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THE Nooner for December 15, 2016






¡Buenos dias mis amigos! For the SacTown folks, I hope you're staying dry. My mom in Portland called me last night to tell me that it was snowing heavily (for Portland) and she wished I was there to have a snowall fight with her, as she remembers how much I loved the snow up there growing up when we'd have Christmas at my grandmother's house.

CA34 (Los Angeles): In yesterday's discussion about the possible special election dates for Xavier Becerra's congressional seat, the timelines assumed that Becerra resigned from the House the first week of January following Kamala Harris's swearing-in. Of course, Becerra is unlikely to resign until confirmed, as required, by majorities of both the State Senate and Assembly. Honestly, we have no idea how fast the Legislature will act on his confirmation.

He's not controversial with the Democratic supermajorities, and with those supermajorities, there's nothing Republicans can do to slow down the process. Also, there's no requirement to have committee hearings. There could be a quick perfunctuary Rules Committee hearing, or they may wish to send it to the Judiciary Committees, which would slow down the process. So, take the dates with a grain of salt and understand they could be pushed back, pushing back the possible special election for AD51.

Also, the Congressional swearing-ins will take place on January 3, since January 2 is a federal holiday to give you one more day to recover.

AD51 (Los Angeles): Some of the names sent to me by readers about possible candidates should Jimmy Gomez win the congressional seat include:

  • LACCD trustee Mike Fong
  • Former LA councilmember Ed Gomez
  • A few neighborhood councilmembers

None of these possible candidates have publicly said they are interested as to not to offend/jynx Gomez.

SHOWDOWN! California, Uber in legal showdown over self-driving cars [Justin Pritchard and Michael Liedtke @ AP] - "Uber is riding its self-driving cars into a legal showdown with California regulators. The ride-hailing company is refusing to obey demands by the state's Department of Motor Vehicles that it immediately stop picking up San Francisco passengers in self-driving cars."

If I were Uber, I'm not sure I'd pick San Francisco to start with the self-driving cars. It's not the driverless cars I worry about, but the other drivers, pedestrians who don't care about crosswalks, and the total non-uniformity of the city's streets. "Uber, take me down Lombard." 

Instead, why not pick a city with a grid, such as downtown Sac? Much easier--if you agree with the concept.

On a similar note, on Tuesday I mentioned taking public transportation, Uber or Lyft to the mayoral swearing-in. I apologize for omitting taxis. Honestly, in Sac, I only think of pick ups from the L Street locations or from the airport out. Anyway, I apologize.

CALEXIT? Jerry Brown strikes defiant tone: ‘California will launch its own damn satellite’ [Christopher Cadelago @ SacBee] - "Gov. Jerry Brown, rallying a room of scientists Wednesday with his most heated rhetoric yet on the topic, suggested California would defy the federal government should President-elect Donald Trump impede the state’s efforts to thwart climate change. . . “And, if Trump turns off the satellites, California will launch its own damn satellite,” he added. “We’re going to collect that data.”"

GOV: Gavin Newsom praises Ashley Swearengin; learns she won’t challenge him for governor [Christopher Cadelago @ SacBee] - ". . . [Gavin] Newsom added, “It’s not lost on me she may be running against me for governor. So I say that lovingly.” After the [California Economic Summit] event, [Fresno Mayor Ashley] Swearengin, the incoming president and chief executive of the Central Valley Community Foundation, said she has no interest in the governorship, despite being held up as one of her party’s few rising stars who could compete statewide."

The bad news for Newsom about this is that it increases the likelihood that the general will be Newsom vs. John Chiang--a Dem-on-Dem general.

OBAMACARE DEALMAKERS: Democrats open to replacing Obamacare [Burgess Everett and Jennifer Haberkorn @ Politico] - "Interviews with more than a half-dozen Democratic senators spanning the party's ideological spectrum suggest the Republican strategy may not be far-fetched. As harshly partisan as the entire Obamacare experience has been, replacing it could draw bipartisan backing, as long as the changes are more adjustment than overhaul."

WE DON'T GIVE A DAMN! Covered California extends signup deadline; health advocates vow to fight repeal of Obamacare [Claudia Buck @ SacBee] - "Ignore the political uncertainty swirling around Obamacare: If you want health insurance coverage in California starting Jan. 1, sign up this week. That’s the message this week from officials at Covered California, the state’s official marketplace for the Affordable Care Act. Following a recent rush of new enrollees, officials extended the signup deadline until midnight Saturday for those who want their coverage to start Jan. 1"

Covered California sent out an email to participants this morning saying don't worry about the federal rhetoric--we've got you covered through 2017.

A full repeal could threaten up to $20 billion in federal funds, although that seems unlikely. "Repeal and replace" now sounds like "tweak and claim victory."

MOVIN' ON UP: Economic Summit Tackles Upward Mobility [Joel Fox @ Fox&Hounds] - "At the California Economic Summit, a project of California Forward and the California Stewardship Network, standard solutions were offered: better education and good jobs. Easier said than done, especially in an era of swiftly advancing technology."

AGUA, POR FAVOR. A tale of two droughts in California: Wetter in the north, still bone dry in the south [Matt Stevens @ LAT] - "Rain and snowmelt from the area feed into a complex system of rivers, canals and reservoirs that send water across the state. And by almost all measures, the drought picture in Northern California has dramatically improved over the last two months, as a series of storms have helped replenish the state’s two major water projects. So far this season, rain levels in the northern Sierra are 180% of average, with 23.5 inches of rain falling — and more on the way this week. . . . But the story is more grim in Southern California, which remains historically dry. Now water officials must figure out how to deal with the disparity and its implications for managing the drought. While Southern California still gets some water from the Sierra, about 50% of its supply comes from local sources such as groundwater and reservoirs."

BLAST FROM THE PAST: Fox News host Kimberly Guilfoyle reportedly in running to be Trump's press secretary [Katie Dowd @ SFChron] - "Fox News host Kimberly Guilfoyle is among the top candidates to become Donald Trump's press secretary, according to a report from Politico."

Yes, that would be Gavin Newsom's ex-wife.

TECHIES GO TO TRUMP: What happened when Silicon Valley went to Trump Tower [Evan Halper and David Pierson @ LAT]:

If any grudges were in the air, they were over who was not in the 25th floor meeting room Wednesday.

Trump’s favorite social media platform, Twitter, was absent, for example. Politico attributed it to retribution for the company refusing during the campaign to abide Trump’s request to generate a #CrookedHillary emoji.

Twitter’s refusal to create a digital running stick figure holding a money bag is a grievance that his director of digital advertising aired on Medium a few weeks ago.

TRADING DOWN: New Sacramento mayor ditches Kevin Johnson’s fancy SUV for a Ford sedan [Ryan Lillis @ SacBee] - "Mayor Darrell Steinberg will be chauffeured in a 2016 Ford Fusion hybrid that was already in use in the city’s fleet. The car had 18,063 miles on it as of Wednesday morning."

NOM NOM! 好吃! ‘Starbucks of Taiwan’ opening in Sacramento [Richard Chang @ SacBee] - "The popular 85°C Bakery Cafe is coming to Sacramento next summer. The Taiwanese bakery chain is expected to open a store at 5591 Sky Parkway in south Sacramento in July. The location is in the Shun Fat Supermarket plaza, which serves the area’s Asian community."

If you haven't been to the one in Irvine, you're going to love this place. It reminds me of the Mexican bakeries. You grab a tray and walk down a line and take you pick of all kinds of Taiwanese pastries. Here's their menu.

#CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Senator Pat Bates, John BurtonJosh Pulliam, Jennifer Quan, and Laura Velkei!




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  • As speculation mounts who will win the Xavier Becerra congressional seat, GLORIA MOLINA -- the first latina elected to the California legislature in an overlapping district -- discusses her trailblazing career in this exclusive interview:
  • The California Charter Schools Association welcomes back to session the 2017-2018 class of State Legislators and looks forward to working to ensure all kids have quality educational opportunities.  CCSA will work with the Legislature to block any federal efforts that undermine the rights of students or are fundamentally at odds with values held by the vast majority of Californians.  Read CCSA’s letter to Legislators here.
  • Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2) is hiring an Organizing Director in their San Francisco office. The E2 Organizing Director will operate in the nexus of advocacy and development. The position’s primary purpose is to grow and maintain E2’s membership and support its nine chapters and 850+ members throughout the U.S. in order to further our policy advocacy. S/he will also co-manage E2’s database with development staff and provide data and targeting services the advocacy team. S/he will also work closely with our Executive Director to cultivate membership donations. This is a mid-to-senior level position with a competitive compensation package. Full description and application instructions are here.
  • The Sacramento LGBT Center is searching for an Executive & Finance Assistant, which reports to the Executive Director and provides community engagement and administrative support. This position may be part or full-time and is non-exempt. High school diploma is required; associate’s or bachelor’s degree is preferred & 3 years or more in an executive, finance, or related assistant role. Full description.
  • SEIU-UHW is seeking a Political Capacity Organizer, which is responsible for a range of program objectives to build and strengthen our infrastructure and engage our members to be a powerful force at their worksites, in the legislative process, in the community and at the ballot box. Please submit cover letter, resume and at least 3 references to our candidate portal at

  • SEIU-UHW is seeking a Regional Political Organize, which reports to the Political Director, and is responsible for a broad range of program objectives to build and strengthen our infrastructure and engage our members to be a powerful force at their worksites, in the legislative process, in the community and at the ballot box. Please submit cover letter, resume and at least 3 references to our candidate portal at

  • The Office of Assemblymember Elect Phillip Chen is looking to hire talented and dedicated individuals to join its Capitol and District team in Brea, CA. The following positions are looking to be filled -- District Director, Scheduler, Legislative Assistant, Field Representative/Caseworker. For more information, please visit
  • Thinking about Graduate School?  Sacramento State’s Department of Public Policy and Administration is now accepting applications for graduate studies in Public Policy & Administration and Urban Land Development. Highly affordable, we offer a rigorous education in a political context with more than 400 alumni working in California State and local government as well as private and non-profit organizations. Priority deadline is December 1; final deadline is March 1 for Fall 2017 admissions.
  • Subscribe to the Capitol Morning Report and closely follow who’s doing what each day in California government and politics. We list news conferences, legislative hearings, state board meetings and other events. Plus we add in community news and announcements from political campaigns. More info at


Budget Analyst Critical Of Jerry Brown's Sacramento Office Plan | The Sacramento Bee
Jim Miller @
Chronicling civil-service life for California state workers

Assemblyman Jimmy Gomez Racks Up Endorsements From Latino Elected Officials In Fight For Becerra's Congressional Seat
Update on 'Essential Politics: California Assembly leader doesn't believe there was voter fraud in the state, Garcetti talks about his ...

Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin Says She Won't Run For Governor | The Sacramento Bee
Christopher Cadelago @
The go-to source for news on California policy and politics

Yahoo Says Hackers Stole Information From More Than 1 Billion Accounts
Tracey Lien @
Yahoo says it believes hackers stole data from more than one billion user accounts in August 2013.

Attorney general reverses direction on challenge to bail system
A legal challenge to the bail system in San Francisco courts will go forward without the active support of Attorney General Kamala Harris, who has changed her mind and declined to file a motion in its support, her office said Wednesday. The lawsuit by the nonprofit group Equal Justice Under Law on behalf of two indigent defendants is seeking to overturn the centuries-old bail system. The suit contends it is unfair to keep poor people behind bars simply because they are unable to come up with the cash — either monetary bail or the nonrefundable 10 percent fee charged by bail bond companies. Phil Telfeyan, executive director of the group, said his challenge to the “wealth-based detention scheme” would “continue unabated.” If the challenge succeeds, Dhillon said, the bail bond industry would fold overnight, countless criminal defendants would be released onto the street and there would be a “detrimental effect” on public safety. Proposals to have defendants report daily to court officers or wear ankle monitors or other devices in lieu of posting bail would be expensive and ineffective, she said.

Source: Twitter Cut Out Of Trump Tech Meeting Over Failed Emoji Deal - Politico
Twitter was told it was "bounced" from Wednesday's meeting between tech executives and President-elect Donald Trump in retribution for refusing during the campaign to allow an emoji version of the hashtag #CrookedHillary, according to a source close to the situation.

Rep. Duncan Hunter Repays Campaign With Loan Brokered By Long-ago Murderer - The San Diego Union-tribune
Morgan Cook @

North Carolina G.O.P. Moves to Curb Power of New Democratic Governor
Republican lawmakers introduced measures to end the governor’s control over election boards and to require State Senate approval of his cabinet members.

CpUC Considering Modifications To San Onofre Nuclear Deal - The San Diego Union-tribune
Rob Nikolewski @

L.A.'s Warehouse Crackdown Will Target Owners, Not Tenants, City Attorney Says
Joseph Serna @
If Los Angeles city leaders have their way, tenants of illegally converted warehouses would be notified of their building’s violations after an inspection, and the property owner would have to pay to relocate them if they’re evicted, the city attorney said Wednesday.

Can Pot Break Up A Family? Parents Face Custody Issues Over Legal Marijuana Use - The Orange County Register
Nathaniel Rudd didn’t know he was going to be a dad until the mother of a woman he’d dated months before – nine months, to be exact – called him from the hospital.

'we're Ready To Fight.' Gov. Jerry Brown Unloads On Trump And Climate Issues
John Myers @
Update on 'Essential Politics: Garcetti talks about his phone call with Trump, pension fund considers expanding tobacco investments'

Jerry Brown Promises To Fight Donald Trump Over Climate Change - San Francisco Chronicle
Gov. Jerry Brown directly challenged the incoming Trump administration on climate change Wednesday, promising that California will fight any attempt to roll back progress on the environment, including possibly launching its “own damn satellite” to track global warming.

Lindsey Graham Lays Out Path For Tillerson To Win His Vote - Politico
Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., speaks with reporters in the Senate Press Gallery on Capitol Hill, in Washington, Tuesday, Nov. 15. | AP Photo

From His Home In Russia, #calexit Leader Plots California Secession | Election 2016 | The California Report | Kqed News
Louis Marinelli heads the secessionist group Yes California. Following the election of Donald Trump to the presidency, the organization has gone from an unknown fringe group to one discussed seriously in mainstream media.

Ballot measure could raise bridge tolls to fund transportation
Bay Area transportation officials are eyeing a regional ballot measure that could increase tolls on the Bay Bridge and other state-owned spans by as much as $3 to raise money for transportation projects. At a workshop meeting Wednesday at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in San Francisco, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission discussed the notion of persuading the state Legislature to create Regional Measure 3 — a ballot measure to increase tolls — for voters’ consideration in 2018. The ballot measure could also create a discount for drivers who pay their tolls with FasTrak, expand congestion-based tolling, now in use at the Bay Bridge, and charge an additional toll for trucks. Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf said the potential measure should direct funding to affordable housing, and bicycling advocates argued that it should pay for construction of a bike path on the west span of the Bay Bridge between Yerba Buena Island and San Francisco. Randy Rentschler, MTC spokesman and legislative director, said the staff needs to know what the commission would like from a 2018 toll increase to allow it to lobby legislators in the coming year. Transportation funding, always hard to come by, has become even more scarce in recent years, driving metropolitan areas and transit agencies to come up with their own sources of revenue.

Colorado Elections Chief: Rogue Electors Could Face Charges - Politico
Wayne Williams, Colorado's secretary of state, discusses the Electoral College lawsuit on Dec. 12, 2016. | AP Photo

GOP's Swearengin Won't Run For California Governor. Might Peter Thiel? -
Ben Adler @
Capital Public Radio, Inc.7055 Folsom BoulevardSacramento, CA 95826

California PUC Reform Deal Includes Uber, Lobbyist Registration | The Sacramento Bee
Jeremy B. White @
Embattled regulator has faced regular criticism

CpUC Considering Modifications To San Onofre Nuclear Deal
Rob Nikolewski @
CPUC considers modifications to the San Onofre nuclear deal

What To Do About Latest Yahoo Data Breach - The San Diego Union-tribune
Gary Robbins @
Yahoo disclosed on Wednesday that hackers had gained access to the accounts of about 1 billion of its users in August 2013. The announcement comes barely three months after the company announced a separate breach involving roughly 500 million users.