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Bay Area news briefs
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Cat rescuer facing criminal cruelty charges

OAKLAND (AP) — A California cat rescuer with nearly 100 felines in her Oakland home is facing criminal charges because most of the animals were sick or dying.

The San Francisco Chronicle says many of the cats inside 60-year-old Jan Van Dusen's home were emaciated and suffering from diarrhea and parasite infestations.

Oakland has no limit on the number of cats an individual can own, but there are laws prohibiting cruelty and neglect.

Animal control officers raided Van Dusen's home on Oct. 27 and confiscated 93 cats and two dogs. Sixteen cats were euthanized.

Van Dusen, who has pleaded not guilty, says she will fight the felony animal cruelty charge. There's a Jan. 23 hearing.

Dublin council calls for  new tobacco restrictions

DUBLIN (AP) — Finding a pack of cigarettes in the San Francisco Bay area city of Dublin could get a lot harder.

The Dublin City Council directed its staff Tuesday to develop new restrictions on tobacco sales to protect children. New rules are expected to be adopted later this year and make the product illegal in most of the city.

The Contra Costa Times reports the council wants to ban tobacco sales within 500 or 1,000 feet of homes, schools, parks, day-care centers and other places where children gather. It also wants to require stores to have licenses to sell tobacco.

Council members suggest the ban could be phased in over three years for existing businesses.

In 2006, Dublin became the first Bay Area city to declare secondhand smoke a public nuisance.

Oakland gives layoff  notices to 2,500 city workers

OAKLAND (AP) — Oakland officials are sending layoff notices to nearly 2,500 employees as the city moves to cut costs to try to make up for the loss of redevelopment money.

The city announced Wednesday that with the state cutting redevelopment funds across California, it won't have the money to pay the salaries of 1,464 full-time and more than 1,000 part-time or temporary employees.

City spokeswoman Karen Boyd says because the city is required to give a 10-day notice if a job is eliminated by the Jan. 31, not every employee who receives a layoff notice will be out a job.

Police and fire staff are exempt from layoffs due to a clause in their contracts.

The city says the loss of the redevelopment funds creates a potential annual budget gap ranging from $25 to $30 million, although the exact size of the deficit has not yet been fully determined.

DNA on slain woman's nylons matches Naso

SAN RAFAEL (AP) — DNA matching that of a serial killing suspect was found on pantyhose worn by a woman found slain in rural Northern California in 1977.

The Marin Independent Journal reports that criminalist Tony Nguyen of the Contra Costa County Sheriff's Office testified Wednesday in the preliminary hearing of 78-year-old Joseph Naso.

Nguyen said Naso's DNA was recovered from semen on the hosiery worn by 18-year-old Roxene Roggasch.

Roggasch is one of four women Naso is charged with murdering in the 1970s and 1990s