Connect with us

California

Federal appeals court upholds California’s gun show ban on state property

Published

on

Federal appeals court upholds California’s gun show ban on state property


California’s ban on gun shows on state property is constitutional, a federal appeals court said on Tuesday, June 11.

In Orange County, gun shows — including the Crossroads of the West Gun Show that had been held at the  OC Fair & Event Center since 1996 — were banned in 2022 under a state law authored by Sen. Dave Min, D-Irvine. The ban was later expanded to include all state properties, including state-owned fairgrounds.

In October, however, a federal judge blocked those bans, saying California was violating the rights of gun sellers and possible buyers by prohibiting purchases at the fairgrounds of weapons that could be bought legally at standard gun shops. That made it possible for the Crossroads of the West gun show to return to the  OC Fair & Event Center in January after a two-year hiatus.

The federal appeals court’s 3-0 ruling overturns that decision, effectively blocking the gun shows on state-owned fairgrounds, including the OC Fair & Event Center, yet again.

Advertisement

“Today’s a big win for anyone who cares about gun safety,” said Min, who is running for Congress in California’s 47th congressional district. “If you care about gun safety, if you care about preventing gun violence … this is a big win for you.”

The California Rifle and Pistol Association, a pro-gun owners organization that challenged the bans, said it would appeal Tuesday’s decision.

“CRPA will continue to protect the despised gun culture and fight back against an overreaching government that seeks to limit disfavored fundamental rights and discriminate against certain groups of people on state property,” the association said in a statement. “CRPA looks forward to seeing this misguided decision reversed in short order.”

B&L Productions, the group that operates Crossroads of the West gun shows, had also challenged the ban on gun sales on state property, alleging a violation of gun buyers’ constitutional rights, including freedom of speech and the right to keep and bear arms.

Judge Richard Clifton, appointed to the appeals court by former President George W. Bush, wrote in Tuesday’s 25-page decision that gun sales are “nonexpressive conduct” and thus are not protected by the First Amendment.

Advertisement

Min said his legislation prevents gun sellers from selling firearms on state property, not talking about them.

“If Crossroads of the West decided they wanted to do a show about how cool guns are where they spoke about guns, they can do that,” he said. “They just can’t sell them.”

In the ruling, Clifton wrote, A “celebration of America’s ‘gun culture,”’ in the words of one of B&L’s briefs, can still take place on state property, as long as that celebration does not involve contracts for the sale of guns.”

Plus, there are six licensed firearm dealers in the same ZIP code as the fairgrounds, Clifton noted in the ruling, and banning gun sales on state property won’t impair potential buyers from owning firearms.

As it was, a separate state law — not challenged in the ruling — imposes a 10-day waiting period and a background check before a firearms dealer can release the weapon to the buyer, meaning someone who purchased a gun at a show on fairgrounds would not be able to walk away with it that same day, the appeals court noted.

Advertisement

“Merely eliminating one environment where individuals may purchase guns does not constitute a meaningful constraint on Second Amendment rights when they can acquire the same firearms down the street,” he said.

Tracy Olcott, president of Crossroads of West, said the gun show has always been one of the “biggest financial contributors” to the OC Fair & Event Center. (When reached Tuesday afternoon, Olcott declined to comment on the ruling.)

The total revenue for the Crossroads of the West Gun Show held at the OC Fair & Event Center in January was $226,250, said event center spokesperson Terry Moore, which included parking as well as food and beverage commissions in addition to the rental fee.

The OC Fair & Event Center is waiting to hear from its attorney on the next possible steps, said Moore.

Attorney General Rob Bonta and Gov. Gavin Newsom, both Democrats, applauded Tuesday’s ruling. Bonta, who defended the bans in court, said the ruling is “another victory in the battle against gun violence in our state and country.”

Advertisement

“If other states followed our policies, thousands of lives would be saved — we won’t stop defending our laws from the right’s radical lawsuits,” said Newsom.

Between 2016 and 2021, the Crossroads of the West gun show brought the fairgrounds about $2.6 million in rental revenue, and according to estimates from 2021, gun shows raked in more than $7 million over the last 25 years for the fairgrounds.



Source link

California

Southern California nurse retires after accident leaves her paralyzed 

Published

on

Southern California nurse retires after accident leaves her paralyzed 


A Southern California nurse is ending her career on a bittersweet note after an accident left her paralyzed from the chest down.

Deanne Niedziela was a nurse director at Providence Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo who oversaw the Spine and Neuroscience Institute and Acute Care Service. She has worked for over 30 years in healthcare, dedicating her life to saving others.

She was on a dream vacation visiting waterfalls in Costa Rica that turned into tragedy after a tree limb fell down and crushed her spinal cord. 

After a nine-hour life-saving surgery, Niedziela survived but she was paralyzed from the chest down.

Advertisement

“This is a tragic accident that happened to me, but it’s outside of my control,” Niedziela said. “I can’t turn back the calendar.”

Niedziela flew back home and for months, she spent her time recovering in the same hospital she dedicated her career to.

  • Deanne Niedziela and her husband, Ken, are seen on vacation in Costa Rica. (Niedziela Family)
  • Deanne Niedziela and her husband, Ken, are seen on vacation in Costa Rica. (Niedziela Family)
  • Colleagues bid farewell to Deanne Niedziela at Mission Hospital on June 13, 2024 as she retires after experiencing an accident that left her paralyzed. (KTLA)
  • Deanne Niedziela making her last rounds at Providence Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo as her colleagues bid her farewell on her retirement on June 13, 2024. (KTLA)
  • Colleagues bid farewell to Deanne Niedziela at Mission Hospital on June 13, 2024 as she retires after experiencing an accident that left her paralyzed. (KTLA)
  • Deanne Niedziela making her last rounds at Providence Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo as her colleagues bid her farewell on her retirement on June 13, 2024. (KTLA)
  • Colleagues held a reception for an honorary farewell to Deanne Niedziela, a nurse director at Providence Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo on June 13, 2024. (KTLA)
  • Colleagues bid farewell to Deanne Niedziela at Mission Hospital on June 13, 2024 as she retires after experiencing an accident that left her paralyzed. (KTLA)
  • Colleagues bid farewell to Deanne Niedziela at Mission Hospital on June 13, 2024 as she retires after experiencing an accident that left her paralyzed. (KTLA)

“I just really appreciate the caregivers who took care of me,” Niedziela said.

She said being cared for by her colleagues has been fulfilling in many ways.

“The patients come and go, but it’s the coworkers that make this workplace so special, and this is a special place at Mission Viejo Hospital,” she said.

On Friday, Niedziela was surrounded by her colleagues at the hospital for an honorary farewell.

Advertisement

Coworkers said Niedziela has always been a guiding light to others and remains so after working decades in the industry.

“To have taken care of patients and to have led the Spine Institute and to have been a patient participating in that is really just an extraordinary triumph of courage and strength,” said Cherri Fox, a nursing director and Niedziela’s colleague. 

Niedziela will now be shifting her focus to the next chapter of her life as she works on regaining her independence.

“Nobody gets a [farewell] reception in the lobby, so having them to do that and have such a special reception for me, I just know my coworkers are just amazing people,” Niedziela said.

While making her final rounds at the hospital, she reflects on her time spent there, recalling all the happy memories spent in a rewarding career she adored. 

Advertisement

“I’m just so blessed to have so many wonderful people in my life,” Niedziela said tearfully. 

A GoFundMe page to help Niedziela cover medical expenses and costs to make her home ADA-compliant can be found here.



Source link

Advertisement
Continue Reading

California

California Legislature rejects many of Gov. Gavin Newsom's budget cuts as negotiations continue

Published

on

California Legislature rejects many of Gov. Gavin Newsom's budget cuts as negotiations continue


SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The California Legislature on Thursday rejected many of Gov. Gavin Newsom’s most difficult budget cuts, choosing instead to speed-up a temporary tax increase on some businesses to help pay off an estimated $45 billion deficit while preserving spending on many social safety net programs.

Thursday’s vote was not really a public rebuke of Newsom, a Democrat who for the most part has had a good relationship with a Legislature dominated by members of his own party. Lawmakers had to pass a balanced budget before Saturday in order to keep getting paid while negotiations on a final spending plan continue.

Instead, the Legislature’s proposal outlines the differences between Newsom, a second-term governor who many believe holds presidential aspirations, and a liberal state Legislature that is often more willing to take risks.

While Newsom’s budget proposal preserved most of the state’s major assistance programs, he included a number of smaller cuts that angered his Democratic allies. He proposed to stop paying for in-home caretakers for some disabled immigrants on Medicaid. He wants to eliminate a program that helps provide housing for families with incomes less than $13,000 per year. And he suggested delaying a rate increase for organizations that care for people with intellectual disabilities.

Advertisement

To reject these cuts, lawmakers needed to find more money. They found it by taking one of Newsom’s ideas and making it happen faster.

Newsom proposed temporarily stopping some businesses from deducting financial losses from their state taxable income, thus increasing their tax bill. It has become a common way to increase revenue during budget shortfalls. The Legislature chose to do this, too, but their plan would start the tax increase one year earlier. That generated an extra $5 billion in revenue compared with Newsom’s plan.

Lawmakers also found large budget cuts in other places. They want to cut $1 billion out of the state’s prison budget, arguing the money isn’t needed now that the prison population is about half of what it was two decades ago. And they want to cancel a $400 million loan to PG&E that would help extend the life of the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant.

One major issue that has yet to be addressed by either side is what to do about a minimum wage increase for health care workers that is scheduled to start on July 1. Newsom signed a law last year that would eventually raise health care workers’ minimum wage to $25 per hour over the next decade.

The wage increase is expected to cost the state hundreds of millions of dollars in increased wages for some state workers and increased payments in the state’s Medicaid program, according to an analysis by the University of California-Berkeley Labor Center. Newsom has said he wants to delay the minimum wage increase, but he so far has been unable to get an agreement from the state Legislature.

Advertisement

Republicans, who don’t have enough numbers to sway policy decisions and say they were left out of the budget negotiations with Democrats, criticized the Legislature’s spending plan as unsustainable. Republican state Sen. Kelly Seyarto accused Democrats of “divesting” from the state’s prison system “instead of fixing it and creating a system that works for all of us.” And Republican state Sen. Roger Niello said it was dangerous for Democrats to assume the state would collect more revenue next year than what the Legislative Analyst’s Office had projected.

“One of the easiest ways to balance a public sector budget is just to assume more revenue and you don’t have to deal with that until the year is over,” he said. “This budget is balanced nominally. But it is not sustainable.”

Democratic state Sen. Scott Wiener said the Legislature’s budget is a plan “we can all be proud of.” He defended the budget cut for prisons, saying “it is absolutely absurd that we have reduced our prison population by 50% and yet we’re spending more on prisons.”

“We can have accountability for committing crimes without going back to mass incarceration,” he said.

Advertisement





Source link

Continue Reading

California

Bees and birds in California protected from harmful insecticides

Published

on

Bees and birds in California protected from harmful insecticides


A new regulation in California bans the use of toxic insecticides on state lands to protect birds, bees, and other pollinators.

Sharon Udasin reports for The Hill.


In short:

  • The California Fish and Game Commission has prohibited neonicotinoid pesticides on lands managed by the Department of Fish and Wildlife.
  • The regulation, effective July 1, affects more than 1 million acres of wildlife habitats and refuges.
  • This decision follows a 2017 petition by Earthjustice, highlighting the dangers of neonics to native birds.

Key quote:

“Systemic insecticides like neonicotinoids have no place on public lands. They are harmful to a wide variety of species and the biodiversity throughout ecosystems.”

Advertisement

— Greg Loarie, attorney for Earthjustice

Why this matters:

Pollinators play an indispensable role in the ecosystem, aiding in the reproduction of around 75% of flowering plants and a substantial portion of food crops. However, their populations have been in alarming decline, largely due to the widespread use of harmful pesticides, habitat loss, and climate change. By eliminating toxic insecticides from state lands, California is setting a precedent that prioritizes ecological health and biodiversity.



Source link

Advertisement
Continue Reading

Trending