Around The Capitol

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THE NOONER for March 9, 2012


  • CD26 (Ventura) - removed David Pollock (D)
  • AD06 (Roseville) - added Andy Pugno (R)
  • AD74 (Newport Beach) - removed Joe Carchio (R)

TWEET DU JOUR: @pourmecoffee "Employers hooking up with employees at increasing pace. What sluts."

CLOSING TIME: Today at 5pm, filing for 153 state legislative and congressional districts will close--or not. County clerks are scratching their heads while saying that it's up to the Secretary of State to determine whether or not an incumbent has filed by the close today. In the end, expect most seats to be left open for filing through Wednesday to avoid any legal challenges. From what I can tell, there is no definition of the word "incumbent" in the Elections Code. Is Joe Baca an incumbent in Congress? Yes. Is he an incumbent for the 35th congressional district? No. 

Anyway, pay your fees or get your sigs in by COB today, just to be safe.

Whenever it occurs, I'm ready for the filing deadline. We'll be able to actually look at the races rather than dealing with candidate Hokey Pokey.


Consumer Watchdog -- or Lapdog for Special Interests?

Watch the new video exposing the grandstanding "consumer" group that's funded by special interest groups to do its dirty work, collects millions in state fees through a self-serving provision, and pays its founder more than $600,000 per year.

Click here for the video

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COURT PARKING: Darrell Steinberg said Thursday that he had no intention to refer Charles Calderon's AB 1208 to a policy committee. The bill is the hotly contested court administration bill that has drawn weird allegiances and squeeked through the Assembly with 41 votes. It's noteworthy that Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye, the chief opponent of the bill, and Steinberg were both 1984 graduates of UC Davis's King Hall School of Law.

Speaking of law school, the market has gotten so bad that law students have now taken to running for Congress (Gill, Boutte) instead of participating in on-campus interviews.

SPORTS AUTHORITY: When Jerry Brown sat down with the Bee's editorial board yesterday, he gave a "don't ask me about that" answer to a question of how he felt about the Sacramento arena deal to keep the Kings. Meanwhile, Oakland is scrambling to save its three professional teams and is openly grumbling about the elimination of redevelopment, which they hoped to use to save the teams.

IN THE CROSSHAIRS: In the Fish and Game controversy, it appears that the hunter has become the hunted.

AURAL PLEASURE: John Myers is joined on the Capital Notes Podcast by Mariso Lagos and Anthony York to chat about the ballot measure quandary.

EYE-CANDY: The History of Animated GIFs [h/t]

That's it...I'm exhausted. Writing from LA again this morning, catching a morning flight to Tahoe, home to Davis tonight, and back to LA tomorrow. Enjoy your weekend!


Torlakson Calls Jerry Brown's Spending Cut Triggers 'blatantly Unfair'
Tom Torlakson, the state superintendent of schools, said Thursday that while he supports Gov. Jerry Brown's tax increase ballot measure, he considers Brown is being "blatantly unfair" to schools in targeting them for spending cuts should voters reject new taxes.

Dan Walters: Redistricting, Top-two Primary Change California's Election Game
Dan Walters @
Independent redistricting and the top-two primary system are game changers in 120 legislative and 53 congressional districts. We're only beginning to learn how the political dynamics are evolving.

Plaintiff Challenging Healthcare Law Went Bankrupt & With Unpaid Medical Bills
David G. Savage @
Mary Brown, the lead plaintiff challenging President Obama's healthcare law, went bankrupt with her husband with unpaid medical bills. Administration lawyers say it's an example of why an insurance mandate is needed to prevent "uncompensated care that will ultimately be paid by others."

Unions Work To Deny Voters Say In Local Pension Issues :: Fox&hounds
Mayor Chuck Reed has been fighting to put San Jose on a better financial footing by introducing pension reform. Projections are the pension debt could reach $650-million a year in San Jose in a worst case scenario. Union leaders claim that estimates of the city pension debt are exaggerated. Union officials say the estimate is hundreds of millions of dollars out of whack and they want the state to investigate.

What Deficit? Legal Mountain Lion Hunt Dominates State Capitol - Oc Watchdog : The Orange County Register
Once again, California faces a budget crisis. Revenues are projected to come in lower than anticipated. The governor and special interest groups are sparring over competing tax measures. Angry college students are occupying the Capitol.

Medical marijuana advocates drop initiative drive, turn to media campaign
Medical marijuana advocates are dropping efforts to qualify a November ballot initiative to regulate California's dispensary industry and instead plan a media campaign to lobby the Legislature to tackle the issue.

Jerry Brown: 'I Don't Know' About Arena for Sacramento Kings
David Siders @
Two days after the Sacramento City Council approved a financing plan to build a $391 million arena for the Sacramento Kings, Gov. Jerry Brown was asked today for his opinion.

Ap Newsbreak: CA Study Views High-risk Inmate Move
Don Thompson @
The state can safely house some maximum-security inmates in lower-level prisons, a development that could save taxpayers money, according to a University of California study obtained by The Associated Press.

Villaraigosa Pushes Gay Marriage Legalization On Democrats' Platform
Shelby Grad @
Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, serving as chairman of the 2012 Democratic National Convention, called for the party's platform to push for the legalization of gay marriage.

Jerry Brown Predicts Ongoing Budget Problems, "Finger-pointing" If His Tax Measures Fails
David Siders and Kevin Yamamura @
Gov. Jerry Brown told The Bee’s editorial board that time is short for budget proposals: “We’ve got to get the truth out and what the consequences are.”

Poll: Millionaires Tax Stands Best Chance Of Approval In November
California millionaires tax has best shot of passing in November, poll says. Advocates of a California millionaires tax contend their initiative will survive on a crowded ballot.

The Swarm: Jerry Brown Is Appalled By GOP Primary Birth Control Talk
Dan Morain @
Gov. Jerry Brown has one word for the Republicans running for president: "Appalling."

Podcast: From Poems To Polls
John Myers @
Governor Jerry Brown sent out a favorite poem this week along with his official proclamation of Arbor Day in California. If only this complicated election season in which he will play a major role could be described as elegantly...

Jerry Brown
David Siders @
Gov. Jerry Brown, in an increasingly public effort to clear the November ballot of competing tax measures, said this afternoon that his own initiative to raise taxes could survive the presence of one of those other proposals, but likely not the other, more popular "millionaires tax."

California Legislative Committee Approves Audit Of Water Rates
Hector Becerra @
Responding to complaints about rising bills from working-class L.A. County communities, a state legislative committee approves an audit to examine how a number of local water agencies set rates and whether misuse of public money is driving up costs.

Official Caught In Mountain Lion Controversy May Be Removed As Fish And Game President
Science @
Although state lawmakers are wavering on whether to hold a vote to remove him from the Fish and Game Commission, Dan Richards fellow commissioners have started the process to pull him as president of the panel

CSUF Journalism Students, Teacher Slam FUSD
Heather Somerville @
A group of California State University, Fresno, journalism students and their instructor publicly criticized Fresno Unified School District on Wednesday for repeatedly blocking access to public information and attempting to stymie their reporting efforts.

Read the arguments in John Chiang's battle with the Legislature
Today's lead item in The Bee's Buzz column gave a snippet of the legal wrestling going on in Controller John Chiang's battle with fellow Democrats in the Legislature over his move to withhold their pay during last year's budget debate.

How A $1,000 Test Could Destroy The Health-insurance Industry
The New York Times reports that the cost of sequencing an individual genome will soon be less than $1,000. That’s not nothing, but given what most health care costs, it’s not much. And it means that an individual mandate — or something much like it — is inevitable.

Community Colleges In Line For Federal Largesse
Jessica Philipps @
California, home to a quarter of the nation's community college students, could reap huge benefits from President Obama's $8 billion plan to pair local businesses and schools.

California medical pot backers drop ballot plan for regulatory scheme
Medical marijuana advocates are dropping efforts to qualify a November ballot initiative to regulate California's dispensary industry and instead plan a media campaign to lobby the Legislature to tackle the issue.

Boehner Tries To Keep Budget From Becoming Election Year Issue
For months, congressional Republicans have hammered Senate Democrats for failing to pass a budget. Now, with their majority position on the line in the November elections, GOP House members are having budget troubles of their own.