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RECENT PODS:

  • Inside Golden State Politics (Bill Boyarsky and Sherry Jeffe): Gavin's State of the State, the recall effort, and more (2021-03-12)
  • Capitol Weekly Podcast: The Future of Work (continuation of the four-part online conference series) (2021-03-12)
  • SacTown Talks (Jarhett Blonien): Assemblymember James Ramos (D-Highland) (2021-03-12)
  • California State of Mind (CapRadio) - Putting a Positive Spin on California’s Pandemic Response; Some Cities Explore Higher Density Solutions to Housing Crisis (2021-03-12)

CLASSIFIEDS BELOW:

  • Capitol Seminars Zoom workshop - April 1
  • McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific - MPA/MPP
  • Executive Director of Government Relations: California State University, Fresno
  • California School Boards Association - Public Affairs & Community Engagement Representative (San Diego)
  • McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific - Masters of Science in Law

DISTRICT UPDATES:

  • SD36 (south coastal OC-north coastal SD): added Carlsbad councilmember Priya Baht-Patel (D) - open seat (Bates)

MONEY MATTERS:

The Nooner for Sunday, March 14, 2021, presented by SYASL Partners

  • COVID
    -data dive
    -vaccines
    -tiers for fears
    -school daze
    -restaurants
    -child welfare
  • The Gov
  • AGstakes
  • AD79 (East San Diego)
  • LA protest
  • The OC
  • Cakeday and classifieds

¡Feliz domingo y Pi Day! Last night, I had the best night of sleep since the shoulder debacle began. Of course, it had to be on the night when we lost an hour of sleep.

Another sad Sunday without the Sacramento Central Farmers Market down the street. Nevertheless, I'll get my nembutsu on this afternoon, of course via the Buddhist Church of Sacramento's Facebook Live page.

Congratulations to the UC Davis Women's Basketball Team for winning the Big West championship yesterday for a second year in a row with a 61-42 victory over UC Irvine and advancing to the Big Dance!

 

COVID-19: California reported an additional 186 deaths yesterday for a total of 55,637 since the pandemic began. Of course, the usual weekend reporting delays must be considered.

-data dive: California's 7-day positivity rate is now 2.1%, far below the 7.1% peak amidst mass testing on December 30.

-vaccines: Remember that in many cases, vaccines are being reserved for second doses (of Moderna and Pfizer).

  • vaccines administered: 11,418,507
  • vaccines delivered to administering entities: 15,702,230
  • vaccines shipped to California: 15,896,795 vaccine doses
  • The Bee's Jeong Park reports on newly eligible Californians to receive a vaccine:

    California is making more essential workers, as well as homeless residents and those living in congregate setting such as prisons, eligible to receive the coronavirus vaccine.

    The state has further defined who is considered to be working in the emergency services sector, explicitly allowing utility and social workers to be eligible for the vaccine. Public transit workers, such as bus drivers and those working in airports, are also now eligible.

    “They are at high risk for occupational exposure, and maintaining continuity of transportation operations is critical,” California’s Department of Public Health said in its bulletin sent to local health departments Thursday.

-tiers for fears:  Today, the following counties move to the less-restrictive red tier: Amador, Colusa, Contra Costa, Los Angeles, Mendocino, Mono, Orange, Placer, San Benito, San Bernardino, Siskiyou, Sonoma and Tuolumne. Of course, each county can maintain more restrictive requirements. While some counties plan to move to fewer restrictions today, LA County's new public health order takes effect at 12:01am Monday, March 15 and reflects the state guidelines.

Money, Wigglesworth, and Lin report in the Times why L.A. County is waiting until tomorrow:

L.A. County health officials — along with the health departments of the cities of Long Beach and Pasadena — said red-level reopenings would take effect at 12:01 a.m. Monday.

L.A. County Health Officer Dr. Muntu Davis said the decision to wait until Monday was “really to give businesses some time” to prepare and appropriately modify their operations.

Here's what it means in LA County (and likely Sacramento County on Wednesday):

  • Museum, Zoos and Aquariums can open indoors at 25% capacity.
  • Gyms, Fitness Centers, Yoga and Dance Studios can open indoors at 10% capacity with masking requirement for all indoor activities.
  • Movie Theatres can open indoors at 25% capacity with reserved seating only where each group is seated with at least 6 feet of distance in all directions between any other groups.
  • Retail and Personal Care Services can increase capacity to 50% with masking required at all times and for all services.
  • Restaurants can open indoors at 25% max capacity under the following conditions: can open indoors at 25% max capacity under the following conditions: eight feet distancing between tables; one household per indoor table with a limit of six people; the HVAC system is in good working order and has been evaluated, and to the maximum extent possible ventilation has been increased. Public Health strongly recommends that all restaurant employees interacting with customers indoors are provided with additional masking protection (above the currently required face shield over face masks); this can be fit tested N95 masks, KN95 masks, or double masks, in addition to the required face shield. Public Health also strongly recommends that all employees working indoors are informed about and offered opportunities to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Outdoor dining can accommodate up to six people per table from three different households.
  • Indoor Shopping Malls can increase capacity to 50% with common areas remaining closed; food courts can open at 25% capacity adhering to the restaurant guidance for indoor dining.
  • Institutes of Higher Education can re-open all permitted activities with required safety modifications except for residential housing which remains under current restrictions for the Spring semester.
  • Schools are permitted to re-open for in-person instruction for students in grades 7-12 adhering to all state and county directives.
  • Private gatherings can occur indoors with up to three separate households, with masking and distancing required at all times. People who are fully vaccinated can gather in small numbers indoors with other people who are fully vaccinated without required masking and distancing.

On Wednesday, the following counties are expected to move to the red tier, assuming the data in each county hold at last week's level in Tuesday's tier update: Sacramento, San Diego, Riverside, Ventura, Kings, Lake, Monterey, San Joaquin, Santa Barbara, Sutter, Tehama, Tulare and Yuba. San Mateo County may move to the orange tier on Wednesday.

Here is the revised statewide picture:

Statewide tiers map

-school daze: EdSource has a great graphical timeline of the impact on California schools over the last year.

  • In the Times, Blume, Watanabe, and Chavez report on the hopes and angst over school reopenings in Los Angeles Unified:

    Parents at two rallies — one in South L.A. and another in Fairfax — talked of schools not opening quickly enough or in an effective way, especially for secondary school students. Callers in a “town hall” sponsored by the union and its allies expressed anxiety about returning to campus, while putting forward questions that allowed the union president to further explain the reopening plan and the union’s role in shaping it.

    Union members will vote on whether to ratify the deal next week. The L.A. Board of Education unanimously approved the agreement in a special meeting Thursday. The district is asking parents to return a survey by Friday but will allow parents to change their minds at two-week intervals.

    The choice will be difficult because the reopening plans are complex and not yet complete — and some parents complained Saturday about being left in the dark during months of negotiations between the L.A. Unified School District and United Teachers Los Angeles, which represents teachers, counselors, nurses and librarians.

  • The Chron's Michael Cabanatuan writes up yesterday's school reopening rallies in San Francisco:

    With San Francisco public schools having agreed to a gradual and modest reopening plan, a parent-led movement to get kids back in the classrooms stepped up the pressure Saturday, calling for five full days of in-person education.

    Hundreds of parents and kids marched from Alamo Square Park to Civic Center Plaza, where Mayor London Breed and a host of elected officials joined their rally. The event, organized by the group Decreasing the Distance, was the latest in a campaign to get the San Francisco Unified School District to develop a plan to fully reopen public schools.

-restaurants:

  • The LAT's Stephanie Briejo reports on the different approaches Los Angeles restaurants are taking to the return to indoor dining at 25% capacity:

    As indoor dining returns at 25% capacity on Monday, some L.A. County restaurateurs are racing to convert their makeshift offices and to-go assembly lines back into dining rooms this weekend. Others await higher vaccination rates and, after a full year of open-close whiplash, more instruction and time.
  • In the Santa Rosa Press Democrat, Heather Irwin writes that local restaurants are concerned about staffing and demand.

-child welfare: For KQED, Deepa Fernandes looks at why the number of children in LA County's Child Welfare System spiked in 2020 and how it is connected to the pandemic:

In Los Angeles County, the impact of the coronavirus pandemic has trickled down to some of the most vulnerable residents: kids in the child welfare system. The number of kids in the system rose dramatically during 2020, according to data released by the county’s Department of Children and Family Services. At the end of 2020, there were 3,535 more children in the system than in 2019, a spike of 10% over the previous year.

To put that increase in context, consider the numbers from the past five years: In 2015 there were 34,881 children in the system. That number crept upward most years, but never by more than a few hundred kids per year. An increase of 3,535 children for just a single year is significant.

DCFS officials were careful to say that spike in the number of kids in the system doesn't necessarily mean there has been a corresponding increase in child abuse or neglect over the last year. Instead they attribute the increase to many cases not closing due to the pandemic shuttering the courts, which led to an overall slowdown in the processing of cases.

Still, ascertaining if a child is being abused got infinitely harder after the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

The Gov: For KQED, Marisa Lagos has a wide-ranging interview with Governor Newsom:

Gov. Gavin Newsom said he has made mistakes over the past year as the state faced an unprecedented health crisis, but believes the recall effort against him has little to do with his handling of the pandemic.

"This thing got started before the pandemic," he told KQED in an exclusive interview Friday. "Look at the petition that's out on the streets."

Newsom, who has been reticent to directly address the push to unseat him, said the recall petition takes aim at his broader progressive policy agenda.

"It's about immigration. It's about our health care policies. It's about our criminal justice reform. It's about the diversity of the state. It's about our clean air, clean water programs, meeting our environmental strategies. So they were crystal clear what this is about," he said.

AGstakes: In an op-ed in The Bee, state senators Susan Talamentes Eggman (D-Stockton) and Melissa Hurtado (D-Sanger) call on Governor Newsom to appoint their colleague Anna Caballero (D-Salinas) to be nominated to be the next state Attorney General after Xavier Becerra is confirmed as Biden's HHS Secretary.

As legislators serving the Central Valley of California, we are closely following the various names being floated as possible appointments for California Attorney General. The attorney general is California’s top law enforcement and justice official, and we hope Gov. Gavin Newsom appoints a strong and capable leader, an ally in the significant efforts we have begun with him to advance the cause of social and economic equity in the Central Valley, and in all of California.

We are pleased to see 12th District State Senator Anna Caballero’s name on the list of possible appointees. Senator Caballero is a trusted and reliable partner and a tireless champion for the Valley. While we would be disappointed to lose her as a legislative colleague, we firmly believe that she possesses the qualities and experience necessary to be an effective attorney general.

Meanwhile, my law school colleague and now Monterey County Board of Supes member Luis Alejo (D-Watsonville) (who succeeded Caballero in the Assembly in the Monterey/San Benito district) has called for Assemblymember Rob Bonta (D-Alameda) to be appointed.

And those are only two of the folks on the list. It places Governor Newsom is in quite a pickle, particularly following the appointment of Dr. Shirley Weber as Secretary of State, an appointment with Assembly Appropriations chair Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego) was running for in 2022 and hoped to be appointed to. That has led to a very tense race in AD79, where Weber's daughter Dr. Akilah Weber is considered the favorite but is challenged by Leticia Munguia, a labor organizer who is Latina, and many see was enouraged by Gonzalez to run. Before the Assembly, Gonzalez was secretary-treasurer of the San Diego and Imperial Counties Labor Council, AFL-CIO.

Gonzalez was the first to max out to Munguia, while Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) is backing Dr. Akilah Weber. It's no secret that Atkins and Gonzalez are not besties and some speculate that Gonzalez believes that Atkins helped spike her Secretary of State aspirations leading to the recruitment of Munguia. When she was Speaker Atkins, she favored then-Republican Brian Maienschein (the two were close from San Diego City Council days) and made Gonzalez vice-chair. Gonzalez was also removed from Assembly Public Safety. She was made chair of Assembly Appropriations after Anthony Rendon was elected Speaker and Atkins had move on to the Senate.

AD79 (East San Diego): In the. Union-Tribune, Deborah Sullivan Brennan looks at what the candidates in the April 8 special election for now-Secretary of State Dr. Shirley Weber's former Assembly seat have to say about the pandemic response and recovery:

As soon as COVID-19 vaccines arrived in San Diego County, state assembly candidate Akilah Weber, a physician with Rady Children’s Hospital and UC San Diego Health, got in line to receive her first shot.

One of her opponents, San Diego businessman Marco Contreras, said recently he’s open to receiving a COVID-19 shot when it’s his turn, but he hasn’t decided whether to get vaccinated.

Their differing stances on vaccination is a reflection of how differently each of the five candidates running for the open seat in California’s 79th Assembly District approaches pandemic questions.

...

Contenders for the seat include Democrats Akilah Weber, an obstetrician/gynecologist and La Mesa Councilwoman who also is Shirley Weber’s daughter; restorative justice consultant Aeiramique Glass; labor organizer Leticia Munguia; teacher and union leader Shane Parmely, and Republican businessman Marco Contreras.

As infection rates decline in San Diego, the candidates’ positions on vaccine distribution, testing, and reopening schools and businesses are becoming key points in their campaigns.

LA PROTEST: The LAT's Carlos Lozano reports on the protests on the anniversary of the death of Breonna Taylor, which led to clashes between police and protestors in Hollywood last night:

Los Angeles police and dozens of protesters clashed in Hollywood late Saturday on the one-year anniversary of the death of Breonna Taylor, a Black woman shot and killed by Louisville police during a botched raid at her apartment.

Video posted on social media showed police in riot gear in a tense standoff with protesters at the intersection of Vine Street and Lexington Avenue about 9:30 p.m. There were also reports of several incidents of vandalism at neighborhood businesses.

The Los Angeles Police Department’s Operations Center had few details about the confrontation, Officer D. Orris told City News Service.

The march, which began as a peaceful demonstration, was one of dozens of rallies held across the country to mark the anniversary of Taylor’s death.

The rally came a day after Kenneth Walker, Taylor’s boyfriend, filed a federal lawsuit against the Louisville Metro Police Department, alleging his constitutional rights were violated during last year’s botched raid, news outlets reported. Walker last year filed a state lawsuit against the city and police, saying he was the victim of assault, battery, false arrest and malicious prosecution.

Taylor’s front door was breached by Louisville officers as part of a drug raid in the early morning hours of March 13, 2020. Walker fired his gun once, saying later that he feared an intruder was entering the apartment. One officer was struck, and he and two other officers fired 32 shots into the apartment, striking Taylor five times.

THE OC: In the Register, Alicia Robinson looks at the election of Costa Mesa mayor Katrina Foley to the Board of Supervisors:

After a Friday update, Foley had nearly 44% of the votes cast and a more than 13,000-vote lead over the second place finisher in the five-person race. OC Registrar of Voters Neal Kelley said roughly 500 ballots remain to be tallied, most because of signature issues that voters still have time to cure.

The election results could be certified and Foley sworn into her Orange County Board of Supervisors’ seat later this month. Her all-but-certain victory makes her the first Democrat in 127 years, and the first woman from the party, to hold the District 2 seat, according to the Democratic Party of Orange County.

Foley is working on a plan for her first 100 days, she said in a Wednesday interview, her voice hoarse from talking with friends and supporters nonstop since election night.

“Certainly at the top of the list is expediting the vaccine rollout,” she said, and with a fresh round of federal stimulus dollars coming soon, “making sure that we use that funding in a way that helps our small businesses and helps our most struggling families get back on their feet.”

Probolsky Research

CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Erin Hannigan, Jenny Dudikoff McLaughlin, Chris Micheli, and David Urhausen!

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CAPITOL SEMINARS’ INVALUABLE LOBBYING 101 COURSE NOW AVAILABLE VIA ZOOM

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Further information: www.capitolseminars.net

The McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific

In addition to a well-respected JD, the McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific, offers the Master of Public Administration (MPA) and the Master of Public Policy (MPP) degrees. Both full-time students and those earning a professional degree while working succeed in the program. 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 skills in public policy making and implementation. Learn at a beautiful campus three miles from the State Capitol:
go.mcgeorge.edu/publicpolicy

McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific

Built on the foundation of nationally ranked and world class programs, McGeorge School of Law offers an online master (MSL) degree for individuals seeking in depth knowledge of law and policy, but who do not require a traditional law degree. Our MSL’s two concentrations in Government Law & Policy and in Water & Environmental Law offer students the flexibility to work while they learn and still engage in a highly interactive master’s program. To learn more and to sign up for our monthly webinars, please visit our website, Online.McGeorge.edu, or contact us at graduatelaw@pacific.edu.

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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: