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California pension fund urged to divest from gun sellers -- Families of mass shooting victims are joining California State Treasurer John Chiang in calling on the nation's largest public pension fund to stop investing in companies that sell assault weapons and devices that allow guns to fire more rapidly. Kathleen Ronayne Associated Press -- 3/19/18

Rohrabacher sees challenge from within GOP in Orange County -- The Democrats aren’t the only ones with too many Congressional candidates running for Orange County seats. The GOP has a civil war going down in the 48th Congressional district, where former Republican Assembly Leader Scott Baugh launched a last-minute challenge to Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, the 15-term congressman who is the star of every Democratic target list. Joe Garofoli in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 3/19/18

This 16-year-old’s suicide letters are a cry for help and a national call for change -- Less than two months ago on Jan. 27, Brandel’s little brother, 16-year-old Patrick – “Patty” to his family – took his life in center field in a nearby park. But unlike with most suicides, Patrick Turner left several thoughtful notes detailing exactly what caused him to take his life and offered them to “whoever reads them.” Significantly, the boy’s notes shed light on what experts call a new national crisis in teens killing themselves. David Whiting in the Orange County Register -- 3/19/18

As a mega-landowner, L.A. Unified has lots to figure out, a new report says -- The Los Angeles school system's vast real estate holdings cost millions of dollars a year to maintain, but they also present an opportunity, according to a task force studying the district. Howard Blume in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 3/19/18

Tech backlash: ‘Maybe Silicon Valley needs to be taken down to size’ -- The products and services it sends out into the world are being called addictive, divisive and even damaging, raising the cry that instead of making the world better, they are making it worse. Ethan Baron in the San Jose Mercury$ -- 3/19/18

Do you take Facebook quizzes? Cambridge Analytica mess shows your privacy is at risk -- What would you look like as a movie star? How “bitchy” are you? What’s your St. Patrick’s Day nickname? You’ve probably found the answers to these fascinating questions by taking a quiz on Facebook, and shared the results with your friends. But what did you give up in exchange for the deep dives into your soul? Levi Sumagaysay in the San Jose Mercury$ -- 3/19/18

Fingers point at PG&E in Wine Country fires, though causes remain unknown -- California investigators have not — repeat, not — blamed last fall’s deadly Wine Country wildfires on Pacific Gas and Electric Co. power lines. But as the sixth-month anniversary of the disaster approaches, many state officials act as if it’s a foregone conclusion. At times, so does PG&E. David R. Baker in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 3/19/18

Wildlife corridor linking Orange County's coast and Santa Ana mountains gets started at ground-breaking ceremony -- The project, in the making for more than two decades, seeks to encourage biological diversity in the animals that dwell in the more than 20,000 acres of coastal chaparral surrounding Laguna Beach. Ben Brazil in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 3/19/18

Bitcoin prosecutions may break new legal ground -- Bitcoin isn’t issued by the government nor can it be deposited in a bank. So should it be subject to the same federal banking rules as traditional paper and coin currency? It is a question that federal authorities have been grappling with ever since digital currency took off a decade ago, one that will now be heard in a San Diego courtroom with the indictment of Morgan Rockcoons. Kristina Davis in the San Diego Union-Tribune$ -- 3/19/18

Quinn: California House Races: The Action For 2018 -- The biggest action in California, even bigger than the governor’s race, may be the race for congressional seats, since California will almost certainly decide if Democrats can win back the House of Representatives this fall. Money tells the story; millions have already been raised by Democratic candidates for seats the party did not even contest in 2016. Tony Quinn Fox & Hounds -- 3/19/18

Abcarian: How to try edible cannabis without feeling like you're going to die -- One evening late last year I was on my computer at home when I heard a woman yelling. Well, not just yelling. More like screaming bloody murder. Robin Abcarian in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 3/19/18

Amazon's 'Sneaky Pete' relocating to California due to state tax credit -- "Sneaky Pete," the Amazon drama series starring Giovanni Ribisi, is relocating to California from the New York area due to the California tax incentive program that has approved $9.2 million for the show's third season. David Ng in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 3/19/18

Supreme Court to decide whether immigrants jailed for past crimes can be detained pending deportation -- The justices will review a class-action ruling from California that held that immigrants who served time in local and state jails may be released if they pose no danger to the public and are not likely to flee. David G. Savage in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 3/19/18

Michael Flynn came to California to campaign for Maxine Waters' far-right challenger -- Friday's event to endorse Republican Omar Navarro in his challenge of 14-term Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters is the latest signal that Flynn is reentering political life while he awaits sentencing and cooperates with special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian election interference and possible coordination with President Trump's associates. Associated Press via the Los Angeles Times$ -- 3/19/18


California Policy & Politics This Morning  

Villaraigosa and his campaigns have benefited from groups that critics say prey upon the poor, people of color -- Antonio Villaraigosa has staked his candidacy for governor on his roots, telling voters he "grew up in a home rich in love, but limited in opportunity" while positioning himself as a voice for low-income families and people of color left behind in California's economic recovery. Seema Mehta in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 3/19/18

Democrats consider attacking their own California candidates to win back Congress -- The filing deadline for California’s June primary has passed, but Democrats and their affiliated groups aren’t done trying to shape the field of candidates running to unseat Republican members of Congress. Emily Cadei in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 3/19/18

California's free-for-all primary election rules could surprise everyone in 2018 ... again -- California may appear to Democrats as an electoral oasis, a sea of newly turned-blue political maps that could quench their thirst for control of the U.S. House of Representatives. Or the oasis could be nothing more than a mirage, disappearing in the haze of the state's unbridled primary election rules. John Myers in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 3/19/18

Walters: Do as we say, not as we do -- The sexual harassment scandal that’s enveloped the Capitol exposes an unsavory aspect of the building’s culture that had been hidden for decades. It’s also exposed another, equally unseemly trait – the Legislature’s routine exemption of itself from laws it imposes on everyone else. Dan Walters Calmatters -- 3/19/18

Company San Diego hired for power-washing overbilled county 20 out of 20 times, records show -- Every one of the 20 invoices that Clean Harbors Environmental Services submitted to the County of San Diego in recent months contained charges that officials said were not covered by the contract. According to documents obtained under the California Public Records Act, the company sought almost $985,000 from San Diego County for work clearing away homeless encampments in response to a hepatitis A outbreak that roiled through the region last year. Jeff McDonald in the San Diego Union-Tribune$ -- 3/19/18

Assemblyman Chiu seeks $250 million in state money for decaying San Francisco Chronicle seawall -- As much as $250 million in state taxes generated from development along San Francisco’s waterfront would be directed toward the city’s ambitious plan to reconstruct the crumbling Embarcadero seawall, under legislation Assembyman David Chiu will introduce Monday. J.K. Dineen in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 3/19/18

In defiance of Trump, California became 'sanctuary state.' This Orange County city may want out -- Since California became the center of the resistance to President Trump's crackdown on illegal immigration, so-called sanctuary policies have taken root across the state. Alene Tchekmedyian in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 3/19/18

Economy, Employers, Jobs, Unions, Pensions  

Pensions help San Francisco earn top bond rating -- Tight pension management helped San Francisco get an upgrade this month to Moody’s highest general obligation bond rating, something many might not expect in a city known for liberal-leaning politics. Ed Mendel Calpensions.com -- 3/19/18

Consultant makes money on 'dream house' raffles, even if nobody wins a home -- Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego has used consultant Neal Martin Zeavy to run its dream-house raffle at least since 2008. In the decade that he has run the event, the fundraiser has never sold enough tickets to result in a house give-away. Phillip Molnar in the San Diego Union-Tribune$ -- 3/19/18

Trump complains about California taxes, but in San Francisco, he’s got a sweet deal -- “I have great property in California,” President Trump said during his visit to the state last week. But he added, “The taxes are way, way out of whack.” Or maybe not. Matier & Ross in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 3/19/18

Amazon jobs may not be worth all the tax breaks cities give, study says -- Amazon's new fulfillment center under construction in southwest Fresno will employ 1,500 workers when it opens this year. The company's decision last summer to locate the center in Fresno came only after the city affirmed a package of economic incentives that will be worth up to $30 million over the next 30 years. Tim Sheehan in the Fresno Bee -- 3/19/18


Rep. Jared Huffman Gets an Earful at Student Gun Violence Summit -- Following nationwide student walkouts this past week, North Bay Representative Jared Huffman visited Dominican University in San Rafael to urge students to continue calling for gun regulations. Student leaders and activists from 15 public and private high schools and colleges across Marin and Sonoma and as far away as Mendocino attended the summit Sunday. Raquel Maria Dillon KQED Eloísa Ruano González in the Santa Rosa Press Democrat -- 3/19/18


Homeless people have few options when nature calls. Sacramento may open new bathrooms soon -- With the population of people living on the street at a record high, Sacramento City Hall is focusing on sheltering the homeless. But advocates for months have consistently pushed for action on another front: providing places for people to relieve themselves. Ryan Lillis and Cynthia Hubert in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 3/19/18




Training for the unthinkable: Teachers drill for school shootings -- While students across the Bay Area walked out of classes Wednesday in a call for stricter gun control laws, some 50 Oakland teachers and after-school workers were gathered in the auditorium of Cole Elementary School for a class on what to do in the event of a school shooting. Matier & Ross in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 3/19/18

Finally, enough beakers for everyone: Oakland teacher wins grant for state-of-the-art science lab – An East Oakland science teacher beat out 500 other applicants nationwide to win $20,000 worth of beakers, heat lamps, composition books, chemicals and other materials to give her students a leg up in science education. Carolyn Jones EdSource -- 3/19/18

Police say no threat was made to Kennedy High, but investigation led to two arrests -- The Sacramento Police Department has arrested a man and a 17-year-old teen on charges of possessing an illegal firearm while investigating reports of a possible threat at Kennedy High School Sunday morning, department spokesman Sgt. Vance Chandler announced that night. Nashelly Chavez in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 3/19/18


In California, Learning How Marijuana Is an Unlikely Divider -- This time, the story I ended up writing compared attitudes in Compton, where residents voted in January by a 3-to-1 margin to ban marijuana businesses from the city, with Oakland, Calif., a city that has embraced marijuana legalization as a way to generate tax revenue and help those who were disproportionately affected by the war on drugs. Thomas Fuller in the New York Times$ -- 3/19/18

Immigration / Border 

After $32,500 lawsuit, Madera County vows to keep ICE away from jail -- After being sued by the American Civil Liberties Union, Madera County officials are vowing to distance their local jail from federal immigration agencies. Mackenzie Mays in the Fresno Bee -- 3/19/18


Whales and fishermen caught in turf war over California’s coast -- As rising ocean temperatures move their food supplies closer to shore, a staggering number of migrating whales have been forced into the path of California’s crab fishing fleet — and the confrontations have increased dramatically over the last five years. Annie Roth in the Santa Cruz Sentinel -- 3/19/18

Also . . . 

AP Exclusive: Kushner Cos. filed false NYC housing paperwork -- When the Kushner Cos. bought three apartment buildings in a gentrifying neighborhood of Queens in 2015, most of the tenants were protected by special rules that prevent developers from pushing them out, raising rents and turning a tidy profit. But that's exactly what the company then run by Jared Kushner did, and with remarkable speed. Bernard Condon Associated Press -- 3/19/18

Blushing 'brides' and one T-Rex storm San Francisco for 'Brides of March' -- The event, which marks its 20th anniversary this year, is a combination bar crawl and costumed stroll. This year, the party began at Bar Fluxus. The group's "special day" also included stops at adult novelty store Good Vibrations and a photo op in Maiden Lane, according to a bride who identified herself as Dana. Graph Massara in the San Francisco Chronicle$ -- 3/19/18

POTUS 45  

Curtain rises in New Hampshire with president’s appearance -- Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) received a standing ovation from a crowd of business leaders and political junkies here on Friday after decrying the “degradation of the United States and her values” by the current occupant of the White House. John Wagner in the Washington Post$ -- 3/19/18

-- Sunday Updates 

More than 60 deaths in fires, floods exposes weaknesses in California's emergency planning -- A reckoning on public preparedness long in the making is underway in California after a year that saw unprecedented death, destruction and loss from disasters set off by extreme weather. Paige St. John and Joseph Serna in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 3/18/18

California to get first female and first LGBT Senate leader -- San Diego Sen. Toni Atkins will make history Wednesday when she becomes the first woman and first lesbian to hold the California Senate's top job. Jonathan J. Cooper Associated Press -- 3/18/18

If D.A. Jackie Lacey won't charge the LAPD officer who shot Brendon Glenn, some ask: When would she prosecute? -- If there was ever a police shooting that would bring criminal charges against a law enforcement officer in Los Angeles, the killing of Brendon Glenn near the Venice boardwalk looked like it could be the one. Cindy Chang, Kate Mather and Marisa Gerber in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 3/18/18

California's anti-abortion pregnancy centers want the Supreme Court to overturn state notice law -- At a faith-based pregnancy center here, rooms are crammed with baby supplies, both new and used, for expectant mothers, and a medical office contains equipment to allow pregnant women to view their fetuses. "Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass," reads a saying on a wall, "but learning to dance in the rain." Maura Dolan in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 3/18/18

Adam Schiff: Facebook Should Testify Before Congress Again -- Following reports that data analytics firm Cambridge Analytica harvested information from the Facebook profiles of more than 50 million users without their permission, Rep. Adam Schiff is calling for the social media company to appear before Congress again. Jeremy Siegel KQED -- 3/18/18

Nancy Pelosi Wants to Lead. House Democratic Candidates Aren’t So Sure -- A few hours after Conor Lamb, the Pennsylvania Democrat, claimed victory in a House race with a vow to oppose his party’s leader, Nancy Pelosi, the once-and-perhaps-future speaker was explaining to a group of female congressional candidates why she did not retire after 2016. Jonathan Martin and Alexander Burns in the New York Times$ -- 3/18/18

California Politics Podcast: This week: President Trump comes to California, and the political world sizzles -- Plus, filing season is now over for statewide and regional races in the Golden State. And some developments on the debate over healthcare reform in Sacramento. Plus, the best of tweeted questions for our lightning round. With John Myers and Melanie Mason of the Los Angeles Times. Link here -- 3/18/18

Trump fumes at Mueller probe; some Republicans warn him not to move against special counsel -- President Trump stepped up his attacks against Robert S. Mueller III on Sunday even as some Republican allies cautioned the president against any move to fire the special counsel, who is carrying out a broad investigation arising from Russian interference in the U.S. presidential election. Laura King in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 3/18/18

Republicans warn Trump to back off Mueller -- But they don’t say what, if anything, they might do if the president fires the special counsel. Kyle Cheney Politico -- 3/18/18

Graham calls for hearing on McCabe firing -- Sen. Lindsey Graham on Sunday said the Senate Judiciary Committee should hold a hearing on Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ firing of FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, telling CNN’s “State of the Union” that the decision merits extra scrutiny “to make sure it wasn't politically motivated.” Louis Nelson Politico -- 3/18/18

Fact-checking Trump’s error-filled tweetstorm about the Mueller probe -- In a series of tweets March 17 and 18, President Trump made a number of inaccurate or misleading statements about the investigations into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election. As a reader service, here’s a quick guide to his claims. Glenn Kessler in the Washington Post$ -- 3/18/18