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THE NOONER for July 15, 2011

It was a busy day in the Capitol yesterday, with the Assembly and Senate passing a combined 133 bills before departing for recess.  Assembly Republicans stayed together and blocked ACA 6, which would require an initiative that costs more than $5 million to identify a funding source. HJTA's Jon Coupal called the bill a "horrible assault on direct democracy," while Assemblymember Tim Donnelly said it would put a lid on the steaming teapot across the state. 

However, the vast majority of bills considered yesterday were approved and sent to the governor, including several budget clean-up biils.  This included AB 130 (Cedillo), a watered down Dream Act, allowing public colleges and universities to provide private scholarships to certain undocumented students.

The dust-up between Anthony Portantino and his leadership continues.  For those not following, his staff is being placed on unpaid leave on October 21 because he has exceeded his approved office budget.  He argues that lots of people exceed their budgets, but he is being penalized for voting against the budget.  Yesterday, he submitted a Public Records Act request for the budgets and expenditures of all Assembly member and committee offices.  

Having his office shut down may not be the only reason for Portantino to be testy.  All three options being considered by the Redistricting Commission now draw Judy Chu and David Drier into the congressional seat he wants to run in (which is adjacent to Adam Schiff's district, where he lives).  While it could be a swing district in a tough election year for Dems, Chu would be a huge favorite if the maps hold.  As Paul Mitchell notes in today's Redistricting Report, the district would have the largest Asian citizen voting age population (30.99%) of any district in the contintental United States.

(Great timewaster for a quiet Friday: Berkeley's interactive mapping of the different redistricting plans.)

HAHN unSOLO: Paul also assesses the difficult situation facing Congresswoman-elect Janice Hahn. "The three sets of possible maps, which can be seen here, either put Hahn into a seat with Laura Richardson and Linda Sanchez or all the way up to Beverly Hills and Malibu where Henry Waxman fully expects to run for reelection."

Might Janice be rooting for the referendum threatened by the head of the state GOP?  Speaking of referenda, Dan Walters looks at the battle before the battle on the Amazon sales tax.

CARMAGEDDON IT: Beginning at 7pm tonight with complete closure at midnight, the 405 freeway between the 10 and the 101 will be closed as half of the Mulholland Bridge is torn down.  Fortunately, Ponch gave us adequate warning, but unfortunately, Jet Blue's $4 fares from Burbank to Long Beach are sold out.  And, yes, I'm originally from SoCal, where we use articles before our freeway numbers.

WEEKEND WEATHER AROUNDTHECAPITOL: 83/54, 84/55, 86/56.

The Legislature is gone and it's in the mid-80s.  Is it really July?

Have a great weekend!

Senate OKs Bill To Move California's Presidential Primary To June - Torey Van Oot @ blogs.sacbee.com
Californians won't choose their 2012 presidential nominees until June under legislation that's heading to Gov. Jerry Brown's desk.

State GOP Chairman Assails Redistricting Panel, Threatens Referendum - Timm Herdt @ vcstar.com
On the day when the Citizens Redistricting Commission had originally planned to put out a second draft of proposed political district maps, the panel Thursday found itself under sharp partisan attack from the state Republican Party, whose chairman asserted its process had been "overtaken by partisanship and incompetence."

Dan Walters: 'Amazon Tax' Bill Faces Epic Battle - Dan Walters @ sacbee.com
Financially, the so-called "Amazon tax" is a relatively tiny piece of the budget package that Democratic legislators and Gov. Jerry Brown enacted last month.

Anthony Portantino Demands Records To Fight 'Punishment' - Jim Sanders @ blogs.sacbee.com
Vowing to fight for his reputation, Assemblyman Anthony Portantino had his private attorney demand Assembly spending and office budget records Thursday from leaders of his own Democratic Party.

Easy Come, Easy Go - Paul Mitchell @ aroundthecapitol.com
Over the past several months we have reported on many districts that ousted or nested incumbents - but none have been as striking as this. On Tuesday voters elected Janice Hahn to Congress in a district that took in San Pedro, Torrance, up to Manhattan Beach and into Marina Del Rey. But then, within minutes of her victory speech, we saw the new congressional lines being "visualized" by the commission - and all were a disaster for the new Congresswoman.

Hancock Pushes 'Double Majority'Tax Measure - Josh Richman @ ibabuzz.com
State Senator Loni Hancock today introduced a proposed state constitutional amendment to let a simple majority of the Legislature place tax measures on the ballot for passage by a simple majority of voters.

Whooping-cough Reprieve Clears Legislature Without Hiccup - Jim Sanders @ blogs.sacbee.com
Legislation granting school districts 30 extra days after classes begin to verify whooping cough vaccinations of middle and high school students is headed to Gov. Jerry Brown.

Fishwrap: Carly & Dee Dee Meet Tony & John - calbuzz.com
“I’m pleased to welcome my friend Carly Fiorina to the NRSC team, where her many business and civic achievements will make her an invaluable leader and fundraiser during this critical election cycle,” said NRSC Chairman Sen. John Cornyn of Texas. “I look forward to working with Carly to elect strong Republican Senators who will finally put a stop to President Obama’s failed tax-and-spend agenda, and instead promote the economic growth and job creation Americans so badly need.”

Legislature Sends Adult Care Bill To Governor - Daniel Weintraub @ healthycal.org
The Legislature has finally sent Gov. Jerry Brown a bill passed as part of the budget package a month ago that is meant to save health services for older adults.

Sacramento-area Car Dealers Haven't Seen Effect Of Lower Sales Tax, Vehicle Fee - Mark Glover @ sacbee.com
Prolonged debate over the state budget produced a bargain on motor vehicles this month, but consumers have been slow to bite.

Newly Elected Janice Hahn May Find Trouble In New Congressional Maps - latimesblogs.latimes.com
The newest member of Congress could be among the most adversely affected by new political maps currently being considered by the state's redistricting commission. Democratic Congresswoman-elect Janice Hahn of San Pedro could find herself in a new district that runs...

UC Regents Vote To Increase Tuition - Paresh Dave @ blogs.sacbee.com
University of California regents today voted to raise tuition by about $1,070, sending the total cost to $12,192 for the upcoming school year.

California Dream Act Sent To Governor - Kathryn Baron @ toped.svefoundation.org
And they’re off! Bills flew through the senate and assembly chambers as lawmakers wrapped up as much business as possible before leaving for summer recess on Thursday afternoon. When they return on August 15th, the docket will still be full, but the fate of some key education bills is coming into sharper focus. Here’s where they stand.

Group Plans Sticker Campaign To Tie Pensions To The Economy - Paresh Dave @ blogs.sacbee.com
Looking to highlight the impact public employee pensions have on the state's economy, an association of the 31,000 retired state employees is turning to thousands of little blue stickers.

Tuition Hyperinflation - Jennifer Gollan @ baycitizen.org
The University of California is raising tuition -- again. The UC Board of Regents voted Thursday afternoon to increase tuition by 9.6 percent. The increase takes effect this fall.

Cheers! Senate Relaxes Beer Tasting Room Rules - Michael Gardner @ signonsandiego.com
Step aside ports. Make room for porters. The state Senate approved legislation Thursday that will make it easier and cheaper for craft beer breweries to open tasting rooms.

Senate Moves Forward With College Aid For Illegal Immigrants - latimesblogs.latimes.com
Illegal immigrants would be allowed to get privately financed student aid administered by state universities and colleges under legislation approved Thursday by the state Senate and sent to Gov. Jerry Brown. Brown is expected to approve the measure, which is...

Less Academics, More Narcissism by Heather Mac Donald - Steven Malanga, Heather Mac Donald, Victor Davis Hanson @ city-journal.org
California's budget crisis has reduced the University of California to near-penury, claim its spokesmen. "Our campuses and the UC Office of the President already have cut to the bone," the university system's vice president for budget and capital resources warned earlier this month, in advance of this week's meeting of the university's regents. Well, not exactly to the bone. Even as UC campuses jettison entire degree programs and lose faculty to competing universities, one fiefdom has remained virtually sacrosanct: the diversity machine.

UC Tuition Hits $12,192 - A 9.6 Percent Increase - Nanette Asimov @ sfgate.com
University of California regents voted Thursday to raise tuition by 9.6 percent - on top of an 8 percent increase already approved for this fall - over the objections of students who said they'll drown in debt. At the...

Where's Jerry Brown? Hiking - David Siders @ blogs.sacbee.com
It's been more than two weeks since Gov. Jerry Brown has had any substantial exchange with the Capitol press corps, calling reporters to his office to announce he reached a budget deal.

Democratic Lawyers Say Amazon's Referendum Against Sales Tax Is Unconstitutional - Dale Kasler @ sacbee.com
The dispute over Internet sales tax in California might wind up in court before it goes to the voters.

Gov. Brown Signs Bill Requiring Teaching Of Gay Accomplishments - latimesblogs.latimes.com
Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation Thursday that makes California the first state in the nation to require the inclusion of the contributions of gay, lesbian and transgender Americans in school history lessons and textbooks. The legislation addresses omissions in history...

As White House Talks Falter, Senate Works On Framework To Raise Debt Limit - washingtonpost.com
President Obama prepared Thursday to bring bipartisan talks over the debt to a close, as Senate leaders worked across party lines to craft an alternative strategy to raise the nation’s $14.3 trillion debt limit and avert a government default.

Median Home Price Drops In Sacramento-area Sales - sacbee.com
The Sacramento region's housing market continued to sag in June as median prices for single-family homes declined in all major counties.

S.F. Threatens Suit Over PG&E, Calls Regulation Lax - Jaxon Van Derbeken @ sfgate.com
State and federal regulators have long failed to enforce pipeline safety laws against Pacific Gas and Electric Co., the San Francisco city attorney's office said in a letter Thursday that threatens government agencies...