Stories by Rachel Goetz
Along with a new state budget, late last week Governor Jerry Brown signed two bills drastically changing redevelopment agencies in California. These bills end the agencies as we've known them and require future agencies to use less property tax, with more going to local school districts. The change puts in question some major redevelopment projects in San Diego, along with making a serious impact on affordable housing.
The San Diego Unified School District is facing an estimated $114 million budget deficit for next academic year. The deficit could be cut in half if voters approve tax extensions in a statewide special election the governor has proposed for June. We talk to the school board president Richard Barrera and the president of the teachers union, Bill Freeman, about the possibility that more than 700 teachers could be laid off. Plus, we talk about what actions the district should take to prevent future budget deficits.
How might the uprisings in Libya, Tunisia, Yemen, Bahrain and Egypt affect global politics? And, what role should the United States play in shaping the future of the Middle East and North Africa? We discuss the latest news on the political unrest in Libya and its surrounding countries.
As recent gas prices have reached as high as $4 in San Diego, alternative energy sources for vehicles becomes a pressing issue. A collaborative program called Smart City San Diego is tackling some of these concerns. This morning we speak with Byron Washom, director of strategic energy initiatives and Lisa Bicker, President and CEO of CleanTECH San Diego, to discuss how Smart City San Diego is involved with the future of electric cars in San Diego.
Last month, Governor Jerry Brown proposed a $500 million dollar cut to both the UC and CSU systems. This could mean that for the first time in UC history, the students will be contributing more to the university budget than the state. Will this proposal affect students in the form of tuition increases, which have already climbed by 40% in the last 2 years? Listen ahead as we speak with Patrick Lenz, UC's Vice President for Budget & Capital Resources, and Wafa Ben Hassine, Associated Students President at UC San Diego, about the impact on students and San Diego.