- SF plaza clear after night of tension (SF Chronicle)
At least one protester tried to set up a tent on San Francisco's Justin Herman Plaza this morning, hours after police and Occupy demonstrators said no tents would be allowed and sparred into the night. Police quickly moved in and removed the tent before requiring the dozen campers who had spent the night sleeping under the stars on the plaza to get up and stop sleeping in the park.
- To avoid more layoffs, San Jose cops tentatively agree to extend 10 percent pay cuts (SJ Mercury News)
Trying to head off more layoffs of cops, San Jose's police union Wednesday tentatively agreed to continue 10 percent pay cuts for at least another year and a half. The agreement most likely ends a dispute with city leaders that was just days away from being arbitrated and could have doubled next year's budget gap if the salary reductions expired.
- Petition drive to recall Oakland Mayor Jean Quan gets under way (Oakland Tribune)
Tick tock, tick tock. The Committee to Recall Jean Quan got the green light late Wednesday to start collecting signatures to qualify a recall measure for a future ballot. Gene Hazzard of the Oakland Black Caucus and author of the recall petition, has until May 14 to submit to the city clerk 19,811 valid signatures, which represents 10 percent of Oakland's registered voters.
- Richmond OKs pot clubs despite crackdown (Contra Costa Times)
Richmond will permit marijuana dispensaries despite a court ruling in Southern California that cities cannot require such permits and a federal ban on the drug. The City Council on Tuesday chose three medical marijuana collectives to operate in the city, capping a months-long process that has been interrupted by state and federal rulings. A state appeals court in October struck down a Long Beach law regulating medical marijuana dispensaries, finding it conflicts with a federal ban on the drug.
Caught up in what law enforcement sources say could become one of the Bay Area's biggest-ever cases of credit card "skimming," some customers of the Lucky grocery chain groused Wednesday that the company should have done more to keep them safe from data thieves.
A San Francisco judge has given the go-ahead to California's plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global warming, ruling that state regulators adequately considered alternatives to a market-based cap-and-trade system.
(O)n Monday, there's to be an encore [of the Occupy port shutdown], not just in Oakland, but up and down the West Coast, "in solidarity with longshoremen, port workers and truckers in their struggle against the 1 percent," says the group..."Any actions organized by outside groups, including the proposed Dec. 12 shutdown of various terminals on the West Coast, have not been vetted by our union's democratically led process," the International Longshore and Warehouse Union said. "Any decisions made by groups outside of the union's democratic process do not hold water, regardless of the intent."
In an effort to discourage single-use carryout bags, the city of Sunnyvale is moving forward with an ordinance three years in the making that will ban the distribution of plastic bags. The ordinance, approved by the city council Tuesday night, will ban single-use carryout bags in large supermarkets greater than 10,000 square feet and other large retailers, but will exclude restaurants and nonprofit/charitable organizations.
A San Francisco McDonald's may have been able to skirt a new fast food law there banning free toys with unhealthy meals, but Santa Clara County's similar attempt appears to have more teeth. A Stanford study released this week found that four fast-food chains in the unincorporated areas of the county are actually making solid efforts to comply with the law prohibiting restaurants from giving away toys with meals that don't meet minimal nutrition criteria.
...The seventh annual "Study of California Women Business Leaders," released Wednesday by the UC Davis Graduate School of Business, found that women occupy fewer than one in 10 of the top posts at the 400 largest public firms headquartered in the state.