- Cal Grant cuts rejected by finance panel (SF Chronicle)
If Gov. Jerry Brown thought he could easily save a few hundred million dollars by withholding Cal Grants from 72,000 low-income, mainly black and brown students - and that lawmakers would bob their heads OK - he learned otherwise Wednesday. Sending a signal that Brown needs to find a way to save $302 million besides barring poor kids from college, three Democrats and one Republican on the Assembly's subcommittee on education finance rejected a range of Cal Grant proposals from the governor.
- PG&E bills to be available in Spanish, Chinese in 2013 (Contra Costa Times)
PG&E customers who speak limited English will be able to get their bills in Spanish or Chinese after regulators Thursday approved an agreement that marks the first time a California-regulated energy company has agreed to provide bills in foreign languages. In fact, the utility may be among the first in the nation to provide such services. State regulators approved those and other revisions, which PG&E customers should see in 2013.
- BART budget in black - cuts unlikely (SF Chronicle)
While other transit agencies struggle to balance their budgets, for the second straight year BART expects to bring in enough money to more than cover the cost of running its trains.
- Families' exodus leaves S.F. with lowest pct. of children in U.S. (SF chronicle)
...The flight of families with children - particularly middle-income and African American families - is leaving San Francisco older, whiter and richer. That has concerned city officials and family advocates who say families with children are essential to a diverse, thriving city.
...(H)ours after (a) largely pro-hunting crowd left [a California Fish and Game Commission meeting Wednesday], in a little-noticed move, (Dan) Richards' fellow commissioners sprung a parliamentary trap. By a 4-1 tally, they voted to change the way the commission -- which sets rules for hunting, fishing and endangered species in California -- chooses its president. The vote placed an item on the commission's May 23 agenda that would repeal the current rules and allow the panel to remove Richards as president when it meets in Monterey that day.
Citizens in San Mateo County's rural midcoast are pushing back against Plan Bay Area, a state-mandated effort to figure out where the region's growing population will live -- and they're not alone. Organizations and community activists throughout the Bay Area are faulting the plan, which intends to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions by creating incentives for transit-oriented development. A number of environmental groups have joined the fray, and even Occupy and tea party activists have found common cause in opposing the ambitious project, which reaches an important milestone Friday with the unveiling of a new land-use vision.
As proposals to tighten abortion laws work their way through statehouses across the country, California lawmakers are set to consider legislation aimed at giving more women access to first-term pregnancy terminations. The California bill, by Sen. Christine Kehoe, D-San Diego, would allow nurse practitioners, physicians assistants and certified nurse midwives to perform a procedure known as "aspiration" abortion, which employs a suction method to remove a fetus from a uterus.