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THE Nooner for December 13, 2017
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THANK YOU: To those who have renewed or begun a new paid subscription, thank you for helping keep The Nooner alive as part of our December drive. We, meaning me and the server hamsters, some of whom are humans, could still use more as we enter the 2018 cycle. Races are shaping up and analyses are being updated daily. Or, become a paid display advertiser (120x90 or 300x250) and I'll throw in subscriptions.
Some folks asked if former congressman Doug Ose had actually filed for the race for governor and the answer is "no." Remember, candidates are placed on aroundthecapitol.com's district pages are deemed as "probable," and in this case I would consider him "highly probable." He was added based on interviews with political consultants and the increased presence of Ose on social media on state political issues.
- CA18 (Silicon Valley): added Michael Milillo (NPP)
- CA43 (Inglewood): added Miguel A. Zuniga (G)
- CA50 (East San Diego): removed Pete Beauregard (D)
- AD45 (West San Fernando Valley): added councilmember/attorney David Shapiro (D)
Once a reluctant politician, he came to shape today’s San Francisco
Kurtis Alexander and Erin Allday @ SFChron
SF: Okay, we can talk some politics in this period of grief. After all, the first decision is going to be by the Board of Supervisors. The Acting Mayor is London Breed, by way of being president of the Board of Supervisors, the same path that led Dianne Feinstein to become Mayor after the death of George Moscone (and of course supervisorial colleague Harvey Milk).
The Board of Supervisors, which operates as the governing body of the combined city and county, will now have the option to appoint an Acting Mayor, which could be Breed, another supervisor, or any other registered voter. If the Board appoints, the office will be next filled for a full term in in 2019. If the board does not act, the office will be filled for a partial term on June 5, 2018 ending in January 2020 following the 2019 regular municipal election.
For now, Breed serves both as Acting Mayor and President of the Board of Supervisors. If the board appoints her as Mayor, she would abandon her Board seat and have the opportunity, as Mayor, to appoint her successor on the Board of Supervisors.
To make an appointment as a successor Mayor, the Board of Supervisors would need votes from six of the eleven members to pass. Breed had already been collecting endorsements for a 2019 run and supervisors Mark Farrell and Jane Kim have shown interest. Also planning on a 2019 run is former state senator Mark Leno, who has been endorsed by four supervisors and has raised significant money. City Attorney Dennis Herrera--who ran against Lee in 2011--may be interest in another bid.
While a tragic loss for the city, Mayor Lee's death is unlikely to bring the Board to consensus as they did behind Feinstein in 1978 following the Moscone-Milk tragedy. Mayor Lee was appointed as Gavin Newsom was elected lieutenant governor, after Lee had been serving as city administrator, with support from Willie Brown, Newsom and Chinatown political powerhouse Rose Pak.
The politics of the city are very different than they were in 2011 because of the tech boom, housing crunch, and the associated gentrification. The city is deeply divided right now between the perceived "haves" and "have nots," as well as new money in the tech sector and older money.
Additionally, there are several possible "firsts" among a potential field--the first African-American woman in London Breed, the first Asian-American woman in Jane Kim, the first Latino mayor in Dennis Herrera, the first openly gay mayor in Mark Leno.
Senator Scott Wiener has been mentioned and he would have a "free ride" next year since his seat is not up for election. However, he can stay in the State Senate until 2028 and I don't see him running against Leno, who he succeeded in the senate, and who endorsed him in a contentious primary against his then-colleague on the Board, Jane Kim. Assemblymember David Chiu has also been mentioned. However, he can serve in the Assembly until 2026 and wouldn't have a free ride if a San Francisco mayoral election is held on June 5, 2018.
For these reasons, I don't think that the Board will find six votes to unify behind Breed as Mayor through at least January, but will choose to allow her to serve in the dual capacity of Acting Mayor and President of the Board and leave it to the voters on June 5, 2018. She would be a formidable candidate, but will also be joined by several other strong candidates.
A FEW RELATED STORIES:
HARASSMENT: For the Times, Jazmine Ulloa asks whether the Legislature will apply the same rigor against sexual misconduct that it has forced on private companies and other public agencies to itself in light of the problems brought forth this year. Meanwhile, KPCC's Mary Remmer reports that Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors is pushing county officials to review its policies and procedures relating to sexual harassment.
As I wrap this baby up and put a bow on it, the GOP announced that it has reached agreement on a compromise tax plan.
Conference committee just started to meet. Obviously, the big win Doug Jones over Roy Moore in Alabama last night provided additional urgency to change the subject. Elements of the deal:
- The corporate tax rate would be 21% and the top personal income tax bracket would be 37%, rather than the 20% and 35% the President Trump wanted.
- Taxpayers would be able to choose either a property tax OR a state and local income tax deduction of up to $10,000, a partial victory for California.
- The mortgage interest tax deduction would be available for mortgages of up to $750,000, splitting the difference between the House (no change at $1 million) and the Senate ($500,000).
- It is unclear how conference committee will handle the issue of personal casualty deduction for disasters. the House bill eliminated the deduction for the cost of rebuilding for damage from wildfires but not hurricane damage. The Senate bill allows for wildfires, but only those that are federally declared major disasters. The wine country, Butte, Yuba, and Anaheim Hills fires received such declaration, but it is unclear how the Southern California fires over the last month would be treated. Clearly, for California, the Senate bill is far more favorable, but still worse for the state than current law.
Alexei Koseff writes for the Bee of the challenge faced by Governor Jerry Brown and his Department of Finance in building a 2018-2019 budget amidst the uncertainty of the federal tax plan.
GASSY ISSUES: For Capitol Weekly, Lisa Renner reports on how the gas tax passage and possible repeal will factor into the 2018 elections.
PENSION MATTERS: The Bee's Adam Ashton reports that a critic of CalPERS, Margaret Brown, beat incumbent Michael Bilbrey in the runoff for a seat on the state's largest pension board.
CAP-AND-TRADE: The state's cap-and-trade program could generate $8 billion by 2027 for state and regional programs, according to a new report by the Legislative Analyst's Office, reports John Myers in the Times.
MONEY DEVELOPMENT: Gubernatorial candidate Antonio Villaraigosa yesterday reported $58,400 ($29,200 each for primary and general) from Highland Fairiew Operating Company ("Highland"). I don't write this section as a knock against Villaraigosa, but more out of interest in what is motivating a large contribution from a company of which I haven't heard. Highland gave $3,600 to then-Assemblyman Paul Cook in 2007, $3,600 to then-Assemblymember Russ Bogh in 2008, $1,500 to Jeff Miller for Senate in 2012, $3,600 to Bill Baley for Assembly in 2012, $3,900 to Jose Medina in 2011, $2,400 to Jeff Stone for Senate in 2014, $15,500 to the Building Industry Association PAC between 2005 and 2008, $7,500 to the Democratic State Central Committee in 2010.
Many of the contributions have been attributed to Highland Fairview Properties and the address (18140 Collins Avenue) of a strip mall in Sunny Isles Beach, Miami, Florida. (Just for fun, it's across the street from the Trump International Beach Resort--but it's the unrelated Trump brothers that Donald J. Trump sued over trademark infringement.)
In other words, the Florida-based (incorporated in Delaware) company has been spending money on both sides around the Inland Empire for over 10 years, but has no existing business in California, other than a small building a block from the Moreno Valley City Hall. The filings with the city have been from that local address.
The company has been in a long battle to build a massive 2,610-acre "World Logistics Center" in Moreno Valley--the size of 700 football fields. That's 25 times larger than the largest warehouse in the country, a hangar that Boeing has in Washington.
It would augment the existing Inland Empire warehouse infrastructure, where trucks bring containers from the Long Beach-Los Angeles port complex to be sorted for redistribution in California or placed on trains for transportation to further inland destinations in other states.
Residents have been split on the project, with some seeing it as a huge boon for local jobs, while others fearful of the increased truck traffic and associated emissions and associated health risks.
The Moreno Valley City Council was deadlocked at 2-2 with one vacancy on giving the project a go-ahead, so Highland Fairview bankrolled an independent committee for successful candidate Ulises Cabrera in a special election for city council in June.
Approved by the city council on August 19, 2015, the project is currently tied up in the courts over alleged deficiencies in the Environmental Impact Report (EIR) under the California Environmental Quality Act for the project and the attempt by opponents to block local ballot measures that allegedly would have usurped adequate envirornmental review. The state's interest is that opponents allege that the EIR deficiencies specifically affect the San Jacinto Wildlife Area, which is managed by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, and is adjacent to the project.
Additionally, it's the center of discussion about how much attention should be paid to environmental justice in future local general plans, which was the subject of Senator Connie Leyva's SB 1000, signed by the governor in 2016. Also, there is a discussion how much environmental scrutiny should be required over projects that are approved by local ballot initiative. Assemblymember Jose Medina carried AB 890 on the issue this year, which passed both houses but was vetoed by the governor, who argued for a more comprehensive CEQA overhaul that "takes into account both the urgent need for more housing and thoughful environmental analysis."
The PE's Jeff Horseman reports that Moreno Valley leaders praised the veto, with mayor Yxstian Gutierrez stating "“We took a strong role in leading the effort to stop this harmful legislation, which would have surrendered cities’ destiny to outside interests who oppose all development, including the type of high quality projects that created more than 14,000 jobs in our city over the past four years."
As with most controversial bills, the veto was made on the last day of the governor's signing period.
#CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Cory Salzillo!
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