Stories you shouldn’t miss:
1. Oakland A’s co-owner Lew Wolff is confident that Major League Baseball will approve his plans this winter to move the baseball team to San Jose, the Mercury News reports, citing a source close to Wolff. Wolff wants to build a new ballpark for the A’s near downtown San Jose. However, it’s unclear whether Major League Baseball will overturn the San Francisco Giants’ territorial rights to the South Bay or whether Wolff has worked out a deal to buy those rights from the Giants.
2. Leading economists predict that the US economy will grow at a faster rate in 2012 than it did this year, the Associated Press reports. However, economists surveyed by the AP warned that the US economy could falter in 2012 if Europe plunges into a steep recession.
3. California business interests held sway in Sacramento in 2011 as they successfully blocked bills they opposed and won approval of those they supported, California Watch and the Sacramento Bee report in an analysis of lobbying in the state Capitol. Labor unions also did well in Sacramento — but not as well as large business interests. The California Chamber of Commerce was the most successful, winning on 62 of the 87 bills on which it lobbied.
4. The California death penalty is no longer effective and the state should have a serious discussion about whether it’s worth continuing, state Supreme Court Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye told the LA Times. Cantil-Sakauye, a conservative, noted that the death penalty is extremely expensive and that it requires a structural change that the cash-strapped state cannot afford.
5. Pacific herring, once plentiful in San Francisco Bay, are still suffering the effects of the Cosco Buscan fuel spill in 2007, AP reports, citing a new federal study. The herring population was decimated by the fuel spill and has not yet recovered.
6. And Occupy Berkeley, the last large protest encampment in the Bay Area, was cleared by police last week after a surge in crime and violence, the Chron reports.