California is home to three of the four busiest container ports in the nation. The Los Angeles-Long Beach port complex is the largest port in the country by value and the fifth-largest container port in the world. So no state has a greater interest in issues of security at ports, which are potentially vulnerable to terrorist attack. The issue also has a far broader impact than merely port communities, since ports can be entry points for weapons that might be used to attack other communities. The Public Policy Institute of California takes a broad look at port security.
Just in time for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s special session on corrections reform, the California Policy Research Center weighs in with a report on California’s troubled prison system. The unsettling conclusion: “The state’s approach to corrections is enormously expensive and ineffective.”
The Sacramento Regional Research Institute looks at the economic impact of California’s housing industry. The conclusion: The industry represents about 11 percent of the state’s total economic output. One note of disclosure: The study was funded by the California Building Industry Association.
Carbon dioxide emissions shot up in the United States between 1960 and 2001, according to a new study from the Environment California Research and Policy Center. By size of increase California ranks behind only Texas and Florida, but that’s partly because we were a big emitter even in 1960. In percentage terms, California is farther down the list.
The Center for Governmental Studies examines schemes for public financing of campaigns, including local systems from San Francisco and Los Angeles.
Gambling is now a $13 billion-a-year industry in California. This and other numbers are in a new summary report on gaming from the California Research Bureau.
Shelter Partnership compiles the latest numbers on homeless shelters in America’s largest county. Among the findings, programs are becoming more restrictive about who they let in, perhaps because they are becoming more crowded. Over two-fifths of shelters say the average length of stay has increased over the past three years. Another interesting fact: boys over a specificied age, usually about 11, are ineligible for a good many programs.
The Reason Foundation weighs in with a last-minute analysis of Proposition 82, responding to an earlier RAND report. In the latest example of dueling think tanks, the Reasoners say the RANDers “significantly” overestimated the benefits of universal preschool and “drastically” underestimated the disadvantages.