Updating . .   

London Breed’s sudden, short term as San Francisco’s acting mayor -- On Jan. 17, some 200 London Breed supporters gathered at Emporium SF, an arcade and bar in the Fillmore district, for the first rally of her mayoral campaign. Breed had been acting mayor for more than a month, but now she had filed her papers to run in the June election, and she was free to make the case for why she deserved the job for good. Jason Fagone in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 1/28/18

Willie Brown: London Breed got a raw deal. That might help her in the mayor’s election -- The San Francisco Board of Supervisors has given us a mayor’s race worth watching. The vote to install Mark Farrell as interim mayor, bouncing London Breed from her acting mayor’s job, had all the intrigue of a palace coup, right down to the element of surprise. Willie Brown in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 1/28/18

In Issa's GOP-leaning district, Democrats have a math problem that makes a win tougher -- For the last year or more, Rep. Darrell Issa was the guy San Diego County Democrats could all agree on. Each Tuesday morning they could assemble with like-minded folk outside his 49th District headquarters in Vista and make the nine-term Republican the punching bag for their problems with Washington. Joshua Stewart in the San Diego Union-Tribune$ -- 1/28/18

UC Irvine chancellor: Students are not 'snowflakes,' but they need to understand free speech -- UC Irvine Chancellor Howard Gillman has plenty of experience with free speech issues. His campus has been rocked by controversial appearances of right-wing provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos, a dust-up with College Republicans and annual skirmishes between supporters of Israel and Palestinian rights. Teresa Watanabe in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 1/28/18

Lopez: L.A. homeless crisis grows despite political promises, many speeches and millions of dollars. How do we fix this? -- It was another warm January day, the afternoon sun sailing across a blue sky, the air thick with the scent of urine, rotting trash and human misery. Beginning at Central Avenue and heading west, I counted 16 tents on the south side of 5th Street. My longtime traveling companion, Times photographer Francine Orr, counted 15 tents on the north side of the street. One block, 31 tents. Steve Lopez in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 1/28/18

Downtown residents say City Hall is ignoring fires on skid row while cracking down in Bel-Air -- After authorities determined that last month's Skirball fire in Bel-Air was caused by a cookiœœng fire at a homeless encampment, Mayor Eric Garcetti and fire officials unveiled a plan to clear tent clusters in hillside areas. Dakota Smith in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 1/28/18

California Politics Podcast: Finales and Fireworks -- Gov. Jerry Brown's final State of the State address seems to talk a lot about a subject (legacy!) he doesn't like to discuss. Plus, we recap a tense state Senate debate over a lawmaker's leave of absence. And we replay the greatest moments from this week's debate between major candidates for governor. With John Myers and Melanie Mason of the Los Angeles Times. Link Here -- 1/28/18

Fire-scarred Santa Rosa has a big housing problem. Tiny homes might help -- Pamela Van Halsema’s home in Santa Rosa’s Coffey Park used to have a huge backyard, one filled with fruit trees, a trampoline, a massive wooden deck. The house is gone now, destroyed by the October wildfire that reduced the neighborhood to rubble. And when she rebuilds, there won’t be quite as much open space out back. Lizzie Johnson in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 1/28/18

Santa Monica tries a balancing act as it deals with burgeoning street vending along beaches, pier -- The sun set over the Santa Monica Pier as Ana Ortiz sold fresh fruit to tourists and kept an eye out for police. The 21-year-old and her mother, uncle, cousin and other family members earned a living in the city as street vendors. "It's like a regular job," she said. "But you get paid the same day." Makeda Easter in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 1/28/18

Can Woody Allen Work in Hollywood Again? -- Hollywood says it’s done with Harvey Weinstein, James Toback, Kevin Spacey and other figures ousted for misconduct through the #MeToo movement. But what about Woody Allen? -- Melena Ryzik and Brooks Barnes in the New York Times$ -- 1/28/18

After a baby suddenly dies, a 911 call from USC's former medical school dean sparks detectives' interest -- The man who called for an ambulance at an Altadena apartment last fall had the calm and direct manner of one familiar with healthcare emergencies. Matt Hamilton and Harriet Ryan in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 1/28/18

Elon Musk wants to sell you a flamethrower for $500 — and it seems to be legal in California -- “Flamethrowers that shoot a flame over 10 feet long require a permit in (California),” said Teller in an email. “This flamethrower projects a flame that is shorter than 10 feet and as such does not require a permit.” The state fire marshal’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Seung Lee in the San Jose Mercury$ -- 1/28/18

 

California Policy & Politics This Morning  

Local Democrats warn DNC: Cash crunch threatens November gains -- At a time when many Democratic candidates and groups are reporting record-breaking fundraising, the top state party officials gathered here for the meeting of the Association of State Democratic Committees say their local parties are cash-starved, raising the prospect that they won’t be able to take full advantage of what could be a historic opportunity in the midterm elections. Gabriel Debenedetti Politico -- 1/28/18

Trump’s immigration plan puts Democrats in a vise -- The Trump administration’s newly released plan to resolve the fate of young immigrants who arrived in the country illegally as children would constitute the biggest change to immigration policy in decades, putting Democrats and their allies in a painful vise. Carolyn Lochhead in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 1/28/18

Fearing ICE raids, San Jose father tells children: ‘Be prepared to be alone’ -- For as long as the Perez children can remember, their father has told them, “Be prepared to be alone.” Federal immigration agents could come in the middle of the night, Ernesto Perez told his four children, “and take us away.” Julia Prodis Sulek in the San Jose Mercury$ -- 1/28/18

Walters: Commentary: Jerry Brown’s legacy still a work in progress -- When Jerry Brown was unveiling his final state budget this month, a reporter asked him about the legacy of his record-long governorship. Dan Walters Calmatters -- 1/28/18

San Diego-based Cyber Patrol volunteers educate would-be johns about the realities of human trafficking -- "You calling about the ad?" a man's deep voice inquired of the caller who had just rung. The man at the other end hesitated, maybe because he expected to hear a woman's voice answer the call, then responded: "Yeah." Kristina Davis in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 1/28/18

Thousands march in San Francisco anti-abortion event -- Thousands of people who want to outlaw abortion marched Saturday in San Francisco in the 14th annual Walk for Life. The event came days after the 45th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion. Many people carried signs with messages such as: "I march for the unborn" and "defund Planned Parenthood." Associated Press Tiffany Camhi KQED Jenna Lyons in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 1/28/18

After the fires, Sonoma County nonprofits see greater needs, fewer dollars -- In the weeks after the October wildfires, the Redwood Empire Food Bank found itself deluged with new requests for help. Survivors and others impacted by the flames parked cars in queues that stretched roughly a mile along Brickway and Airport boulevards north of Santa Rosa. Robert Digitale in the Santa Rosa Press Democrat -- 1/28/18

Economy, Employers, Jobs, Unions, Pensions  

With pension costs skyrocketing, Modesto investigates ways to keep services running -- Modesto expects in a decade the pension costs for its workers and retirees will hit a high of $54.6 million. That's about double the current cost and unless the city can mitigate that increase, it will have less money to maintain its parks, hire police officers and for other basics. Kevin Valine in the Modesto Bee$ -- 1/28/18

Transit  

Richmond-San Rafael Bridge to get new traffic lane in April -- Within months, drivers weary of the eastbound crawl to and across the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge every evening should get relief with the addition of a new traffic lane. But bicyclists, who were supposed to get their own path on the upper deck at the same time, will have to wait, perhaps up to a year, and they might have to surrender the path to cars for a few hours each weekday morning. Michael Cabanatuan in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 1/28/18

Housing  

Now accepting bitcoin: Oakland home seller offering house for cryptocurrency -- An Oakland home owner is offering to sell his property for bitcoins or other cryptocurrencies, a growing trend in the real estate industry but a relative rarity in the Bay Area. Erin Baldassari in the San Jose Mercury$ -- 1/28/18

Also . . . 

Dennis Peron, activist who helped legalize medical marijuana, dies -- Dennis Peron, an activist who helped legalize medical marijuana in California, died Saturday afternoon in a San Francisco hospital. He was 71. Peron was a force behind a San Francisco ordinance allowing medical marijuana, a win that later helped propel the 1996 passage of Prop. 215, which legalized medical use for the entire state. Lizzie Johnson in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 1/28/18

POTUS 45  

Trump sticking to economic script in his first State of the Union address -- If President Trump follows the traditional choreography during his first State of the Union address Tuesday night, he’ll proclaim to a joint session of Congress that the state of the union is strong. The state of the presidency, however, “is at a crossroads,” said Barbara Perry, a director of the Miller Center of public policy at the University of Virginia and a longtime presidential scholar. Joe Garofoli in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 1/28/18

 

-- Saturdy Updates 

Dozens of PG&E equipment problems reported as Wine Country fires began -- Just before 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 8, a tree branch fell into a power line in the town of Kenwood east of Santa Rosa as sparks were scattered by heavy winds. Local emergency officials contacted Pacific Gas and Electric Co., asking the utility to immediately evaluate the damage because of the evening’s dangerous fire conditions. Joaquin Palomino and David R. Baker in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 1/27/18

Homeless man almost crushed after San Diego city workers scooped him up and tossed him in a garbage truck -- The shrieking came from inside the jumble of tents and bedding and personal belongings scooped off the street. Arms started flailing and the screams grew louder. In what can only be described as a jaw-dropping blunder, a homeless man scrambled his way out of a San Diego city trash truck and avoided being crushed to death by mere seconds. Jeff McDonald in the San Diego Union-Tribune$ -- 1/27/18

Medical examiner: Homeless deaths on the rise in San Diego County -- Volunteers were out early Friday canvassing the streets, canyons and riverbanks as part of San Diego County’s annual homeless count. But one stat is already known: The number of homeless people dying in the county increased significantly in 2017, according to the Medical Examiner’s Office. Leonardo Castañeda inewsource.org -- 1/27/18

Nurses clash with UC leaders over contract proposals -- Amid an impasse in negotiations, registered nurses all around the University California system rallied Thursday at hospitals and on campuses to protest contract proposals that they say would impede their ability to provide quality patient care and undermine their well-being in retirement. Cathie Anderson in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 1/27/18

Bill to evade President Trump's tax overhaul gets watered down -- State Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) has changed his bill allowing those who donate to a new state-run nonprofit to receive relief on both their state and federal taxes. In the new version of the bill, those who give to the nonprofit will reduce their state income taxes by 85% of the donation plus receive a federal charitable deduction. Liam Dillon in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 1/27/18

After California pot stockpiles go up in smoke, what's next? -- Like many pot shops in California, the Urbn Leaf in San Diego bulked up its inventory before legal sales began on Jan. 1, stockpiling enough marijuana to last for months because no one knew what the era of legal pot would bring. Michael R. Blood Associated Press -- 1/27/18

Knight: Backroom maneuver making Farrell mayor could be boost for Breed -- On Jan. 20, Aimee Allison stood before thousands of women and supportive men in Civic Center Plaza to address the second annual Women’s March. Allison, who is African American, is president of Democracy in Color, a national group that wants to empower minority progressive voices. She had a simple message for the enthusiastic crowd that was dotted with pink knit hats. “Trust, follow and let black women lead — that was my message,” she recalled. “People were excited. People were cheering!” Heather Knight in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 1/27/18

What’s that river view worth? City prepares to buy properties for Sacramento River trail -- The view from Don Murphy’s expansive backyard is breathtaking. The Sacramento River rolls gently past as birds float in the mid-winter fog. It is nearly silent, except for the infrequent car driving along a delta road across the river. It’s easy to forget you’re standing in the middle of a major city. Ryan Lillis in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 1/27/18

Diaz: The ‘California resistance’ intensifies -- Even before Donald Trump was sworn in as 45th president, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra served notice that he was ready to do battle to defend the state’s values. In fact, one of the very reasons that Gov. Jerry Brown selected Becerra to succeed Kamala Harris was the veteran congressman’s legal and political mettle. John Diaz in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 1/27/18

Massive widening of the 405 Freeway in Orange County is about to begin -- The project will affect the 16-mile portion of the 405 between the 73 Freeway in Costa Mesa and the 605 Freeway near Rossmoor. It is expected to be completed in 2023. Bradley Zint in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 1/27/18