top
Newswire
Calendar
Features

Government & Elections News

Contribute by publishing to the newswire or calendar and selecting the topic "Government & Elections" Links | Upcoming Events | photo Photo Gallery
Tuesday Nov 27
Sun Nov 4 2018 (Updated 11/08/18)
The Rent Is Too Damn High
UPDATE 11/8: While millions of ballots remain uncounted in California, it appears Prop 10 was defeated.

Grassroots activists have been campaigning hard for the Affordable Housing Act, a ballot initiative to repeal California’s Costa Hawkins state law and return control of rental housing law to local jurisdictions. Several localities have promised to act rapidly should Proposition 10 pass. But real estate interests have spent over $70 million to defeat Prop 10. Should it not pass on November 6, housing rights activists remain committed to pushing for rent control and other tenant protections locally and statewide in the future. Nationwide, a new movement has been inspired by California's efforts.
On October 19, the United Nations Special Rapporteur to the Right to Adequate Housing, Lelani Farha, released her new report documenting the “global scandal” of homeless encampments. In January of 2017, Farha spent time in the San Francisco Bay Area and Southern California to meet with unhoused residents and housed advocates and described the conditions as "cruel and inhuman." The only U.S. cities explicitly called out for violations in the UN’s report on global homelessness are San Francisco and Oakland.
Sun Oct 28 2018 (Updated 11/15/18)
Campground Crisis as Winter Approaches
The River Street campground in Santa Cruz is slated for dispersal at the end of November, breaking promises from city staff that it would last through the winter until April. The only option the city is offering in its place is a small night-time only shelter. Massive new fences were raised around San Lorenzo Park, Grant Street Park, and the downtown post office. In anticipation of the River Street campground closure, homeless activists are organizing to establish a community survival campground on Thursday, November 15.
Tue Oct 2 2018 (Updated 10/09/18)
Bay Area Cries Out: "We Believe Christine!'
The country was transfixed when Christine Blasey Ford testified against Supreme Court Nominee Brett Kavanaugh on September 27. On the same day in Palo Alto, neighbors, friends, and colleagues of Dr. Ford rallied to her support. Actions in Berkeley, San Francisco, Mountain View, and San Mateo demonstrated the Bay Area's commitment to supporting victims of sexual assault and protested what they called Republican rape culture. A major demonstration in the nation's capital will be held with a sister rally in San Mateo on October 6.
UPDATE 9/18: Governor Brown signs AB-2178 into law.

The California Assembly and Senate have passed AB-2178, which would impose new restrictions on individuals and community groups like Food Not Bombs that share free meals. Volunteer groups feeding the poor and homeless pose little food safety risk. These grassroots groups have operated for decades and follow strong private food safety practices. They fill a critical gap that the state itself struggles to address.
The Trump administration will close the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) office in D.C. This follows a State Department promise to cut more than $300 million in funding for humanitarian assistance. These moves appear intended to force Palestinians into a "peace deal" that would deny them a state, as well as denying the right of return for Palestinian refugees. Meanwhile, Israeli settlers storm the courtyards of the Al-Aqsa Mosque on a daily basis to push forward their plans to build the so-called “Third Temple.”
Sat Sep 8 2018
Fake Rent Control Alert
The Santa Cruz City Council's "Non-Protections for Renters" proposal, as rent control advocates have described it, is scheduled for a first reading during the 2:00 p.m. session on Tuesday, September 11. The ordinance would require relocation fees for tenants who experience rent increases of 10% in one year or 15% over two years, which would still allow a 42% rent increase every five years. Yes on M: Santa Cruz for Rent Control writes: We need REAL rent control: No Rent Raises over 3% once a year, Just Cause for Eviction for all renters - and heck, the city didn't even enforce its own rent freeze so of COURSE we need a Rent Board.
Despite California’s image as a “green” and “progressive” leader, there has been a massive expansion of oil and gas drilling in the state under Governor Jerry Brown — and most of these new wells are located in communities with above average poverty rates and/or communities of color. On August 7, 35 youths held a sit-in at Governor Jerry Brown’s office demanding a plan to phase out oil and gas extraction.
A five-month grassroots campaign led by human rights groups and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Missouri celebrated a win on May 18, when the Missouri legislative session ended, failing to pass legislation that would have denied state contracts worth over $10,000 to businesses and organizations boycotting Israel over its subjugation and dispossession of the Palestinian people.
Tue May 15 2018 (Updated 05/16/18)
California Communities Demand "Rent Control Now!"
Efforts to stabilize communities in California with with much needed rent control measures and just cause eviction protections are presently occurring in ten cities throughout California, including Santa Rosa, Santa Cruz, Santa Ana, Sacramento, Pomona, Pasadena, National City, Long Beach, Inglewood, and Glendale. Big money is gearing up in opposition to the statewide effort to repeal the Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act.
Justice Teams Network launched on May 2 to build power against systemic State Violence in all its forms. The Network is a statewide coalition of rapid response organizations across the state of California that will mobilize communities to respond radically to state violence. The Network will focus heavily on legislation as well as a public information campaign around the Police Officer’s Bill of Rights, the single largest obstacle to police accountability.
California lawmakers have introduced a measure that would alter the standard for when law enforcement officers can use deadly force. The Police Accountability and Community Protection Act (AB 931) would change the standard of firearm use from "reasonable use" to "necessary force." SB 1421 will give the public access to police records related to use-of-force investigations and complaints against officers for sexual assault or other serious job-related dishonesty.
Wed Apr 25 2018 (Updated 04/26/18)
Urban Shield As We Know It Ends After 2018
At the March 27 Alameda County Board of Supervisors meeting, five-plus hours of discussion ended with a decision that Urban Shield as currently constituted would end after the 2018 war games and exposition. The vote left open-ended what Alameda County’s regional disaster preparedness activities would be in future years, but the Supervisors were decisive that it would not be the Urban Shield event, which began in 2007.
Sat Apr 21 2018 (Updated 05/07/18)
Community Control Over Police Surveillance Spreads
Update: Oakland passes strongest community control of surveillance in the nation on May Day.

Davis and Berkeley have adopted the new law that mandates public transparency, vetted use policies, and annual reporting to protect human rights and reins in secret, unfettered surveillance by local law enforcement. Oakland is in the final stages of the adoption process. A California surveillance transparency law (SB 1186) passed through its first policy committee on April 5 at the State Senate Public Safety committee.
Sun Apr 8 2018 (Updated 04/17/18)
Facebook CEO Faces Government/Public Scrutiny
When Facebook security tried to shut them down, protesters at the social media giant used their best delaying tactics and continued shouting and singing in front of the "Like" sign at the entrance of the corporate campus on April 5. Under pressure from lawmakers, the media, and the public, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg will testify before Congress about Cambridge Analytica’s breach of Facebook data. Meawnwhile, buried in a company announcement, Facebook admitted that most of its 2 billion users have had their personal data scraped by "malicious actors."
Congressman Jimmy Panetta, who represents California's central coast, was a member of a Democratic congressional delegation that visited Israel on March 26 to congratulate the nation on the 70th anniversary of the establishment of its government. Nancy Pelosi, the leader of the delegation, stated ahead of their visit, “There is no greater political accomplishment in the 20th Century than the establishment of the State of Israel." Also on March 26, Israel's army announced that “dozens of snipers" would be deployed in Gaza – and four days later, over 750 Palestinians were shot during Land Day demonstrations.
On March 26, proponents of Monterey County’s landmark Measure Z ballot initiative filed an appeal to restore the land-use protections that voters passed by an overwhelming majority in November 2016. The appeal challenges a Superior Court ruling in March that invalidated part of the ordinance, which aims to shield the county from fracking chemicals and oil industry pollution. Measure Z won with 56 percent of the vote.
Fri Mar 23 2018
Defend the Rent Freeze!
Movement for Housing Justice writes: Renters and community - Come out to the city council meeting next Tuesday to defend the rent freeze! Right now the city isn't enforcing our badly needed short term freeze on rents and eviction protections. They expect renters to take landlords to court to enforce the law if our rents are increased unfairly or we are unjustly evicted. They say it's a budgeting issue but we know that this is an issue of priorities. Let's remind the city council that 60% percent of Santa Cruz is renters. Our housing rights are non negotiable!
iCal feed From the Calendar:
2:30PM Tuesday Nov 27 Defend the Rent Freeze
Defend the Rent Freeze YES on M: SC for Rent Control Fri Nov 16th 11:21pm
The Movement is Only Getting Started YES on M: SC for Rent Control (1 comment) Fri Nov 16th 2:41pm
In SF, Activists Along the Political Spectrum Protest Trump's Firing of Sessions RR/photos by Rachel Podlishevsky and Terry Scussel (1 comment) Thu Nov 15th 1:36am
Protest in Oakland Despite Red Alert Weather Text: RR Photos: Cornelia Grimes Tue Nov 13th 12:09am
March in Protest of Jeff Sessions' Dismissal Starts at Congresswoman Eshoo's Office Text: R.R. Photos: Jack Owicki (3 comments) Sun Nov 11th 5:44am
Alamedans Say Protect Mueller's Investigation Text: R.R. Photos: Lynn LaRocca Sun Nov 11th 4:24am
You Know It's Bad When Berkeley is Sticking Up for the FBI Text: R. R. Photos: Mary DeShaw Sat Nov 10th 7:06pm
Orange for Gun Safety at Palo Alto Outrage Over Trump's Firing of Sessions Text: R.R. Photos: Teri Vershel Sat Nov 10th 5:21pm
More Local News...
In the wake of Bolsonaro's election victory... Alice at Survival International Sat Nov 17th 10:52pm
Woolsey Fire Burns Toxic Santa Susana Reactor Site John Laforge, CounterPunch Sat Nov 17th 8:48pm
Please Help Mississippians Vote For Mike Espy On Nov 27th Winds Of Change Fri Nov 16th 11:53pm
California Fire Near Nuclear Accident Site John Mecklin, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientis Wed Nov 14th 9:55pm
Elections = Democracy? DLi Tue Nov 13th 6:07pm
Massive Woolsey Fire Began On Contaminated Santa Susana Field Laboratory, Close to Site of Partial Meltdown Physicians for Social Responsibility - Los Angeles (2 comments) Mon Nov 12th 12:19pm
Woolsey Fire Burns Nuclear Meltdown Site that State Toxics Agency Failed to Clean Up Physicians for Social Responsibility - Los Angeles (1 comment) Sun Nov 11th 11:01am
More Global News...