In the first quarter of 2011, 53% of buyers could afford the median-priced single-family in California, and 60% could afford the median-priced condo or townhouse, according to the California Association of Realtors.
With different aspects of the City of Bell scandal continuing to come to light, "Bell" is starting to become short-hand for government corruption. Still, Bell's mess does not displace San Bernardino County from its longtime position at the top of the local government corruption charts.
"Life in the Slow Lane" is the headline of a piece in The Economist that provides a very interesting analysis of the lack of infrastructure spending in the United States.
Because the story is in The Economist, it comes at the topic from a European perspective. No doubt this will trouble conservatives because, well … I'm not sure why conservatives fear comparisons with other prosperous, industrialized, democratic societies. Anyway, I think the story is worth reading.
The City of Tulare has officially given up on a proposed speedway. The premature checkered flag for the Tulare Motor Sports Complex is hardly a surprise.
On the surface, auto racing tracks seem like a sexy way to generate big economic returns. Cities such as Indianapolis, Charlotte and Daytona Beach owe a good portion of their existence to auto racing. But these places are the exception, as numerous other cities have learned over the last decade.
With different aspects of City of Bell scandal continuing to come to light, "Bell" is starting to become short-hand for government corruption. Still, this one scandal can't displace San Bernardino County from its longtime position at the top of the corruption charts.
The mess in Bell is easily summarized: At least two top-level city employees and four councilmembers abused their powers to get rich at taxpayers' expense. According to prosecutors and news investigations, the city officials may have received millions of dollars in excess salaries.
Meanwhile, the corruption allegations, indictments and convictions in San Bernardino County are so numerous they are nearly impossible to track.
California is on the verge of "five major, protracted water crises" and must change its system of governance to address the urgent situation, according to "Managing California's Water," a comprehensive examination of the subject recently produced by the Public Policy Institute of California.
The report recommends creating a Department of Water Management that is headed by an appointed director whose term overlaps different governors' administrations. This department, which could have cabinet-level status, would house a "public trust advocate" to ensure water is put toward reasonable uses and, for the first time, would have significant groundwater oversight.
Poor George Will. He's getting kicked all over the blogosphere for a recent Newsweek column in which he said liberals love trains because they are a way to control the masses, while conservatives love cars because they provide freedom.
What happens when you go through years of planning and actually building TODs, only to have the T suddenly vanish?
This is the question on the San Francisco Peninsula and in the South Bay, where Caltrain is proposing radical service reductions and the closure of numerous stations.
It's also a question that other places are likely to confront as public budgets grow more austere and the Republican Party ramps up its attacks on seemingly all transportation that doesn't involve automobiles.
There, I said it. But I'm not the only one uttering those words during the ongoing discussion of the State of California's enormous budget gap. Just maybe, we can no longer ignore the elephant in the room.
The state's fiscal problems are as big as an elephant, and the reasons for them are legion. But, make no mistake, the largest contributor to those problems -- by far -- is the system created by and in reaction to Prop 13.
The California Supreme Court will review a case in which Alameda County and a housing developer argue that a California Environmental Quality Act lawsuit filed by project opponents should have been dismissed because the opponents did not raise their objection during the administrative process.