“Newsom and other Capitol politicians are acutely aware that PG&E, et al, are not popular these days and that if they appear to let them and their executives off the hook for wildfire damages, there could be a political backlash.
“Under current law, dubbed “inverse condemnation,” utilities are strictly liable for losses from wildfires their equipment causes. Utilities say that’s an unfair burden because they cannot control nature and are powerless, as it were, to prevent fires when hot weather and high winds cause even well-maintained electric cables to fall.
“The Newsom plan would presume the utilities to be innocent if they have met the higher safety standards to be imposed and otherwise acted prudently, thus allowing damage claims to be shifted from stockholders to ratepayers.”
In other words, ordinary people are going to suffer!
“Party favors: Friends of Gov. Gavin Newsom raised a party-hearty $2.5 million for his inauguration festivities.
“The biggest donor to the inaugural and the two days of parties was organized labor, which ponied up $775,000 to help stage the events, with $150,000 coming from the state’s prison guards union and $100,000 from the California Teachers Association Political Action Committee. “The state’s Indian casinos chipped in $525,0000, including $200,000 from the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria, owners of the Graton Resort and Casino in Rohnert Park. “Friends of Gov. Gavin Newsom raised $2.5 million for his inauguration festivities. “The biggest individual donor was former San Diego Padres owner Jennifer Moores, who gave $200,000. Netflix founder and charter school advocate Reed Hastings gave $50,000.
“Other big-dollar contributors included AT&T ($100,000), the State Democratic Party ($100,000) and the California Association of Hospitals ($100,000). In other words, pretty much your usual collection of organizations, businesses and trade associations that do business with the state. “Donors to the California Rises charity concert held the night before the inauguration included the Silicon Valley Community Foundation at $250,000 and $50,000 from the San Francisco Giants.
“The concert, which featured Pitbull and Common, along with the X Ambassadors and Betty Who, raised $5 million for the California Fire Foundation.” — Phil Matier
“The reality is the [candidate for] governor, like so many politicians in the Democratic party, has been bought and paid for by the landlords and the realtor lobby and the developer lobby,” says Damien Goodmon,
Walters does a superb job of showing the connection between the Newsoms, Pelosis, Browns:
Newsom is succeeding someone who could be considered his quasi-uncle, since his inauguration continues the decades-long saga of four San Francisco families intertwined by blood, by marriage, by money, by culture and, of course, by politics – the Browns, the Newsoms, the Pelosis and the Gettys.
The Los Angeles Times makes an eloquent point here:
Newsom’s family business is run by a close relative — his sister, who seems unlikely to maintain radio silence with her brother for his four-year gubernatorial term. And if Newsom continues to accrue profits from the business’ assets, there’s the potential that lobbying firms or interest groups wishing to curry favor with or grab the ear of the governor might arrange to spend a ski vacation at the PlumpJack Squaw Valley Inn or a rejuvenating long weekend at the Ingleside Inn in Palm Springs, book a party at one of the company’s event spaces or order cases of wine from one of the wineries.
San Francisco journalist and researcher Carol Harvey expertly details Newsom’s involvement with toxic pollution at Hunters Point and on Treasure Island, as well as his pandering to the anti-homeless crowd:
And so it happened that on Aug. 18, 2010, a brilliantly sunny day, Gavin Newsom convened a “Mayor’s Press Conference” on Treasure Island attended by U.S. Navy Secretary Ray Mabus and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Willie Brown observed from the audience.
Newsom’s TIDA Redevelopment Director Jack Sylvan asked board members to stand. Among them was past TIDA board member Jared Blumenfeld, who, after directing San Francisco’s Department of the Environment, was elevated to regional administrator for Environmental Protection Agency District 9 in San Francisco, a federal post he held from January 2010 to May 6, 2016.
This EPA official was well aware of the Navy’s decontamination of Treasure Island, yet nowhere in Michael Krasny’s KQED 2016 exit interview of Blumenfeld did the former EPA director mention Treasure Island or Hunters Point. Blumenfeld spoke of environmental injustice against Native Americans but not the people of color being poisoned at both former bases.
After all three politicians delivered unctuous self-congratulatory speeches, they signed the terms for the conveyance of former Naval Station Treasure Island from the Navy to the City.