Around The Capitol

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THE NOONER for August 31, 2012

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It's do or die time for legislation, which must be approved by both houses by midnight tonight. 

My list of "most interesting" bills to watch today include:

The Bee editorializes that the pension package is a "best reform package that could have been achieved," while Dan Walters says it is just a ruse to get voters to support Proposition 30.

AB 5 (Fuentes)Assembly's teacher rating bill shelved [Jim Sanders @ SacBee]

David DePaolo blogs on the politics behind workers comp reform. [h/t Frank Russo]



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$$$: The governor picks up $750,000 for Prop. 30. 

VCSTAR EDITORIAL: Prop. 32 is a sham, deserves to lose in Nov. 6 election

FAREWELL (FOR NOW): When the gavel comes down tonight, we will be saying goodbye to many members who move on to greener pastures (or, in some cases, if all goes right, blue carpet). 


  • Elaine Alquist
  • Sam Blakeslee
  • Bob Dutton
  • Tom Harman
  • Christine Kehoe
  • Alan Lowenthal
  • Sharon Runner
  • Joe Simitian
  • Tony Strickland

(Does not include Gloria McLeod and Juan Vargas, both of whom are running for Congress, but whose Senate terms are not up.)


  • Julia Brownley
  • Gil Cedillo
  • Charles Calderon
  • Wilmer Amina Carter
  • Paul Cook
  • Mike Davis
  • Mike Eng
  • Nathan Fletcher
  • Felipe Fuentes
  • Warren Furutani
  • Martin Garrick
  • Linda Halderman
  • Mary Hayashi
  • Jared Huffman
  • Kevin Jeffries
  • Fiona Ma
  • Tony Mendoza
  • Jim Nielsen
  • Anthony Portantino
  • Jim Silva
  • Cameron Smyth
  • Jose Solario
  • Sandre Swanson
  • David Valadao

I am sure I have left someone out and, if so, my apologies!

DEPT OF CORRECTIONS: Anthony Cannella also voted for the driver's license bill, AB 2189 (Cedillo).


Jack Scott To Join Claremont University As Scholar In Residence
Dan Walters @
Jack Scott, a former state senator who is retiring this week after three years as chancellor of California's community college system, will become a "scholar in residence" at Claremont Graduiate University's School of Educational Studies, the university announced Thursday.

Whether Smokers Should Pay More Is Among The Questions In California Health Care Debate
Kevin Yamamura @
Should smokers pay more for health insurance? The issue was one of several that California lawmakers considered this week as they sent Gov. Jerry Brown bills that carry out the federal health care overhaul by 2014.

Poor Shade, Water Could Land Farmer In Jail Under Bill Sent To Governor
Jim Sanders @
Farmers could be jailed for failing to provide field workers with adequate shade or water under legislation sent to the governor Thursday.

Editorial: Pension bill not perfect, but a start toward reform
Given the political realities under California's Capitol dome, the pension measure awaiting final action in the Legislature today is probably the best reform package that could have been achieved. Nevertheless, lawmakers need to vet this measure as carefully as they can before they approve it and the public should be under no illusions. The changes enacted do not end the pension crisis that afflicts the state, local governments and school districts.

Bay Area's $200k Club: Government Retirees Won't Be Hit By State Pension Reform
Thomas Peele @
Call it the Bay Area's $200K club. More than 60 retired local government employees are members of the coveted group, each guaranteed pensions of more than $200,000 a year -- for the rest of their lives.

Brown And Christie Again -- This Time Its Pension Reform :: Fox&hounds
Brown declared that his measure would save $18 to $30 billion in 30 years if implemented. Christie said in his speech when he took on public sector unions to reform pension and health benefits he saved taxpayers $132 billion over 30 years.

Pension Overhaul Plan Falls Short
Dan Walters @
The new plan's promoters say it will reduce future pension obligations by tens of billions of dollars, but the basis for that assertion is squirrelly, and even if accurate, does little to reduce unfunded liabilities that are at least $250 billion and could be twice as high.

Limited Ban On Openly Carrying Rifles Heads To Governor Brown
A bill that would ban the public display of rifles and shotguns in most California cities and towns was on its way to the governor after the state Assembly approved it Wednesday over strenuous objections from several lawmakers.

California Bills Aimed At Better Worker Conditions Head To Gov. Jerry Brown
Jim Sanders @
Lawmakers on Thursday sent Gov. Jerry Brown a pair of bills intended to improve conditions for farmworkers, housekeepers and nannies.

California Lawmakers Consider Bailout For Inglewood Schools
On the last day of the legislative session, state lawmakers on Friday will consider approving $55 million in emergency funding to keep the Inglewood Unified School District operating.

Jerry Brown To Miss Democratic National Convention
David Siders @
Gov. Jerry Brown will not attend the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., next week, staying at the Capitol to review hundreds of bills sent to him as the Legislature concludes its session this week, spokesman Gil Duran said tonight.

Legislature Votes To Ban Sexual-orientation Conversion Therapy For Minors
California lawmakers ban gay conversion therapy for minors

From Party Pariah To Elder Statesman, Pete Wilson Still Draws A Crowd
David Siders @
Former Gov. Pete Wilson, who has not always enjoyed such an easygoing relationship with members of his own party, stood among them on a beachfront patio the other night, happy to see "so many old friends."

Driver's Licenses For "deferred Action" Immigrants Clear California Legislature
Jim Sanders @
By Jim Sanders

CalPERS revises estimate of pension reform savings
In a revised estimate, CalPERS today said Gov. Jerry Brown's pension reform plan would yield savings of $42 billion to $55 billion over 30 years.

GOP State Senate candidate passes on ‘no-tax’ pledge
State Senate candidate George Plescia of La Jolla is one of a handful of Republicans this year daring to say “no thank you” to no-tax pledges that have become a signature tenet of his party.

Bill Devotes $20m In Hidden Funds To State Parks - Ap State Wire News - The Sacramento Bee
Castle Crags State Park, with its namesake features looming large over the landscape near Dunsmuir and straddling the border of Shasta and Siskiyou counties, was one of 70 California State Parks that will were scheduled for closure due to budget cuts.

CA Woman Shares Story Of Mitt Romney, Sick Daughter At RNC
Torey Van Oot @
A California woman gave a tearful account of Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney's support for her family and their sick infant daughter as a speaker at tonight's Republican National Convention.

Assemblyman's Teacher Rating Bill Shelved
Jim Sanders @
Hotly contested legislation to create a new statewide teacher evaluation system was shelved Thursday night, one day before the Legislature adjourns for the year.

Legislators Pass Bills That Would Revive Redevelopment
California redevelopment funding may not be dead after all.

Romney Talks Faith, Vision At Convention - Sfgate
Democrats have tried to paint Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney as an elitist who is out of touch with the common American. "Americans have a choice, a decision," Romney told the delegates at the packed Tampa Bay Times Forum after delighting them by entering through the crowd and shaking hands up and down the aisles. Romney, who polls say lags behind President Obama in support among women and who during the campaign will lead a party that has been accused of launching a war on women, pointedly portrayed himself as someone who has supported and been supported by women. Finlayson recounted how Romney, as a church leader in Boston, attended to her family and her sick infant, folding her clothes and cooking her meals without seeking recognition or thanks. "When the world looks at Mitt Romney, they see him as the founder of a successful business, the leader of the Olympics or a governor," she said. When I see Mitt, I know him to be a loving father, man of faith and a caring and compassionate friend. Chris Lehane, a spokesman for Bill Clinton when he was president and a Democratic strategist, said Romney's attempt to remake his image, even with help from friends and warm biographic films, will not succeed in dissolving his record, or change his statements or an image hardened in many voters' minds. Aware of adageJohn Allan Peschong, a veteran California GOP organizer and fundraiser, said at the convention that the Romney team is keenly aware of the adage that "people vote for a candidate not for what they're against - but for what they're for."

Key Leaders At UC Davis Ag College Resign
Darrell Smith @
The top two leaders of the University of California, Davis' signature College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences have resigned their posts.

Landmark Community College Bill Heads To Governor | Edsource Today
The bill stems from the work of the Student Success Task Force, a panel established by the Legislature that developed 22 recommendations aimed at improving completion rates for students through a combination of financial and academic incentives, as well as reprioritizing resources.

California legislature poised for votes to reform pension, workers comp
Steven Harmon @
On a busy last day of the Legislative session, Gov. Jerry Brown says the two bills deserve special attention.