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News Story
6/9/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
California voters rejected the two initiatives put on Tuesday's ballot by major corporations -- Proposition 16, requiring voter approval before cities can get into the electricity business, and Proposition 17, giving auto insurance companies more leeway in setting rates. With most of the vote counted Wednesday morning, both measures trailed by...
News Story
5/30/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
To varying degrees, elected officials routinely use their campaign war chests for lavish trips, fancy meals and luxurious stays at posh destinations. California law prohibits elected officials from using campaign dollars for personal use. But while a new state law enacted in July 2008 tightened reporting requirements for meals, travel and gifts,...
News Story
5/27/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
What happens to ossified Sacramento if California voters get to shop around? State Democratic and Republican leaders were undoubtedly disturbed and annoyed last week, but it had nothing to do with California's $20 billion budget deficit. Instead, the politicians faced a different kind of bad news: On Tuesday, June 8, voters of every ideological...
News Story
5/26/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
The prospect of broad new powers has attracted two Democrats, two Republicans and four minor-party candidates to the June 8 primary. Sacramento, CA - California's elected insurance commissioner — one of the most powerful jobs of its kind in the nation — is likely to get even more authority over the next four years as President Obama's...
News Story
4/9/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
SACRAMENTO, Calif.  -- The California Chamber of Commerce is pulling a TV ad that criticized Democrat Jerry Brown's record and prompted two complaints to the state's elections watchdog. Chamber President Allen Zaremberg said Thursday the group accomplished its goal of drawing attention to spending and taxes after just two days. He said the...
Blog Post
3/26/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
Pay to play policymaking is rarely spelled out as clearly in public as it was in a just-released fundraising email sent to financial industry lobbyists on behalf of Senator Corker, a key Republican negotiator on finanicial reform. As reported in Politico: Sen. Bob Corker’s reelection campaign offered donors a chance to have a meal with the...
News Release
3/16/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
Washington, D.C. -- Consumer Watchdog’s Washington Director, Carmen Balber, made the following comments on consumer protection in financial reform legislation proposed by Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd:   “Legislation released by Chairman Dodd on consumer financial protection would hamstring a new consumer regulator...
News Story
2/9/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
Federal and state lawmakers called Monday for a closer examination of Mercury Insurance Group in the wake of a state report that suggests the firm may have engaged in illegal practices, including deceptive pricing and discrimination against military personnel and people in other occupations. The document from the office of State Insurance...
News Story
2/8/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
A high-profile California insurance company that is backing a controversial insurance measure on the June ballot has engaged in practices that may be illegal, including deceptive pricing and discrimination against consumers such as active members of the military and drivers of emergency vehicles, according to a state report obtained by The...
News Story
2/2/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
Thirty-one California lawmakers have reached tentative agreement with the state's political watchdog agency to pay $9,400 in fines for failing to disclose gifts from interest groups. Sacramento Kings tickets, golfing fees, hotel accommodations, restaurant tabs, and concert tickets to see comedian George Lopez and country singers George Strait and...