Oracle Moving Annual Conference to Las Vegas Because San Francisco is Too Expensive

Photo courtesy disneybrent, flickr

Oracle’s OpenWorld conference, one of the biggest annual technology events in San Francisco, is moving to Las Vegas in 2020 and will remain in Sin City for at least three years.

According to an email that the San Francisco Travel Association (SFTA) sent to its members on Monday, Oracle has signed a three-year agreement to bring its flagship event to the Caesars Forum in Las Vegas.

“Oracle stated that their attendee feedback was that San Francisco hotel rates are too high,” the email, which was viewed by CNBC, said. “Poor street conditions was another reason why they made this difficult decision.”

The SFTA, a private nonprofit organization that promotes San Francisco tourism, said it’s issuing a cancellation bulletin, covering five days and over 62,000 room nights in October 2020, October 2021 and September 2022. …

Click here to read the full article from CNBC

Lawsuit Claims SAT And ACT Are Illegal In California Admissions

Fatima Martinez knows there’s a lot riding on her SAT score.

“My future is at stake,” says the Los Angeles high school senior. “The score I will receive will determine which UC schools I get into.”

But that may not always be the case.

A lawsuit expected to be filed Tuesday is challenging the University of California system’s use of the SAT or ACT as a requirement for admission. A draft of the document obtained by NPR argues that the tests — long used to measure aptitude for college — are deeply biased and provide no meaningful information about a student’s ability to succeed, and therefore their requirement is unconstitutional.

“The evidence that we’re basing the lawsuit on is not in dispute,” says attorney Mark Rosenbaum of the pro bono firm Public Counsel. “What the SAT and ACT are doing are exacerbating inequities in the public school system and keeping out deserving students every admissions cycle.”

Public Counsel is filing the suit in California Superior Court on behalf of students and a collection of advocacy groups. …

Click here to read the full article from NPR

Former Democratic Assemblyman Takes a Plea Deal in Fraud Case

A former state assemblyman admitted to using investors’ money intended for the construction of Peet’s Coffee shops in Bay Area transit stations for his businesses.

Terry Goggin, 78, pleaded guilty Thursday to money laundering charges and faces up to 10 years in prison, according to the U.S. attorney’s office.

Goggin, an attorney who was a Democratic assemblyman from San Bernardino between 1974 and 1985, was indicted in September 2018 on four counts of wire fraud and nine counts of money laundering. As part of a plea agreement, he pleaded guilty to one count of money laundering and will pay back the $685,000 he took from investors, prosecutors said. …

Click here to read the full article from the Los Angeles Times.

Rep. Hunter to plead guilty in corruption case

After years of denials and claims that he was the target of a political witch hunt, Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) is scheduled to appear in federal court Tuesday morning to plead guilty in a sweeping campaign finance investigation.

The announcement was posted on the U.S. District Court docket Monday morning, then KUSI aired an interview with Hunter in which he said he would plead guilty to one of the 60 criminal charges against him. He suggested that he is likely to spend time in custody.

“The plea I accepted is misuse of my own campaign funds, of which I pled guilty to only one count,” Hunter told the station. “I think it’s important that people know that I did make mistakes. I did not properly monitor or account for my campaign money. I justify my plea with the understanding that I am responsible for my own campaign and my own campaign money.” …

Click here to read the full article from the Los Angeles Times

Kamala Harris Drops Out of Presidential Race

Sen. Kamala Harris suspended her presidential campaign Tuesday, after falling from the top tier of Democratic candidates and failing to resurrect a doomed fundraising operation.

“I’ve taken stock and looked at this from every angle, and over the last few days have come to one of the hardest decisions of my life,” Harris, D-Calif., said in a statement shortly after her departure was first reported.

“My campaign for president simply doesn’t have the financial resources we need to continue.”

Earlier Tuesday, CNBC reported that Harris canceled a fundraising event in New York amid a flood of recent reports describing her campaign as chaotic. …

Click here to read the full article from NBC News

California Labor Union Feuding With Gov. Gavin Newsom

A young girl dressed as a newsie walked up to Gov. Gavin Newsom at the California Democratic Party convention in Long Beach last month, handing him a copy of a paper with his image splashed across the front page.

Alongside an unflattering photo of the Democratic governor, a headline on the Building Trades News read: “Gov. Newsom Vetoes Fair Wages for Construction Workers.”

The State Building and Construction Trades Council of California, which represents plumbers, electricians, ironworkers and other construction workers, distributed hundreds of copies of the anti-Newsom story at the convention, escalating an increasingly public and personal feud with the governor on the state party’s biggest stage. …

Click here to read the full article from the Los Angeles Times.

Kamala Harris aide: ‘I have never seen an organization treat its staff so poorly’

An aide to Sen. Kamala Harris blasted the treatment of staff on the California Democrat’s presidential campaign in a resignation letter this month. 

“This is my third presidential campaign and I have never seen an organization treat its staff so poorly,” wrote state operations director Kelly Mehlenbacher in the Nov. 11 letter, which was obtained by The New York Times

“While I still believe that Senator Harris is the strongest candidate to win in the General Election in 2020, I no longer have confidence in our campaign or its leadership,” she added. 

She wrote that “the treatment of our staff over the last two weeks was the final straw in this very difficult decision.” …

Click here to read the full article from The Hill

Harris’ support dipping below 10% in California

Former Vice President Joe Biden and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren lead the pack of Democratic presidential hopefuls in California with 24% and 23% support, respectively, according to a recent Public Policy Institute poll.

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders clocked in at third with 17% support — followed by California Sen. Kamala Harris at 8%, South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg at 7% and entrepreneur Andrew Yang at 5%.

No other candidate scored more than 1%, while 9% of those surveyed said they don’t know which candidate they would choose.

The California primary is in March. …

Click here to read the full article from the San Francisco Chronicle

Battle Over Cannabis Home Deliveries

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Escalating a legal battle with California cities and counties over where marijuana can be sold, state officials are intervening in a new court fight over home delivery of cannabis in communities that have banned or restricted pot shops.

Earlier this month, Atty. Gen. Xavier Becerra filed a motion on behalf of the California Bureau of Cannabis Control to join a lawsuit by Salinas-based East of Eden Cannabis Co. against Santa Cruz County, which has banned deliveries by companies it has not licensed.

The legal action comes as a group of cities is challenging California’s home delivery rules in Fresno County Superior Court, arguing that state law allows them to decide whether businesses can sell pot in their communities. In January, the Bureau of Cannabis Control issued regulations that permit firms it licenses to deliver marijuana to homes anywhere in the state, including in cities and counties that have banned pot shops. …

Click here to read the full article from the Los Angeles Times.

Rain and Snow Forecast Complicates Thanksgiving Travel

Heavy rain and snow are forecast to hit Southern California right around the time Thanksgiving travelers will take to the freeways.

A “broad swath of precipitation” is expected to blanket Los Angeles County and surrounding areas starting early Wednesday, said Kathy Hoxsie, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Oxnard. The heaviest rain and snow are predicted to fall on Wednesday from the morning to the afternoon.

“The absolute worst time, of course,” Hoxsie said.

Lighter showers are forecast for Thursday and Friday and could extend into the weekend. Rainfall estimates for this storm call for about 1 to 2 inches for the coast and valleys, and 1.5 to 3 inches for the foothills and at lower elevations of the mountains. A foot or more of snow is possible at higher elevations. …

Click here to read the full article from the Los Angeles Times.