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Noreen Evans renews push for state oil tax

State Sen. Noreen Evans.

State Sen. Noreen Evans is making another run at the oil industry, and this time she’s bringing in reinforcements.

Future of Sonoma Developmental Center on the table

Kathleen Miller, and her son Dan Smith who lives at the Sonoma Developmental Center, background, Friday May 31, 2013 near Glen Ellen. (Kent Porter / Press Democrat)

Key decision makers will gather Tuesday to discuss what will happen to the property and its 460 residents.

Money pours into North Coast legislative races

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Money is flowing into the campaigns for North Coast legislative seats being contested in 2014, with four candidates showing an early separation in the fundraising race.

Changes coming to North Coast’s legislative landscape

Assemblymember Marc Levine talks to a group of Stanford Law School students in the State Capitol building in Sacramento on Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014. (Christopher Chung / The Press Democrat)

Sweeping changes across the North Coast’s political landscape will present major challenges this election year both for voters and for candidates in state races, with one possible outcome being an almost entirely new and untested slate of leaders handling local problems in Sacramento.

Bill by state Sen. Noreen Evans seeks to shrink juror pools

State Sen. Noreen Evans.

Legislation billed as an effort to make jury service less onerous in California, but which critics fear could harm a criminal defendant’s right to a fair trial, advanced last week in the state Senate.

New courthouse in Santa Rosa clears key hurdle

Sonoma County courthouse.

Construction of a new $174 million courthouse in Santa Rosa received a huge boost Friday from state court officials, who also blessed plans for new facilities in Lake and Mendocino counties.

Legislator offers to pay for rebuilding of Lopez memorial

Marc Levine.

Assemblyman Marc Levine, D-San Rafael, has pledged to pay for the materials used to restore the fire-damaged memorial to Andy Lopez, the 13-year-old Santa Rosa boy fatally shot by a sheriff’s deputy in October.

Sonoma County politicians wary of push to overhaul pensions

Pension

Several Sonoma County politicians who rely on labor union support are coming out early against a proposed statewide ballot measure that could dramatically overhaul public employee pensions.

Ruling deals setback to Artesa’s disputed vineyard plan

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Environmentalists are hailing a court ruling this week that deals a significant setback to a hotly disputed vineyard project in northwestern Sonoma County.

Santa Rosa Councilwoman Erin Carlstrom ‘taking a look’ at Assembly seat

Santa Rosa Vice Mayor Erin Carlstrom, right, lets out a yawn while her husband Nick Caston hands her a notepad as she follows a City Council meeting from her iPad and takes care of her 10-day-old son at home in Santa Rosa on Tuesday, Oct. 15, 2013. (CONNER JAY/ PD)

Santa Rosa Councilwoman Erin Carlstrom, who until recently was a candidate for state Senate, now is weighing a bid for the 10th District Assembly seat held by Marc Levine.