Associated Press


University of California to raise tuition for non-residents

The University of California’s governing board has approved a tuition increase for out-of-state undergraduate students of 3.5 percent, or $978 a year, starting in the 2018-19 school year.

The Board of Regents voted 12-3 in favor of the increase Thursday and will decide in May whether to raise tuition for California residents.

Thursday’s vote increases supplemental tuition for out-of-state undergraduate students to nearly $29,000, up from about $28,000 currently.

The supplemental tuition is an extra cost that out-of-state students pay on top of $12,630 in “system-wide tuition and fees.”

The increase will bring tuition and fees for out-of-state undergraduates to nearly $42,000 next year.

The university says the increase will generate nearly $35 million and help compensate for lower than expected state funding at a time of record-high enrollment.

Submitted by Associated Press



Los Angeles Zoo puts new ‘mob’ of meerkats on exhibit

The Los Angeles Zoo’s new breeding group of meerkats is now on exhibit.

The “mob” of meerkats includes four males that arrived from the Zoo de Granby in Quebec last September and three females that came from Sedgwick County Zoo in Wichita, Kansas, in January.

The Los Angeles Zoo said this week that the two groups of meerkats were slowly introduced to each other at a quarantine facility before entering their outdoor habitat together in late February.

Meerkats, which constantly tunnel and dig holes, are tiny members of the mongoose family and are native to deserts and grasslands on the southern tip of Africa.

The Los Angeles Zoo is rebuilding its meerkat collection with a genetically valuable group after its elderly meerkats passed away.

Submitted by Associated Press



Lawsuit seeks protected areas for West Coast humpbacks

A new lawsuit accuses the Trump administration of failing to follow the law on protecting humpback whales.

Two environmental groups and a nonprofit that represents Native American tribes filed the lawsuit Thursday in federal court in San Francisco.

There have been increasing reports of humpback whales tangled in fishing gear that cause some to die. Federal authorities have designated three groups of West Coast humpbacks as endangered or threatened.

The lawsuit says that obligates federal officials to designate special areas of the ocean as critical to protecting the humpback whales. It says authorities missed the legal deadline for doing so by 2017.

Spokeswoman Jennie Lyons of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says the agency does not comment on litigation.

Submitted by Associated Press



Ruling: California marijuana letter works like Arizona cards

An Arizona Court of Appeals ruling says a man’s medical marijuana recommendation letter obtained from a physician under California’s medical marijuana law provides the same legal immunity as registry cards issued by Arizona authorities.

The three-judge panel’s decision Thursday upholds a La Paz County Superior Court judge’s dismissal of drug possession charges stemming from a 2016 traffic stop of Stanley Kemmish Jr.

Prosecutors argued that the physician’s letter saying Kemmish would benefit from marijuana medical usage wasn’t the equivalent of Arizona’s state-issued cards, but the Court of Appeals said having the letter meant Kemmish was a “visiting qualifying patient” under the Arizona law.

The ruling described Kemmish as a California resident while La Paz County online court records gave an address in Laveen, which is part of metro Phoenix.

Submitted by Associated Press



State controller critical of Compton spending

The California state controller says a review found the city of Compton’s general fund deficit has largely been caused by overspending, deficient internal controls and a lack of City Council oversight.

The controller’s office says in a press release Thursday that at the start of the 2007-08 fiscal year, Compton had a general fund surplus of $22.4 million and three years later there was a $42.7 million deficit due to overspending of more than $16 million a year.

The report also contains criticisms ranging from elected officials’ compensation to staff turnover.

A Compton city statement says its newest leaders recognized many of the same problems and attributes them to past practices. The city says it has since made substantial progress in correcting them, in particular management of revenue and expenditures.

Submitted by Associated Press