Busy week for Brown: Wage equity yesterday, greenhouse gases today

Oct 7, 2015

It’s only Wednesday and it’s already a big week for bill signings.  Governor Jerry Brown is poised to put his John Hancock on SB 350, Senate Pro Tem Kevin de Leon’s (D-Los Angeles) ambitious bill to reduce greenhouse gases, at Los Angeles' Griffith Observatory today. The signing follows yesterday’s gubernatorial endorsement of SB 358, a historic equal pay measure authored by Senator Hannah Beth Jackson (D-Santa Barbara).  Juliet Williams, AP:


“Female workers in California will get new tools to challenge gender-based wage gaps under legislation signed into law Tuesday that supporters say offers the strongest equal-pay protection in the nation.


“Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown signed the measure while surrounded by women and girls at an event at Rosie the Riveter National Historical Park in Richmond, northeast of San Francisco.


"’The stratification and the pay disparities in California and in America, probably in the world, are something that really eats away at our whole society,’ Brown said. He called the legislation a ‘milestone.’"


A union-backed ballot measure that would raise the minimum wage has collected the 366,000 signatures needed to be placed on the 2016 ballot according to supporters.  Christopher Cadelago, Sacramento Bee:


“In the first major event in support of the proposed initiative, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee and Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf said they would lead the union-funded endeavor to hike the state’s base wage to $11 an hour in 2017, and then increase it by $1 a year until it hits $15 in 2021. After that, the wage would automatically rise with the cost of living.


“The minimum wage is scheduled to reach $10 per hour next year, an insufficient floor amid rising prices for housing and everyday expenses like milk and eggs, Lee told reporters at Rickshaw Bagworks, a manufacturer of customizable bike messenger bags.


“Lee, a Democrat who has focused his re-election effort on tackling inequality, said with the state economy rebounding, we have “got to do a lot more in sharing our prosperity”…”


And, speaking of ballot measures, opponents of California’s freshly-signed Right-to-Die law say they will seek a referendum to overturn the law.  Patrick McGreevy, Los Angeles Times:


“A group called Seniors Against Suicide filed papers with the state attorney general’s office to get an official title and summary for the referendum, the first step toward collecting signatures.


“The group would have 90 days, or until Jan. 3, to collect the signatures of 365,880 registered voters…”


But, even if they manage to get the signatures for the referendum, odds are that they are going to lose.  Big.


While we’re on the subject of controversial health policy… KQED’s Lisa Aliferis reports that the Supreme Court just dealt a blow to opponents of SB 277, California’s mandatory vaccine law.


“The U.S. Supreme Court will not hear a challenge to a requirement in New York state that all children be vaccinated before they can attend public school. The justices on Monday let stand lower court rulings that the policy does not violate the constitution.


“This decision matters in California, where a new law passed this summer requires virtually all schoolchildren to be vaccinated against a range of diseases in order to attend school.


“The high court’s move means that potential challenges to the California law are ‘not likely to succeed,’ Prof. Dorit Reiss, a vaccine law expert at UC Hastings College of the Law in San Francisco…”


There’s just no good way to tell you this, so we’ll be blunt: the world may end today. 


Yes, that means you may have just spent some of your last precious moments on earth reading about ballot initiatives and Supreme Court decisions.  So says The eBible Fellowship, a Philadelphia-based church which has announced that today is the day.  From Adam Gabbatt at The Guardian:


“’According to what the Bible is presenting it does appear that 7 October will be the day that God has spoken of: in which, the world will pass away,’ said Chris McCann, the leader and founder of the fellowship, an online gathering of Christians headquartered in Philadelphia.


“’It’ll be gone forever. Annihilated.’


“McCann said that, according to his interpretation of the Bible, the world will be obliterated ‘with fire’.


“The blood moon – a lunar eclipse combined with a ‘super moon’ – occurred without event on 27 September. This was despite some predictions that it would herald the beginning of the apocalypse. Certain religious leaders had said the blood moon would trigger a chain of events that could see our planet destroyed in as little as seven years time.


“According to this new prediction, however, there will be no stay of execution. On the day of 7 October, the world will end.


“’God destroyed the first Earth with water, by a flood, in the days of Noah. And he says he’ll not do that again, not by water. But he does say in 2nd Peter 3 that he’ll destroy it by fire,’ McCann said.”


If all goes well, we’ll see you Thursday.   If not… well, it’s been nice.

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