Tuesday, December 30, 2014

How to get more Angelenos to the ballot box

Honored to have another op-ed in the Los Angeles Times. 

You can read it here.

"Governor’s Choice to Lead CPUC Dismisses Concerns of Improper Ties with PG&E"

Good to talk to Ted Goldberg of KQED for this one

Picker’s remarks about his agency’s dealings with PG&E “were stunning in how politically tone deaf they were about how PG&E essentially owned members of the PUC and many of its top political advisors,” said David McCuan, a Sonoma State University Professor of Political Science who specializes in state politics.

“I wish he would have been more open and forthcoming,” said Jessica Levinson, a Loyola Law School professor who focuses on governance issues.

Monday, December 29, 2014

"City Council panel backs away from GMO ban it previously supported"

Great to talk to Soumya Karlamangla for this one

The GMO turnabout also reveals where city ethics regulations fall short in tracking the effect of lobbyists at City Hall. Lobbyists are required to report who they work for and how much they are paid — but sometimes not until months after they've completed their work.

Jessica Levinson, a Loyola Law School professor who's on the city's Ethics Commission, said that can mean when an issue is being discussed the public won't "have the information necessary to see a full picture."

Thursday, December 25, 2014

"New FPPC chair takes low-profile approach"

Great to talk with Laurel Rosenhall of the Sacramento Bee for this piece

“Being a State Bar judge is a lower-profile, more insular position – you’re one of a number of people as opposed to the person leading a state agency. None of which is to say that she lacks the proper credentials. She was still in the business of regulating bad behavior,” said Jessica Levinson, a professor at Loyola Law School who sits on the Los Angeles Ethics Commission.
Ravel raised the profile of the FPPC, Levinson said, by taking on well-known lobbyists and political operations.
“Every chair has their own style, and I don’t think Chair Remke is as interested in being high profile.”

Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/article4956267.html#storylink=cpy

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

"State Senate leader: Divest in coal to fight global warming"

Always wonderful to speak with Carla Marinucci of the San Francisco Chronicle.

More here.

Jessica Levinson, professor of political ethics at Loyola University in Los Angeles, said that as long as Steyer is willing to throw his millions at liberal causes, he will have no trouble attracting the attention of California’s leading Democratic officeholders.
“If you have a billion dollars, your dance card is going to be full,” she said. “You’re going to have a lot of friends, and access and power in politics. California is no exception, and Jerry Brown is no exception.
“If anything it’s openly transactional, and that’s not a bad thing,” Levinson said. “We all know why everyone shows up at Tom Steyer’s events — because he may spend a lot of money supporting candidates and issues. And if you spend it, they will come.”

Friday, December 5, 2014

"New Los Angeles County officials sworn in"

Good to talk with Abby Sewell and Soumya Karlamangla for this one.

The transition creates "a moment of some opportunity" to reexamine priorities, said Jessica Levinson, a Loyola Law School professor and member of the city's ethics commission.

But she said it doesn't necessarily herald major policy changes. Governing the county "is like steering a tanker," she said. "You can't pull a U-turn."