Stories you shouldn’t miss:
1. The Oakland school board is moving toward closing the scandal-ridden American Indian Charter Schools, the Trib reports. Superintendent Tony Smith said this week that the troubled schools had failed to fix their oversight problems, which led to a massive misuse of public funds. The school board may vote to close the schools in February or March.
2. The Berkeley school board is preparing to spend $500,000 on security upgrades at the district’s schools in the wake of the Newtown, Connecticut school massacre, the Trib reports.assault weapons ban bill; it also would ban the sale of gun magazines that can hold more than ten bullets, the Chron reports. A previous assault weapons ban introduced by Feinstein was in effect from 1994 to 2004.
4. During his state of the state speech, Governor Jerry Brown called for the construction of two massive underground tunnels through the Delta area that would guarantee water supplies to the southern Central Valley and Southern California, the LA Times reports. The tunnel plan is opposed by many environmental groups who worry that it will divert too much fresh water from the fragile Delta. Brown also pushed for the construction of high-speed rail.
5. No criminal charges will be filed against state parks employees who hid $20 million in funds for more than a decade, the LA Times reports. Although the financial scandal rocked the state parks department, the Sacramento DA’s Office decided that no criminality was involved.
6. The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission voted to make it much tougher to drain Hetch Hetchy reservoir in Yosemite National Park, the Merc reports.
7. And Senate Democrats buckled to Republicans and agreed to only minor changes to the Senate filibuster rules, which the GOP has used to block much of President Obama’s agenda, the LA Times reports.