Subject: Studies in the News 06-28 (June 28, 2006)


CALIFORNIA RESEARCH BUREAU
CALIFORNIA STATE LIBRARY
Studies in the News


California -- One Hundred and Fifty Years Ago

June 1856 - "On June 22, John Durkee of the Committee of Vigilance led a raid on the schooner Julia, and hijacked the muskets aboard, destined for the militia. He took the arms to the Committee’s headquarters on Sacramento Street (in San Francisco). The Committee of Vigilance headquarters were fortified with sandbags to stop any attacks by state militia.... Cannons were mounted on the roof to forestall bombardment. "  http://www.sfmuseum.net/hist6/sherman2.html  

June 1856 - "Governor Johnson’s attempt to stop the Committee of Vigilance was cut short when he asked Gen. John E. Wool, commandant of the army at Benecia, for arms to help put down the San Francisco rebellion. The general refused.... There were no arms in the State except what General Wool had, or what were in the hands of the Vigilance Committee of San Francisco.... Major-General Volney E. Howard came to San Francisco soon after; continued the organization of the state militia; and succeeded in getting a few arms from the country."   http://www.sfmuseum.net/hist6/sherman2.html  

Contents This Week

Introductory Material CRIMINAL JUSTICE & LAW ENFORCEMENT
   Modes of entry for unauthorized immigrants
   Court upholds parolee search
   Effectiveness of supermax prisons
CULTURE AND SOCIETY
   Arts in the San Diego region
   Ageism in America
ECONOMY
   The case against cotton subsidies
   Poverty, jobs and the future of Los Angeles
   The Bay Area's innovation economy
EDUCATION
   Nation's science report card
   Deserving students are excluded
   Future of the University of California
   Value of public libraries
   Updating teacher credentialing
EMPLOYMENT
   Ruling on immigrant doctors overturned
   Minimum wage and inflation
   Fewer females employed
ENERGY
   Fuel price spikes
ENVIRONMENT & NATURAL RESOURCES
   Biofuels implication for agriculture
   School bus pollution
   Climate warming and water management in California
   Court rules on wetlands
GENERAL GOVERNMENT
   Homeland security grant allocations
   Emergency preparedness in San Francisco
   Audit of San Francisco emergency preparedness
   Impact of state income taxes on low-income families
   Mega lottery ruled legal
HEALTH
   Chemical exposure and reproductive health
   Risk of receiving poor quality health care
   Expanding health insurance coverage for children
   Sudden unexplained infant death initiative
HOUSING
   Unfair lending on home mortgages
HUMAN SERVICES
   Rebuilding child care programs
   Family shelters in Los Angeles County
TRANSPORTATION
   Drivers still use cell phones
   Safety of push-pull trains
STUDIES TO COME
   Review of high-tech industry
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 California’s Capitol. To help share the latest information with state policymakers, these reading lists are now being made accessible through the State Library’s 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

IMMIGRATION

Modes of Entry for the Unauthorized Migrant Population. By the Pew Hispanic Center. (The Center, Washington, DC) May 22, 2006. 5 p.

Full Text at: pewhispanic.org/files/factsheets/19.pdf

["New estimates show that nearly half of all the unauthorized migrants now living in the United States entered the country legally through a port of entry such as an airport or a border crossing point where they were subject to inspection by immigration officials. As much as 45% of the total unauthorized migrant population entered the country with visas that allowed them to visit or reside in the U.S. for a limited amount of time.... Another smaller share of the unauthorized migrant population entered the county legally from Mexico using a Border Crossing Card, a document that allows short visits limited to the border region, and then violated the terms of admission."]

[Request #S62801]

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PRISONERS & PAROLEES

Samson v. California. U.S. Supreme Court. 04-9728. June 20, 2006. Various pagings.

Full Text at: www.supremecourtus.gov/opinions/05pdf/04-9728.pdf

["Police in California can search paroled prisoners or their homes without evidence of wrongdoing. The 6-3 decision upheld a 1996 state law that allows searches of parolees without the individual suspicion that is required for other types of searches under the Constitution. The court majority said parolees have no more privacy rights than prisoners, and noted that they agree to be searched at any time upon their release from prison. No other state has such a law, but representatives of 21 states signed written arguments supporting California's position in the case, indicating their interest in considering a similar measure." San Francisco Chronicle (June 20, 2006) B2.]

[Request #S62802]

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PRISONS

Evaluating the Effectiveness of Supermax Prisons. By Daniel P. Mears, Florida State University. (The Urban Institute, Washington, DC) March 2006. 89 p.

Full Text at: www.urban.org/UploadedPDF/411326_supermax_prisons.pdf

["During the past 20 years, super-maximum-security prisons have become a common feature of the corrections landscape. Little is known, however, about the goals or unintended effects associated with these prisons. Even less is known about how they achieve particular goals.... Supermax prisons may in fact prove to be an effective corrections management tool, one that is cost-effective and that achieves outcomes that no other approach can. The results of this study suggest otherwise, however." Urban Institute Update (May 18, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S62803]

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CULTURE AND SOCIETY

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

Understanding the San Diego Region: We Must Understand, Then We Can Act. By the Arts and Culture Working Group of the San Diego Foundation. (The Foundation, San Diego, California) April 2006. 36 p.

Full Text at: participatesandiego.org/ArtsandCultureReport_FINAL.pdf

["Long-term community solutions for arts and culture require a firm foundation of understanding, together with a plan of action that leads to focused results.... A range of issues emerge from this picture. Advocacy and public awareness, arts education, audience development, increased funding and leadership are all identified as issues central to increasing cultural patronage."]

[Request #S62804]

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CIVIL RIGHTS

Ageism in America. By the International Longevity Center. (The Center, New York, New York) 2006.

["Ageism, the denial of basic human rights of older persons, is one of the most pervasive prejudices across human society. Although ageism is less acknowledged than racism or sexism, it is a harmful prejudice that negatively affects older Americans, who experience widespread mistreatment, ranging from stereotypic and degrading media images to physical and financial abuse, unequal treatment in the workforce, and denial of appropriate medical care and services."]

Executive Summary. 4 p.
http://www.ilcusa.org/_lib/pdf/Ageism%20In%20America-%20Executive%20Summary.pdf

Full Report. 122 p.
http://www.ilcusa.org/_lib/pdf/Ageism%20in%20America%20-%20The%20ILC%20Report.pdf

[Request #S62805]

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ECONOMY

AGRIBUSINESS

"Why King Cotton Should Lose its Crown." By G. Paschal Zachary. IN: Milken Institute Review, vol. 8, no. 2. (2006) pp. 56-63.

Full Text at: www.milkeninstitute.org/publications/review/2006_6/56_63mr30.pdf

["Subsidies for cotton (which run as high as $4 billion annually) have more impact on global supplies and prices than payments directed at any other crop. Without subsidies, global cotton prices would be as much as 15 percent higher.... Cotton is grown by some of the poorest people on the planet: farmers in sub-Saharan Africa. Farmers in California's Central Valley would hardly be affected because they generally grow premium long-fiber Pima cotton, which is not currently eligible for subsidies."]

[Request #S62806]

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LOS ANGELES

City at a Crossroads: Poverty, Jobs and the Future of Los Angeles. By Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy. (The Alliance, Los Angeles, California) 2006. 4 p.

Full Text at: laane.org/docs/City_at_a_Crossroads.pdf

["This brief looks at the socioeconomic insecurity that Los Angeles faces, focusing on low paying jobs, a declining middle class and entrenched poverty. The brief examines: median wages of the largest growing occupations, the costs of housing and health care in LA, hunger, homelessness, the decline in welfare participation, and general strategies for cities in combating poverty."]

[Request #S62807]

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NORTHERN CALIFORNIA

The Innovation Economy: Protecting the Talent Advantage: Bay Area Economic Profile. By McKinsey & Company. (The Bay Area Council, San Francisco, California) February 2006. 64 p.

Full Text at: www.bayareacouncil.org/atf/cf/{2F567EB5-67C0-4CDA-9DD3-EC4A129D3322}/Economic%20Profile%202006.pdf

["The Bay Area economy has rebounded from the dot-com collapse, but the region's infrastructure problems and rising costs threaten its ability to attract talented workers. The incredibly high cost of living, especially driven by the high cost of housing, is making it harder and harder for people to continue to live and work here, which means it's harder to attract companies than it was." San Francisco Chronicle (March 24, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S62808]

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EDUCATION

ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE

The Nation's Report Card: Science 2005. By the National Center for Education Statistics, U.S. Department of Education. (The Center, Washington, DC) May 2006. 44 p.

Full Text at: nces.ed.gov/NAEP/pdf/main2005/2006466.pdf

["California's fourth- and eighth-graders are getting smarter in science, showing the largest achievement gains in the nation, but still scoring well below their peers in other states.... Educators were particularly encouraged by the progress made nationally by minority students, with the gap between white and black fourth-graders narrowing four points since 2000 and between white and Latino students by eight points." Los Angeles Times (May 25, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S62809]

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DISCRIMINATION

Admissions and Omissions: How "The Numbers" Are Used to Exclude Deserving Students: 2005-2006. By Eddie Comeaux and Tara Watford, Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies, University of California, Los Angeles. (The Center, Los Angeles, California) June 2006. 8 p.

Full Text at: www.bunche.ucla.edu/publications/Bunche%20Research%20Report-June%202006.pdf

["For several years, students, professors and administrators at UCLA have watched with discouragement as the numbers of black students declined. But the new figures have prompted school leaders to declare the situation a crisis....The demand for reforms follows the disclosure that blacks account for only 96, or 2%, of the more than 4,700 freshmen expected to enroll at UCLA this fall. That is the lowest level in more than three decades, and gives UCLA a lower percentage of African American freshmen than USC or UC Berkeley." Los Angeles Times (June 3, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S62810]

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EDUCATION FINANCE

Current Budget Trends and the Future of the University of California. By Christopher Newfield and others, University Committee on Planning and Budget. (The Committee, Oakland, California) May 2006. 58 p.

Full Text at: www.universityofcalifornia.edu/senate/committees/ucpb/futures.report0506.pdf

["Short-term decisions about the University budget are having long-term impacts, and yet we know of no detailed analysis of their long term implications for the University. The report evaluates the long-term implications of the Higher Education Compact that now defines the basic budgetary relationship between the University and the Governor, as well as those of three other scenarios, varying from one based on a move toward further major reductions in state funding and increased privatization to one in which state support for the University is returned to the higher level of state support that existed in 1990."]

[Request #S62811]

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LIBRARIES

Long Overdue: A Fresh Look at Public and Leadership Attitudes About Libraries in the 21st Century. By Public Agenda. (Public Agenda, New York, New York) June 2006. 84 p.

Full Text at: www.publicagenda.org/research/pdfs/long_overdue.pdf

["Americans prize public library service and see libraries as potential solutions to many communities’ most pressing problems, from universal access to computers to the need for better options for keeping teens safe and productive. But few Americans are aware of the increasingly tenuous financial picture faced by many libraries.... Four areas of opportunity for libraries resonated with the public and leaders alike: 1) providing stronger services for teens, 2) helping address illiteracy and poor reading skills among adults, 3) providing ready access to information about government services, including making public documents and forms readily available and 4) providing even greater access to computers for all."]

[Request #S62812]

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TEACHING CREDENTIALS

Modernizing the Functions of the Commission on Teacher Credentialing. By Jennifer Kuhn, Legislative Analyst Office. (The Office, Sacramento, California) April 27, 2006. 28 p.

Full Text at: www.lao.ca.gov/2006/ctc/ctc_042706.pdf

["State law establishes the Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CTC) and entrusts it with accrediting teacher preparation programs, credentialing teachers, and monitoring teacher conduct. In this report, we describe each of these three teacher-quality functions, identify related shortcomings, and propose various recommendations for overcoming them. The recommendations seek to simplify existing teacher-quality processes, reduce redundancies, strengthen accountability, and foster greater coherence among education reforms. Taken as a package, these recommendations would improve how the state ensures teacher quality and eliminate the CTC."]

[Request #S62813]

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EMPLOYMENT

IMMIGRATION

Stefan Schneider, et al. v. Michael Chertoff, Secretary of Homeland Security, et al. U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit. 04-55689. June 7, 2006.

["A court has overturned government rules that made it harder for immigrant doctors to qualify for permanent legal residence by working in inner cities and other areas where medical providers are in short supply.... They said that regulations adopted by immigration officials in 2000 conflicted with a law Congress had passed a year earlier to encourage noncitizen doctors to practice in areas that were designated as medically underserved." San Francisco Chronicle (June 9, 2006) 1.]

Decision. 29 p.
http://www.ca9.uscourts.gov/ca9/newopinions.nsf/8D6FA79CBF6F8F9B88257186004BF3D0/$file/0455689.pdf?openelement

Oral Argument. (case number 04-55689)
http://www.ca9.uscourts.gov/ca9/media.nsf/Media%20Search?OpenForm&Seq=2

[Request #S62814]

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MINIMUM WAGE

Indexing the Minimum Wage to Inflation. By Alissa Anderson Garcia, California Budget Project. Policy Points. (The Project, Sacramento, California) May 2006. 2 p.

Full Text at: www.cbp.org/2006/0605_pp_indexminwage.pdf

["Inflation has eroded the purchasing power of California’s minimum wage since it was last increased in 2002. Some minimum wage proponents advocate 'indexing' the minimum wage to inflation -– automatically adjusting the minimum wage to keep pace with the cost of living. This brief provides an overview of what indexing would mean for California’s minimum wage and how it would work."]

[Request #S62815]

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WOMEN

Changes in Behavioral and Characteristic Determination of Female Labor Force Participation, 1975-2005. By Julie L. Hotchkiss, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. Economic Review. (The Bank, Atlanta, Georgia) Second Quarter 2006. 20 p.

Full Text at: www.frbatlanta.org/filelegacydocs/erq206_hotchkiss.pdf

["This article dissects the changes in the labor force participation rate over the past thirty years among women aged twenty-five to fifty-four. Using Current Population Survey data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the author focuses especially on the unprecedented 2.7 percentage point decline in women’s participation rate between 2000 and 2005. While changes in the observed behavior of educated women and in characteristics such as the number of young children have contributed to the decline, the results suggest that the largest contributors have been unobserved changes.”]

[Request #S62816]

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ENERGY

GASOLINE AND DIESEL

Spring 2006 Petroleum Fuels Price Spike: Interim Report to the Governor. By the California Energy Commission (The Commission, Sacramento, California) June 2006. 18 p.

Full Text at: www.energy.ca.gov/2006publications/CEC-600-2006-009/CEC-600-2006-009.PDF

["California drivers paid $132 million more for gasoline this spring than those in other parts of the nation, raising new questions about market manipulation.... California fuel prices have historically been higher than other parts of the nation but price increases generally reflect hikes elsewhere. The magnitude of the jump this spring, however, was not repeated anywhere else. But state officials said they have not attempted to research the cause of the price increases and have left that question for a report due in August. They did acknowledge that market manipulation could be a factor as well as other issues such as refinery bottlenecks and market influences." San Francisco Chronicle (June 16, 2006) D1.]

[Request #S62817]

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ENVIRONMENT & NATURAL RESOURCES

AGRICULTURE

Biofuels for Transportation: Global Potential and Implications for Sustainable Agriculture and Energy in the 21st Century. By the Worldwatch Institute. (The Institute, Washington, DC) June 2006. 38 p.

["Biofuels have the potential to replace growing amounts of oil, but can cause agricultural and ecological damage if not developed carefully, a report said.... The most problematic and serious risk is of spreading into wild areas and impacting biodiversity.... In addition, growth of biofuels could drive up food prices by diverting crop yields to produce fuel. Traditional ethanol crops, such as corn in the United States and sugar in Brazil, could also increase erosion and deplete aquifers." Reuters (June 8, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S62818]

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AIR POLLUTION

School Bus Pollution Report Card 2006: Grading the States. By Patricia Monahan, Union of Concerned Scientists. (The Union, Cambridge, Massachusetts) May 2006. 80 p.

Full Text at: www.ucsusa.org/clean_vehicles/big_rig_cleanup/clean-school-bus-pollution.html

["Aging school buses continue to spew harmful diesel across the United States, a new report based on federal and state data says, and major funding is needed to address the problem.... California leads the nation in regulatory efforts and funds to replace aging buses but still has made limited progress. State cleanup programs reduced school bus soot by less than 9% from 1999 to 2005. Less than 10% of California's fleet is retrofitted with sophisticated soot-traps, and less than 5% is powered by cleaner natural gas." Los Angeles Times (May 25, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S62819]

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CLIMATE CHANGE

"Climate Warming and Water Management Adaptation for California." By Stacy K. Tanaka and others, University of California, Davis. IN: Climatic Change. Online First. (June 10, 2006) 27 p.

Full Text at: cee.engr.ucdavis.edu/faculty/lund/papers/ClimateChangeCALVIN2005.pdf

["The authors of the most sophisticated analysis of California's water management system say the system should be able to adapt to a warmer climate and a larger population, albeit at a significant cost.... The report suggests that water system managers could adapt to these major changes by changing reservoir and groundwater operations, water allocations (including water markets), water-use efficiency and wastewater reuse. If those strategies were employed, the state would not need major new surface-water reservoirs for water supply." UC Davis News and Information (June 14, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S62820]

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WETLANDS

Rapanos v. United States. U.S. Supreme Court. 04-1034. June 19, 2006. Various pagings.

Full Text at: www.supremecourtus.gov/opinions/05pdf/04-1034.pdf

["The court set some general limits on the federal government's power to prevent landowners from polluting thousands of marshes, drainage ditches and other wetlands. But the court's ruling also left the regulatory picture as murky as it was before.... In the middle was Justice Anthony Kennedy, whose opinion -- joined by no other justice -- now becomes the law of the land, the standard for regulating 100 million acres of wetlands. Kennedy said only wetlands that have a 'significant nexus' to navigable waters, such as rivers and lakes, fall within federal authority." San Francisco Chronicle (June 20, 2006) A1.]

[Request #S62833]

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GENERAL GOVERNMENT

EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS

Homeland Security Changes FY 2006 Grant Allocations. By Federal Funds Information for States. (FFIS, Washington, DC) June 5, 2006. 8 p.

["The Department of Homeland Security released fiscal year (FY) 2006 grant allocations for the State Homeland Security Grant Program, the Law Enforcement Terrorism Prevention Program, Citizen Corps and the Urban Areas Security Initiative. Funding for most state grant programs was reduced; however, the Citizen Corps program was increased by $5 million from FY 2005 funding levels."]

[Request #S62821]

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Disaster Planning: The Realities of Emergency/ Disaster Medical Preparedness in San Francisco. By the Civil Grand Jury, City and County of San Francisco. (The Jury, San Francisco, California) May 2006. Various pagings.

Full Text at: www.sfgov.org/site/uploadedfiles/courts/HealthCommitteeReport.pdf

["As soon as 30 minutes after a large earthquake, terrorist strike or other disaster, San Francisco's emergency medical operations would 'fail catastrophically' and be unable to treat hundreds of severely injured patients. Hospitals would be forced to turn away the wounded and helicopters carrying casualties would be prevented from landing at any of the city's hospitals because none has a functioning landing pad. Those conclusions are contained in a report which has been investigating disaster preparedness at the Department of Public Health and the Office of Emergency Services." San Francisco Chronicle (May 26, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S62822]

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Management Audit of the Office of Emergency Services. By Harvey Rose, San Francisco Budget Analyst. Prepared for the Board of Supervisors of the City and County of San Francisco. AND The Written response From the Executive Director of the Office of Emergency Services. By Annemarie Conroy, Office of Emergency Services. (The Analyst, San Francisco, California) May 2006.

["The audit calls into question the department's readiness for a disaster, its spending habits and (Annemarie) Conroy's experience in emergency preparedness, and it says the Office of Emergency Services is top-heavy with management.... San Francisco is prepared to handle an earthquake, terrorist attack or other disaster, and an audit criticizing the agency charged with planning for such catastrophes makes assertions that are 'absolutely incorrect,' the department's director said." San Francisco Chronicle (May 16, 2006) A1.]

Analyst Report. Various pagings.
http://www.sfgov.org/site/uploadedfiles/budanalyst/Reports/OES/OES_Mgt_Audit.pdf

OES Response. Various pagings.
http://www.sfgov.org/site/uploadedfiles/budanalyst/Reports/OES/OES_Response.pdf

[Request #S62823]

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INCOME TAXES

"The Impact of State Income Taxes on Low-Income Families: 2005." By Jason A. Levits and Nicholas Johnson. IN: State Tax Notes, vol. 39 no. 11. (March 20, 2006) pp. 867-886.

["This analysis assess the impact of each state's income tax in 2005 on the poor and near-poor families with children. Some states have achieved progress in improving their income tax treatment of the poor, but others have not.... Despite some progress, there remains much to do before state income taxes adequately protect and assist families working to escape poverty."]

[Request #S62824]

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STATE LOTTERY

California Coalition Against Gambling Expansion, et al. v. California State Lottery Commission, et al. Sacramento County Superior Court. 05-CS-00984. June 6, 2006. 12 p.

["A judge ruled that California can continue participating in multistate Mega Millions lotto, if the game is tweaked by legislation. Gambling expansion foes had challenged the constitutionality of the game, launched without voter approval. They contended that voters originally approved a lottery only within the borders of the state." Oakland Tribune (June 8, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S62825]

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HEALTH

ENVIRONMENTAL TOXINS

Our Reproductive Health and Chemical Exposure: A Review of the Evidence for Links Between Declines in Human Reproductive Health and our Exposure to Hazardous Chemicals. By Michelle Allsopp and others, Greenpeace Research Laboratories. (Greenpeace, Brussels, Belgium) April 2006. 28 p.

Full Text at: www.greenpeace.org/raw/content/international/press/reports/fragile-our-reproductive-heal.pdf

["Concerns have been raised regarding declining ratios of boys to girls: From 1970 to 1990, it has been estimated that some 38,000 too few boys were born across the U.S.A. And there's no telling what other long-term effects these chemicals might be causing. They are suspects in a host of problems later in life, including declining sperm counts, increased rates of testicular cancer, early puberty in girls and endometriosis." San Francisco Chronicle (May 17, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S62826]

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HEALTH CARE

"Who is at Greatest Risk for Receiving Poor-Quality Health Care?" By Steven M. Asch and others. IN: New England Journal of Medicine, vol. 354, no. 11 (March 16, 2006) pp. 1147-1156.

["The largest study of U.S. healthcare quality suggests that all Americans -- rich, poor, black, white -- get roughly equal medical treatment from doctors and nurses and it is mediocre for all: Patients receive proper care only 55 percent of the time. A survey looked at urban residents who sought treatment but it challenged some stereotypes: Blacks and Latinos in the study got slightly better medical treatment than whites." San Jose Mercury News (March 16, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S62827]

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HEALTH INSURANCE

Estimated Cost and Coverage Impacts of Four Proposals to Expand Health Insurance Coverage for Children in California. By the Lewin Group. Prepared for the California Endowment. (The Endowment, Los Angeles, California) April 20, 2006. 77 p.

Full Text at: www.calendow.org/reference/publications/pdf/access/LEWIN_apr2006.pdf

["This study presents estimates of the cost and coverage impacts of four proposals to expand health insurance coverage in California, with particular emphasis on the effect these approaches would have on children. The four proposals studied are in varying stages of development and are likely to be revised throughout the policy debate."]

[Request #S62828]

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INFANTS

Sudden Unexplained Infant Death Initiative. By Jody Ruskamp-Hatz and Debra Prosniz, National Conference of State Legislatures. NCSL Legisbrief. Vol. 14 No. 13. (NCSL, Denver, Colorado) March 2006. 2 p.

["Although the number of children who die from SIDS has declined substantially since 1990, rates of SUIDs have increased. This variation in the rates of infant death indicates a difference in how death scene investigators and certifiers of caused-of-death and death certificates are investigating and reporting these deaths.... Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ... created a national standard for the collection of data at infant death scene investigations to improve the accuracy and consistency of SUIDs classifications."]

[Request #S62829]

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HOUSING

HOMEBUYING

Unfair Lending: The Effect of Race and Ethnicity on the Price of Subprime Mortgages. By Debbie Gruenstein Bacian and others, Center for Responsible Lending. (The Center, Oakland, California) May 31, 2006. 52 p.

Full Text at: www.responsiblelending.org/pdfs/rr011-Unfair_Lending-0506.pdf

["Black and Hispanic home buyers entering the fast-growing market for subprime mortgages tend to pay higher interest rates than whites with similar credit ratings, a statistical study by an advocacy group says. The subprime industry makes loans at higher interest rates to people who cannot qualify for regular mortgages.... The study, using federal and industry figures from 2004 to analyze a sample of 50,000 loans, found that among subprime borrowers with similar credit ratings, blacks and Hispanics were 30 percent more likely than whites to be charged the highest interest."]

[Request #S62830]

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HUMAN SERVICES

CHILD CARE

Department of Social Services: In Rebuilding Its Child Care Program Oversight, the Department Needs to Improve Its Monitoring Efforts and Enforcement Action. By the California State Auditor, Bureau of State Audits. (The Bureau, Sacramento, California) May 2006. 78 p.

Full Text at: www.bsa.ca.gov/pdfs/reports/2005-129.pdf

["The Department of Social Services, through the child care program in its community care licensing division, is responsible for monitoring licensed child care facilities -- child care centers and family child care homes -- and investigating complaints against those facilities. However, the department has struggled to make required visits to the facilities and carry out its other monitoring responsibilities.... Nevertheless, a question for the State’s decision makers to consider is whether the level of monitoring required by statute, toward which the department is working with its rebuilding effort, is sufficient."]

[Request #S62831]

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HOMELESS

Operating at Capacity: Family Shelters in Los Angeles County. By Nicky Viola, Shelter Partnerships, Inc. (The Partnerships, Los Angeles, California) May 2006. 74 p.

Full Text at: www.shelterpartnership.org/documents/FinalFamilyReport.pdf

["This report examines family emergency shelter and transitional housing programs in Los Angeles County. Examined are: characteristics of homeless families (size and living situations), an overview of family shelters (programs, over capacity, shelter demand, geographic distribution), program characteristics (admission requirements, length of stays) ,client characteristics (causes of homelessness, prior living situation, exit situation), special needs populations (children, health status of household head), and trends in homeless families. Also included are program recommendations on preventing homelessness, admission policies, and supportive services."]

[Request #S62832]

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TRANSPORTATION

AUTOMOBILE SAFETY

Despite Understanding Risks Many U.S. Adults Still Use Cell Phones While Driving. By Harris Interactive. (Harris Interactive, Rochester, New York) June 6, 2006. Various pagings.

Full Text at: www.harrisinteractive.com/harris_poll/printerfriend/index.asp?PID=673

["The poll indicates that a large majority of drivers with cell phones still talk on the cell phone and drive at the same time, despite knowing that driving and talking on a cell phone at the same time may be dangerous, and that it is safer to use a hands-free device to hold the cell phone. This is especially true of younger adults. Even in states that have laws requiring the use of a hands-free device, many adults are not using such a device." TRB Newsletter (June 7, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S62834]

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RAILROADS

The Safety of Push-Pull and Multiple-Unit Locomotive Passenger Rail Operations: Report to the House and Senate Appropriations Committees. By the Office of Safety, Federal Railroad Administration. (The Administration, Washington, DC) June 2006. 75 p.

Full Text at: www.fra.dot.gov/downloads/safety/062606FRAPushPullLetterandReport.pdf

["The report explores whether there is any difference in the likelihood of derailment or severity of accident consequences resulting from a highway-rail grade crossing collision between a conventional locomotive-led train and a cab car or multiple-unit (MU) locomotive-led train.... Includes the implication of prohibiting or restricting push-pull and MU service." TRB Newsletter (June 27, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S62835]

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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.]

ECONOMY

HIGH TECHNOLOGY INDUSTRY

Cyberstates 2006: A Complete State-by-State Overview of the High-Technology Industry. By the American Electronics Association. (The Association, Washington, DC) April 2006. 165 p.

["In California, widely considered the epicenter of the U.S. tech industry, job loss slowed. In 2004, high tech lost only 10,600 jobs, compared to a loss of 67,800 jobs in 2003. The report also confirmed that California continued to lead the nation by most high-tech industry metrics. California tech companies reported the largest payrolls of technology employers nationwide, and California tech workers had the highest average wage in the United States." AEA Press Release (April 19, 2006) 1.] Note: Cyberstates ... will be available for loan.

[Request #S61928]

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