PPIC Statewide Survey: Special Survey on Californians and the Initiative Process

Posted on October 31st, 2005 — in Politics :: Polls and Surveys

The Public Policy Institute of California delivers some bad news for Schwarzenegger’s initiatives: none of them enjoy majority support among likely voters. The poll also ranks the approval rating of the governor, the California Legislature, Bush, the U.S. Congress, and our two state senators. The winner? Diane Feinstein with 50% approval.
PPIC Statewide Survey: Special Survey on Californians and the Initiative Process

For More Background, see the IGS “Hot Topic” on each initiative at: http://www.igs.berkeley.edu/library/htSpecialElection2005.html


What Would Proposition 76 Mean for Health and Health-Related Programs?

Posted on October 22nd, 2005 — in Health Care :: Public Finance

The California Budget Project continues its series of reports on the likely fallout from Proposition 76, which would substantially change the state budget process. Focusing on health care, the report finds that health programs may be disproportionately vulnerable to spending reductions, and that counties may be forced to pick up the slack.
What Would Proposition 76 Mean for Health and Health-Related Programs?

For More Background, see the IGS “Hot Topic” on Prop. 76: http://www.igs.berkeley.edu/library/htSpendingLimits.html


Analysis of propositions 73, 74, 76, 77

Posted on October 15th, 2005 — in Politics :: Public Finance :: Social Policy

The USC California Policy Institute has analyzed four of the initiatives on the Nov. 8 ballot: Props. 73 (abortion), 74 (teacher tenure), 76 (state budget), and 77 (redistricting).
Proposition 73
Proposition 74
Proposition 76
Proposition 77

For More Background, see the IGS “Hot Topic” on each initiative at: http://www.igs.berkeley.edu/library/htSpecialElection2005.html


California Fruit & Vegetable Intake Calibration Study

Posted on October 14th, 2005 — in Health Care

Experts always say to eat five servings of fruits or vegetables every day. How many do people really eat? According to researchers at UC-Berkeley and the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, it’s four. This entry, by the way, wins the award for the most boring title of any research report we have yet to see.
California Fruit & Vegetable Intake Calibration Study


The Right Prescription for California? An Analysis of Propositions 78 and 79

Posted on October 13th, 2005 — in Health Care

Researchers at RAND Health have analyzed the two competing prescription-drug measures on the Nov. 8 ballot — Prop. 79, the measure from consumer groups and unions, and Prop. 78, from the pharmaceutical industry. They conclude that Prop. 79 will enroll more people and bring bigger discounts, but it could also cost the state millions of dollars in Medi-Cal rebates and adversely affect Medi-Cal patients’ access to drugs.
The Right Prescription for California? An Analysis of Propositions 78 and 79


Innovation, Entrepreneurship, Collaboration: An Economic Action Agenda for Rural California

Posted on October 12th, 2005 — in Economy and Business :: Growth, Development & Infrastructure

Rural areas have often lagged behind urban ones in economic growth, but the California Center for Regional Leadership has studied ways to bring a renewed sense of vitality to areas of the state outside the big cities. One ironic note, given the views of some rural residents, is that environmentalism may help. “Quality of life” is said to be the new buzzword that helps rural areas boom. The economic strategies that can help maintain that quality include green businesses, organic agriculture, and eco-tourism. Technology will also help. One specific policy recommendation from the report: more broadband. Coming soon from a farm near you — milk, eggs, and a blog.
Innovation, Entrepreneurship, Collaboration: An Economic Action Agenda for Rural California


A Primer: Three Strikes — The Impact After More Than a Decade

Posted on October 11th, 2005 — in Social Policy

After a decade of experience, what has been the effect of California’s “Three Strikes and You’re Out” law? Well, perhaps not as great as was once expected. When the law was enacted in 1994, analysts predicted that in 2003 there would be 100,000 prison inmates locked up as “strikers.” Instead, there are fewer than half that, reports the Legislative Analyst’s Office. Among the other interesting findings: counties vary widely in how they apply the law, the longer sentences mean an older prison population, and the rate of felony cases decided by jury trial has gone up, presumably because nobody takes a plea bargain when the sentence is so long.
A Primer: Three Strikes — The Impact After More Than a Decade


Healthy Food, Healthy Communities: Improving Access and Opportunities Through Food Retailing

Posted on October 10th, 2005 — in Economy and Business :: Health Care

Can your neighborhood make you fat? Maybe. The lack of good grocery stores in poor neighborhoods often contributes to an unhealthy diet, which in turn can lead to high obesity rates. But PolicyLink finds that there are strategies to get good stores into bad neighborhoods. Farmers’ Markets help too.
Healthy Food, Healthy Communities: Improving Access and Opportunities Through Food Retailing


Perspectives on State and Local Finance in California: Surveys of City Officials and Residents

Posted on October 9th, 2005 — in Polls and Surveys :: Public Finance

In a twist on normal polling, the Public Policy Institute of California surveyed city officials in the state, then compared their views to those of the voters at large. Among the interesting comparisons: city officials are far more likely than voters to think that the state needs a tax increase to deal with its chronic budget shortfall, and voters are much more positive about the initiative process.
Perspectives on State and Local Finance in California: Surveys of City Officials and Residents


Walking the Line: What to Do When You Suspect an Ethics Problem

Posted on October 8th, 2005 — in Politics

The Institute for Local Government provides a primer on how public officials should deal with suspected ethics problems. This is loaded with useful information for local government types.
Walking the Line: What to Do When You Suspect an Ethics Problem