Around The Capitol

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  • Nooner Conversations (Scott Lay): Lobbyist David Quintana on the 2020 Back-to-Session Bash: Looking at the past and getting ready for 2020 with tunes! Scott promises not to sing. [Apple Podcasts | Simplecast] (2019-12-27)
  • Political Breakdown (Scott Shafer and Marisa Lagos @ KQED): SF Chron's Joe Garofoli and KQED's Guy Marzorati join Scott and Marisa for a wrap on the year in California political news (2019-12-19)
  • Gimme Shelter (Matt Levin and Liam Dillon): Housing storylines to watch in 2020, with former state housing head Ben Metcalf (2019-12-17)



The Nooner for Tuesday, December 31, 2019, presented by SYASL Partners 

  • AD57 (Whittier)
  • AB 5 (Gonzalez)
  • Filing deadline
  • Cakeday and new classifieds

Do you like The Nooner? This is my livelihood which is odd during the AB 5 debate which is nor crazier than Memento in 2015, but I literally live off subscriptions to what we call ATCPro. I may have to find a real job.

You literally would not believe my last 24 hours, stalemate on I-80, and dreams of re-envisioning aroundthecapitol. Nooner Premium is becoming ATCpro tomorrow, although I have tons of work to do and I-80 totally f'd my schedule.

Some people think I have an elaborate plan for The Nooner with stories planned in advance and well-researched. Of course, I start most days with a blank window and no idea what I'll write.

Many of you know that midnight tonight is the most important in the Japanese-American tradition. We're (of course I'm a white guy from The OC) supposed to have everything washed and cleaned but I'll be on Buddha's naughty list this year. I wanted to write a "year in review" message today. I planned to record a Nooner Conversation with Madrid today to talk about the year that was. Instead, I was stuck on I-80 yesterday for three hours.

One of my besties took me to SF for my birthday to see the comedienne Ali Wong. It was wild from start to finish. We had to put our electronic devices in magnetized pouches for the entirety of the show. I joked with the person "What if the governor calls me?" He actually emailed me instead.

The show was fantastic and as she lifted her skirt to show her panties, the technological ban became justified. At the end of the show, we obtained our devices from the magnetized pouches and then were among hundreds waiting in pouring rain for any possible transportation option near the Masonic.

Of course, yesterday was a picture-perfect day in SF, something that POTUS would never recognize in his Twitter obsession of Nancy and Gavin. After writing, I walked around eight blocks or so including the "Loin." It was beautiful and the Twitter memes of SF had no resemblance.

However, after an hour wait for great dim sum at Dragon Beaux, we entered a parking lot formerly known as EB I-80. Someone was threatening suicide on the Magazine Street overpass in Vallejo that led to the freeway's closure in both directions. Now, when you're coming from Baghdad by the Bay, there are no detours when you arrive at a parking lot on the Carquinez Bridge. C&H "pure cane sugar, from Hawaii" may be an awesome sight of history, but there's no such thing as a detour.

CHP has been mum about the closure, but when we finally got off (get your mind out of the gutter) in Vallejo to pee, we heard it was a suicidal person and when we found a non-publicized detour, we could see the collection of police cars on the Magazine overpass.

Anyway, my plans for today included an end-of-year pod with Madrid and lots of ATC improvements, but we're going to have to punt some. I'll be renewed tonight at Buddhist Church of Sacramento, watch Anderson and Andy make themselves look silly on CNN, and an early bedtime after the ball drops EST. That's how I roll as the age of 50 gets way the heck too close.

We're just going to stick to a couple of stories because yesterday was just, well, yesterday. I don't know what happened with the suicidal person as the CHP is being mum, but I hope that the person is getting needed help.

AD57 (Whittier): Not only is the race to succeed the unexpected retirement of Assembly Majority Leader Ian Calderon (D) a cray-cray repeat of the SD22 election between Susan Rubio (D) and Mike Eng (D) in 2018, but sources suggest it's a proxy battle of card clubs and gaming tribes.

The tribes and racetracks are on the street for a November initiative to legalize sports betting and the card clubs are left out. Of course, the perennial competitors of the tribes and tracks are totally pissed.

For me, the initiative legalizes true craps in California, the only casino game I truly enjoy (sports betting is "down time" with my law school buddies). If you were thinking 2020 was cray-cray because of the presidential, you have no idea. Gaming, Prop 13, and

AB 5 (Gonzalez): As I was on the parking lot formerly known as I-80, news came across the transom that Uber and Postmates filed a federal case in the Central District of California-based in Los Angeles. Here is the case so you don't have to pay $0.10 per page from the stupid federal PACER system.

With no NFL games and a stupid Orange Bowl last night, I had nothing better to do after finally getting back from SF than read the 49-page complaint. It is a cornucopia of constitutional law arguments that, from my read, are insufficient for a C-grade in the 1L year of law school. The very good attorneys at Gibson Dunn are throwing every constitutional provision against the wall like those "gummy" crawlers we had as kids.

It's also a weird play. Despite very weird convos on Twitter and attacks on Lorena, the fact is that no legit business interests wanted Dynamex to stand as held by SCOCAL on April 30, 2018. It was a class action against a defunct company now owned by Quebecois TFI International. Everybody familiar with the case knows that Dynamex was a bad hombre. The document-delivery service re-categorized drivers from employees to be independent contractors to eliminate benefits and overtime. As we learn in the first year of law school, bad facts make bad law.

With an absence of AB 5, Dynamex would have led most independent contractors in California to be considered as employees. An extreme reading would make your employee and I need not tell you how cray-cray that result is.

Lorena knows that I want a re-write of the Labor Code. We got a codification of Dynamex with specific exemptions. Some were no brainers like barbers and cosmotolgists who have always been indie by "renting" chairs at salons. Jason owns Iverson's where I get my redic locks trimmed, but if I see Kevin because J isn't available, he's indie and rents his chair in Jason's shop. He has his book of business and sets his rates. That was easy. Writers like me are a bigger conceptual challenge. The "gig worker" drivers is far more difficult.

I took Uber and Lyft rides in SF during my quick sojourn for my birthday over the weekend. The drivers were happy and I tip well. I like the gig transportation options, particularly in SF where taxis have mostly disappeared. In my opinion, the Legislature can step in with umbrella insurance coverage and unemployment insurance to address these issues. We've done it with health care and, despite the political animus toward the Affordable Care Act, Covered California is working very well in The Golden State, so we have a model. Perfect? Of course not, but does "perfect" ever find its way into a health care insurance graf?

Anyway, the case against California filed by Uber/Postmates in the Central District of California has been assigned to judge Dolly Gee. She's a UCLA Law alum and an appointee to the Central District by Obama. She clerked for Milton Schwartz of the Eastern District.

Also a UCLA Law grad? Lorena S. Gonzalez, albeit 15 years earlier.

This is totally cray-cray. I've offered my opinion multiple times.

FILING DEADLINES: Lots of people wonder why California election law provides for a 5-day extension when an incumbent doesn't file for re-election. The rationale was proven this week when North Carolina congressman Mark Meadows announced he wouldn't seek a fifth term 30 hours before the North Carolina filing deadline. Coincidentally, the wife of a close friend of his knew and filed.

Thank you California for fair elections. I hear other states have a filing deadline two weeks before for incumbents so challengers have time to think about it and collect signatures. We need that and, while I personally like Chad Mayes, the same extension should be provided for incumbents who change parties in the week before filing. So, Marc Berman (Asm Elections chair) and Tom Umberg (Sen Elections chair), let's do the same thing in The Golden State because we share a common belief in free and fair elections.

Cakeday and new Classifieds after the jump... 


Probolsky Research

CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Rocky Fernandez, super Super Nathan Fletcher, Christian Griffith, and Myles White!


Add your classified now both in The Nooner and online for $50/week or $150/month by emailing, with a headline, a summary of up to 200 words, and what you'd like the end date to be. You can attach a PDF or provide a link for a bigger job description/info to apply. [Other advertising options]

Fiona Hutton & Associates: Account Supervisor or Director (Los Angeles)

Fiona Hutton & Associates is looking for a highly-driven communications pro to join our Los Angeles-based agency as an Account Supervisor or Director (depending on experience).

The position requires a minimum 5-7 years of experience in public affairs, public relations or politics, with agency experience required. Responsible for managing integrated communications and advocacy programs, creative content, media relations & coalitions. Will oversee operational performance of accounts, serve as day-to-day contact with clients and mentor junior staff.

For full qualifications and responsibilities, read the job description at

Interested candidates should submit a cover letter and resume to

Jobs with Expanding Statewide Non-Profit to #EndPoverty

Golden State Opportunity is hiring multiple positions including Field Director, Field Organizers, Operations Assistant, Program Manager, Social Video Producer and part-time mobile organizers.

GSO is a ground breaking non-profit that uses the tools and strategies of political campaigns to reach low-income workers and families to build financial resiliency and security.

Join our growing team and be a part of the most effective anti-poverty organization in the country. Please go to our website for more details.

UDW/AFSCME Local 3930: Communications Consultant

UDW/AFSCME Local 3930, representing 116,000 In Home Supportive Services (IHSS) providers around the state, seeks proposals from an experienced consultant to assist with external communications efforts around our 2020 statewide legislative and local collective bargaining campaigns.

The consultant will work closely with UDW’s Communications Director and staff, and may also work with the Legislative Director and Internal Operations Director.

Consultants may respond to one or both sections of the RFP.

Click here for the full position description and qualifications sought.

CTBA Back to Session Bash XV - 5 p.m. - 1:00 a.m

The biggest political event of the year, The Back to Session Bash, returns on Thursday 1/16 to celebrate its 15th year anniversary. Invitees will enjoy cigars, bourbon, Moscow Mule, Whiteclaws, rosé and cupcake bars; food by Cafeteria 15L; and more. You won't want to miss our live musical guests. By invitation only. Questions: Monique Vieira Huestis at

UCOP State Govt. Relations: Executive Assistant

The University of California Office of the President is seeking an Executive Assistant in its State Government Relations (SGR) office in Sacramento. Primary responsibility for managing SGR AVP/Director’s calendar, scheduling legislative visits, making staff travel arrangements, and writing/editing sensitive materials. Job requires demonstrated experience planning and coordinating logistics, strong organizational skills, and excellent written/editorial skills. Bachelor’s degree and 3-4 years of experience (or equivalent combination of education and experience) in executive assistant role in either the Capitol or in large academic or governmental organization preferred. Salary commensurate with experience. Apply HERE.

California Council on Science and Technology: Senior Program Associate

CCST is seeking a Senior Program Associate to focus on partner engagement and enhance long-lasting, meaningful impact in the California academic and research communities by building and deepening the relationships and strategic partnerships necessary to bring important research and ideas directly from the scientific community to California decision makers. The CCST Senior Program Associate will also manage the performance of key CCST programs and projects including but not limited to updating the CCST Federal Labs Impact Report, coordinating CCST’s annual site visit, and developing and engaging with the CCST Advisory Panel. Full job description can be found on our website.

California Council on Science and Technology: Science Fellows Program Manager

CCST is seeking a Science Fellows Program Manager to manage all aspects of the CCST Policy Fellowship Program by establishing program goals and processes; researching, interpreting and applying program and contract guidelines and requirements; formulating strategies; administrating resources; and continually innovating all aspects of the program. The Program Manager will need to use advanced concepts and organization objectives to resolve complex issues and/or rapidly unfolding events and issues in a constantly changing environment. This position reports directly to the Deputy Director of CCST. Full job description can be found on our website.

Sacramento City Unified School District: Chief Communications Officer

The Sacramento City Unified School District is seeking candidates for the position of Chief Communications Officer. The responsibilities include:

  • Provide leadership and direction for the district’s public relations and marketing programs, cable television operation, media relations, employee communications, and corporate and governmental relations on a local, state, and national basis. Serve as public relations counsel to the Superintendent, Superintendent’s Cabinet, and Executive Staff, and serve as a liaison between the press/media and the district. Communicate the district’s vision, mission, goals, objectives, results, and challenges to parents and the community.
  • Plan, develop, and maintain effective processes and channels of communication with internal and external audiences. Lead the development and delivery of news to broadcast, print, and online media to create media coverage of the school district on a daily basis. Develop and maintain brand image, positioning, and messaging for SCUSD.

Full description, qualifications, compensation range, and application information:

Deadline: January 5, 2020

OPEN POSITION: Public Affairs & Community Engagement Rep – California School Boards Association

4 New positions: Serve as CSBA’s liaison to local schools and county boards of education, key decision makers, and the community-at-large. Execute grassroots strategies designed to build relationships with, train, and mobilize local school board members and communities to advance CSBA’s legislative and statewide ballot measure advocacy priorities. Coordinates and executes fundraising events.
Openings in the following locations: North LA/Ventura, South San Joaquin, SF Bay Area, and North Coast. Salary based on experience.
To apply, please visit:

The McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific

The McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific, offers the Master of Public Administration (MPA) and the Master of Public Policy (MPP) degrees to both full-time students and those earning a professional degree while working. Our focus on the interconnections of law, policy, management, and leadership provides unique competencies for your success. Students gain a foundation in statutory interpretation and regulatory processes critical to governance. Learn at a beautiful campus three miles from the State Capitol: or

Political Data Inc.
For 30 Years PDI has been California’s premier data vendor. Now, you can get live online trainings on the newest PDI software every week: