Subject: Studies in the News 04-83 (December 30, 2004))


CALIFORNIA RESEARCH BUREAU
CALIFORNIA STATE LIBRARY
Studies in the News


California -- One Hundred and Fifty Years Ago

1854 - "In December, 1854, Phineas Banning mounted a coach to make the first run over a new route (north from Los Angeles), although his foreman insisted the trail was not yet ready. Wagons rolled generally up the route of present-day Interstate 5 to San Francisquito Canyon, where an adobe station awaited thirsty and hungry travelers. Phineas Banning had the largest freight operation in Southern California, with five hundred mules, forty wagons and fifteen stagecoaches. The merchants of Los Angeles found that the only road north was controlled by a beardless youth of twenty-four who went around town in shirtsleeves, bright suspenders, clod hopper shoes and pants that were five or six inches too short. In time, Banning was appointed a brigadier general in the California Militia. "   History of the Santa Clarita Valley p. 4  

December 1854 - "In December of 1854, the first large-scale sales of Rancho San Pedro land was made to a company headed by Phineas Banning. This area was first known as 'New San Pedro'. Later it was named Wilmington. Manuel Dominguez sold 214 acres of land, which bordered the ocean north of the City of Redondo Beach. Manuel also deeded Phineas Banning, a right-of-way from north to south of the Rancho, being 100 feet wide and 33,293 feet in length, which constituted about 77 acres, for the Los Angeles and San Pedro Railroad. http://score.rims.k12.ca.us/activity/rancho/pages/pst_gld_sh_rnch_expnsn.htm"    

Contents This Week

Introductory Material CRIMINAL JUSTICE & LAW ENFORCEMENT
   Women on parole
   State sentencing systems
   States' placement of sexual offenders
CULTURE AND SOCIETY
   Life on Mexico's border with the U.S.
   Same-sex marriage constitutional in Canada
DEMOGRAPHY
   Women and political participation
   California women's survey
ECONOMY
   Economic forecast for California
   States' economic freedom
   Internet use expanding to rural businesses
   International patent protection
   Attorney General sues mutual funds broker
   Corporate bond market and U.S. economy
EDUCATION
   Educational assessment of foster children
   California ranking in education
   School choice and the No Child Left Behind Act
   Colorado's school voucher experience
   New public school funding system
   Teacher development and accountability
ENERGY
   Hydrogen fuel cell research and development
   Long-term strategy to address energy challenges
ENVIRONMENT & NATURAL RESOURCES
   California air fails particulate standard
   Montana miners can sue state
   Public opinion on genetically modified foods
   Global warming in the arctic
   Forest Service has new management plan
   Court stops big-box retail
GENERAL GOVERNMENT
   Federal funds for state homeland security
   Decline in city finance capabilities
   Transforming California's state government
   Federal websites' popularity rankings
   Group sues to block bond sale
   National sales tax
   Consumption patterns and sales tax revenue
   Corporate tax strategies
HEALTH
   State of aging and health in America
   Children and health insurance coverage
   California employer health benefits survey
   Problems with access to physicians
   Nurses association sues over staff ratio regulations
   Junk-food ban lowers campus revenues
HOUSING
   Improving oversight of lenders
HUMAN SERVICES
   Foster care adoption in the United States
   Second demographic transition and children
   Telephone hotlines resources for parents
TRANSPORTATION
   Security at general aviation airports
   Pedestrians and safety
STUDIES TO COME
   Public policy and gifted education
   Strategies for leading high school reform
   Regulation and use of initiative process
   Staff and lobbyists in legislative process
Introduction to Studies in the News

Studies in the News is a very current compilation of items significant to the Legislature and Governor's Office. It is created weekly by the State Library's Research Bureau to supplement the public policy debate in Californiaís Capitol. To help share the latest information with state policymakers, these reading lists are now being made accessible through the State Libraryís website. This week's list of current articles in various public policy areas is presented below.

Service to State Employees:

  • When available, the URL for the full text of each item is provided.

  • California State Employees may contact the State Information & Reference Center (916-654-0206; cslsirc@library.ca.gov) with the SITN issue number and the item number [S#].

  • All other interested individuals should contact their local library - the items may be available there, or may be borrowed by your local library on your behalf.

The following studies are currently on hand:

CRIMINAL JUSTICE & LAW ENFORCEMENT

CORRECTIONAL POPULATIONS

Breaking the Barriers for Women on Parole. By The Little Hoover Commission. (The Commission, Sacramento, California) December 2004. 110 p.

Full Text at: www.lhc.ca.gov/lhcdir/177/report177.pdf

["In this report, the commission examines the stateís efforts to break the cycle of violence, crime and addiction by female offenders. This review further validates the overarching need for improving the correctional system, and for pioneering those reforms by developing a better correctional strategy for women."]

[Request #S4635]

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SENTENCING

Aggravated Sentencing: Blakely v. Washington: Practical Implications for State Sentencing Systems. By Jon Wool and Don Stemen, Vera Institute of Justice. (The Institute, New York, New York) 2004. 11 p.

Full Text at: www.vera.org/publication_pdf/242_456.pdf

["Under Blakely, when the law establishes an effective maximum sentence for an offense, the Sixth Amendmentís right to trial by jury prohibits a judge from imposing a longer sentence if it is based on a fact -- other than prior conviction -- determined by the judge. Any such fact must be proved to a jury beyond a reasonable doubt if not admitted by the defendant."]

[Request #S4636]

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SEX OFFENDERS

Sex Offender Placement: Departments that Are Responsible for Placing Sex Offenders Face Challenges, and Some Need to Better Monitor Their Costs. By the California State Auditor, California Bureau of State Audits. (The Bureau, Sacramento, California) December 2004. 68 p.

Full Text at: www.bsa.ca.gov/bsa/pdfs/2004-111.pdf

["As of July 1, 2004, more than 100,000 sex offenders were registered in the State. A number of entities participate in the process of releasing these sex offenders in the community when appropriate. This report examines the process and related costs incurred by the departments of Developmental Services, the Youth Authority, and Mental Health in housing sex offenders in the community."]

[Request #S4637]

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CULTURE AND SOCIETY

IMMIGRATION

On the Border: Society and Culture Between the United States and Mexico. Edited by Andrew Grant Wood. (SR Books, Lanham, Maryland) 2004. 303 p.

["This book explores little-known corners of the U.S.-Mexican borderland in a collection of essays. Beginning with an exploration of mining and the rise of Tijuana, the book examines a number of aspects of the region's social and cultural history, including urban growth and housing, the underworld of border-town nightlife, borderlands cuisine, the life of squatters, and popular religion." NOTE: On the Border ... is available for 3-day loan.]

[Request #S4638]

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SAME-SEX MARRIAGES

In the Matter of a Reference by the Governor in Council concerning the Proposal for an Act Respecting Certain Aspects of Legal Capacity for Marriage for Civil Purposes. Supreme Court of Canada. December 9, 2004. Various pagings.

Full Text at: www.lexum.umontreal.ca/csc-scc/en/rec/html/2004scc079.wpd.html

["Canada's Supreme Court said that the government can legally extend marriage rights to same-sex couples in a landmark decision that paves the way for legislation that would allow same-sex couples to marry in every province.... The court, however, stopped short of saying the Constitution required the legalization of same-sex marriage." San Francisco Chroinicle (December 10, 2004) 1.]

[Request #S4639]

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DEMOGRAPHY

WOMEN

Status of Women in the State. By the Institute for Women's Policy Research. (The Institute, Washington, DC) 2004. 87 pages.

Full Text at: www.iwpr.org/States2004/PDFs/National.pdf

["[This report] contains indicators describing womenís status in five main areas: political participation, employment and earnings, social and economic autonomy, reproductive rights, and health and well-being. In addition, the report provides information about basic demographics among women." Moving Ideas (November 17, 2004) 1.]

[Request #S4640]

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California Women's Survey. By the Public Policy Institute of California. Just The Facts. (The Institute, San Francisco, California) November 2004.

[One in eight California women are poor, compared to one in 10 California men. Women account for almost 80 percent of single parents living with children, and 28 percent of them have incomes below the federal poverty threshold ($14,824 for a mother with two children in 2003). Nineteen percent of single women living alone are poor. In married-couple families, only 7 percent of women are poor. Of all people over age 70, 11 percent of women and 8 percent of men are poor.... Among poor women between the ages of 25 and 59, 36 percent work, 25 percent have a working husband, and 25 percent rely on public assistance as their main income source."]

A Political Survey. 2 p.:
http://www.ppic.org/content/pubs/JTF_WomenPoliticalProfileJTF.pdf

A Portrait of Diversity. 2 p.:
http://www.ppic.org/content/pubs/JTF_WomenDiversityJTF.pdf

A Status Report. 2 p.:
http://www.ppic.org/content/pubs/JTF_WomenStatusReportJTF.pdf

The Economic Status of Women in California. 2 p.:
http://www.ppic.org/content/pubs/JTF_WomenEconomicStatusJTF.pdf

[Request #S4641]

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ECONOMY

CALIFORNIA

The UCLA Anderson Forecast for the Nation and California. By the UCLA Anderson Forecast, UCLA Anderson Graduate School of Management. (The School, Los Angeles, California) December 2004. Various pagings.

["California can look forward to 'solid, but not spectacular' economic growth in 2005, according to a new report from UCLA, thanks in large part to continued growth in the national economy.... But the UCLA researchers warn in their latest quarterly report on the state and national economy that they see clouds on the horizon, ranging from Southern California's increasingly unskilled and off-the-books work force to the state's unresolved budget issues and the country's low savings rate, growing mortgage debts and vulnerability to a downturn in the property market." Orange County Register (December 8, 2004) 1. NOTE: The UCLA Anderson Forecast ... is available for 3-day loan.]

[Request #S4642]

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ECONOMIC POLICY

U.S. Economic Freedom Index: 2004 Report. By Ying Huang and others, Pacific Research Institute. (The Institute, San Francisco, California) November 16, 2004. 185 p.

Full Text at: www.pacificresearch.org/pub/sab/entrep/2004/econ_freedom/Econ_Index2004.pdf

["The index scores states based on more than 100 variables, including regulatory and fiscal obstacles imposed on residents.... Kansas has assumed the lofty spot as the nationís most economically free state, followed closely by Colorado and Virginia.... Rhode Island, Connecticut, California, and New York bring up the rear. If all states ranked as free as Kansas, the annual income of an average working American would rise 4.42 percent, or $1,161." Publisher's Announcement (November 16, 2004) 1.]

[Request #S4643]

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INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

City or Country: Where Do Businesses Use the Internet? By Chris Forman, Tepper School of Business, Carnegie Mellon University, and others. Prepared for the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. Regional Report, FRBSF Economic Letter. No. 2004-24. (The Bank, San Francisco, California) 2004. 4 p.

Full Text at: www.frbsf.org/publications/economics/letter/2004/el2004-24.pdf

["This Economic Letter summarizes research findings that the use of basic internet technology is widely dispersed among both urban and rural locations. Moreover, although advanced internet technology was adopted most rapidly in large urban areas, the research finds that much (but not all) of the apparent 'digital divide' in internet use can be explained by the heavy concentration of internet-intensive industries in large urban areas."]

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INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY

Can International Patent Protection Help a Developing Country Grow? By Diego Valderrama, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. FRBSF Economic Letter. Number 2004-11. (The Bank, San Francisco, California) 2004. 4 p.

Full Text at: www.frbsf.org/publications/economics/letter/2004/el2004-11.pdf

["International protection of intellectual property rights may increase growth in [developing] economies and thus improve living standards. If the spread of new technologies is fast enough, then the economies of developing countries can grow faster, allowing them to improve their living standards, even after taking into account the higher price needed to pay for patented technologies."]

[Request #S4645]

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MUTUAL FUNDS

People of California v. Edward D. Jones & Co., L.P. Sacramento County Superior Court. Complaint for Civil Penalties, Ancillary Relief, and Preliminary and Permanent Injunctions. December 20, 2004.

["California Attorney General Bill Lockyer sued brokerage Edward Jones, saying the firm failed to tell customers that it received $300 million from mutual fund companies in return for pushing their funds. Lockyer filed the suit even as Edward Jones, based in Saint Louis, announced a tentative $75 million settlement Monday with the Securities and Exchange Commission over similar complaints. A spokesman for Lockyer called the proposed settlement insufficient." San Francisco Chronicle (December 21, 2004) 1.]

Complaint. 13 p.
http://caag.state.ca.us/newsalerts/2004/04-146a.pdf

Press Release. 1 p.
http://caag.state.ca.us/newsalerts/2004/04-146.htm

[Request #S4646]

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U.S. ECONOMY

What Determines the Credit Spread? By John Krainer, Federal Reserve Bank, San Francisco. FRBSF Economic Letter No. 2004-36 (The Bank, San Francisco, California) December 10, 2004. 4 p.

Full Text at: www.frbsf.org/publications/economics/letter/2004/el2004-36.pdf

["In this Economic Letter [the author] describes the significant narrowing of bond spreads across different sectors and ratings classes since the last recession. [He] also discusses recent research on the determinants of relative pricing in the corporate bond market."]

[Request #S4647]

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EDUCATION

ASSESSMENT

"The Need for Educational Assessment of Children Entering Foster Care." By Larry D. Evans and others. IN: Child Welfare, vol. 83, no. 6 (November/December 2004) pp. 565-580.

["Comprehensive medical and mental health evaluations of children in foster care are recommended within 30 days of entering care. What constitutes a comprehensive evaluation has yet to be established. This study examines the need to include educational assessment as a component of the comprehensive evaluation."]

[Request #S4648]

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CALIFORNIA

How California Ranks: A Look at the State's Investment in K-12 Education Over the Past Decade. By EdSource Inc. (EdSource, Washington, DC) September 2004. 4 p.

Full Text at: www.ed-data.k12.ca.us/Navigation/fsTwoPanel.asp?bottom=%2FArticles%2FArticle%2Easp%3Ftitle%3DHow%2520California%2520Compares

["California ranks next to last in the nation in the number of teachers and principals per student and last in librarians and counselors per pupil.... This report looks at the current rankings and estimates as well as how the state fared over the past decade compared to the rest of the nation."]

[Request #S4649]

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SCHOOL CHOICE

Bringing To Life the School Choice and Restructuring Requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act. By Bryan C. Hassel and others, Education Commission of the States. (The Commission, Denver, Colorado) 2004. 12 p.

Full Text at: www.ecs.org/clearinghouse/54/26/5426.pdf

["Under the No Child Left Behind Act, school districts are required to offer students who attend schools that do not make 'adequate yearly progress' for two consecutive years the option to transfer to higher performing schools in the district.... This policy brief sketches out the role states can play in the process."]

[Request #S4650]

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SCHOOL VOUCHERS

Early Lessons from Colorado's Voucher Experience. By Alex Madler, Consultant, and Todd Ziebarth, Augenblick, Palaich and Associates. Prepared for Education Commission of the States. (The Commission, Denver, Colorado) 2004. 20 p.

Full Text at: www.ecs.org/clearinghouse/51/41/5141.pdf

["This report begins by describing Colorado's voucher program, and then takes a look at what state leaders on either side of the issue hope it will accomplish -- or fear it will lead to. The report also examines the implementation and evaluation processes that are being put into place for the Colorado program, and concludes with a look at how evaluations might converge with voucher debates in the future."]

[Request #S4651]

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STATE OVERSIGHT

Columbia Falls Elementary School District No. 6, et. al. v. the State of Montana. Montana Supreme Court. No. 04-390. November 9, 2004. 4 p.

Full Text at: www.lawlibrary.state.mt.us/dscgi/ds.py/Get/File-36310/04-390.pdf

[The Montana Supreme Court has unanimously upheld a lower court ruling that declared the state's system of funding public schools unconstitutional.... The Legislature must now define what constitutes a quality education and, as ordered by the lower court, create a new school funding system." Associated Press (November 10, 2004) 1.]

[Request #S4652]

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TEACHER DEVELOPMENT

Teacher Professional Development in High-stakes Accountability Systems. By Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Research Brief. Vol. 2, No. 4 (The Association, Washington, DC) 2004. 5 p.

Full Text at: www.ascd.org/publications/researchbrief/volume2/v2n13.html

["The No Child Left Behind Act requires states to assess student performance in math and literacy (and soon, science) each year in grades 3-8 and once in grades 10-12. Within this environment of increased teacher and student expectations, teacher professional development is frequently cited as a key strategy in improving student learning. The research examines the effectiveness of high-stakes accountability systems in bringing about improvements in professional development."]

[Request #S4653]

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ENERGY

ALTERNATIVE FUELS

Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Vehicle R&D: FreedomCAR and the President's Hydrogen Fuel Initiative. By Brent Yacobucci, Resources, Science, and Industry Division, Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress. Issue Brief. (National Council for Science and the Environment, Washington, DC) 2004. 6 p.

Full Text at: www.ncseonline.org/NLE/CRSreports/04Aug/RS21442.pdf

["A report examines the organization, funding, and goals of the FreedomCAR and Fuel partnerships, and explores legislation relevant to the partnerships. FreedomCAR and the Presidentís Hydrogen Fuel Initiative are two complementary government-industry research and development initiatives that promote the development of hydrogen fuel and fuel cell vehicles. Coordinated by the U.S. Department of Energy, these initiatives aim to make mass-market fuel cell and hydrogen combustion vehicles available at an affordable cost within 10 to 15 years."]

[Request #S4654]

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ENERGY

Ending the Energy Stalemate: A Bipartisan Strategy to Meet Americaís Energy Challenges. By the National Commission on Energy Policy. (The Commission, Washington, DC) December 2004.

["A bipartisan group of top energy experts from industry, government, labor, academia, and environmental and consumer groups released a consensus strategy, more than two years in the making, to address major long-term U.S. energy challenges. The report contains detailed policy recommendations for addressing oil security, climate change, natural gas supply, the future of nuclear energy, and other long-term challenges, and is backed by more than 30 original research studies."]

Report. 28 p.:
http://www.energycommission.org/ewebeditpro/items/O82F4682.pdf

Press Release. Various pagings.:
http://www.energycommission.org/news/

[Request #S4655]

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ENVIRONMENT & NATURAL RESOURCES

AIR POLLUTION

Air Quality Designations and Classifications for the Fine Particles (PM2.5) National Ambient Air Quality Standards: Final Rule. By the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. (The Agency, Washington, DC) December 17, 2004.

["Parts of California and 19 other states are flunking a new national standard for hazardously tiny air pollutants, federal pollution officials announced. The San Joaquin Valley, Los Angeles basin and San Diego area were found to exceed limits for fine particulates, a form of pollution associated with increased risk of heart disease, respiratory illness and untimely death." Sacramento Bee (December 18, 2004) 1.]

Final Rule. 45 p.:
http://www.epa.gov/pmdesignations/documents/final/preamble.pdf

Press Release and Fact Sheet. Various pagings.:
http://www.epa.gov/pmdesignations/

[Request #S4656]

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ASBESTOS

Orr v. State of Montana. Supreme Court of the State of Montana. 204 Mt 354. December 14, 2004. 61 p.

Full Text at: www.lawlibrary.state.mt.us/dscgi/ds.py/Get/File-37279/02-693.pdf

["State officials had a responsibility to warn miners about decades of dangerous health conditions at a Libby vermiculite mine, but a trial was needed to determine if government officials failed to fulfill that duty, a divided Montana Supreme Court said. The 4-3 decision said the government's immunity from being sued provided no protection from the claims of the miners suffering from years of exposure to asbestos in the mine, which W.R. Grace & Co. closed in 1990." Los Angeles Times (December 15, 2004) 1.]

[Request #S4657]

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BIOTECHNOLOGY

Pew Initiative on Food and Biotechnology: 2004 Focus Groups and Poll: Overview of Findings. By the Pew Initiative on Food and Biotechnology. (The Initiative, Washington. DC) November 24, 2004.

["U.S. consumers want more federal protections on biotech foods, but they also are keen on engineering plants to create cheaper drugs, according to the most recent survey of attitudes about biotechnology. The results of 1,000 consumer interviews show that the nation remains divided about biotechnology, but opinions aren't deeply held. Pew also found that the public remains largely ignorant about biotech foods, although opposition to them in the food supply has softened since 2001." Sacramento Bee (November 29, 2004) A1.]

Overview. 6 p.:
http://pewagbiotech.org/research/2004update/overview.pdf

Press Release. 1 p.:
http://pewagbiotech.org/newsroom/releases/112404.php3

[Request #S4658]

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CLIMATE CHANGE

Impacts of a Warming Arctic: Arctic Climate Impact Assessment. By Susan Joy Hassol and others. Prepared for the Arctic Council (The Council, Reykjavik, Iceland) November 2004. Various pagings.

Full Text at: amap.no/workdocs/index.cfm?dirsub=%2FACIA%2Foverview

["The Arctic is experiencing some of the most rapid and severe warming on the planet, according to a new, eight-nation report. The report, a four-year effort involving hundreds of scientists, describes vast areas of melting ice, declining species and fading indigenous cultures.... The report states that climate change is accelerating sharply, spurred by human production of greenhouse gases." Los Angeles Times (November 9, 2004) A3.]

[Request #S4659]

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FORESTRY

National Forest System Land Management Planning: Final Rule. By the U.S. Forest Service. (The Service, Washington, DC) December 2004.

["A key wildlife protection that has governed federal forest management for more than two decades will be dropped under new regulations announced by the Bush administration, and requirements for public involvement in planning for the country's 192 million acres of national forest will be dramatically altered. U.S. Forest Service officials said the changes, contained in an administrative rewrite of national forest rules expected to take effect next week, would free them from wasteful and time-consuming paperwork and give them the latitude to more quickly respond to evolving forest conditions and scientific research." Los Angeles Times (December 23, 2004) A1.]

Final Rule. 158 p.
http://www.fs.fed.us/emc/nfma/includes/rule_and_preamble_signed_version.pdf

Press Release. 1 p.
http://www.fs.usda.gov/news/2004/releases/12/planning-rule.shtml

[Request #S4660]

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LAND USE

Bakersfield Citizens for Local Control v. City of Bakersfield. California Court of Appeals, Fifth Appelate District. F044943. December 13, 2004. 47 p.

Full Text at: www.courtinfo.ca.gov/opinions/documents/F044943.PDF

["The court ruled that the city of Bakersfield failed to properly examine the environmental impacts of the two large south Bakersfield retail projects. Judges said the city bungled the hearings on the project's environmental effects and failed to study impacts on transportation and animals.... The rulings could threaten stores already open for business." The Bakersfield Californian (December 13, 2004) 1.]

[Request #S4661]

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GENERAL GOVERNMENT

EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS

Fiscal Year 2005 Homeland Security Grant Program: State Allocations and Issues for Congressional Oversight. By Shawn Reese, Government and Finance Division, Congressional Research Service, The Library of Congress. (Congressional Quarterly, Washington, DC) December 13, 2004. 26 p.

Full Text at: homeland.cq.com/hs/flatfiles/temporaryItems/20041214_crs.pdf

["The federal government is targeting more homeland security funds to high-risk urban areas this year, but more anti-terrorism money still is being spent to protect each resident in the most sparsely populated states than in populous ones.... California now ranks 27th in per capita funding, up from 38th last year." Stateline.org (December 16, 2004) 1.]

[Request #S4662]

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LOCAL GOVERNMENT

"City Fiscal Conditions in 2004." By Michael A. Pagano. IN: State Tax Notes, vol. 34 no. 10 (December 6, 2004) pp. 665-685.

["In the National League of Cities' latest annual survey of city finance directors, more than three in five respondendts said their cities were less able to meet financial needs during 2004 than in the previous year, regardless of population size, region, or taxing authority. Looking ahead, 61 percent say they expect their cities to be less able to meet their 2005 needs, relative to the current fiscal year."]

[Request #S4663]

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PERFORMANCE REVIEW

Historic Opportunities: Transforming California State Government. By The Little Hoover Commission. (The Commission, Sacramento, California) December 10, 2004. 38 p.

Full Text at: www.lhc.ca.gov/lhcdir/176/report176.pdf

["State government needs to be re-engineered to be more responsive and accountable to the public, to focus its priorities and to improve its performance. The Stateís unresolved budget deficit represents an acute crisis for California, and responsibility falls to elected officials to make the necessary and difficult choices to solve that problem."]

[Request #S4664]

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PUBLIC OPINION

American Customer Satisfaction Index Scores for U.S. Federal Government. By the American Customer Satisfaction Index. (The Index, Ann Arbor, Michigan) December 14, 2004. 2 p.

Full Text at: www.theacsi.org/government/govt-04.html

["The top complaint from citizens: the inability to successfully find specific information, the survey found. Thatís the same chief hurdle reported by the public last year.... Users turn first to a siteís search function to find something, and if that fails, satisfaction decreases." Government Computer News (December 15, 2004) 1.]

[Request #S4665]

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STATE BONDS

Pension Obligation Bond Committee v. All Persons Interested in the Matter of the Validity of the California Pension Obligation Bonds. Sacramento County Superior Court. 04AS04303. Verified Answer on Behalf of Fullerton Association of Concerned Taxpayers and its Members. December 8, 2004.

["The plan to sell $929 million in bonds to cover the state's pension obligation this year violates constitutional mandates that voters approve all big loans, according to a lawsuit.... Attorney Harold Johnson of the Pacific Legal Foundation, who filed the challenge on behalf of an Orange County anti-tax group, said the legal issues this year are the same as last year. 'The state constitution requires that all major borrowing be approved by the voters,' Johnson said. 'There are no exceptions.'" (San Francisco Chronicle (December 9, 2004) A1.]

Answer. 11 p.:
http://www.pacificlegal.org/briefs/pensionbonds.pdf

Press Release. 1 p.:
http://www.pacificlegal.org/view_PLFNews.asp?iID=263&sTitle=PLF+and+Taxpayer%2DRights+Group+Challenge+State+Pension+Bonds

[Request #S4666]

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TAXES

"Economic Analysis: The Rise and Fall of the National Sales Tax." By Martin A. Sullivan. IN: State Tax Notes, vol. 34 no. 9 (November 29, 2004) pp. 601-606.

["For years, many conservative legislators ... favored the idea of completely replacing all current federal income, corporation, Social Security, and excise taxes with a single national sales tax.... By eliminating the excess burden on saving inherent in an income tax [it] would promote capital formation.... It would be simpler to administer."]

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Consumption Patterns, Demographic Change and Sales Tax Revenue: Is Yet Another Fiscal Shock On The Horizon? By Paul L. Menchik. National Tax Association 96th Annual Conference Proceedings. (The Conference, Chicago, Illinois) 2003. 12 p.

["[This paper's objective] is to a) document the very partial coverage of state sales taxation; b) document the likely demographic shift over the long run; and c) use the Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Expenditure Survey to determine changes in expenditure patterns associated with this shift between taxable and non-taxable items, and, if significant; d) provide an estimated/guesstimate of the ensuing revenue effect."]

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"Sarbanes-Oxley Compliance In the Corporate Tax Department." By David E. Hardesty. IN: State Tax Notes, vol 34 no. 9 (November 29, 2004) pp. 589-596.

["In this report [the authors] cover three aspects of Sarbanes-Oxley that affect corporate tax departments directly: 1) internal control over financial reporting in corporate tax department, and compliance with Sarbanes-Oxley section 404; 2) use by the corporate tax department of outside consultants who work for the company's auditing firm for tax and internal control consulting services; and 3) the impact of Sarbanes-Oxley on the corporation's use of tax strategies, especially aggressive tax strategies."]

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HEALTH

AGING

The State of Aging and Health in America 2004. By the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the Merck Institute of Aging and Health. (The Center, Atlanta, Georgia) 2004. 48 p.

Full Text at: www.cdc.gov/aging/pdf/State_of_Aging_and_Health_in_America_2004.pdf

["This report assesses the health status and health behaviors of U.S. adults aged 65 and older, and makes recommendations to improve the mental and physical health of all Americans in their later years. It includes national- and state-based report cards that examine 15 key indicators of older adult health and compare them to targets set in Healthy People."]

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CHILDREN

Children's Insurance Coverage Increases as a Result of Public Program Expansion. By E. Richard Brown and Shana Alex Lavarreda, UCLA Center for Health Policy Research. Health Policy Fact Sheet. (The Center, Los Angeles, California) December 2004. 2 p.

Full Text at: www.healthpolicy.ucla.edu/pubs/files/Child_Insurance_FS_12132004.pdf

["The number of children in the state receiving health coverage under Healthy Families in 2003 increased by 500,000 from 2001, and the number of children covered under employer-sponsored health plans decreased by 300,000 over the same period, according to this report. The number of children in the state without health insurance last year decreased to 1.1 million from 1.5 million in 2001, according to the study." California Healthline (December 14, 2004) 1.]

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HEALTH CARE

California Employer Health Benefits Survey. By California HealthCare Foundation. (The Foundation, Oakland, California) 2004. 40 p.

Full Text at: www.chcf.org/documents/insurance/HRETEmployerBenefits2004.pdf

["California health insurance premiums increased 11.4 percent on average this year, more than six times the state's inflation rate of 1.7 percent.... That rate hike was smaller than the 15.8 percent average increase paid by California employers last year. But after several consecutive years of double-digit premium increases, the state's employers continued to meet additional health costs in 2004 by asking workers to pay more." Sacramento Bee (December 17, 2004) D1.]

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MEDICARE

Results from the 2003 Targeted Beneficiary Survey on Access to Physicians Services Among Medicare Beneficiaries. By Timothy Lake and others. Mathematica Policy Research. (Mathematica, Washington, DC) 2004. 250 p.

Full Text at: www.mathematica-mpr.com/publications/PDFs/targetben.pdf

["This report presents results from 2003 targeted survey of Medicare beneficiaries on physicians access issues in 11 local markets. The study examines the reasons given by beneficiaries for reporting problems, with the goal of identifying whether there is evidence of a link between changes in physician fees and access problems. The study was initiated to inform the debates about the potential effects of Medicare's physician payment policy on access to care for Medicare beneficiaries."]

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NURSES

California Nurses Association v. Arnold Schwarzenegger , et al. Sacramento County Superior Court. Petition for Writ of Mandamus; Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief. December 21, 2004.

["Arnold Schwarzenegger was sued by California's largest nursing union as it moved to uphold landmark hospital staffing ratios recently blocked by his administration.... As the new staffing ratios have been phased in this year, health care associations have blamed them for combining with an avalanche of uninsured patients and low Medicaid reimbursements to prove costly to their industry, helping close some facilities. The nurses' union counters that managed care practices and a corporate quest for high profits are also to blame." San Francisco Chronicle (December 22, 2004) 1.]

Complaint. 54 p.:
http://files.calnurse.org/assets/Lawsuit.pdf

Press Release. 1 p.:
http://www.calnurse.org/?Action=Content&id=544&PHPSESSID=6c8d896e2391c56f04793442abce6ebc

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OBESITY

"Junk Food Ban Eats Revenues." By Jennifer Radcliffe. IN: Los Angeles Daily News (November 30, 2004) p. A1.

["Five months into the much-touted junk-food ban in Los Angeles public schools, the drop-off in revenue from sales of soda, candy and other popular items at student stores and vending machines has hit many campuses hard. Sales are down by more than 60 percent at some campuses, costing them $1,000 or more each per week." Los Angeles Daily News (November 30, 2004) 1.]

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HOUSING

AFFORDABLE HOUSING

Single-Family Housing: Progress Made, But Opportunities Exist to Improve Oversight of Federal Housing Administration Lenders. By the U.S. Government Accountability Office. (The Office, Washington, DC) November 12, 2004. 54 p.

Full Text at: www.gao.gov/new.items/d0513.pdf

["This report examines: 1) how well HUD follows its guidelines when granting lenders direct endorsement authority; 2) the extent to which HUD uses a risk-based approach when monitoring FHA lenders; and 3) the extent to which HUD holds accountable lenders that it identifies as not complying with its performance requirements."]

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HUMAN SERVICES

ADOPTION

Foster Care Adoption in the United States: A State-by-State Analysis of Barriers and Promising Approaches. By Jennifer Ehrle Macomber and others, Urban Institute. (The Institute, Washington, DC) November 2004. 122 p.

Full Text at: www.urban.org/UploadedPDF/411108_FosterCareAdoption.pdf

["More than 129,000 children nationwide are waiting to be adopted, but court delays, high caseworker turnover, and incomplete records drag out their cases, keeping them in the foster-care system care for an average of three years. [The] study lists 20 barriers or obstacles that impede state child-welfare agencies from getting children adopted." Philly.com (November 18, 2004) 1.]

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CHILDREN

"Diverging Destinies: How Children Are Faring Under the Second Demographic Transition." By Sara McLanahan. IN: Demography, vol. 41 no. 4 (November 2004) pp. 607-628.

["This article argues that the trends associated with the second demographic transition are following low trajectories and leading to greater disparities in children's resources. Whereas children who were born to the most-educated women are gaining resources, in terms of parents' time and money, those who were born to the least-educated women are losing resources. The forces behind these changes include feminism, new birth control technologies, changes in labor market opportunities, and welfare-state policies.... Americans should be concerned about the growing disparity in parental resources and that the government can do more to close the gap between rich and poor children."]

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PARENTS

Dialing for Help: State Telephone Hotlines as Vital Resources for Parents of Young Children. By Treeby Brown and others, The Association of Maternal and Child Health Programs. (The Commonwealth Fund, New York, N.Y.) November 2004. 12 pages.

Full Text at: www.cmwf.org/usr_doc/787_Booth_dialing_for_help_issue_brief.pdf

["Toll-free telephone hotlines operated by the states are increasingly being used by families to obtain reliable advice on their young children's health and well-being. Originally created for prenatal-care assistance alone, these lines now cover a wide range of early-childhood issues. But while the majority of the lines deliver high-quality information, promptly and empathetically, to their callers, there is still considerable room for improvement." Moving Ideas (November 18, 2004) 1.]

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TRANSPORTATION

AIRPORTS

Aviation Security: Increased Federal Oversight Is Needed, But Continued Partnership with the Private Sector Is Critical to Long-Term Success. By the U.S. Government Accountability Office. GAO-05-144. (The Office, Washington, DC) November 2004. 60 p.

Full Text at: www.gao.gov/new.items/d05144.pdf

["The questions GAO answered regarding the status of general aviation security included: 1) What actions has the federal government taken to identify and assess threats to, and vulnerabilities of, general aviation and communicate that information to stakeholders? 2) What steps has the federal government taken to strengthen general aviation security? and what, if any, challenges does the government face? and 3) What steps have nonfederal stakeholders taken to enhance the security of general aviation?"]

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SURFACE TRANSPORTATION

Mean Streets, 2004: How Far Have We Come: Pedestrian Safety, 1994 Ė 2003. By Michelle Ernst, Surface Transportation Policy Project. (The Project, Washington, DC) November 2004.

["Mile per mile, walking is by far the deadliest way to travel in Southern California and the rest of the nation. By counting the percentage of pedestrians among traffic deaths, the Los Angeles region ranks as the fifth most dangerous in the country, trailing New York-New Jersey, Miami-Fort Lauderdale, San Diego and San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose. Compared to the population average, the pedestrian death rates for seniors, minorities and children are all disproportionately high.Ē Los Angeles Times (December 3, 2004) B3.]

Report. 36 p.:
http://www.transact.org/library/reports_html/ms2004/pdf/Final_Mean_Streets_2004_4.pdf

Executive Summary. Various pagings.:
http://www.transact.org/library/reports_html/ms2004/exec_sum.asp

State Facts Sheets. 39 p.:
http://www.transact.org/library/reports_html/ms2004/pdf/state_fact_sheets_al-mo.pdf

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STUDIES TO COME
[The following studies, reports, and documents have been ordered or requested, but have not yet arrived. Requests may be placed, and copies will be provided when the material arrives.]

EDUCATION

EDUCATION POLICY

Public Policy in Gifted Education. Edited by James J. Gallagher. (Corwin Press, Thousand Oaks, California) 2004. 179 p.

["Raising some of the most challenging questions in the field, this book focuses on the services gifted programs provide, the potential crisis gifted educators face, and what must be done to keep the gifted child movement alive and well. Key features include: 1) an account of the issues that continue to plague gifted education reform efforts, and recommendations for addressing these issues; 2) Eleven articles from researchers in the field of gifted education; 3) A study on how the elimination of gifted and talented programming impacts participating students and their parents." Publisher's Announcement (2004) 1. NOTE: Public Policy in Gifted Education ... will be available for 3-day loan.]

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EDUCATION REFORM

Breaking Ranks II: Strategies for Leading High School Reform. By the National Association of Secondary School Principals. (The Association, Reston, Virginia) 2004.

["Breaking Ranks II was developed to improve the learning experience of every student by providing high school principals and their leadership teams with illustrations of possible entry points or areas in which to begin reform, strategies for implementing successful reform, and profiles of successes, challenges, and results of implementation. Breaking Ranks II focuses its strategies in key areas: collaborative leadership, professional learning communities, the strategic use of data, personalizing the school environment, curriculum, instruction, and assessment." Publisher's Announcement (2004) 1. NOTE: Breaking Ranks II ... will be available for 3-day loan.]

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GENERAL GOVERNMENT

INITIATIVES & PROPOSITIONS

The Initiative and Referendum Almanac. By M. Dane Waters, Initiative and Referendum Institute. (Carolina Academic Press, Durham, North Carolina) 2003.

["Waters provides information on the roots of the initiative and referendum movement in the United States; the regualtions associated with using the initiative process in each state, the legislative attempts to regulate the process; and the role of the judiciary in relation to the initiative processs." Publisher's Announcement (2003) 1. NOTE: The Initiative and Referendum Almanac will be available for 3-day loan.]

[Request #S4684]

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LEGISLATURES

Majority of One: Legislative Life. By George W. Scott. (Civitas Press, Seattle, Washington) 2002.

["A Majority of One shows how the turmoil of Watergate and Vietnam, abortion, the environment and judicial activism 'transformed three part governance by legislatures, governors and courts into five part ones -- and made staff and lobbyists now as powerful as legislators.'" Publisher's Announcement (2002) 1. NOTE: Majority of One... will be available for 3-day loan.]

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