Climate law adds jobs to state payroll
Published Monday, Jul. 26, 2010
The state's landmark global warming law has yet to create the promised bonanza of green jobs, but it has boosted payrolls in another sector of the economy: state government.
At a time of budget cuts and state worker furloughs, the state agency primarily responsible for regulating global warming has bulked up its staff as it prepares to enforce AB 32, the climate change law signed in 2006 by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Since 2007, the California Air Resources Board has added more than 150 employees, an increase of 12.5 percent. The additions include dozens of scientists, engineers, technicians and other air pollution experts.
Other state agencies, such as the California Energy Commission and the Department of Resources Recycling Recovery, have added 29 positions as part of the climate change initiative.
Founded in 1967, the 11-member California Air Resources Board enforces the state's air pollution laws. It is the lead agency in implementing AB 32, which aims to reduce California's carbon emissions 15 percent by 2020.
AB 32 gives the agency the power to "regulate all sorts of facets that will affect the economy," said Tyson Slocum, director of the energy program at Public Citizen, a Washington, D.C., consumer advocacy group. "That's a powerful agency," he said. Click here to continue reading.
Botched Paramilitary Police Raids: An Epidemic of "Isolated Incidents"
"If a widespread pattern of [knock-and-announce] violations were shown . . . there would be reason for grave concern." —Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, in Hudson v. Michigan, June 15, 2006. An interactive map of botched SWAT and paramilitary police raids, released in conjunction with the Cato policy paper "Overkill: The Rise of Paramilitary Police Raids," by Radley Balko. What does this map mean? How to use this map View Original Map and Database
The proliferation of SWAT teams, police militarization, and the Drug War have given rise to a dramatic increase in the number of "no-knock" or "quick-knock" raids on suspected drug offenders. Because these raids are often conducted based on tips from notoriously unreliable confidential informants, police sometimes conduct SWAT-style raids on the wrong home, or on the homes of nonviolent, misdemeanor drug users. Such highly-volatile, overly confrontational tactics are bad enough when no one is hurt -- it's difficult to imagine the terror an innocent suspect or family faces when a SWAT team mistakenly breaks down their door in the middle of the night.
But even more disturbing are the number of times such "wrong door" raids unnecessarily lead to the injury or death of suspects, bystanders, and police officers. Defenders of SWAT teams and paramilitary tactics say such incidents are isolated and rare. The map above aims to refute that notion.
|Death of an innocent.||Death or injury of a police officer.||Death of a nonviolent offender.|
|Raid on an innocent suspect.||Other examples of paramilitary police excess.||Unnecessary raids on doctors and sick people.|
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