federal and local officials are celebrating as the San Joaquin Valley attained its first ozone standard – albeit one that dates back to the late 1970s and that most of the country achieved by the November 2010 deadline. Andrea Castillo in the Fresno Bee$ -- 5/5/16

Fremont: New park with panoramic views unveiled -- The first new East Bay Regional park in six years opens Thursday in the hills between Fremont and Sunol with sweeping views of San Francisco Bay, six new miles of trails, and places for future trail connections to several parks. Denis Cuff in the East Bay Times$ -- 5/5/16

Health 

California’s new aid-in-dying law begins June 9, but it won’t be simple -- California’s End of Life Option Act creates a long list of administrative hurdles that both patients and their doctors must clear. Emily Bazar in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 5/5/16

Beltway 

Saunders: What now? It’s panic time on the right -- Some Republicans are swallowing hard and lining up behind Trump. Others are burning their voter registration cards. A few already have declared their support for Clinton. Debra J. Saunders in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 5/5/16

Former president talks of a return to prosperity as the Clintons hit L.A. -- Former President Bill Clinton made the case for sending his wife to the Oval Office during a speech Wednesday that referred to the San Bernardino terrorist attack and avoided direct attacks against Republican Donald Trump. Jeff Horseman in the Orange County Register -- 5/5/16

Hillary Clinton says she'll be a Golden State warrior -- Even as she increasingly turns to the general election fight against Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton vowed Wednesday to campaign "up and down the Golden State" ahead of the California primary next month. Michael A. Memoli in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 5/5/16

Democrats: Welcome to California, the battleground state -- Bernie Sanders may be a mathematical long-shot to get the Democratic presidential nomination despite Tuesday’s win, but Hillary Clinton isn’t taking chances and has begun flooding California with rallies, office openings and fundraisers. David Montero in the Orange County Register -- 5/5/16

Trump begins in a massive hole -- The presumptive GOP nominee trails Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders by polling margins not seen in a generation. Steven Shepard Politico -- 5/5/16