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Governor cuts 25% from his own budget

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Gov. Jerry Brown announced a $4.5 million cut in his own budget, including the elimination of the Office of the First Lady.

Brown, sworn in four days ago, said he was chopping 25 percent from spending for the governor's office. Other cuts, eliminating the offices of the Secretary of Education, Cabinet Secretary, Inspector General and the closure of the governor's field branches in San Diego, Fresno and Riverside, will bring a total savings of $7 million, according to a statement.

"California is facing a huge deficit and it is necessary to find savings throughout all of government," Brown said. "We all have to make cuts and I'm starting with my own office."

Brown, 72, is due to present the state's next budget on Jan. 10. The nation's largest state by population must confront a $28 billion deficit over the next 18 months.

The governor announced on Jan. 5 that his wife, Anne Gust Brown, would serve in the unpaid position of special counsel.

-- Bloomberg News


Dole re-admitted to Washington hospital

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) -- A spokeswoman for the Dole Institute of Politics in Lawrence says former Kansas Sen. Bob Dole has been re-admitted to Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C.

Dole Institute spokeswoman Heather Anderson said that Dole was admitted to the hospital Thursday. She said she had no additional details, and several messages left with Walter Reed staff weren't immediately returned Friday.

The 87-year-old Russell native spent 10 months at Walter Reed last year after suffering pneumonia three times following knee surgery in February. He left the facility in mid-November.

Dole was first elected to the U.S. House in 1960 and to the Senate in 1968. He was President Gerald Ford's running mate in 1976 and was the Republican nominee for president in 1996, losing to Bill Clinton.


'App' tech slang voted 'Word of the Year'

PITTSBURGH (AP) -- The tech slang "app" was voted the 2010 "Word of the Year" Friday by the American Dialect Society, beating out Cookie Monster's "nom, nom, nom, nom."

The shortened slang term for a computer or smartphone application was picked by the linguists group as the word that best sums up the country's preoccupation last year.

"Nom" -- a chat-, tweet-, and text-friendly syllable that connotes "yummy food" -- was the runner-up. It derives from the Sesame Street character's sound as he devours cookies.

The vote came at a Pittsburgh hotel ballroom during the national conference of the Linguistic Society of America, an umbrella group that includes the Dialect Society. About 120 of the 1,000 conference attendees voted in the "competition" with neither side entirely satisfied.

Critics of "app" said the word was somewhat stale, while proponents said 2010 was the year the word became omnipresent. "Nom" supporters simply liked its cheeriness.

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