News

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

By Sudhin Thanawala | AP October 25 at 12:25 AM

SAN FRANCISCO — Efforts to do away with cash bail in California received a big boost when the state’s top judge got behind a proposal to end what critics say is a system that keeps poor people behind bars while wealthier suspects can pay for their freedom.

California Supreme Court Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye said Tuesday that instead of cash bail, the state should rely on assessments of defendants’ danger to the public to determine whether they should be released.

The proposal endorsed by Cantil-Sakauye is contained in a report by a group of judges that concluded the state’s cash bail system “unnecessarily compromises victim and public safety” and “exacerbates socioeconomic disparities and racial bias.”

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

“The Governor made us wait,” said Representative Rob Bonta of the California Assembly, about the Buy Clean California act that he had sponsored.

Governor Jerry Brown had until midnight on Sunday to sign or veto the bill. "It was touch-and-go until the very end, given some of the governor’s office's concerns," Bonta reports. He was on a plane returning home from visiting his daughter on the east coast when the good news finally arrived in the form of a group text from his staff:  AB 262 signed!!

“I congratulated my team,” Bonta said. “This was not an easy lift at all.”

Friday, September 29, 2017

Capital & Main
Author: Dean Kuipers

With California doubling and tripling down on climate change as a reality in 2017, a new bill awaiting Governor Jerry Brown’s signature could use the state’s massive purchasing power as the world’s sixth largest economy to address greenhouse gas emissions far beyond its borders.

Assembly Bill 262, the Buy Clean Act, would require all state departments and the University of California and California State University systems to buy steel, rebar, flat glass and mineral wool board insulation for its infrastructure projects from low-carbon producers. Currently, the state usually buys at the lowest price, meaning that materials can come from companies in China and elsewhere, where the carbon footprint is almost certainly higher.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

BY HAL HARVEY

AND ROB BONTA

Special to The Bee

SEPTEMBER 12, 2017 12:00 PM

California has long been a global leader on climate change and energy innovation. Since the passage of the Global Warming Solutions Act a decade ago, other countries have sought to emulate our cutting-edge approach to reducing carbon emissions.

Now, with the Buy Clean California Act, the state has an opportunity to export that leadership directly, through an innovative new approach to industrial pollution.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Public defender's offices across California are in need of immigration law training and resources, a demand that a state lawmaker says has been made more pressing under President Donald Trump and his threat of massive deportations.

Speaking before members of the Assembly Public Safety Committee on Monday, Assemblyman Rob Bonta (D-Oakland) urged support for a bill that he said would provide critical immigration resources to criminal defense lawyers working on the front lines. His legislation seeks to create regional and statewide resource centers to provide immigration law training and advice for court-appointed criminal defense attorneys.

Monday, February 6, 2017

SACRAMENTO -- Many California lawmakers are not threatened by the president's threats to defund the state over sanctuary cities. Some are moving forward with a bill to make all of California a "sanctuary state."

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

A California lawmaker wants state officials to consider greenhouse gas emissions when making new purchases, a proposal that would add a new wrinkle to the bidding process for government contracts.

Assemblyman Rob Bonta (D-Oakland) said the legislation (AB 262) would "harness the state’s enormous buying power to support clean manufacturing.”