- Associated Press - Friday, June 12, 2015

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - Gov. Jerry Brown has named one of his top spokesmen to lead regulation over California’s gambling industry.

The governor’s office announced Friday the appointment of Jim Evans as chairman of the California Gambling Control Commission.

Evans, a Democrat, served as a spokesman for the state’s Business, Transportation and Housing Agency before joining Brown’s team in 2013. He has also run communications for Democratic senators, including former Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg.

Evans replaces Richard Lopes, who announced his retirement in May amid allegations that a former top executive improperly contacted the agency and received confidential information about investigations.

Evans will lead the five-member commission over licensing of the state’s $10 billion gambling industry, primarily tribal casinos and card rooms.

The position requires Senate confirmation and pays $138,867 a year.

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