Daily news roundup for Tuesday, September 1, 2015
Here's what's happening in the Bay Area, as curated by KALW news
California lawmakers propose sweeping ivory ban to curb elephant poaching // Contra Costa Times
SAN FRANCISCO -- "Two years after imposing a controversial ban on the sale of shark fins, California lawmakers are shifting their activism from the ocean to the jungle with a new effort to slow the alarming killing of African elephants by shutting down the market for ivory.
"A bill moving through the Legislature -- championed by zoos, museums and environmentalists, while opposed by the National Rifle Association and other hunting groups -- would effectively ban the sale of nearly all ivory in California, from antique guns to chess sets, not only in San Francisco and Los Angeles Chinatowns but also among private collectors."
Google wants to disrupt diabetes // San Jose Mercury News
MOUNTAIN VIEW --"Fighting the diabetes epidemic is the first mission of the tech giant's life sciences wing as it shifts from the Google X research lab into its own subsidiary of newly formed parent company Alphabet. That's the vision of the co-founders of Google, who plan to tackle the global epidemic affecting hundreds of millions of people with the same technological wizardry they used to conquer the Internet.
"A fast-growing team of about 150 scientists and engineers is wasting no time, announcing Monday a partnership with French pharmaceutical giant Sanofi and a renowned diabetes research institute in Boston."
Kate Steinle slaying prompts Bay Area counties to cooperate with immigration officials// San Jose Mercury News
SAN FRANCISCO -- "The fate of a 31-year-old illegal immigrant from Nicaragua with a history of domestic violence and assault with a deadly weapon rested entirely on where he was recently caught in the Bay Area.
"If it had been in San Francisco or Santa Clara County, he would have walked out of a jail a free man after serving time for violating probation. But because he broke the law in another part of the Bay Area -- where local jailers recently started cooperating with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement -- federal agents were able to retrieve him from jail two weeks ago and lock him up in a federal detention center pending possible deportation.
"Cooperating with immigration authorities is such a politically touchy issue in the Bay Area that ICE officials wouldn't say where they picked up the Nicaraguan man. But in the two months since Kate Steinle's death in San Francisco at the hands of an illegal immigrant with a criminal record ignited a national immigration policy debate, four Bay Area counties -- Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo and Marin -- have agreed to notify ICE when inmates flagged by the agency for possible deportation are about to be released.
"Four Bay Area counties -- Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo and Marin -- have agreed to notify ICE when inmates flagged by the agency for possible deportation are about to be released."
SAN FRANCISCO -- "San Francisco’s first effort to document the scope of human trafficking in the city identified nearly 300 known or suspected victims in the second half of 2014 alone and highlighted the challenge of addressing a crime in which women, men and often children are exploited in society’s shadows.
"The study itself was difficult, with the city acknowledging that its survey of 19 government and community-based agencies may have counted some survivors of trafficking more than once. Still, officials said, the statistics probably fall well short of reality, with many victims unknown and unseen.
"Yet the count, released Monday, offers city officials a starting point and a numerical baseline as they grapple with what they call a complicated and entrenched problem — one that features victims who often don’t understand they’re being victimized, and a system that is frequently unable to prosecute the suspected traffickers."
MARIN CITY -- "Sausalito Marin City School District started serving only organic and GMO-free meals to students this week, becoming the first school district in the nation to do so.
"It's an extension of what is considered to be a successful pilot program begun in 2013 at Bayside MLK Jr. Academy in Marin City. The other school in the district, Willow Creek Academy in Sausalito, has now joined Bayside MLK Jr. Academy in installing a permanent program."
SACRAMENTO — "Worsening traffic for California commuters has prompted Caltrans to offer a cash prize to anyone who can find the best solution.
"Caltrans is offering $25,000 to 'the Californian with the best unique idea about how to improve the state’s transportation system.' It’s called the '25K Find A New Way' contest.
"Residents have until the last day of October to submit their ideas to Caltrans, and a winner will be picked by the end of the year."
SAN FRANCISCO -- "The future is now. It certainly feels that way when you walk through the doors at the flagship location of Eatsa, a new high-tech fast food restaurant that opened on August 31st, near San Francisco’s Embarcadero.
"In terms of the front of house experience, it’s fully automated, with all meal ordering done via in-store iPads. Not a human in sight, though there is a team of about five or six back-of-house kitchen staff (or as I like to imagine, magical elves) who are hidden from view and prepare the food. There’s also one attendant on hand to help the tech challenged.
"When your meal is ready — in just a few short minutes — it appears in small glass compartments, in a manner that’s reminiscent of the classic mid-20th century automats."