SACRAMENTO - People who want straws with their drinks at California restaurants will have to ask for them under a new state law. The law signed Thursday by Gov. Jerry Brown makes California the first state to bar full-service restaurants from automatically giving out single-use plastic straws. It takes effect next year. Also in the news: California scraps helmet mandate for motorized scooters Brown signs 16 California clean-energy bills into law California doctors to reveal probation status under new law Brown cited the damage that discarded plastic has done to marine life and its threat to human health. “Plastic has helped advance innovation in our society, but our infatuation with single user convenience has led to disastrous consequences,” Brown wrote in a signing message. The governor said plastic in the oceans is estimated to kill millions of marine animals each year, and he noted that when a dead pilot whale washed up on a beach in Thailand recently, … [Read more...] about Gov. Jerry Brown signs bill into law restricting plastic straws. What’s a diner to do?
After he concludes his historic run next month as California’s longest-serving governor, Jerry Brown will retire to a rural patch of the north state, a rugged region of ranchers and Republicans whose vision for California couldn’t be more different from his own. Brown has lost Colusa County every time he’s been on the ballot. The region covered in almond and walnut orchards, rice fields and cattle ranches is so fed up with Democrats’ grip on state government that it has officially declared a desire to secede from California— an aspiration plastered on the “State of Jefferson” billboards that dot the landscape. The women drinking beers after work at a small steakhouse in Williams, an hour north of Sacramento, don’t have anything nice to say about Brown. Neither does the man in an antique shop selling garden gnomes. Even Jeff Gilbert, the small town fire chief who has befriended Brown in recent years, readily admits: “Myself, I never … [Read more...] about Colusa County makes way for Jerry Brown, the governor they ‘never voted for’
Jason Burnett said he detected a faint feeling of disappointment from his wife when Gov. Jerry Brown pardoned him for an old drug crime less than two weeks after the couple lost their home in the nation's deadliest wildfire in a century. Heather Steels Burnett had applied for a pardon too but didn't receive it last month like her husband. "She's like, 'I didn't get mine,'" Jason Burnett, 44, playfully recalled her reaction. More: The Camp Fire took her home and her best friend. Now she's starting over in Palm Springs That changed Monday when Brown also erased an old drug conviction for Heather Burnett, saying she had lived "an honest and upright life" since completing her sentence more than 15 years ago on a charge of possessing ephedrine with the intent of making methamphetamine. Brown noted that Heather Burnett now works as a drug counselor. She was among 143 pardons and 131 commutations Brown issued on Christmas Eve. Another person who lost his home in the fire, Kyle … [Read more...] about Couple that lost home in Camp Fire get pardons from Gov. Jerry Brown
SAN FRANCISCO — Gov. Jerry Brown of California on Monday ordered a limited retesting of evidence in a highly contested murder conviction. Lawyers for Kevin Cooper, who was convicted in 1985 of murdering Douglas and Peggy Ryen and two of their children in an affluent suburb of Los Angeles, had petitioned the governor for clemency in 2016. Mr. Brown said in July that he would consider additional testing in the case, and on Monday he ordered the retesting of a shirt, towel, hatchet handle and hatchet sheath. In his order the governor said that the purpose of the testing, which will be carried out under the supervision of Daniel Pratt, a retired judge, was to see whether DNA from any another person in the F.B.I.’s database is present on the items. Mr. Cooper, who has been sentenced to death, has exhausted all his appeals. His case had been championed by, among others, Senator Kamala Harris and the New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof. The request for retesting was … [Read more...] about Gov. Jerry Brown Commutes 131 Sentences and Orders DNA Testing in Death Row Case
(CNN)California Gov. Jerry Brown continued his Christmas tradition of dispensing second chances to convicted felons, issuing 143 pardons and 131 commutations on Monday. In one of his last acts as governor, Brown also ordered new testing of evidence in a high-profile, 1983 quadruple murder for which inmate Kevin Cooper and others have maintained that he was framed. Cooper was convicted of killing Doug and Peggy Ryen, their daughter Jessica and 11-year-old Chris Hughes. The outgoing governor has now granted 1,332 pardons and 283 commutations during the last eight years -- the most of any governor in modern state history, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. During his 1975 to 1983 gubernatorial stint, the paper reported, Brown pardoned 404 inmates and granted one commutation. Read More The governor leaves office next month. Brown's pardons on Monday included Cambodian and Honduran immigrants facing deportation, according to published reports. President Donald Trump lashed out … [Read more...] about Outgoing California Gov. Jerry Brown issues Christmas Eve pardons and commutations