Around The Capitol

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THE NOONER for November 14, 2014

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Happy Friday! Today at 1pm, we're scheduled to get an update from LA County, which is being watched for the AD39 race where Raul Bocanegra (D-inc.) trails Patty Lopez (D) by 7 votes.

CORN SYRUP TAX: I haven't covered it before, but Berkeley approved the first-in-the-nation soda tax last week. The biggest funder of the campaign was former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg. San Francisco's measure did not pass. While it received 55.6% yes votes, it needed a two-third majority.


#CAKEDAY: Birthday greetings to Patrick Blacklock, David Hadley, Amy Howorth and Amanda Levy!






  • The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network is seeking an experienced well-qualified advocate to direct its state legislative program. The State Legislative Director will serve as ACS CAN’s primary lobbyist at the State Capitol responsible for developing and executing its legislative agenda. Requires expertise in health policy, especially the Affordable Care Act, Medi-Cal and other access to care issues, and substantial experience working at State Capitol as legislative staff and/or lobbyist. Minimum salary: $85,000. For further details and to apply please visit:

  • The Future of California Elections seeks a strategic, collaborative leader to serve as Executive Director. The ideal candidate would have considerable experience achieving strategic goals from a policy and/or non-profit setting. Could be based in Sacramento, Los Angeles or elsewhere in CA. Competitive salary and benefits. Full details here: Deadline: November 14.



Lobbyist Fined For Failing To Collect Campaign Fees From Legislators
Capitol lobbyist Richie Ross has agreed to pay $5,000 in fines to the state ethics agency for not collecting campaign consulting fees from two lawmakers, thus improperly putting them under the personal obligation to a lobbyist, officials said Monday.

California Local Governments Have Spent $45 Million On Spying Technology, Report Says | California County News
A new report from the American Civil Liberties Union attempts to document for the first time what local governments in California are spending for what the ACLU considers to be spying on its citizens.

In California, Close Races Test Resolve Of Campaigns | The Sacramento Bee
Christopher Cadelago @
Be sure to include your name, daytime phone number, address, name and phone number of legal next-of-kin, method of payment, and the name of the funeral home/crematory to contact for verification of death.

Might California’s Low Voter Turnout Spark 2016 Initiative Frenzy? | News Fix | Kqed News
Here’s one to ponder as we await the tallying of tens of thousands of uncounted ballots: Will this fall’s voter malaise in California plant the seeds for a ballot initiative frenzy in two years?

Supervisor Breed backs off criticism of fire chief
Breed has been a vocal critic of the fire chief's handling of the agency's troubled ambulance division, raising questions since the beginning of this year about ambulance response times and, just two months ago, calling for Hayes-White to step down. In both instances, the open board position was in a district where a progressive had been elected — although in the case of Chiu, he tacked toward the center after becoming supervisor — leaving the moderate Lee to ponder the electability of his appointee if he picked someone more aligned with his political views. [...] the issue that really doomed Olague’s political career — her vote, in defiance of the mayor, to reinstate Mirkarimi as sheriff in 2012 after a misdemeanor domestic violence conviction — could also play into the mayor’s pick for District Three. Some City Hall insiders see progressive Supervisor Jane Kim as having five of the six votes needed to be elected the next board president and believe Wu would give Kim the final vote needed. “(The Mirkarimi) vote speaks volumes in terms of (Kim's) lack of leadership,” said Andrea Shorter, a member of the city's Commission on the Status of Women who also managed independent political campaigns that opposed Olague’s election and Supervisor David Campos in his unsuccessful Assembly race against Chiu. Friends of longtime San Francisco tenants advocate Ted Gullicksen will gather Sunday to say goodbye to the activist and progressive leader, a month after his unexpected death. Gullicksen, head of the San Francisco Tenants Union and a tireless advocate for renters' rights, helped shape dozens of pro-tenant city policies over his quarter century in San Francisco.

John Garamendi Withdraws From Ranking Member Race
Rep. John Garamendi, D-Calif., has withdrawn his bid for ranking member on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.

Cal State Trustees Approve Budget, Pay Raises
California State University trustees approved a new budget Thursday for the 23-campus system and boosted the pay of top executives. The trustees also heard from students about campus fees but decisions on those won't be made until January.

Immigration News: Boehner Will Fight 'tooth And Nail' Against Obama's Executive Amnesty
Updated 5:58 p.m. | Speaker John A. Boehner said Republicans will fight “tooth and nail” against President Barack Obama’s plans to act on immigration by himself, and didn’t rule out a government shutdown.

Senate GOP taps Deborah Gonzalez as caucus chief of staff
A week after getting snubbed by the Assembly GOP Caucus, Deborah Gonzalez has found a bigger better deal in the State Senate.

California Senate Leader Proposes Big Boost In Nonresident UC Tuition
In his first major policy proposal since taking over as Senate president pro tem last month, De Leon said he was concerned that some Californians may be unable to afford the UC system or get into the UC campus of their choice because of an increase in students from other states, as well as from foreign countries including China and India.

Lawsuit Accuses Bp Of Overcharging California Agencies For Natural Gas
British energy giant BP , which supplies natural gas to California state agencies under a $250-million annual contract, overcharged the state by as much as $300 million over eight years, a lawsuit contends.

Education Secretary Visits San Diego To Check Up On Common Core Standards |
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House Passes Controversial Keystone Xl Pipeline Bill
The House of Representatives approved construction of the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline on Friday. The vote, along with a similar Senate proposal scheduled for a vote Tuesday, foreshadows the first post-election legislative showdown between the White House and Congress.

L.A. Lawmakers Press For Action On Fracking Ban Despite New Report
Two lawmakers who want Los Angeles to bar hydraulic fracturing and other kinds of "unconventional drilling" at oil and gas wells are pushing back after city staffers cast doubt on the idea, urging them to swiftly draw up rules that would bar such practices.

Two Votes For Ranked-choice Voting In L.A.
For special elections to fill a vacancy, this method, also known as "instant runoff" voting, reduces the time that residents are without representation. Under ranked-choice voting, the vacancy for the District 1 Los Angeles Unified School District Board of Education seat would have been filled on June 3. Instead, voters were without representation until the August 12 runoff.

Homeland Security Head Aims To Build Trust In L.A. Muslim Community
Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson met Thursday with American Muslim leaders who've raised concerns about government surveillance, initiatives to combat extremism and treatment during airport security screenings.

Going solo on immigration: Obama weighs reform options
Shortly before President Obama left for Asia last weekend, aides gave him an ambitious list of potential actions he can order to change enforcement of immigration laws without congressional approval.

Governors Team Up To Tackle Drought Crisis | Fate Of The State: California Drought 2014 | Bakersfield Now - News, Weather And Sports

The 10 Most Interesting New Members Of Congress
Colin Daileda @
Hundreds of elections took place across the country, and most of the victors will remain largely anonymous outside of their immediate jurisdiction. But a few of the new members of Congress have biographies that stand out.

Same-Sex Couples Petition Supreme Court on Right to Marriage
After a lower-court ruling upholding bans on gay marriage, advocates want the Supreme Court to rule on the constitutionality of same-sex marriages.

Obamacare 2.0: Open Enrollment Period Kicks Off Saturday
Tracy Seipel @
She tried once or twice to enroll on her computer, but got frustrated by website glitches. And she didn't follow through.

Dorner Report Finds Concerns Over Bias Within LAPD
A Los Angeles Police Department review of its discipline system prompted by the Christopher Dorner rampage found widespread concerns among officers and civilians that the agency discriminates based on gender, ethnicity and rank, according to a report reviewed by The Times.

Weary March Into Corrective Action Continues In Ca :: Si&a Cabinet Report :: The Essential Resource For Superintendents And The Cabinet
Tom Chorneau @
Although federally-directed intervention has become a thing of the past in 43 states, most local educational agencies in California are still subject to the sanctions. The adoption of the Common Core and the introduction of new statewide assessments have softened the impact, but under federal law a growing list of districts must be identified as failing to meet NCLB benchmarks and accept corrective action measures.