Around The Capitol

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THE Nooner for November 6, 2017


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  • Superintendent of Public Instruction: added Adam Anderson (non-partisan)
  • CA01 (Northeast): added social worker Dennis Dean (D)
  • CA08 (SB High Desert): added Yolanda Brown (D)
  • CA23 (Kern): added real estate agent Kurtis Wison (NPP)
  • CA25 (Santa Clarita/Antelope): added Dierdra Michelle Greenaway (D)
  • CA25 (Santa Clarita/Antelope): added attorney Scott McVarish (D)
  • CA26 (Ventura): added John Nelson (D)
  • CA27 (Pasadena): added Brian Witt (D)
  • CA43 (Inglewood): added film producer Frank DeMartini (R)
  • CA48 (Huntington Beach): added investment banker Kevin Kensinger (NPP)
  • CA51 (Imperial): added deputy sheriff Juan Carlos Mercado (NPP)
  • CA53 (La Mesa): added Bryan Kim (NPP)

Happy Monday. Election Day is one year from today. The AD51 special runoff is in 29 days.

Parents of Sacramento Unified schoolchildren are on pins and needles over the threatened strike of teachers on Wednesday. The district has asked state regulators to step in to block the strike.

WEVEHADENOUGH: The Bee's Adam Ashton looks at the challenges statehouses across the country are facing as legislative leaders struggle to create policies and procedures for handling harassment complaints amid the heated political environment. 

The Bee's Amy Chance reports that the Legislature plans to release a summary document of harassment claims.

“The public disclosure of records concerning complaints and investigations compromises the privacy rights of victims, witnesses, and others. Public disclosure may even have the unfortunate effect of discouraging our employees and others from coming forward with complaints or information,” said Secretary of the Senate Daniel Alvarez and Assembly Chief Administrative Officer Debra Gravert, using identical language in separate letters.

BOE3 (Los Angeles/Ventura): Things continue to heat up in the race to replace Jerome Horton on the Board of Equalization. Los Angeles Community College District trustee Scott Svonkin was thought to have the significant early lead. However, the political dynamics of the harassment discussion has renewed claims that Svonkin has engaged of bullying of fellow trustee Andra Hoffman. Nevertheless, Svonkin has an overwhelming financial advantage.

CLIMATE COUSINS: In the Bee, Christopher Cadelago looks at the European trip on climate change that both Governor Jerry Brown and Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León are currently on. "

De León has helped Brown cement the biggest climate deals in recent years, carrying some of the measures himself and working behind the scenes to pass others.

Now, in the twilight of that partnership – with Brown closing in on an unprecedented four terms as governor, and de León using his Capitol record as a cudgel against Trump and the Democratic establishment in Washington – their careers reflect both the state’s shifting demographics and the challenges the next generation of leaders faces as it struggles to replace its elders.



OPPOSITE COASTS: The LAT's George Skelton writes that while Republicans are leading the charge to repeal the gas tax, California's GOP members of Congress appear to be uniformly supporting the tax plans in DC, which takes away several middle-class tax deductions. "Eliminating the federal income tax deduction for state taxes and capping local property tax write-offs at $10,000 would especially smack Californians. So would limiting mortgage interest deductions on future home purchases to loans under $500,000."

Dan Walters writes for CALmatters that the impact of the draft tax plan would hit Californians particularly hard.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Ivanka Trump held a business roundtable to pitch the tax proposal in Newport Beach this morning. If the location seems interesting, think vulnerable Congressman Dana Rohrabacher. The roundtable was held the offices of investment advising firm HighTower Advisors.

HOUSING: AP's Gillian Flaccus and Geoff Mulvihill report that the homeless situation on the West Coast is pushing cities to a breaking point. "People who were once able to get by, even if they suffered a setback, are now pushed to the streets because housing has become so expensive. All it takes is a prolonged illness, a lost job, a broken limb, a family crisis. What was once a blip in fortunes now seems a life sentence."

AMAZON: If you saw that rumor over the weekend that Amazon had chosen San Diego for its second headquarters, it was a fake news site.

THE TUNNEL(S): In the Bee, Dale Kasler looks at whether a single tunnel would be more financially and politically palatable. if there isn't sufficient money for the twin tunnels to ferry water around the Bay Delta to connect to the California aqueduct for delivery to Southern San Joaquin Valley farmers and other Southern California consumers.  

Drastically downsizing Gov. Jerry Brown’s tunnels wouldn’t merely save money. It would also reduce the project’s footprint and make it more palatable to some of its critics. A coalition of environmental groups has endorsed a lone-tunnel approach.

Advocates of the twin tunnels say a smaller project would translate into less protection for the endangered fish that live in the Delta and supposedly would be helped by the twin-tunnel setup. Proponents also say a single tunnel, while less expensive as a whole, would likely cost more on a per-gallon basis than a twin-tunnel plan.

There will be opposition regardless from Delta farmers and several local governments, including Sacramento County and Stockton over increased Bay Delta salinity and endangered fish.


Probolsky Research



SMOKIN': The AP's Michael R. Blood reports that the cost of recreational marijuana is expected to go up dramatically after it becomes legal on January 1. "On a retail level, it costs about $35 to buy a small bag of good quality medical marijuana in Los Angeles, enough to roll five or six joints. But in 2018, when legal sales take hold and additional taxes kick in, the cost of that same purchase in the new recreational market is expected to increase at the retail counter to $50 or $60."

VAXX: In the Times, Soujmya Karlamangla reports on the sluggish pace at which the state is cracking to anti-vaccination doctors and parents "[S]o far, no doctors, including Sears, have been punished for writing unnecessary medical exemptions. The crackdown many foresaw never materialized."

WHERE ARE THEY NOW: Alex Vassar writes for Capitol Weekly an update of what former Senator Mike Machado is up to these days. “When I was first elected, I said I’d return to the private sector,” said Machado recently. “Since leaving office, I’ve returned to our agricultural farming operation and served on the board of directors for a few public companies and nonprofits.” 




#CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Noah Finneburgh and Jason Kinney!


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Blasting California's Gas Tax While Working To Cut Federal Tax Breaks? That's Called Hypocrisy
George Skelton @
California Republicans seem to have conflicting tax philosophies. Or maybe they’re just outright hypocritical.

Mueller Probe Drags Into 2018 Election Season
David Goldstein @
Republicans enter the new election cycle already carrying the weight of Sisyphus: Rarely does the party in power gain seats in midterm congressional elections. But in 2018, they have an additional burden to bear, as Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into whether Donald Trump’s team colluded with Russia drags into the campaign season.

Why Hasn't California Cracked Down On Anti-vaccination Doctors? A Loophole In State Law
Soumya Karlamangla @
A year ago, California officials appeared to be coming down hard on doctors and parents who were reluctant to vaccinate children.

Act 2 Of Tax Reform Coming With Senate Bill
Aaron Lorenzo @

The Senate may also try to patch up some of the fraternal squabbles that erupted when House GOP leaders unveiled their bill last week, including a revolt by the housing industry and a powerful small business association.

One Homeless Person A Week Dies In Sacramento County, Report Shows
Cynthia Hubert @
The report prepared by the Sacramento Regional Coalition to End Homelessness documents the deaths of 776 people between 2002 and 2016 who the coroner’s office determined were homeless. The figure translates to about one death a week for the past 15 years.

Feds: Manafort Claims Current Net Worth Of $28 Million - Politico

In a court filing Saturday, lawyers for former Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort offered to pledge three properties as part of the bail arrangement. | Matt Rourke/AP Photo

Trump Ends His Visit In Japan By Calling For A Military Buildup To Counter The Threat From North Korea
Brian Bennett @
President Trump called for Japan to buy U.S. anti-missile batteries to shoot down counter the growing ballistic missile threat from North Korea.

House Tax Writers Eye Changes To Reform Bill As Committee Work Gets Underway - Politico

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady gives his opening statement during the first day of a tax reform markup session in the Longworth building on Monday. | John Shinkle/POLITICO

Sacramento City Unified Wants State To Block Teachers Strike
Diana Lambert @
The Sacramento City Unified School District has asked a state labor board to block a teacher strike planned for Wednesday as tensions mount between district leaders and the 2,800-member Sacramento City Teachers Association, according to a document obtained Sunday.

La County Leaders Fuel New Drive Reaching Out To Homeless With Severe Mental Illnesses – Daily News
The homeless man was naked when Santiago Reyes found him lying on a Pasadena street.

El Cajon Fights Homelessness, Hep A With Tough New Regulations | Kpbs
Susan Murphy @
Serving meals to groups of homeless people in parks and other public spaces is now against the law in El Cajon as well as panhandling, sleeping on the sidewalk and setting up encampments.

Conway: Politicizing Texas Shooting 'disrespectful To The Dead' - Politico

Kellyanne Conway slammed officials who in the wake of the latest historic mass shooting were calling for action on gun legislation. | Matt Rourke/AP

11% raises in SF schools contract would be among tops in state
Double-digit salary increases for San Francisco educators proposed under contract terms agreed to over the weekend are among the highest being offered in the state, union and school district officials said a day after the two sides signed off on a tentative agreement. If approved by the 6,200 members of the United Educators of San Francisco, the city’s school workforce of teachers, early childhood educators, librarians, nurses, classroom assistants and social workers would receive an 11 percent raise over three years (3 percent in the first year, then 4 percent in the next two) in addition to smaller bonuses each year.

Op-Ed Contributor: Marco Rubio: Tax Reform Should Help American Families

Working parents deserve a robust expansion of the child tax credit.