California Gets New Rules Covering Medical Malpractice Payments. Here’s What Will Change

By Melody Gutierrez, LOS ANGELES TIMES

May 23, 2022

https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2022-05-23/california-new-rule…

SACRAMENTO — Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bill Monday to raise the amount of money that patients can receive in medical malpractice cases, increasing pain and suffering payments for the first time since lawmakers placed a cap on monetary damages nearly five decades ago. 

California To Raise Medical Malpractice Caps After 47 Years

By Victoria Colliver, POLITICO PRO

May 23, 2022

Gavin Newsom on Monday signed a bill to update California's medical malpractice damage cap, ending a long-fought battle to adjust the pain-and-suffering limit that has remained unchanged for 47 years.

"After decades on negotiations, legislators, patient groups, and medical professionals have reached a consensus that protects patients and the stability of our health care system," Newsom said in a statement following the bill's signing, which was not public. 

KNX 1070 AM Los Angeles, CA: Consumer Advocates Applaud Newsom Signing Bill Raising Medical Malpractice Damages Cap in California

By Emily Valdez, KNX 1070 AM Los Angeles, CA

May 22, 2022

Click here to listen to the audio of this radio broadcast segment. 

Jamie Court, President of Consumer Watchdog, applauding Governor Newsom signing AB 35 which will raise the medical malpractice damages cap in California. 

Advocates and Victims' Families Look Forward To Gov. Newsom Signing Med Mal Cap Reform Bill

By Staff Reports, KCRW 89.9FM Santa Monica, CA

May 19, 2022

Click here to listen to the audio of this radio news broadcast segment.

Advocates and victims' families look forward to Governor Newsom signing AB 35 into law to raise the cap on medical malpractice damages in California after nearly 50 years. 

Victims of Medical Malpractice Could Win More In Damages Under New Deal Reached By California Lawmaker

By Bob Egelko, SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE

April 27, 2022

https://www.sfchronicle.com/bayarea/article/Victims-of-medical-malpract…

Consumer advocates, physicians and legislative leaders announced a long-sought agreement Wednesday to rewrite change a 1975 California law that placed a $250,000 limit on damages for pain and suffering caused by medical malpractice.

Sacramento Reaches MICRA Deal

By Victoria Colliver, POLITICO PRO

April 27, 2022

California’s nearly 50-year-old medical malpractice compensation limits may soon be increased as part of a deal announced Wednesday that could end a decadeslong fight that’s pitted doctors and insurance companies against patients and families seeking justice in the courtroom for wrongful injuries or deaths.

Patients Embrace Legislative Deal to Update Malpractice Cap, Forestall Ballot Fight on Fairness for Injured Patients Act in November

Los Angeles, CA - The California families harmed by medical negligence who launched the Patients for Fairness coalition (http://www.patientsforfairness.org) responded favorably to news of a potential legislative deal to raise the 47 year old cap on medical malpractice damages. The families said the legislation would eliminate the need for the Fairness for Injured Patients Act to go before voters in November 2022.

Newsom Unveils Bottle Recycling Plan

By Dustin Gardiner, SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE

April 6, 2022

https://www.sfchronicle.com/politics/article/Newsom-proposal-California…

SACRAMENTO -- Gov. Gavin Newsom's administration unveiled a $330 million proposal Friday that aims to breathe new life into California's ailing bottle deposit program by opening up thousands more locations where consumers can redeem empty bottles and cans for their nickel and dime deposits. 

Florida and California Consider Changes That Could 'Decimate The Rooftop Solar Market,' Experts Say

By Ben Adler, YAHOO NEWS

February 2, 2022

https://www.yahoo.com/news/florida-and-california-consider-changes-that…

California and Florida are considering revoking a policy that has encouraged homeowners to install rooftop solar panels — causing fear among solar panel owners and installers, and creating divisions in the environmental community.

New Analysis Reveals Fossil Fuel Industry's Job Claims Are 'Wildly Inaccurate' In California, U.S.

By Dan Bacher, ELK GROVE NEWS

January 27, 2022

http://www.elkgrovenews.net/2022/01/new-analysis-reveals-fossil-fuel.html

The Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA), the most powerful corporate lobbying group in Sacramento, claims that there are 368,000 jobs in the oil industry in California.

CA Crosses Line Of 10,000 Oil Drilling Permits Issued Since Newsom Took Office, Groups Urge Newsom To Cease All Permitting

Los Angeles, CA —As the LA City Council votes today to ban oil and gas wells, Consumer Watchdog and FracTracker Alliance reported that Governor Newsom has approved 10,212 oil drilling permits since he assumed office in 2019. The total is nearly identical to the number of permits Governor Jerry Brown approved in his first three years.
 

If Newsom Blesses CPUC Plan To Charge Consumers Solar Tax, He Will Kill Rooftop Solar Across The Country, Consumer Watchdog Says

Los Angeles, CA — Consumer Watchdog said today that Governor Newsom firmly reject most of a proposed net metering decision before the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) if he wants to claim the mantle of a climate leader.
 
“Look up,” the group wrote in a letter to Newsom.  “Rooftop solar and battery storage today is the most progressive way forward to help the working and middle class afford energy, decrease wear and tear on the existing, centralized grid, ensure the growth of renewable energy, and provide energy security.
 

Critics Say Newsom's Proposed 2022-23 Budget 'Falls Short' on Confronting Fossil Fuels

By Dan Bacher, DAILY KOS

January 11, 2022

https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2022/1/11/2073926/-Critics-Say-Newsom-…

SACRAMENTO – Governor Gavin Newsom on January 10 unveiled his 2022-23 state budget proposal including a $45.7 billion budget surplus, receiving both criticism and praise from environmental and climate advocates.

CA Permit Approvals For New Well Drills Are Down 64% For The First Six Months; Consumer Watchdog Urges Governor To Seize Golden Opportunity To Move From Fossil Fuels

Los Angeles, CA — Permit approvals to drill or rework new oil wells fell by 64% in the first six months of 2021 over the same period last year, giving Governor Newsom an excellent opening to more decisively transition off of fossil fuels, Consumer Watchdog and FracTracker Alliance said today. The number of permit applications filed by oil and gas companies also fell by 52%.

Consumer Watchdog Applauds Oil Regulator’s Denial Of Aera Fracking Permits

Los Angeles, CA—The denial by the California Geologic Energy Management Division of 21 Aera Energy fracking permits is a win for public health and the environment, Consumer Watchdog said today.

“We applaud the Newsom Administration for finally using its discretion to deny Area destructive and dangerous fracking permits,” consumer advocate Liza Tucker said today. “This step is in concert with Governor Newsom’s goal of banning all fracking by 2024, though we believe that a ban across the board should be immediate.”

Consumer Watchdog Applauds Fracking Ban, Calls For More Steps As First Quarter 2021 Oil Permit Approvals Plunge

Los Angeles, CA — Governor Newson’s ban on fracking in 2024 is a step in the right direction, and with the number of permit approvals falling dramatically so far this year, he has a perfect opening to take even stronger steps, Consumer Watchdog said today.

CA Permits To Drill New Oil And Gas Production Wells Rose 160%, While New Wells Actually Drilled Plummets To 60;

Los Angeles, CA — Oil companies received 160% more oil production drilling permits in the first nine months of 2020 over the year before, but the number of oil wells drilled in California has slowed to a trickle, Consumer Watchdog and the FracTracker Alliance said today. The two groups updated the permit numbers and locations on an interactive map at the website: http://www.NewsomWellWatch.com.

Fracking In California Gets Green Light After 9-Month Pause; Aera Energy Receives Permits

By Janet Wilson, THE DESERT SUN

April 3, 2020

https://www.desertsun.com/story/news/environment/2020/04/03/calgem-appr…
 

California regulators on Friday issued fracking permits for the first time in nine months, saying federal scientists had given clearance for 24 permits to Aera Energy for oil well stimulation in Kern County.

Rally At State Of The State Calls On Newsom To Phase Out Oil Production

By Dan Bacher, INDY BAY MEDIA

February 22, 2020

https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2020/02/22/18830901.php

On the morning of February 19, activists from groups affiliated with the Last Chance Alliance held a spirited rally on the sidewalk outside the west steps of the Capitol just before Governor Newsom delivered his State of the State address.

Number Of Oil And Gas Well Permits Issued By Newsom Administration In 2019 Rivals Number Issued In Gov. Jerry Brown’s Last Year In Office

Los Angeles, CA—The total number of oil and gas well permits issued in 2019 under the Newsom Administration rivals the number issued in 2018 during the last year in office of former Governor Jerry Brown, Consumer Watchdog and FracTracker Alliance reported today. The Newsom Administration issued just 1% fewer permits for a total of 4,545 versus 4,590 for all of 2018.

Consumer Watchdog Applauds Departure of Another Regulator Who Protected Big Oil As Hopeful Sign Of Major Reform Under Gov. Newsom

Los Angeles, CA - Consumer Watchdog hailed the imminent departure of the Department of Conservation’s Chief Deputy Director, widely seen as an impediment to environmental reform, as a sign that Governor Newsom plans to overhaul the way oil and gas is regulated in the state.

Thirty-Seven Groups Urge Newsom to Halt New Fossil Fuel Drilling, Close Aliso Canyon

By Dan Bacher, INDY BAY MEDIA

January 9, 2020

https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2020/01/09/18829591.php

Sacramento - On the anniversary of Governor Gavin Newsom’s first year in office on January 7, thirty-seven environmental and public health groups called on the governor to declare an “immediate climate emergency” and institute a moratorium on new oil and gas drilling permits. 

Consumer Watchdog Welcomes Resignation of CalRecycle Director, Recycling Agency Shakeup

Los Angeles, CA—Consumer Watchdog welcomed the resignation today of the CalRecycle Director as a first step in overhauling the troubled agency in charge of the state’s failing bottle deposit system. CAL-EPA Secretary Jared Blumenfeld confirmed the resignation to Consumer Watchdog this afternoon.

Newsom Freezes New Fracking Permits In California & Slows Rate of Oil Well Approvals Since Summer; 2019 State Oil Well Permits Still Outpace 2018

Los Angeles, CA—Since mid-July, state regulators have not issued a new permit for fracking or acidizing in California and have slowed the overall rate of permitting oil wells. Nonetheless, state regulators have granted oil permits at a pace that is 8.8% greater in the first ten months of 2019 than in the same period last year under Governor Jerry Brown, Consumer Watchdog and FracTracker Alliance said today based on an analysis of state data.

California Governor Gavin Newsom Has Ordered An Investigation Into Soaring Gas Prices In The State

Californians consistently pay a dollar to a dollar fifty more for our gasoline and there`s no good reason for it.

By Anne-Marie Green, CBS NEWS

October 28, 2019

ANNE-MARIE GREEN: And California Governor Gavin Newsom has ordered an investigation into soaring gas prices in the state. Carter Evans reports.

(Begin VT)

CARTER EVANS: Eye-popping prices at the pump are a harsh reality for Californians.

Consumer Watchdog Applauds Newsom Call for AG Action on CA Gas Price Gouging

Los Angeles, CA -- Consumer Watchdog said today that a new state report finding that major oil companies are overcharging their own stations in order to gouge California consumers vindicates the analysis that it has made since 2015 and requires new state laws to protect drivers.  

The nonprofit nonpartisan consumer group applauded Governor Newsom’s call for an investigation and possible prosecution by the California Attorney General into the problem.

Newsom Appoints Two Top Oil And Gas Regulators, Including A Former Chevron Staffer

By Dan Bacher, INDY BAY MEDIA

October 20, 2019

https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2019/10/20/18827485.php

The appointments of Shabazian and Ntuk come in the wake of increased opposition by environmental justice, conservation and public interest groups to the expansion of onshore and offshore drilling in California under Governors Jerry Brown and Gavin Newsom.

Fair Political Practices Commission Investigates Two Oil Regulators For Conflict Of Interest After Consumer Watchdog Complaint

 

Los Angeles-- The Fair Political Practices Commission is investigating two regulators at the Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources for conflicts of interests raised in a July complaint by Consumer Watchdog.

Consumer Watchdog Urges Governor To Take Urgent Steps On Recycling

Los Angeles, CA — Consumer Watchdog today urged Governor Newsom to crack down on the state’s recycling regulator CalRecycle and to take urgent steps that save the state’s bottle deposit program in the long and short term.

“The closure of the largest recycling chain in the state, rePlanet, has cut the number of recycling centers available to Californians in half over the last six years,” Consumer Watchdog President Jamie Court wrote in a letter to Governor Newsom. “CalRecycle has long known about these problems, but it has failed to act.

California’s Biggest Bottle Redemption Center Chain Closes

Los Angeles, CA — Consumer Watchdog said the closure of the largest operator of bottle redemption centers in the state, rePlanet, today requires the Governor to prioritize recycling reform in the coming months. rePlanet closed its last 284 centers today, leaving consumers with few places to receive bottle and can deposit refunds.

Consumer Watchdog called for CALRecycle, the state agency in charge of recycling, to immediately require every grocery and convenience store chain to begin redeeming bottles and cans.

DOGGR Regulator Fired Over Conflicts of Interest and Increased Oil Well Permits

Gov Newsom Fires Top Oil Regulator & Institutes Sweeping Ethics Review of Agency In Response To Watchdog Report of Conflicts

Los Angeles, CA – Consumer Watchdog today thanked Governor Gavin Newsom for firing the state’s top oil and gas supervisor and instituting an ethics review of the state’s oil well approval and inspection process in response to its recent report of conflicts at the agency and request.

Watchdogs Call For Resignations & Permit Freeze As California Oil Regulators Approve Surge In Well Permits While Personally Invested In Oil Companies

Los Angeles, CA -- A review of state conflict of interest forms shows that eight regulators managing the state’s oil and gas well approval and inspection process have hundreds of thousands of dollars invested in the oil companies they regulate.  One of the regulators is among the top three in command at the State’s Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR).

Consumer Watchdog Urges Immediate Budget Fix to Save CA Recycling Program; In Crisis After Grocers Kill Life Line For Centers In Legislature

Los Angeles, CA—Consumer Watchdog has asked the Newsom Administration to avert the closure of more recycling centers that redeem empty glass, aluminum, and plastic beverage containers by funding centers long enough to reform the container deposit system. 

Consumer Watchdog Applauds Governor Newsom’s Energy Commission Report Taking on Gas Price Manipulation

Los Angeles, CA -- Consumer Watchdog said today that the California Energy Commission under Governor Gavin Newsom is finally taking steps to confront artificially high gasoline prices in California by acknowledging the role of oil refiners' supply and retail price manipulation in sky-high pump prices.  

Consumer and Recycling Advocates Condemn Loss of Last Recycling Center West of 405 Freeway

Santa Monica, CA --- At the site of the soon-to-be shuttered Santa Monica Community Recycling Center, consumer advocates called on California lawmakers and regulators to rescue the failing redemption industry. The center, closing Saturday, is the last redemption center west of the 405, serving 200,000 people on LA's Westside. 

Consumer Watchdog: Victims, Taxpayers and Ratepayers Shouldn’t Be Forced To Pay For Felon’s Negligence Under PG&E Bailout Plan

Los Angeles, CA -- Consumer Watchdog said today that a California wildfire victims’ relief fund could be important, but that the proposal put forth today by Governor Newsom, in legislative hands, threatens to take rights and dollars from wildfire victims, ratepayers and taxpayers without forcing PG&E to make tangible concessions.

Consumer Watchdog: PG&E is No Victim, Governor Newsom Should Appoint Tough Regulator

Los Angeles, CA -- Consumer Watchdog said today that PG&E prematurely filed bankruptcy protection to drive a political bailout of the company and gain leverage over what and when it pays victims of fires it started.  Bankruptcy could delay what victims receive from the company for its negligence for years.