Around The Capitol

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RECENT PODS:

  • Capitol Weekly Podcast (John Howard and Tim Foster): Lande Ajose, chair of the Governor’s Council for Postsecondary Education (2021-05-09)
  • CAP·impact (McGeorge School of Law): Lobbyist and law professor Chris Micheli with key reminders on legislative drafting in California (2021-05-09)
  • 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)  

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)
  • Join the California Manufacturers & Technology Association Team!
  • 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 UPDATES:

  • SD06 (Sacramento): While I have had him on the list for a while, former Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones (D) has announced that he is indeed running for the open district currently held by termed-out Dr. Richard Pan (D) in 2022. I missed his email last Tuesday due to shoulder downtime.

    It's going to be a wild race with Sacramento City Council members Angelique Ashby and Eric Guerra, former Assemblymember Roger Dickinson, Metro Chamber VP Khaim Morton, and pastor/author Tecoy Porter already in the race. All are Democrats in a solidly blue district that is unlikely to change much in redistricting.

The Nooner for Monday, May 10, 2021, presented by SYASL Partners

Good morning! Just another Manic Monday and it's May Revision week! My head is already spinning...

From "The Nooner after hours file," I know Nooner readers who receive it at a Gmail address received it at odd times or not at all. Oddly, mine came through right away and about 50% went through). Here's what's going on. In an effort to reduce spam, Google implemented new (and unannounced) safety procedures yesterday. It requires additional changes to the DNS records of domains that go beyond Sender Policy Framework, which has worked well, but clearly, lots is still getting through. I've made the changes to the DNS records that they direct, but it may take a day or two to take effect.

I appreciate the efforts of Google, but the ever-changing requirements are boggling. I'm sure you ask why I don't use MailChimp or a similar service. I could, but that would end such things as popular Nooner contests, etc., because of the dynamic nature of such things as contest codes.

Meanwhile, I try to post to Twitter and Facebook each day when it's posted on the website, which you always can see in the archives.

Anyway, aside from the above that kept me up late, I'm doing great. We had my sister and I joined my Mom, aunt, and uncle for a Zoomtastic Mother's Day. Of course, 80% of the conversation was pollitics. I know my sister joins me in anticipating getting up to Portland later this year. I plan to be there over Thanksgiving.

WEEKENDS AT THE NOONER: It was a beautiful weekend and I know many of you were out-and-about. Here's what was covered in this space over the weekend.

Saturday, May 8

Sunday, May 9

BUDGET: It's May Revision week! (While the common parlance may be "May Revise," but the pros will correct that to the correct term of "May Revision." Government Code §13308 requires the revision to be provided to the Legislature on or before May 14, which is Friday. I'm hearing that it'll be released Thursday, but I've been surprised before. However, the previews have already begun.

During the Mother's Day message yesterday by Governor Gavin Newsom and First Lady Jennifer Siebel Newsom, Newsom said that the revision will propose additional child and family care funding, including:

  • 100k additional child care slots, largest expansion of its kind in CA history
  • Millions in state funds for child care providers
  • $200 million to support career pathways for home care workers & more

This morning in Alameda, Governor Newsom announced that the May Revision will propose a $10.9 billion "tax rebate" to spur economic recovery. For The Bee, Sophia Bollag previewed the announcement:

Two-thirds of Californians would get an extra $600 from the state under a new plan unveiled Monday morning by Gov. Gavin Newsom.

Families with children would also get additional $500 checks as part of the plan, according to Newsom’s office.

His office has not yet release details about who would qualify for the payments. He is scheduled to discuss the plan at an event in Alameda County Monday morning.

The proposal represents nearly $12 billion of a $100 billion “California Comeback Plan” Newsom says he’ll unveil in pieces over the next few days to help the state bounce back from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Scott Shafer reports from KQED:

Today's announcement, framed by the governor as part of his "California Comeback Plan," is a major expansion of a stimulus package Newsom signed into law in February that sent one-time payments of $600 to nearly 6 million low-income Californians.

According to the governor's Department of Finance, households earning up to $75,000 in adjusted gross income will be eligible for the new round of stimulus checks.

Cash from the surging U.S. stock market, along with the $26 billion the state recently received from the $1.9 trillion federal American Rescue Plan, have flooded California's coffers to a point that could not have been imagined when the COVID-19 pandemic began last year and the stock market tanked.

The announcement marks a stunning budgetary turnaround that comes as Newsom faces a statewide recall over criticism of his handling of the pandemic and as the pandemic-delayed deadline for filing income taxes approaches.

Just over a year ago, it appeared that California's estimated $5.6 billion surplus was morphing into a $54 billion deficit thanks to the soaring costs of the pandemic and sinking revenues as unemployment spiked and businesses closed.

Since then, the stock market has risen faster than an Elon Musk spaceship, with companies like Apple, Facebook and Tesla pumping out huge profits.

In addition, hundreds of companies have used the Wall Street surge to make initial public offerings (IPOs) of their stock in hopes of riding the wave of investor optimism, minting hundreds of new millionaires in the process.

The rebates are required because the state will otherwise hit the State Appropriations Limit ("Gann Limit"), which constitutionally limits state and local per person inflation-adjusted spending to be below 1978-79 levels. Here is a great primer on the issue from the Legislative Analyst's 2018-19 budget analysis.

The state has $38 billion in discretionary spending in the upcoming fiscal year. The state is at the Gann Limit. $26 billion of the $38 billion is from the federal government. When accepting that money, a state is prohibited from cutting taxes. More on that under the recall item below.

In the Chron, Alexei Koseff previews the discussions between the governor and legislative leaders that will follow the release of the May Revision.

The overflowing coffers are likely to set off a scramble for new spending. Legislators have previewed their priorities in recent weeks, proposing everything from assistance for first-time home buyers to expanded college scholarships to more subsidized child care slots.

“We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to make transformative changes for California,” state Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins, D-San Diego, said during a news conference last month.

But they may run into the Gann Limit, a law approved by voters in 1979 that requires the state government to keep per capita spending below the 1978-79 level, adjusted for growth in personal income and population. It hasn’t been triggered since 1987, when California refunded $1.1 billion to taxpayers.

The law now kicks in if the state exceeds the limit for two years in a row. Half of the money beyond the spending cap then goes to schools and half goes back to taxpayers.

DOLLARS AND NONSENSE: In the LAT, George Skelton writes that while the state is flush with cash, legislators are proposing tax increases. As noted above, Governor Newsom is proposing a tax rebate to spur economic growth.

...Sacramento is hauling in so much revenue that the state government is accumulating a huge surplus and is close to being legally forced to return some of the money to taxpayers.

Yet, during the young legislative session lawmakers have already proposed raising taxes and fees by an unbelievable $234 billion annually, according to the California Tax Foundation. That’s a research nonprofit founded decades ago by the California Taxpayers Assn., an anti-tax lobby.

Let’s put that $234 billion in perspective. It’s more than the entire $227-billion state budget Gov. Gavin Newsom proposed in January for the next fiscal year. He plans to revise the budget this week, no doubt upward.

A caveat on the tax total: I characterize the figure as unbelievable because it is. It’s an implausible stretch crafted to serve as a two-by-four to awaken taxpayers and prod them to yell at lawmakers.

It’s beyond the realm of conceivability that the vast majority of these tax proposals could be enacted into law.

Nevertheless, the foundation did Californians a service by laying out what could happen if tax-happy lawmakers were left to their own devices. Fortunately, there are pragmatic leaders, moderate Democrats and conservative Republicans to block the two-thirds majority votes mostly required.

And Newsom is leery of any major tax hike, especially when he’s fighting off a recall attempt and is up for reelection next year.

...

Sacramento is rolling in money. It doesn’t need big tax increases. It needs more efficient spending.

Republicans have been screaming that for years. They’re not always wrong.

DO YOU RECALL?

  • Beauty and the beast: This morning, Gubernatorial candidate John Cox took his "Meet the Beast Bus Tour" to Los Angeles, although apparently Kodiak Tag has gone into hibernation. Cox will be in Sandy Eggo tomorrow and his campaign emails:
    "We can save California and stop our historic population loss, but it will take beastly changes," John Cox said. "Pretty boy politician Gavin Newsom has failed this state. It's time to shake things up."
    Meanwhile, the campaign has released two new 15-second ads as part of Cox's self-funded $5 million ad campaign: "Shake Up" and "Roaring." Both continue the "Beauty and the Beast" theme, with a parrot saying "pretty boy" with a picture of Newsom followed by a roaring bear followed by a picture of Cox and Tag.

    Political strategists would debate whether it's smart to go quiet in a week of roll outs by Newsom of budget proposals buoyed by federal stimulus and above-than-projected tax revenues. I've never seen a conclusive answer, but have heard political consultants argue over it for years.

    On Last Week Tonight, John Oliver opened his show last night blasting Cox's campaign launch. The segment isn't posted yet on YouTube but may be later here
  • Budget politics: In a second emailed release this morning, the Cox campaign writes:
    “Instead of making beastly, structural changes and slashing taxes permanently, pretty boy Gavin Newsom is making one-time payments to Californians to avoid being recalled - and only because the law requires him to,” John Cox said. “But, Californians can't be bought. Now is when we should be making big changes that will shake-up Sacramento, lower taxes and make California permanently more affordable.”
    Candidate Kevin Faulconer tweeted:

    Faulconer statement

    The problem is that, if a state accepts the federal stimulus, it is prohibited from cutting taxes. As I understand it, to the extent tax cuts are provided, federal stimulus dollars must be returned dollar-for-dollar to Washington.

    Meanwhile, the state is required to return funds under the Gann Limit at least on a one-time basis. That's why it's not an ongoing tax cut but rather a one-time economic stimulus payment to meet the federal and state constitutional requirements. It's an elegant dance, but the law actually matters. If permanent tax cuts are done, the money must be returned to the feds.
  • Faulconer: While he doesn't have the wealth or the bear of John Cox, former San Diego mayor and gubernatorial candidate Kevin Faulconer found an audience  at the "Freedom Fest" fundraiser in Tulare on Saturday hosted by Congressman Devin Nunes (R-Tulare). Donald Trump Jr. also spoke at the event.

    In the Visalia Times-Delta, Joshua Yeager writes:

    More than 1,700 people attended the festival, which was live-streamed on Rumble, an online video platform that conservatives have held up as an alternative to YouTube and Facebook.

    ...

    Faulconer spoke to the Valley crowd, making his first introduction to potential voters unfamiliar with southern California politics. The former San Diego mayor has flown under the radar compared to higher-profile candidates John Cox, who brought a 1,100-pound Kodiak bear along on the campaign trail this week, and Olympian turned reality television star, Caitlyn Jenner.

    Both have significant leads over Faulconer in a Newsweek poll released this week. A 47% plurality of voters said Newsom should remain in office while 36% said he should be removed. If a simple majority agrees to recall Newsom, he'll be fired.

    Faulconer said he won office in San Diego, which only has 25% registered Republican voters, by appealing to "common sense." The same could happen for the statewide office, he said. 

    "Why did I get elected and reelected? Because we talked about common sense. When you talk about conservative values and principles, and we actually get up to get results, guess what? People will support that, people will vote for that," he said. "That's the kind of change we need in Sacramento."

    He said building more dams and maintaining California's waterways would be a priority if elected.

    "It's time to have a governor and an administration that will support you, that will back you up, that understands how important this Valley is to the success of our state," he said. 

GOVERNOR'S AUTHORITY: For CalMatters, Dan Walters looks at the unanimous ruling of the three-judge panel in the state's Third District Court of Appeal last week reversing a Sutter County judge's ruling in a case brought by two Republican Assembly members that Governor Newsom exceeded his authority in the Emergency Powers Act last year in a series of executive orders during the pandemic.

Newsom will likely prevail when the issue hits the state Supreme Court. Whether he will prevail when his performance as California’s one-man band is placed before voters is less certain.

However it turns out, California’s experiment in quasi-parliamentary government will be grist for political scientists, political historians and pundits for many years to come. They should weigh whether emergency powers meant to cope with relatively brief calamities such as earthquakes or riots should be extended into months- or even years-long expansions of executive power.

EARTH, WIND, AND FIRE: While only modest grass fires were reported in Northern California over the weekend, the Red Flag Warning has been extended through tomorrow in much of Northern California. From the NWS, the warning includes "Sacramento Valley, Delta, northern San Joaquin Valley and surrounding terrain below 2000 feet elevation"

COVID-19, cakedays, and classifieds after the jump...

COVID-19: California reported 20 deaths yesterday for a total of 61,952 since the pandemic began. The usual weekend lag in reporting must be considered, but the trend line certainly justifies optimism. Let's look at the charts:

COVID cases and deaths

-data dive: California's 7-day positivity rate is currently 1.1% (-0.1%), far below the 7.1% peak amidst mass testing on December 30 and the lowest 7 day average of the pandemic.

-vaccines:

  • vaccine doses administered in California: 32,471,842 (not the number of people vaccinated because of the two-dose Moderna and Pfizer vaccines)
  • vaccine doses delivered to California: 40,942,280 
  • Californians fully vaccinated: 14,227,497 (44.7% of 16+)
  • Californians partially vaccinated: 5,379,930 (16.9% of 16+)

-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 and classifieds after the jump...

Probolsky Research

CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Alex BurrolaWillie Guerrero, Chandra Sharma, and Ali Doerr Westbrook!

 

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: