Daily Headlines for April 20, 2018

We scan major news sources* and compile selected articles to keep you up-to-date on current issues affecting California business – the economy, health care, environment, transportation and more. Receive Daily Headlines by Email

Today’s Top Story

CalChamber Kills Targeted Tax Proposal in Assembly Committee
A California Chamber of Commerce-opposed job killer bill that would have imposed a tax on contractors for the privilege of doing business with the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation failed to pass its first committee hurdle this week. CalChamber

Public Affairs / Politics

Kamala Harris’ Rapid Rise Confounds California
Kamala Harris has been called “the female Barack Obama.” She’s built a national following with her outspoken criticism of Donald Trump and prolific fundraising for fellow Democrats. Politico

Will 2018 Be the Year of the Young Voter in California?
Jennifer Antunez can’t vote in this country now and might never be able to. EdSource

Human Resources / Health & Safety

National Medical Support Notice Requires Timely Response
I received a National Medical Support Notice for one of my employees. What is this notice and how do I respond? CalChamber Alert

State Auditor: California Doing a Poor Job on Homelessness
California is doing a poor job of sheltering the nation’s largest homeless population and needs to provide statewide leadership to address the problem, the state auditor said Thursday in a report that also singled out problems with homeless services in Los Angeles County. The Associated Press

Economy

U.S. Leading Economic Indicators Rose in March
An economic index that measures U.S. business trends continued to increase in March. The Wall Street Journal

Stocks Fall Broadly, Giving the Market its First Loss of the Week
Losses among technology and consumer products companies weighed on U.S. stocks Thursday, snapping a three-day winning streak for the market. Los Angeles Times

If the World Economy Is Looking So Great, Why Are Global Policymakers So Gloomy?
By a lot of measures, these are very good times for the global economy. Nearly every major region of the planet is enjoying solid growth and prosperity simultaneously for the first time in a decade. The New York Times

Environmental / Agriculture

Amid ‘Green Rush’ of Legal Cannibis, California Strives to Control Adverse Effects on Water
For decades, cannabis has been grown in California – hidden away in forested groves or surreptitiously harvested under the glare of high-intensity indoor lamps in suburban tract homes. Water Education Foundation

2,000 New Trees for San Francisco — and Less Carbon in the Air, Too
San Francisco officials are beginning to chart an ambitious course to sharply curtail the city’s carbon emissions over the next three decades. The first step: planting more trees — a lot of them. San Francisco Chronicle

Can Plants Tell us When the Next Drought Will Happen? JPL’s ‘Space Botanist’ May Have the Answer
In a few months, scientists, farmers and water managers will get answers to such questions as: Will a drought occur and if so, where? Which plants die first? Which species are adept at absorbing carbon dioxide, a gas that is overheating our planet? The Orange County Register

International

Trump Wants to Close Trade Gap, but Leaves Export Agency in Limbo
As trade tensions mount, an 84-year-old Washington institution could have been a powerful tool for President Trump. The institution, the Export-Import Bank, was created to help American companies compete overseas and bolster exports by providing cheap government-backed loans. The New York Times

Chile, California Continue Building Strong Trade/Investment Relationship
On April 17 and 18 the Chile-California Council gathered for its annual event and Board Meeting at the California Chamber of Commerce. The opening session on Wednesday focused on Clean Energy and Opportunities, Challenges, Policies and Programs for a Sustainable Grid and Electrification Transport. CalChamber Alert

In a Trade War, China Might Boycott U.S. Goods. That Could Backfire.
If China calls for a boycott of American goods, Chinese workers like David Xu could be in trouble. The New York Times

Trump Says He Will not Accept High Oil Prices; Crude Dips
U.S. President Donald Trump criticized OPEC on Friday for output curbs that have helped raise global oil prices and said “artificially” high prices would not be accepted, drawing rebukes from oil-producing countries as prices dipped following his remarks. Reuters

Infrastructure / Education

Tuition Will not Increase at California State University Next Year
California State University has abandoned its plans to raise tuition next year. The Sacramento Bee

How California Water Suppliers Are Getting Earthquake-Ready
As is often said, it’s not a matter of if, but of when, a large earthquake strikes the heart of one of California’s most densely populated regions. State officials and local agencies know the clock is ticking, and mile by mile, pipe by pipe, work crews are replacing or retrofitting water lines throughout much of the Los Angeles and San Francisco Bay areas. KQED

Opinion/Editorial

SB 827 is Dead. But California Still Can — and Should — Build More Housing Near Transit
Few bills in Sacramento have gotten as much attention or stirred up as much controversy recently as SB 827, Sen. Scott Wiener’s bold proposal to override local zoning laws to allow the construction of buildings four to five stories tall near rail stations and frequently served bus stops — even in single-family neighborhoods where dense development is prohibited. The Times Editorial Board in Los Angeles Times

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