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  • Capitol Weekly Podcast (John Howard and Tim Foster): Assemblymember Mike Gipson (D-Carson) (2021-05-17)
  • California State of Mind (CapRadio): Total Recall: How The CA Political Process Works and Its History; Exploring Silicon Valley’s Role in Pandemic Response (2021-05-14)
  • This Week in California Education (John Fensterwald and Louis Freedberg @ EdSource): Newsom's $2 billion college savings account plan & Chris Edley on his new role (2021-05-14)
  • SacTown Talks (Jarhett Blonien): Assemblymember Miguel Santiago (D-Los Angeles) (2021-05-14)
  • Political Breakdown (Scott Shafer and Marisa Lagos): Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon on the state budget and executive powers (2021-05-13)
  • Inside Golden State Politics (Bill Boyarsky and Sherry Jeffe): House GOP dumps Liz Cheney, Gavin Newsom proposes billions, and is Eric Garcetti leaving Los Angeles? (2021-05-13)


  • CCST Expert Briefing: Disaster Resilient California: Mitigating Extreme Heat in a Changing Climate - May 18
  • Congresswoman Doris Matsui seeks a Field Representative experienced in infrastructure policy to join her Sacramento team.
  • Capitol Weekly presents A Conference on Housing Policy - May 26
  • The Breakthrough Institute is seeking a Press Secretary (Berkeley)
  • Join the California Manufacturers & Technology Association Team!
  • McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific - MPA/MPP
  • McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific - Masters of Science in Law

The Nooner for Wednesday, May 19, 2021, presented by SYASL Partners

Happy Humpday! I'll be short again today as I have jab #2 at 10:24. I'll probably be listening to Assembly Budget Sub 2's discussion on higher ed on the walk over to Rite Aid and the 15 minute post-shot waiting time. My family has had varying reactions to the second shot. Hopefully, my body's response is like my Mom's, which was minimal. Anyway, if I had a choice, it would be an afternoon appointment. Of course, I got what I could get.

AD54 (Baldwin Hills-Culver City-Westwood): In yesterday's special election for Sydney Kamlager's former seat, Isaac Bryan is awfully close to 50%, currently with 49.6%. Heather Hutt is second with 24.6% and Cheryl Turner is third with 10.5%. Kamlager endorsed Bryan, who previously worked for her while she was in the Assembly.

SCHOOL DAZE: In The Bee, Hannah Wiley writes that schools could lose funding if not fully reopened this fall.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom wants to withhold billions of dollars from schools that don’t return to pre-pandemic learning with full in-class instruction this fall as part of a budget proposal that emphasizes an economic recovery from COVID-19.

The blueprint would shift the K-12 system back to what was offered before the coronavirus forced kids into “Zoom school” in spring 2020 and initiated a yearlong battle between districts, legislators and teachers unions over reopening strategies.

Under Newsom’s plan, most students would return to a “default” in-person, classroom-based instruction. Families who aren’t ready for a physical return to school could instead enroll their kids in already-existing independent study programs offered by school districts.

SOCIAL DISTANCING? The Chron's Kellie Hwang looks at the future of social distancing rules in California after the masking requirements sunset on June 15.

In less than a month, Californians fully vaccinated against COVID-19 can begin shedding their face coverings indoors — but will they still need to keep their distance from others?

Right now, the future of the state’s pandemic physical distancing guidelines is unclear. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last week said fully vaccinated people can resume activities without wearing a mask or physical distancing, except when required by state or local rules, including business and workplace guidelines.

California officials announced Monday that they would follow the mask guidelines starting June 15, when the state plans a full reopening. But they didn’t mention anything about social distancing.

The state has said that when it retires its color-coded reopening blueprint on June 15, many sectors that have been forced to limit capacity can return to business as usual. But the specifics for physical distancing have not been spelled out.

In response to an email inquiry Tuesday, the California Department of Public Health said it would “provide additional guidance and details related to specific sectors” as it gets closer to the June 15 reopening date.

FRENCH LAUNDRY: In the Chron, Alexei Koseff writes that while the French Laundry incident was bad politically for Governor Newsom, things have been rosy for birthday boy Jason Kinney.

Billings by lobbying firm Axiom Advisors rose by more than 25% last quarter, following an infamous birthday dinner held by partner Jason Kinney at Napa Valley’s French Laundry restaurant. Gov. Gavin Newsom attended the November event in violation of his own social distancing rules in effect at the time, helping to spur the recall drive currently underway against him.

The Sacramento-based consultancy logged revenues of $2,008,046 between January and March, according to lobbying reports filed with the state, an increase of $406,916 from the fourth quarter of 2020 and its second-best reporting period since the firm was formed two and a half years ago.

Among more than 60 clients during those three months were nine that had newly hired Axiom Advisors to lobby on their behalf, including a little-known Massachusetts-based technology company, the cellular telecommunications industry association and French cosmetics juggernaut L’Oreal.

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

COVID-19: California reported 45 deaths yesterday for a total of 62,399 since the pandemic began.

-data dive: California's 7-day positivity rate is currently 0.9%, far below the 7.1% peak amid mass testing on December 30 and the lowest of the pandemic.


  • vaccine doses administered in California: 34,804,886
  • vaccine doses delivered to California: 43,880,370  
  • Californians fully vaccinated: 15,758,526 (49.5% of 16+)
  • Californians partially vaccinated: 4,718,243 (14.8% 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 12, 2021

Variant  Number of Cases Caused by Variant 
B.1.1.7   5,750
B.1.351    72
P.1  670
B.1.427   6,421
B.1.429  11,961

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.
  • 10 counties in the Red (substantial) Tier (11.2% of Californians): Del Norte, Merced, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Shasta, Solano, Stanislaus, and Yuba.
  • 35 counties in Orange (moderate) Tier (58.7% of Californians): Alameda, Butte, Calaveras, Colusa, Contra Costa, El Dorado, Fresno, Glenn, Humboldt, Imperial, Inyo, Kern, Kings, Lake, Madera, Marin, Mariposa, Modoc, Monterey, Napa, Plumas, Riverside, San Benito, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Siskiyou, Sonoma, Sutter, Tehama, Tulare, Tuolumne, Ventura, and Yolo.
  • 13 counties in Yellow (minimal) Tier (30.1% of Californians): Alpine, Amador, Lassen, Los Angeles, Mendocino, Mono, Orange, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Sierra, and Trinity.

Sacramento County is at a tier-adjusted case rate of 6.3/100k, meaning that it continues to be unlikely the county will have further reopenings before the June 15 anticipated lifting of tier-based restrictions. The case rate needs to be below 6/100k to progress to the orange tier. Placer County is at 5.9/100k and could advance to orange next week if case rates continue below 6/100k.

Statewide tiers map

cakedays and classifieds after the jump...

Probolsky Research

CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Vince Hall, Aaron Skaggs, and Don Wilcox!



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]

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 ideal candidate will have demonstrated experience in infrastructure and transportation policy.

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:

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!


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:

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!

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.

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:

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,, or contact us at

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: