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WatchSonoma Watch
SSU president urges students to press governor over budget cuts

Sonoma State University’s president told students Thursday to press Gov. Jerry Brown to stop cutting and to restore funding to the state’s public higher education system. ‘This is a self-inflicted wound that will have great repercussions in this state,’ Ruben Armiñana said.

Romney’s returns and tax reform

Mitt Romney’s income tax return, showing an effective tax rate of 13.9 percent, doesn’t exactly bolster Republican arguments that taxes are sky high. But it may not boost Democratic bids to raise income tax rates, either.

GOLIS: Wanted: Plain talk about jobs

In recent years, Sonoma County residents have learned the hard way that prosperity can’t be taken for granted. More people are out of work. More people live in poverty. Essential public services are being jettisoned as tax revenues decline.

Educators laud Brown plan to trim tests

Sonoma County educators on Wednesday greeted Gov. Jerry Brown’s call for less student testing and quicker results on the remaining tests as a bit of good news for schools that are awash in financial worry. Brown said students are asked to take too many tests, and teachers learn little from them because results are not readily available. What do you think of the governor’s proposal?

GUEST OPINION: Now is not the time to raise taxes

Daniel A. Drummond, executive director of the Sonoma County Taxpayers’ Association, says Gov. Jerry Brown is presenting voters with a false choice: increase taxes or cut schools. He says the governor and the media are complicit in seeking to create a sense of fear by focusing on threatened cuts to high-profile services such as education and parks, or services to the poor and disabled. Instead, Drummond says, we should confront the real problems before us. What do you think?

Redevelopment fallout reverberates across region

Local government officials express horror, warning of ‘carnage’ to budgets, delays for critical community projects and setbacks for economic recovery efforts.
School officials are encouraged, expecting to enjoy a larger slice of the property-tax pie.

Redevelopment agencies fear ‘carnage’

The elimination of California redevelopment agencies will create ‘carnage’ on city projects unless the state gives communities more time to respond and adapt to a recent court ruling, Santa Rosa City Manager Kathy Millison said Friday.

Local schools, social service agencies study budget choices

Gov. Jerry Brown’s hastily released state budget proposal would slash local health and human services programs while tying the fate of school funding to a proposed tax measure he wants on the November ballot. Whether the measure makes it to the ballot, and whether voters will approve it remains uncertain, leaving Sonoma County school districts again facing the prospect of building two budgets.

State court upholds abolishing redevelopment agencies

Officials in Sonoma County struggled Thursday to gauge the local impact of a state Supreme Court ruling that upheld the state’s elimination of redevelopment agencies. Uncertainty remained about the ruling’s implications, especially to redevelopment projects already under way.

New laws coming to California businesses

California businesses and consumers will see a host of new laws in 2012, covering everything from tanning beds to online sales tax. Most of the new laws go into effect Sunday.

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