CA’s May Employment Numbers in 23 Charts

CA’s May Employment Numbers in 23 Charts

LOTS OF DATA, LOTS OF CHARTS! This morning the California Employment Development Department released it latest labor market information data. The data shows improvement in the Golden State’s labor market with the seasonally adjusted unemployment dropping to 7.6 percent, a level last seen in August 2008. The data also contained small improvements in the labor force as 4,600 Californians entered the labor force. Total state employment rose 39,800 to 17.2 million and unemployment fell by 35,200 to a total of 1.42 million.

Jerry Brown Leads All California Governors in State Supreme Court Appointments

Jerry Brown Leads All California Governors in State Supreme Court Appointments

The retirement announcement by Associate Justice Marvin Baxter adds one more State Supreme Court vacancy for Governor Jerry Brown to fill. Justice Kennard announced her plans to retire last year. Brown will not only make history as the longest serving California governor, he will also lead all other Golden State governors in high court appointments surpassing Pat Brown and George Deukmejian.

Governor Brown 2.0: Four Budgets, One Chart

Governor Brown 2.0: Four Budgets, One Chart

As the Legislature prepares to pass Governor Brown’s last budget of this term it’s worth noting how it compares to his previous three spending plans. Using the numbers from Department of Finance, I was able to craft a quick chart showing all four years of spending (4th being tentative) by major program areas. This is a really simple illustration that doesn’t give the obsessive budget wonks much information about the individual state programs where the real policy takes place. So just consider this either a primer, refresher, or just something to look at.

California Minimum Wage: Then and Now

California Minimum Wage: Then and Now

As the California Legislature debates raising the minimum wage, I thought it was worth plotting the history of the state’s minimum wage (as adopted in law) against the federal minimum wage to give the policy discussion some context on how the Golden State compares. I also added SB 935 by Senator Mark Leno which is the focus of this year’s debate.