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FlashReport Weblog on California Politics

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Katy Grimes

State’s Ag Labor Board Involved In Intimidation, Harassment of Latino Farm Workers

Labor unions target many non-union businesses across the country for takeover; some businesses successfully fend off the unions, and others succumb. But in California, the Agricultural Labor Relations Board, a state agency, works in cahoots with the United Farm Workers labor union, intimidating, fear-mongering, threatening, and uses legal actions filed against farming employers to force them into submission to the United Farm Workers labor union.

But recently, the ALRB has been dealt several legal blows to its efforts to malign Gerawan Farming, and force its farm workers into unionization.

The Agricultural Labor Relations Board was created following the signing of the Agriculture Labor Relations Act in 1975 by then-Governor Jerry Brown, a Democrat, to restore peace in the fields. The California Labor Act states:

It is hereby stated to be the policy of the State of California to encourage and protect the right of agricultural employees to full freedom of association, self-organization, and designation of representatives of their own choosing, to negotiate the terms and conditions of their employment, and to be free from theRead More

Katy Grimes

Resolute Fresno Councilman Announces Run For Assembly

Clint Olivier just announced he’s running for California State Assembly for the 31st Assembly District. If Olivier’s name isn’t familiar, be thankful. He’s not the son of a politician. He’s not from Hollywood. He didn’t get independently wealthy as a hedge-fund manager on oil and coal investments. He hasn’t sold rocket launchers to Filipino Muslim separatists, or offered bribes to FBI agents.

Clint Olivier is a member of the Fresno, California City Council, representing District 7, first elected to the council in 2010, and a former television news reporter. He’s married and has two kids.

What makes… Read More

Katy Grimes

Irvine City Council Abolishes Preposterous ‘Living Wage’ – Kills Biz Licensing Tax

Flexing Republican muscle, the Irvine City Council is making headway on repealing years of heavy-handed Democrat policies, which are bad for business, and worse for taxpayers.

On the heels of passage of the new Los Angeles minimum wage of $15.00 per hour by 2020, the new GOP supermajority in Irvine just repealed its “living wage” ordinance. While the rest of the state seems to be pushing for mandatory minimum wage laws, or higher minimum wage laws under Democrat majorities, killing free market principles, as well as driving up the cost of city contracts, and preventing many employable students from getting important work experience, Irvine is doing things differently.

The Irvine City Council voted last week to repeal its Living Wage Ordinance, the only of its kind in all of Orange County.Where Republicans are governing, ridiculous and burdensome top-down mandates get cut.

The City of Irvine website explains the living wage:

Read More

Katy Grimes

50 Shades of Brown: Gov. Jerry Brown and Democrat Party Rule

As Gov. Jerry Brown prepares to sign another climate change agreementwith “government leaders from around the world,” as his office announced, remember the recent agreement Brown got into with the scandalized Oregon Gov. Kitzhaber. “In October 2013,California Gov. Jerry Brown, together with the Governors of Oregon and Washington and the British Columbia Premier,signedthePacific Coast Action Plan on Climate and Energy, “to align climate change policies and promote clean energy,’” I wrote in February.

The Pacific Coast Collaborative links with theWest Coast Infrastructure Exchange(WCX), a compact betweenCalifornia, Oregon, Washington and British Columbia, formed in 2013 to promote “the type of new thinking necessary to solve the West Coast’s infrastructure crisis.” And the WCX is linked to… Read More

Katy Grimes

Labor Kills Bill To Help Farm Workers

Labor unions are still running the show in the Democratically-controlled California Legislature. Despite hearing from more than 50 farmworkers on Wednesday, the Assembly Labor and Employment Committee denied the farmworkers the right to vote on their own labor negotiated contacts, even though this right is enjoyed by other union members in California.

Assemblyman Jim Patterson and Assemblywoman Shannon Grove presented ABRead More

Katy Grimes

New Technology Facilitates Transparency, Openness in CA State Govt.

‘Transparency’ is probably the most overused word in political speech, while at the same time, the most underutilized in practice.In a free society, transparency in government means openness, accountability, and honesty. It is the obligation of government to share information with citizens, yet is increasingly difficult to access – even in California, home to Silicon Valley.

Without transparency, citizens are unable to hold public officials accountable. And that’s the problem –government is responsible for making itself available to be accountable. It’s unnatural. While the true statesman values principle above popularity, today’s era of politics in California doesn’t breed an abundance of statesmen.

However, one of the good guys – a real statesman – former State Sen. Sam Blakeslee, has tackled the problem of transparency in politics. The Institute for Advanced Technology and Public Policy, under the leadership of Blakeslee, officially launched the Digital Democracy Project, to provide a searchable database of all legislative hearings. “This package… Read More

Katy Grimes

California Gas Tax ‘Unfair and Foolish’

The California Democratic Party claims to be for the poor and middle class, but killed a bill Monday which would have cut California’s highest-in-the-nation gas tax.Californians pay 68 cents tax on every gallon of gasoline – the highest gas tax in the nation.

Not content to be the first state in the country to tax the air we breathe, California is the first in the nation to impose a cap and trade tax on transportation fuels.

In response, Assemblyman Jim Patterson, R-Fresno, and more than 20 other Republican lawmakers, introduced AB 23, theAffordable Gas for California Families Act,legislation to exempt transportation fuels and natural gas from the California Air Resource… Read More

Katy Grimes

Indisputable Evidence of ‘Two Californias’ In New Poll Giving Gov. Brown High Marks

The latest poll from USC Dornsife and the Los Angeles Times would have you believe California voters give Gov. Jerry Brown and the Legislature their highest approval ratings in year — despite “soaring taxes, high unemployment, costly illegal immigration, escalating crime rates, substandard roads, record power and gas prices, underwater home values, and dismal schools.”

This is what happens when smart people like to be right and defend bad ideas.

Amedia conference call withUSC Dornsife discussed the poll results.

The… Read More

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