PG&E Equipment Blamed for Camp Fire
On Wednesday, state fire investigators found that PG&E’s equipment caused November’s Camp Fire, the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in California history. The blaze killed 85 and burned nearly 14,000 homes in and around the town of Paradise. The utility is currently in bankruptcy proceedings, claiming it faces nearly $70 billion in liabilities along with numerous lawsuits filed by wildfire victims. It also faces a criminal investigation in Butte County, where the Camp Fire broke out, and pressure from state lawmakers to ramp up inspections and shield customers from future rate hikes.
- Marisa Lagos, politics correspondent, KQED
- Carla Marinucci, senior writer, Politico
- Sean Walsh, GOP strategist, Wilson Walsh Consulting
San Francisco’s Facial Recognition Technology Ban
This week, San Francisco became the first city in the U.S. to approve a ban on the use of facial recognition technology by city agencies. Although neither the San Francisco Police Department nor the Sheriff’s Department currently use facial recognition software, some law enforcement officials say it’s a useful tool to apprehend suspects or prevent terror attacks. Critics, however, point to recent studies that have documented widespread inaccuracies in the use of the technology on women and people of color, and privacy concerns associated with government agencies surveilling and tracking people without their consent. Law enforcement agencies in Orlando, New York and Washington, D.C. have face surveillance pilot programs currently under way.
- Jennifer Lynch, surveillance litigation director, Electronic Frontier Foundation
- Trisha Thadani, city hall reporter, San Francisco Chronicle
Best in the West Playoffs for Warriors and Sharks
It’s playoffs frenzy in the Bay Area as the Golden State Warriors compete in the Western Conference NBA Finals for the fifth consecutive year. Time time, they’re facing off against the Portland Trail Blazers, who last reached the conference playoffs 19 years ago. In their first match on Tuesday, the Warriors dominated the Trail Blazers as NBA history was made when two brothers, Steph Curry and Seth Curry, faced off for the first time in a playoff game. Moving from the basketball court to the hockey rink, another Bay Area sports franchise is vying to be best in the west. On Wednesday, the San Jose Sharks won game three in their western conference matchup against the St. Louis Blues.