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THE NOONER for May 26, 2015

 

 

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California's Water Security Can't Wait


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END THE SUSPENSE! This week marks the end of the Appropriations committees' work. Both houses have large "suspense" files that will be considered on Thursday. That will then end committee work to give way to budget negotiations and lengthy floor sessions.  The house-of-origin floor deadline is June 5.

Dan Walters writes, though, that most of the budget work is done in secrecy now through the crafting of trailer bills.

MONEY MATTERS: Tax proposals by unions, activists may loosen Brown's grip on budget [Chris Megerian @ LAT] - "Unions and grass-roots organizers are considering an effort to, over Brown's objections, extend the higher taxes that the governor persuaded voters to go along with in 2012. They are also pondering a proposal to alter the state's landmark restrictions on property taxes, to raise more revenue from commercial interests."

... California gas tax increase: Is this the year Jerry Brown pushes it through? [Jessica Calefati @ MercNews] - "[T]his year he appears ready to take on Mission Impossible -- getting Democrats and Republicans to agree to increase the state's gas tax to fix California's crumbling roads and bridges."

BLURRED LINES: Supreme Court to hear case that could change how voting districts are drawn [David G. Savage @ LAT]:

The Supreme Court has agreed to consider a major shift in how political districts are drawn nationwide by counting only citizens who can vote, not the total population.

If the justices eventually rule for the conservative group that appealed the issue, the decision could dilute the political power of Latinos, especially in large states such as Texas, California and Florida.

AD16 (Tri-Valley): Sbranti won't seek Assembly rematch, going to work for Swalwell instead [Josh Richman @ MercNews] - "Former Dublin Mayor Tim Sbranti, a Democrat who lost November's 16th Assembly District race to Republican Catharine Baker, won't challenge Baker in 2016, he said Wednesday."

INTO THE 21st CENTURY? Didn’t vote? State moving to make it easier to cast a ballot [John Wildermuth @ SFChron] - "Among the ideas that California’s new secretary of state hopes will boost anemic turnout: automatically registering people through the Department of Motor Vehicles and mailing a ballot to every registered voter."

STAND DOWN: California Republicans Soften Tone On Immigration [Ben Adler @ CPR] - "Immigration debates in the California Legislature aren’t what they used to be. Republican anti-immigrant rhetoric is largely gone. Instead, GOP lawmakers are softening their criticism. Often, they aren't even voting no."

NOTED: The NRCC has gotten quite a bit quieter about congressional races in California as it is becoming more of a status quo election. It is increasingly likely that there will be no party changes in congressional races in California in 2016. The biggest possibiiity now could be CA24 (Santa Barbara)--the Capps seat--but even that may be a longshot for Republicans in a presidential year. 

OFFICE ROMANCE: Thad Cochran marries longtime aide [Louis Nelson @ Politico] - "Mississippi Sen. Thad Cochran married his longtime executive assistant, Kay Webber, over the holiday weekend, according to a report from the Clarion-Ledger in Jackson, Miss."

If you sent me an email over the last ten days and I haven't responded, please send again. I told you about my dead laptop, but I also had a lost cell phone. For those asking "why didn't you use Find My iPhone?"...I tried, but it doesn't work if your battery is dead (good reminder to keep your phone fully charged).

I use two-factor authentication, meaning even after I got the new laptop, I couldn't access Gmail without my cellphone. Anyway, I'm back up and running with a new laptop and cellphone.

Oh, and I found my lost cellphone while washing my sheets over the weekend. It was UNDER the fitted sheet. Not sure how that happened!

#GHOSTS OF CAKEDAYS PAST: KimChi Nguyen (Monday) 

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Caring for California


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**CLASSIFIEDS**

  • California League of Bond Oversight Committees (CaLBOC): Fourth Annual CaLBOC Statewide Conference "Value in a Changing World" – Tuesday, May 19, 2015, 9:30 – 3 PM in Downtown Sacramento at the California Chamber of Commerce – Speakers include Michael Cohen, Director of the California Department of Finance, Don Mullinax, Certified Fraud Examiner and prior Inspector General of LAUSD and Mac Taylor, California Legislative Analyst.  More information and registration available here
  • The Center for Responsible Lending has an opening for a Policy and Government Affairs Associate/Counsel in Oakland, CA.  The associate will work with stakeholders in California and other Western states to develop and advance strategies for legislative and regulatory reform at the state level to prevent predatory lending practices.   If you would like to know more about this opportunity, please visit www.self-help.org/jobs-internships.html.  If you are interested in applying for this position, please submit your resume and cover letter describing why you are a fit for this position to hiringmanager@self-help.org

  • Job Seeker, Taylor Bazley
    Soon to be alumnus of the Coro Fellowship in Public Affairs is seeking challenging full time opportunities for employment based out of the Los Angeles area in the sectors of electoral campaigns, non-profits, advocacy, government, consulting, labor, or business. Please email taylorbazley@gmail.com; past experience can be viewed at tinyurl.com/l2g742q
  • Friends of the CCC Please support the CA Conservation Corps Foundation at the 2nd Annual “Friends of the CCC” fundraiser on May 12th, 5:30pm at the Sutter Club.  Enjoy food and cocktails, and bid on silent auction items including lunch with the State Treasurer or State Controller, a week in Mexico, a weekend on Tomales Bay and more! Tickets are $50 per person.  For more information go to www.cccfoundation.net or call Cindy Laubacher at (916) 771-3328.
  • Job Opening: Associate for Political Consulting Firm

    San Francisco political consulting firm, specializing in revenue measures for public agencies including, school districts, community colleges, cities and other special districts, seeks a qualified Associate to support our firm’s client services consulting team. Interested candidates: please submit a cover letter, resume and writing sample to ssternbenoit@tbwb.com
  • Vice President.  Fiona Hutton & Associates Inc., a Los Angeles-based strategic communications and public affairs firm representing corporate, trade association, government, non-profit and political clients involved in complex and often controversial issues, is expanding its team and immediately hiring a Vice President to manage the agency’s high-profile and often complex clients. More info: fionahuttonassoc.com/pdf/FHA_VP_Announcement_040915.pdf

 


 

TOP HEADLINES ON AROUNDTHECAPITOL.COM AS OF 12:00PM
A Look At Where California Assembly Speakers Send Money
Associated Press @
sacbee.com
Speakers of the California Assembly have discretion over how to spend the legislative body's roughly $150 million annual operating budget, including on services that have nothing to do with lawmaking. The spending is not subject to public hearings or vote.

Tax Proposals By Unions, Activists May Loosen Brown's Grip On Budget
latimes.com
When it comes to California's roller-coaster finances, Gov. Jerry Brown has bent lawmakers and voters to his will, rejecting new spending programs, passing a temporary tax hike and strengthening the state's rainy-day fund.

San Bernardino Exit Plan Cuts Some Pension Costs
Ed Mendel @
calpensions.com
A San Bernardino plan to exit bankruptcy follows the path of the Vallejo and Stockton exit plans, cutting bond debt and retiree health care but not pensions. Then it veers off in a new direction: contracting for fire, waste management and other services.

Tax proposals by unions, activists may loosen Brown's grip on budget
latimes.com
When it comes to California's roller-coaster finances, Gov. Jerry Brown has bent lawmakers and voters to his will, rejecting new spending programs, passing a temporary tax hike and strengthening the state's rainy-day fund.

California Gas Tax Increase: Is This The Year Jerry Brown Pushes It Through?
Jessica Calefati @
mercurynews.com
But this year he appears ready to take on Mission Impossible -- getting Democrats and Republicans to agree to increase the state's gas tax to fix California's crumbling roads and bridges.

Opinion: Misdirection On California Budget Bills Is Disgraceful
Dan Walters @
sacbee.com
While those and other issues are ironed out, the late stages of the budget cycle include a less visible and somewhat unseemly activity – the drafting of so-called budget trailer bills.

UC San Diego May Lose Art Gallery
Angela Carone @
kpbs.org
Funding for the 50-year-old UC San Diego University Art Gallery has been cut and its only full-time staffer let go after months of debate about budget priorities. There are no exhibits scheduled for next academic year, leaving the future of the space uncertain.

Will Ryu Stir The Pot Or Play Ball With Wesson?
David Zahniser @
latimes.com
For the last two months, Los Angeles City Council President Herb Wesson was a reliable ally of Carolyn Ramsay, helping her as she ran in last week's election for the seat being vacated by her former boss, Councilman Tom LaBonge.

Obama Urges Senate To Work To Preserve Nsa Access To Phone Data
latimes.com
President Obama urged the Senate on Tuesday to work during its recess to renew the government’s authority to track terrorists through phone data before it expires at midnight Sunday.

States Struggle To Hire Cybersecurity Experts
Jon Ortiz @
sacbee.com
State governments, which routinely handle tax records, Social Security numbers and other sensitive data, are struggling to hire cybersecurity experts with the skills to ward off data breaches and stymie hackers.

California Builds Emergency Barrier In Drought To Protect Water Supplies
Amy Quinton @
capradio.org
In a normal year, fresh water flowing from rivers into the Delta pushes back tidal ocean water. In this fourth year of drought, not enough water is flowing down river.

Supreme Court to hear case that could change how voting districts drawn
David G. Savage @
latimes.com
The Supreme Court has agreed to consider a major shift in how political districts are drawn nationwide by only counting citizens who can vote, not the total population.

Sea Mammals Brought To Seaworld From Oil Spill Remain In Guarded Condition
Tony Perry @
latimes.com
Oiled sea mammals brought to SeaWorld San Diego from the Refugio State Beach oil spill "remain in guarded condition," park officials said Monday.

Obama Urges Senate to Renew Phone Record Collection Program
rss.nytimes.com
With the Patriot Act set to expire, the president urged lawmakers to act, but passage of a bill appeared unlikely.

Supreme Court To Hear Case That Could Change How Voting Districts Are Drawn
latimes.com
The Supreme Court has agreed to consider a major shift in how political districts are drawn nationwide by counting only citizens who can vote, not the total population.

O.C. College District Facing Criticism Over Deal In Saudi Arabia
Ruben Vives @
latimes.com
After years of competing with other college districts in Orange County for donor money, the Rancho Santiago Community College District thought it had struck upon a winning idea.

Oakland mayor doesn't support using tax dollars to keep Raiders
Austin Knoblach @
latimes.com
Although she said last year she would "fight like hell" to keep the Raiders, Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf is also vowing not to use public funds to prevent the franchise from leaving.

Contested Words in Health Law May Have Been Left by Mistake
rss.nytimes.com
Democrats and Republicans say a clause affecting subsidies, now before the Supreme Court, was an inadvertent product of a sloppy merging of versions.

Conservative's win of Polish presidency likely to boost party this fall
latimes.com
The old and the young joined forces in Poland to hand a surprising victory to conservative populist Andrzej Duda, whose presidential campaign promises included rolling back the retirement age and wresting control of domestic economic matters from the European Union.

First Draft: Ann Kirkpatrick to Challenge John McCain for Arizona Senate
rss.nytimes.com
Representative Ann Kirkpatrick enters the race as a likely underdog to Senator John McCain, the five-term Republican who is running for re-election.

California Students Shouldn't Get Placed In Fake Classes
Editorial @
latimes.com
When it was revealed that students at Jefferson High School in South Los Angeles and other schools were being assigned to "classes" in which nothing was actually taught, many people wondered how this could happen. Isn't it against the law to stick kids in fake classes and deprive them of basic educational opportunities?

California Puts Medical Dispensaries In Catch-22 Situation
Steven Greenhut @
utsandiego.com
California authorities are notoriously creative when it comes to wringing as much tax revenue as possible out of the state’s businesses, yet are leaving real money on the table because of their failure to come up with a simple way for medical marijuana dispensaries to pay their tab.