Thursday’s Briefing: Oakland City Workers Stage One-Day Strike; GOP Tax Plan Would Slam California Homebuyers

Plus, Californians say the lack of student housing is the biggest barrier to college.


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Stories you shouldn’t miss for Nov. 2, 2017:

1. Oakland city workers who are members of SEIU Local 1021 are staging a one-day strike today, protesting what they say are unfair labor practices, reports Bay City News (via SFGate.com). SEIU 1021 has also been locked in contract negotiations with the city and is demanding higher pay. The union also has been running TV ads against Mayor Libby Schaaf and plans to protest her state of the city speech this evening.

2. The GOP tax plan in Congress would deliver a blow to California homebuyers in order to fund a large tax break to corporations, the LA Times$ reports. The plan, backed by President Trump, would severely reduce the mortgage interest deduction for homeowners, while slashing the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 20 percent. The plan is expected to add $1.5 trillion to the federal deficit over the next decade.

3. A huge majority of Californians — 85 percent — say the high cost of student housing and the extreme lack of it are the biggest barriers to attending college in the state and graduating, reports Nanette Asimov of the San Francisco Chronicle, citing a new survey from Public Policy Institute of California. “The stress placed on students to find adequate, affordable places to live near campus is so great that many simply give up and never graduate, 75 percent of respondents agreed.”

4. The state legislature has paid at least $580,000 to settle sexual harassment and racism claims in the last five years, reports Kathleen Ronayne of the Associated Press (via KQED). “In one case, a payout included a stipulation forbidding the claimant from making ‘derogatory statements” about lawmakers or Senate business.”

5. The California Teachers’ union pension fund, CalSTRS, may finally divest from gun manufacturers in the wake of the mass killing in Las Vegas last month, reports John Myers of the LA Times$. The pension fund has come under criticism for years for continuing to invest in weapons makers.

6. The Richmond-to-San Francisco ferry service broke ground and is scheduled to launch in September 2018, reports Michael Cabanatuan of the San Francisco Chronicle. The $20 million ferry terminal is being built at the south end of Harbour Way near the Craneway Pavilion and the Rosie the Riveter WWII Home Front National Historical Park visitor center.

7. The Berkeley school board will soon consider whether to rename LeConte Elementary School, reports Anjali Shrivastava of the Daily Cal. The school is named after Joseph LeConte, who, along with his brother John LeConte, owned slaves and helped manufacture weapons for the Confederacy.

8. And President Trump signed legislation that will make it much tougher for consumers to sue financial institutions for wrongdoing, CNN reports. Trump’s decision overturns a rule established by the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau earlier this year.

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