Friday, February 23, 2018

Statewide Rent Control Dead (for Now)

California lawmakers killed a bill Thursday (late Jan '18) that likely would have expanded rent control laws in cities and counties, setting the stage for a protracted statewide battle over how to rein in the state’s soaring housing costs.
Democratic Assemblyman Richard Bloom’s Assembly Bill 1506 died in the Assembly’s housing committee.
The 3-2 vote set off protests in the committee room, with angry tenants chanting, “Housing is a human right,” and “Repeal Costa-Hawkins.”

I cannot even begin to estimate the disruption statewide rent control efforts would generate.  

CA Assembly Bill 1506 (legislative text/etc)

Costa-Hawkins Act explainer (Curbed LA)

Read more here:

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Bearly Noticed

The Arctic Ocean is warming up, icebergs are growing scarcer and in some places the seals are finding the water too hot, according to a report to the Commerce Department yesterday from Consulate at Bergen Norway.
Reports from fishermen, seal hunters and explorers all point to a radical
change in climate conditions and hitherto unheard-of temperatures in the Arctic zone.

Exploration expeditions report that scarcely any ice has been met as far
north as 81 degrees 29 minutes.

Soundings to a depth of 3,100 meters showed the Gulf Stream still very warm.
Great masses of ice have been replaced by moraines of earth and stones,
the report continued, while at many points well known glaciers have entirely disappeared.

Very few seals and no white fish are found in the eastern Arctic, while
vast shoals of herring and smelt which have never before ventured so far north, are being encountered in the old seal fishing grounds.

Within a few years it is predicted that due to the ice melt the sea will
rise and make most coastal cities uninhabitable.

* * *
This report was from November 2, 1922, as reported by the AP and published in The Washington Post - 96 years ago.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Cold Front Moving Through

I am glad I haven't planted the tomatoes.  Snow level to 1400 feet tonight.  At least you all get a break from my tedious bragging about the weather.  At 8:30AM Monday the temp dropped 10 degrees in 15 minutes. 
Not my picture.  But may happen.
It should still be warm enough for the Wednesday dawn Falcon 9 launch

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Dirty Birds

“The soot on these birds’ feathers allowed us to trace the amount of black carbon in the air over time, and we found that the air at the turn of the century was even more polluted than scientists previously thought,” says Shane DuBay, a graduate student at The Field Museum and the University of Chicago and one of the authors of the study. He and co-author Carl Fuldner, also a graduate student at UChicago, analyzed over a thousand birds collected over the last 135 years to determine and quantify the effects of soot in the air over cities in the Rust Belt.

I love real science.  

Friday, February 16, 2018

LINXS would design, build and operate the system under a $4.5 billion, 30-year contract.  Commissioners on Thursday approved a preliminary $42 million agreement with LINXS for pre-construction work to keep the project on schedule for completion in 2023.
The 2¼-mile system will carry up to 10,000 passengers per hour and connect to a transportation center and the Metro light-rail system.


Oh, and the Metro light rail green line?  Currently carries 32k boardings daily for the entire line  

Tarnished Golden State

California leads the nation once again in a statistic no state wants to boast about.
When the cost of living is factored in, the Golden State has the highest poverty rate in the country. More than 20 percent of its residents struggle to make ends meet, according to recently released Census figures.That’s nearly 8 million people.
Unfortunately for Californians, this year’s poverty numbers are not an aberration. The Census began releasing state-by-state results for its “supplemental poverty measure” in 2011, in an attempt to improve upon the outdated and heavily criticized official poverty statistics.


Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Eating Their Dust, the 1% Pull Away

If we go back 38 years to 1980 — an entire lifetime of work — we find real (adjusted for official inflation, which seriously understates big-ticket expenses such as rent, healthcare and college tuition/fees) wages have notched higher by $10/week — a gain of $500 annually.

Read more:

This ties in with LBD's questions about the future where labor is devalued relative to capital. 

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Beautiful Islands

Unless otherwise noted i took all the pictures.  Real posts soon.  A thousand emails and stuff first. 

Thursday, February 01, 2018

Insurance Mess

Losses from last fall’s wildfires in Northern, and Southern California wildfires are staggering, hitting the $12 billion dollar range.
The State Insurance Commissioner’s Office says 32,000 homes were destroyed or damaged statewide by the October and December wildfires in California.
In Ventura County, claims have been filed for 4100 homes, and $1.3 billion dollars stemming from the Thomas Fire. State officials say so far, insurers have paid out $256 million dollars.
In Santa Barbara County, the state says 1700 homes have been the subject of fire related claims. The claims seek $40 million dollars, with nine million paid out at this point.
As far as commercial properties are concerned, 524 claims have been filed seeking more than $100 million dollars to cover losses. In Santa Barbara County, 189 commercial claims were filed seeking $2.4 million dollars in compensation.
The just released numbers don’t include losses from this month’s flooding.