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Morning Wrap: 8/4/11

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Newsom leads pols in fundraising for 2014, Caltrans says Devil’s Slide work delayed, Amazon bulks up to fight online tax, a milestone at Marine Mammal Center, plus an attempt by metal thieves to steal brass railings at Oakland City Hall, and more inside.

Top of the morning’s news
  • Iran’s ambassador to Iraq said today that he expects two former UC Berkeley students arrested for espionage while hiking on the Iran border and held for two years to be released “very soon.” AP
  • CBS News president Jeff Fager acknowledged that the news division has paid to get interviews “in the past” but said the network no longer does so and that it “goes against everything” that CBS stands for. TV Newser
  • New filings show Amazon has already spent more than $3 million toward its ballot initiative aimed at overturning the state’s online sales tax collection law. The Bay Citizen
  • How the federal budget ax hangs over California. LA Times
  • Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, who has from the start positioned himself as a candidate for governor in 2014 if Jerry Brown doesn’t run for reelection, has raised $300,000 thus far for his 2014 ambitions, more than any other state office holder. California Watch
Other news

  • The 49ers unveiled another set of drawings and a new scale model for the stadium they hope to build in Santa Clara. Mercury News
  • Caltrans now says the Highway 1 bypass tunnels at Devil’s Slide will open a year later than previously announced and that the delay will cost taxpayers extra but that it doesn’t yet know how much. BANG
  • Metal thieves tried and failed to steal some of the historic brass railings at Oakland City Hall. KTVU 2
  • That “mystery” hotel where dorm-evicted students at San Jose State displaced by a larger than expected incoming freshmen class will be put up turns out to be a Clarion Hotel 3 miles from campus, complete with pool, hot tub, spa, cable TVs and, of course, maid service. Mercury News
  • A crisis pregnancy center targeted by San Francisco officials for alleged false advertising has pushed back, saying it respects a woman’s right to choose an abortion. Examiner
  • Palo Alto-based Tesla Motors, ramping up development of its electric Model S sedan in Fremont, lost $58.9 million in the second quarter, 53 percent more than the $38.5 million it lost for the same period a year ago. LA Times
  • Pittsburg scheduled a special election Nov. 8 that will determine whether the East Bay city can pursue annexing a nearly 200-acre former petroleum tank farm for future development. Contra Costa Times
  • After months of wrangling, Santa Clara County reached a tentative accord with its largest labor union, the 8000-member SEIU Local 521. Mercury News
  • The Sausalito-based Marine Mammal Center is celebrating a milestone, having rescued and rehabilitated its 10,000th sea lion. AP
  • A man died after his small fishing boat and a larger boat collided in the bay near South San Francisco and he was trapped beneath his capsized vessel. Chronicle

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