Around The Capitol

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RECENT PODS:

  • SacTown Talks (Jarhett Blonien): former Assemblymember Mike Gatto (2021-05-07)
  • Inside Golden State Politics (Bill Boyarsky and Sherry Jeffe): Lobbyist Bob Naylor (2021-05-07)
  • Political Breakdown (Scott Shafer and Marisa Lagos): Mary Nichols on California's Climate Leadership and Biden's 'Inflection Point' (2021-05-06)i
  • Look West Podcast (Assembly Democrat Caucus): Connecting Californians: Expanding High Speed Internet with Speaker Anthony Rendon (2021-05-06)
  • Inside Golden State Politics (Bill Boyarsky and Sherry Jeffe): Is The Republican Party Imploding? (2021-05-06)
  • Then There's California (Senate Democratic Caucus): Senator Susan Talamentes Eggman (D-Stockton) (2021-05-05)
  • Inside Golden State Politics (Bill Boyarsky and Sherry Jeffe): USA Today Waszhinton Bureau chief Susan Page on her new book on Speaker Nancy Pelosi (2021-05-02)  
  • Capitol Weekly Podcast (John Howard and Tim Foster): Assemblymember Alex Lee (D-San José) (2021-05-02)

CLASSIFIEDS BELOW:

  • Congresswoman Doris Matsui seeks a Field Representative experienced in infrastructure policy to join her Sacramento team.
  • The Breakthrough Institute is seeking a Press Secretary (Berkeley)
  • Capitol Weekly presents A Conference on Housing Policy
  • New Sacramento-based thriller
  • Golden State Opportunity: Director of Operations, Director of Development and a Northern CA Coordinator
  • Associate Position at CleanSweep Campaigns, San Francisco
  • McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific - MPA/MPP
  • McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific - Masters of Science in Law

DISTRICT CHANGES:

  • GOV: added Riverside County Supervisoer Jeff Hewitt (L)
  • AD18 (Alameda-San Leandro West Oakland): the final candidate list is out, with ballot labels for the five Democrats, one Republican, and one No Party Preference. The special primary is June 19. If no candidate receives more than 50% of the vote, the special general would be on August 31. This is the seat left vacant following Rob Bonta's appointment to Attorney General.

RECALL WATCH:

  • Stop the Republican Recall of Governor Newsom reports receiving:
    • $50,000 from Evan Williams (CEO, Medium, San Francisco)
    • $25,000 from Thomas Safran (Self, Los Angeles)

The Nooner for Saturday, May 8, 2021, presented by SYASL Partners

Happy Saturday! It's a great morning with a not-so-painful shoulder and nearly eight hours of sleep. I can both type and lift my mug of tea up with my left hand. That's a particularly good thing since, if you're like me, a full eight hours of sleep makes for a unusually sleepy morning.

I don't know if finally being able to sleep was from the shoulder or the Giants 5-4 win over the Padres that featured beautiful moments honoring the 90th birthday of Willie Mays.

As I've written before during these last two months with an on-and-off frozen shoulder, if you emailed me and I did not respond, please email me again. I've been working to follow my doctor's advice of less computer time and a more ergonic setup, I know that has also let email fall through the cracks.

It'll be a beautiful day in Sacramento with a forecasted high of 88. That said, it's windy and dry, large swaths of Northern California are on red flag fire warnings. However, PG&E has not warned its customers that there will be public safety power shutoffs over the weekend. 

DO YOU RECALL?

  • Caitlyn: For Politico, Jack Shafer writes that for Caitlyn Jenner to "win" in the recall election, she need not get the most votes.  

    Why is Caitlyn Jenner running for governor of California? Judging from her Wednesday evening interview with Fox News Channel’s Sean Hannity, she doesn’t have a whole lot of political insight into the state she wants to lead. So instead of the conventional political questions — like what she wants to do or how California might benefit from a Jenner governorship — it might be smarter to ponder what she stands to gain from her candidacy.

    In the modern era, running for office has become a job in itself, one that can pay off in ways that have nothing to do with politics. Mike Huckabee, who ran for president twice, used the increased name recognition to earn a handsome living as a Fox News TV host, a successful book author and a public speaker. Jesse Ventura crossed over from wrestling to political office (governor of Minnesota) and onto a career in TV. Presently, Matthew McConaughey is, his critics say, juicing the sales of his new memoir with strong hints that he’ll run for Texas governor.

POPULATION: For CalMatters, Ben Christopher takes a deeper data-based look at the population projections yesterday that have led to some bad headlines and even worse social media posts.

State forecasters stress that the factors that contributed to this population dip are unique to this period — and therefore temporary. In 2020 roughly 51,000 Californians died of COVID-19. Travel restrictions and fear of contagion also dramatically tamped down the number of new arrivals from abroad, the main source of the state’s population growth over the last decade. 

“Going forward, we anticipate that those two factors that tipped us temporarily into negative territory are going to change over the next few months,” said Department of Finance spokesperson H.D. Palmer

But even if California reaches herd immunity, the state isn’t likely to experience a serious growth spurt anytime soon. Our pre-pandemic plodding rate of growth is thanks to a few long-term trends.

The state birth rate, which took a dip in 2020, has been on a gradual decline for years. 

The number of Californians who have left the state for more affordable corners of the union has also been a drag on the state’s head count for three decades. That “net-domestic outmigration” exceeded the number of new immigrants from around the world for the first time in 2018, according to Department of Finance estimates.  

Palmer went out of his way to stress that Californians packing it up for Texas and Colorado are not the primary cause of the state’s striking population decline.

“Some people who run with statistical scissors will try to extrapolate or hyperventilate that this is evidence of some sort of ‘Mad Max’ style ‘exodus’ from California and that is not the case,” he said.

Here are the counties by fastest rate of population decline and in population increase. Before you read too much in to this as it pertains to redistricting, note that these are Department of Finance estimates based on several state and federal data points. While the statewide number reflected below roughly matches the statewide number announced by the U.S. Census Bureau, that doesn't mean the county/city/Census block numbers necessarily will. These are the numbers that will be used by the California Citizens Redistricting Commission and local governments in redistricting.

Fastest declining counties year-over year
County 1/1/2020 1/1/2021 Change
Lassen 28,666 27,572 -3.8
Santa Cruz 270,373 261,115 -3.4
Butte 208,951 202,669 -3.0
Tuolumne 54,925 53,465 -2.7
Santa Barbara 450,511 441,172 -2.1
Source: California Department of Finance

California 39,648,938 39,466,855 -0.5

Fastest declining counties year-over year

Colusa 22,030 22,248 1.0
El Dorado 193,519 195,362 1.0
Yuba 78,510 79,407 1.1
San Joaquin 773,505 783,534 1.3
Placer 399,015 404,994 1.5
San Benito 62,486 63,526 1.7

For the Sacramento readers, here are the numbers by city.

Sacramento County Total 1,553,157 1,561,014 0.5
Citrus Heights 87,788 87,811 0.0
Elk Grove 176,036 178,124 1.2
Folsom 81,106 82,303 1.5
Galt 26,006 26,116 0.4
Isleton 832 832 0.0
Rancho Cordova 78,333 79,662 1.7
Sacramento 513,626 515,673 0.4
Balance of County 589,430 590,493 0.2

SIN AGUA: The Bee's Dale Kasler writes that the Sierra snowpack is not delivering as much water to the Northern California reservoirs as expected.

In the weeks following April 1, the traditional end of the rainy season, warm temperatures have burned off most of the Sierra Nevada snowpack and left the state’s water network gasping. Instead of delivering a generous volume of melted snow into California’s rivers and reservoirs, the snowpack has largely evaporated into the air or trickled into the ground.

“We got unlucky. A lot of it didn’t make it into the reservoirs,” said Jeffrey Mount, a geologist and water expert at the Public Policy Institute of California.

The miserly output from the Sierra Nevada helps explain why the U.S. Drought Monitor, a weekly hydrological analysis by the federal government, shows 93% of California in either “severe,” “extreme” or “exceptional” drought. A month ago, only about two-thirds of the state was facing those conditions.

The rapidly worsening drought has led to even sharper cutbacks in allocations to those who depend on California’s elaborate complex of dams, reservoirs and canals for their water.

Many farmers in the Sacramento Valley had been counting on getting a 5% allocation this year from the federal government’s Central Valley Project. On Wednesday, the Bureau of Reclamation put that meager shipment on hold, explaining that the melting snow wasn’t contributing much to the reservoirs.

REDISTRICTING: Here is this week's edition of Paul Mitchell's Redistricting Report.

GUNS: In the Times, Patrick McGreevy reports that California has confiscated a record number of guns under the state's "red flag law."

Five years ago, California became one of the first states in the nation to enact a so-called red flag gun law, allowing family members and police officers to ask a court to block those believed to be a risk to themselves or others from having firearms. Now, as other legislatures weigh adopting similar laws, state officials said Friday that a record 1,285 gun-violence restraining orders were issued by judges in California last year, temporarily removing firearms from people deemed a danger.

Though many courts were operating under restrictions or remotely because of the COVID-19 pandemic, they received petitions for the orders at a greater rate than the year before, when guns were taken from 1,110 people.

“I’m glad that Californians have a tool to intervene to save lives and prevent tragedies,” said Assemblyman Phil Ting (D-San Francisco), who authored a bill last year that expanded those eligible to ask judges for orders to employers, co-workers and school employees.

WAREHOUSES: Citing "diesel death zones" from trucks, the South Coast Air Quality Management District on Friday adopted first-of their kind regulations to try to reduce emissions associated with the large number of warehouses in Southern California, reports Tony Barboza for the Times.

The regulations will have the greatest effect in the Inland Empire, where relatively cheap land within a reasonable drive of the nation’s largest port complex has triggered development of massive distribution and fulfillment centers, including mega-warehouses that exceed 1 million square feet. Dubbed both “America’s shopping cart” and “diesel death zones,” these communities have only grown busier during the COVID-19 pandemic, as online shopping pushes the volume of cargo moving through the region to record levels.

Under the rules, warehouses 100,000 square feet or larger — about the size of two football fields — must take steps to cut or offset emissions associated with their operations or pay a mitigation fee to fund similar air quality improvements nearby.

Republican Ben Benoit, mayor pro tem of the Riverside County city of Wildomar and the newly sworn-in chair of the air quality board, joined the board’s eight Democrats in supporting the measure. Four Republicans voted in opposition. The 13-member board, made up of eight Democrats and five Republicans, consists of elected officials and other appointees from Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties.

The vote followed hours of public testimony, much of it from residents of Riverside, San Bernardino and other inland communities urging action on behalf of children with asthma, relatives with lung cancer and others who struggle to breathe because of the smog and truck pollution.

"ELECTRIC READY" NEW HOMES: In the Chron, J.D. Morris writes up the California Energy Commission's new proposed updates to the state building code to promote all-electric new homes.

California is preparing to use its building standards as a tool to promote construction of homes that wouldn’t rely on natural gas.

A draft code update released Thursday by the California Energy Commission would require new single-family homes to be equipped with circuits and panels that would allow them to be powered by all-electric appliances for heating, cooking and drying clothes.

The new code would not prohibit natural gas infrastructure, a step many environmentalists would like the state to take. But if the draft is ultimately authorized by the commission this year, it would require new homes to be “electric ready,” meaning they’re prepared to be transitioned away from gas appliances if any are used initially.

Additionally, the commission would make heat pumps, which are powered by electricity, the standard for new homes and many nonresidential buildings too. The pumps would not be required, but builders would have to increase energy efficiency in other areas if they forgo one.

“We’re encouraging the technologies of the future,” energy commissioner Andrew McAllister told reporters Friday afternoon.

LA-LA LAND: In the Times, David Zahniser and Dakota Smith look at the speculation that Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti will take an ambassador ship and leave office early and the uncertainty it's creating at City Hall.

At Los Angeles City Hall, everything is suddenly up in the air.

With Mayor Eric Garcetti again in the running for a post in the Biden administration — this time as U.S. ambassador to India — politicians, bureaucrats, activists and others are trying to figure out what a mayoral departure would mean for the city and its most pressing issues.

An early exit could reshuffle the race to replace Garcetti in next year’s election. And it would likely trigger another, behind-the-scenes competition for the post of interim mayor — a choice that would be up to the City Council.

“It’s going to have a ripple effect,” said Loyola Law School professor Jessica Levinson, “not just in terms of who Garcetti’s successor would be but how that would affect the race for mayor, who on Garcetti’s staff stays and goes and, perhaps most importantly, what happens to the mayor’s initiatives and goals.”

...

Behind the scenes, a number of candidates have surfaced for interim mayor, including Council President Nury Martinez, Councilman Paul Krekorian and former City Controller Wendy Greuel. Council members might hesitate to put someone in the interim post if they believe that person would use the role as a springboard for a mayoral campaign.

City Atty. Mike Feuer and Councilman Joe Buscaino have already entered the 2022 mayoral race, and at least four other council members — including Martinez — are weighing the idea.

Of course, Councilmember (and former Senate President Pro Tem) Kevin de León is also waiting in the wings.

COVID-19, cakeday, a big farewell, and classifieds after the jump...

COVID-19: California reported 47 deaths yesterday for a total of 61,879 since the pandemic began.

-data dive: California's 7-day positivity rate is currently 1.2% (-0.1), far below the 7.1% peak amidst mass testing on December 30 and tied for the lowest 7 days of the pandemic.

-vaccines:

  • vaccine doses administered in California: 31,787,822 (not the number of people vaccinated because of the two-dose Moderna and Pfizer vaccines)
  • vaccine doses delivered to California: 40,562,240 

-variants: From the California Department of Public Health:

  • "UK strain": B.1.1.7 variants are associated with approximately 50% increased transmission, and likely with increased disease severity and risk of death. Appears to have minimal impact on the effectiveness of treatments with antibodies.
  • "South Africa strain" B.1.351 variants are associated with approximately 50% increased transmission. May have moderately decreased response to antibody treatments.
  • "Brazil strain": P.1 variants may have moderately decreased response to some antibody treatments.
  • "West Coast strain"": B.1.427 and B.1.429 are associated with approximately 20% increased transmission. There is significantly reduced efficacy of some antibody treatments.

Here are the variants of concern in California. Remember that this is just from 48,770 samples of the 3.6+ million cases in California.

Known Variants of Concern in California
As of May 5, 2021

Variant  Number of Cases Caused by Variant 
B.1.1.7   4,971
B.1.351    67
P.1  524
B.1.427   6,275
B.1.429  11,844

You can view a US map by strain prevalence on the CDC site. Note that, like the numbers above, this map is case numbers of a sample, and not a case rate. Obviously, California will have higher counts, but that doesn't translate into a higher case rate of the variant.

-tiers for fears: As a reminder, any county must remain at a tier for three weeks before progressing to a less-restrictive tier, even if the metrics continue to improve. The most recent changes are bolded and italicized.

Here's where the counties stand after Tuesday's changes, which are bolded and italicized.

  • No county in the Purple (widespread) Tier.
  • 12 counties in the Red (substantial) Tier: Del Norte, Inyo, Madera, Merced, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Shasta, Solano, Stanislaus, Tehama, and Yuba.
  • 39 counties in Orange (moderate) Tier: Alameda, Amador, Butte, Calaveras, Colusa, Contra Costa, El Dorado, Fresno, Glenn, Humboldt, Imperial, Kern, Kings, Lake, Marin, Mono, Napa, Mariposa, Modoc, Monterey, Orange, Plumas, Riverside, San Benito, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, San Mateo, Santa Barbara, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Siskiyou, Sonoma, Sutter, Tulare, Tuolumne, Ventura, and Yolo.
  • 7 counties in Yellow (minimal) Tier: Alpine, Lassen, Los Angeles, Mendocino, San Francisco, Sierra, and Trinity.

Statewide tiers map

cakedays, a big farewell, and classifieds after the jump...

Probolsky Research

CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Julian Cenete, Evan Hawkins, Sean Henschel, Andrés Ramos, and Frank Torres!

FAREWELL: Cruz Reynoso (May 2, 1931 - May 7, 2021) - from his obituary:

As one of eleven children born to Mexican immigrant parents, Cruz began working in the fields of Southern and Central California at the age of eight. He graduated from Fullerton Union High School and received an Associates of Arts degree from Fullerton Junior College prior to earning a scholarship to Pomona College. After graduating from college, Cruz spent two years in the Army followed by law school at the University of California, Berkeley.

Cruz had a long and diverse legal career that spanned over 60 years. He began his career as a small-town lawyer in El Centro, CA. His early aspiration was simply to be a small-town attorney and often joked that he was apparently a failure at that. He moved on from El Centro to be Associate General Counsel for the Equal Opportunity Commission. He then worked as Director of the California Rural Legal Assistance, Professor of Law at the University of New Mexico, Associate Justice in the Third District Court of Appeal, and as the first Hispanic Associate Justice on the California Supreme Court. After leaving the court in 1987, he practiced law with firms based out of Beverly Hills and New York. In 1991, he once again became a professor, this time at the UCLA School of Law. A decade later he was given the inaugural Boochever and Bird Endowed Chair for the Study and Teaching of Freedom and Equality at the UC Davis School of Law.

During his time at UC Davis School of Law, Cruz taught my Professional Responsibility and Remedies classes. And, some of you attended my 2008 wedding, and remember that Cruz was the officiant. While the marriage did not last, Judge Kara and I emailed last night about our special friendship was wiith him.

If you've been on social media since the news came out last night and share "friends" in common with me, you gave seen how many lives he touched and inspired throughout his career.

Classifieds

Add your classified now both in The Nooner and online for $50/week or $150/month by emailing scottlay@gmail.com, 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]


Congresswoman Doris Matsui seeks a Field Representative experienced in infrastructure policy to join her Sacramento team.

General duties include, but are not limited to, the following: Representing the Congresswoman at public events in the community, creating and organizing events that advance her legislative agenda, advocating before federal agencies on behalf of constituents who have sought assistance, collaborating with local organizations seeking federal grants, and meeting with constituent groups and organizations.

The ideal candidate will be a motivated, hardworking, highly dependable, and an organized professional who possesses strong communication skills and the ability to work well under pressure.

The position requires a driver’s license, a bachelor’s degree, and the ability and willingness to work evenings and weekends.

The candidate would be joining a motivated and cohesive team that is 100% committed to improving the lives of people living in Sacramento and West Sacramento.

Salary will be commensurate with experience. Interested candidates should send a cover letter, resume, and writing sample to Glenda Corcoran:

ca06jobs@gmail.com

CAPITOL SEMINARS’ INVALUABLE LOBBYING 101 COURSE OFFERED VIA ZOOM

Taught by 46-year Capitol veteran Ray LeBov. Provides comprehensive coverage of California’s Legislative process, along with touch points and best practices you need to know for effective Legislative advocacy. Send your new lobbyists, support staff, legislative committee members, executives who hire and manage lobbyists. Capitol Seminars is the No.1 training resource for nonprofits and private sector organizations, lobbying firms, trade associations, state and local government entities. Next Zoom session is Tuesday, May 25th, 8:30am-1:30pm. Seats are limited. Reservations: (916) 837-0208. Further information: www.capitolseminars.net

Join the California Manufacturers & Technology Association Team!

Are you a legislative advocate? Know someone passionate about improving policies for manufacturers? Do they have 4+ years of government affairs experience with emphasis on legislative, regulatory and/or commercial environment? CMTA’s exciting and fast-paced State Government Relations team is searching for a Policy Director. Subject-matter expertise in energy, environment and/or workforce issues preferred. Apply here! cmta.net/job_post.php

The Breakthrough Institute is seeking a Press Secretary (Berkeley)

Are you a savvy communications professional with ecomodernist ideals? Are you an effective communicator and strong writer with a passion for solving humanity’s biggest challenges? The Breakthrough Institute, a Berkeley-based research center, is looking for a new Press Secretary to expand our reach in the media and build connections with journalists, reporters, and newsroom editors. The Press Secretary will develop, implement, and assist in guiding media and digital strategies rooted in climate, energy, food, and agriculture with an ecomodernist emphasis. Please visit our website for a detailed job description and application instructions.

The position is in Berkeley, although remote until later in 2021.

Capitol Weekly presents A Conference on Housing Policy

Join us for an informative update on California’s Housing Crisis. For years, the Golden State has had the highest home prices in the US, one of the lowest rates of home-ownership, and the most people living on the streets – now, the COVID-19 pandemic has made the situation even worse. Three panels of experts, insiders and elected officials will discuss the status of the state’s Housing Crisis and the policy solutions being proposed to help solve it.

This event will be hosted on ZOOM from 9AM – 1:45PM, Wednesday, May 26. There is no cost to attend, but registration is required. Attend one panel, or the whole day!

NEW SACRAMENTO-BASED THRILLER!

SET IN SACRAMENTO, ALL THAT FALL is "a white-knuckled, character-driven thriller, at once twisty and full of heart." In this first in a new series from award-winning author KRIS CALVIN, Investigator Emma Lawson has just 48-hours to stop a killer whose plans for revenge include upending California's government. "The story reads as if it happened. Emma and the rest of the cast will hook you." ORDER NOW from Amazon or your favorite bookstore at www.kriscalvin.com. Available in hardback, ebook & audiobook.

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.

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: