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Economics - Money

Managing money is  part of our lives and if we do it well, we can thrive. From NEWS of economic issues to advice on money, this category keeps you informed.

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2019-02-12Feb 12, 2019

In 2014, I was elected to the State Board of Equalization, one of the two principal tax collection agencies in our state where cannabis dispensaries are supposed to collect and remit sales taxes. Duffel bags and sometimes suitcases of cash would arrive quarterly at some of our designated offices and some business owners had to drive 350 miles to pay their taxes. I asked how much we collected from the cannabis industry and my agency really didn’t know since tax revenues are “commingled” and deposited with other cash tax payments. 

 

2018-12-22Dec 22, 2018

Without legislative changes, Sonoma County will continue to become increasingly unaffordable, as middle class jobs disappear and new wealth continues to move upwards, according to a new report from a local labor organization.

2018-12-06Dec 6, 2018

The Sonoma County District Attorney says she will "continue to vigorously enforce the state anti-price gouging law." The Santa Rosa City Attorney will continue to prosecute violators under a city ordinance protecting renters. 

2018-12-04Dec 4, 2018

The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors discussed the future of a Sheriff Office oversight body, approved an extension of a contract with an emergency preparedness consultant and listened to a policy update from Assemblymember Jim Wood at its Tuesday, Dec. 4 meeting.

2018-11-28Nov 28, 2018

If after the December rush and New Year’s sales things slow down, it could be a good time to learn more about some of the facets of your business. You could, for instance attend a conference or two, learn about new products that could enhance your business or focus on new ways to market and sell your products.

2018-11-26Nov 26, 2018

It’s open enrollment time for medical insurance, and for people having to shop in the individual insurance market; the choices are as confusing as ever. When searching for a policy, it's important to consider cost, coverage and other factors. 

2018-11-16Nov 16, 2018

At an event on Monday, a coalition of labor, environmental, housing and faith groups will unveil a report about working conditions in Sonoma County and the group's priorities moving forward.

2018-11-01Nov 1, 2018

As people begin to live longer, financial planning will become even more important. Many customers have told me that these home loans just aren’t right for them, but the reality is that they can be a major financial windfall for seniors in multiple situations.

2018-10-26Oct 26, 2018

In many businesses staff training is a haphazard affair that doesn’t happen very often. Businesses that are in high turnover industries sometimes expect their employees to come already trained, feeling that they lose money on training when people leave.  However,the gains for training staff (even if they are not with you for very long) still outweigh the costs and time spent.

 

2018-10-16Oct 16, 2018

Once upon a time being an insurance agent was viewed as a rather boring, vanilla occupation. Not so, these days in Sonoma County. Insurance agents enjoy the life of the party now! 

2018-10-16Oct 16, 2018

Our local government, if it wants to show it’s working for people, it needs to start with making a real impact on our most dire social issue and that is housing by taking it out of the hands of commercial developers, landlords, and real estate investors and making it affordable to everyone.

2019-02-11Feb 11, 2019

Newly elected California State Treasurer Fiona Ma will speak on Capitol Hill regarding banking services and issues of access surrounding the cannabis industry on Wednesday. The hearing is the first of the new Congress to address federal cannabis banking policy. Congressional members will hear testimony from the California State Treasurer, a drug policy reform organization, a medical cannabis dispensary, as well as individuals representing financial institutions.

2018-10-08Oct 8, 2018

The past year has been one of the most taxing that we’ve faced together. The October fires took 24 lives from us. It burned more than 173 square miles and rendered almost 7,000 homes and businesses into ash. It was a disaster in every sense. Last October, I was devastated by the losses of my friends, family and neighbors throughout Sonoma County.

2018-10-03Oct 3, 2018

One judge can make a huge difference in many lives—including the lives of immigrants. 

In 2015, one federal judge in Texas unilaterally blocked an Executive Order issued by President Obama called DAPA that would have extended a reprieve from deportation and a work permit to 5 million people.  Later that same year, the difference on the federal appeals court was one judge in a 2-1 ruling affirming the decision of that Texas judge. 

2018-10-01Oct 1, 2018

Sonoma County DRAFT Fire Recovery and Resiliency Plan - PUBLIC COMMENT DEADLINE: October 26, 2018. As we continue to recover and rebuild a year after the North Bay fires of October 2017, the DRAFT Recovery and Resiliency Framework just released by the Sonoma County Office of Recovery and Resiliency offers a pathway for starting to look forward.

2018-10-01Oct 1, 2018

The wildfires of October 2017 destroyed more than homes, neighborhoods, and open space. They burned almost a fourth of the county’s parkland and damaged or destroyed parks in Santa Rosa as well.

Measure M on the November ballot will provide funds for aggressive action to reduce fire risk in parks in the unincorporated areas of the county and for improving and maintaining existing county and city parks.

2018-09-01Sep 1, 2018

Local environmental groups in the San Francisco Bay area and Sonoma County often point to the successes of this resident-led initiative as proof we in the North Bay are a “Green” community. As a matter of fact, many of the organizations promoting tourism to the North Bay and Sonoma County invoke the natural beauty and conservation as marketing tools to get the visitors to come to the “Sonoma County Wine Country”. Going green has become a profitable approach now.

2018-08-31Aug 31, 2018

The Sonoma County Office of Resilience and Recovery's five year Fire Recovery Plan and the Sonoma County General Plan Update will prioritize land-use altercations and other policies with the goal of reducing fire risk, improving emergency preparedness, and making our communities and lands more resilient, healthy and climate-smart.

2018-08-31Aug 31, 2018

Last month my family flew to Connecticut for a long-awaited vacation. Our connection time in Chicago was supposed to be 1 ½ hours, but due to “crew scheduling issues”, our flight was delayed an additional three hours. We did not arrive until 3 am (instead of 10 pm as scheduled). Do I have any “flight rights?”

2018-08-30Aug 30, 2018

There were no old people in the Springs Community Hall the night Ken Brown, former longtime mayor, put on a Middle Eastern fusion event called “Jews, Blues and Sufis”, just a bunch of grey-heads and greybeards frolicking on the dance floor in joyful gyrations. It was a pleasure to see them, I was too weary to join but watching from the sidelines, people I’ve seen in various progressive political circles now cavorting as if they were kids.

2018-08-29Aug 29, 2018

Concerned about preventing discrimination from rearing its ugly head in Guerneville? Have any complaints or suggestions for our local law enforcement? Maybe you would just like to thank law enforcement for providing us with a dedicated deputy and doing a good job at treating all of our community members with fairness and respect? Wanna talk about how homelessness or immigration policies affect our community? The Sonoma County Human Rights Commission (HRC) and the Independent Office of Law Enforcement Review and Outreach (IOLERO) will be bringing a road show here to Timberline (16440 4th St, Guerneville) on Thursday, Sept. 27th at 5:30 pm. The event is free and open to the public. Incoming Sheriff Essick and Supervisor Hopkins will also be attending.

2018-08-19Aug 19, 2018

Local not-for-profit Community First Credit Union has crafted a new real estate loan to help local residents purchase lots burned out during the recent firestorms. The funding allows them time and money to pursue plans, permits and people to rebuild on the property.

2019-02-08Feb 8, 2019

The Forestville Teacher's Association is officially at an impasse with the district. And WHY...? Because your teachers had the audacity to ask for average. Yes, "average". and that's only the state average. We all know that West County has an above average cost of living, yet Forestville teachers struggle to make ends meet at a wage 33% below the state average.

2019-02-07Feb 7, 2019

A new report confirms that rising housing prices in the Bay Area have caused disproportionate harm to low-income households of color, displacing them at higher rates and pushing them into new areas of poverty and racial segregation.

2019-02-05Feb 5, 2019

 

The first details of a contract to sell Sebastopol’s hospital were unveiled on February 4 at a meeting of the Board of the Palm Drive Health Care District.

2019-02-01Feb 1, 2019

On March 5, voters in the Palm Drive Health Care District will go to the polls to decide if Sebastopol’s struggling public hospital will be leased, then sold, to a private, for profit company, American Advanced Management Group of Modesto. The District is putting the former Palm Drive Hospital on the market because it has consistently lost money. Despite 20 years of good faith efforts and multiple managers, the District is $28 million in debt and in its second bankruptcy. Former employees and vendors are still owed more than $8 million.

2019-02-01Feb 1, 2019

Homelessness is one of Sonoma County’s most intractable problems. Despite the efforts of local activists, nonprofits, and government agencies, the number of people living on the streets, in vehicles, and in improvised shelters remains largely unchanged from year to year.

2019-01-15Jan 15, 2019

Between January 15-20 the State will issue February CalFresh benefits earlier than usual to many Sonoma County residents to cover food during the coming month. The early allocation is due to concerns that the partial federal government shutdown will prevent issuance of the benefits in February. Payments will be made by the federally funded Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), from reserves approved by Congress in 2018.

2019-01-07Jan 7, 2019

The thousands of homeless people living in our county deserve better living conditions. And Sonoma County could offer more shelter quickly if it funded two fast, cheap housing solutions: safe parking and sanctioned campsites.

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