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Sacramento, CA - Senator Ben Allen (D - Santa Monica) and Senator Mark Leno (D - San Francisco) announced today their authorship of legislation to place an advisory measure on the November 2016 ballot urging the United States Congress to overturn the 2010 Citizens United Supreme Court ruling.

Allen and Leno's legislation, SB 254, is the latest step in a multi-year legislative and legal battle.  In 2014, the legislature approved SB 1272 (Lieu), which placed an advisory measure on the November 2014 statewide ballot asking whether Congress should propose an amendment to the Constitution to overturn the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission Supreme Court decision.  The Court's ruling rolled back the previous ban on corporate spending in federal elections, opening …

Cal-Access is the Secretary of State's online system for campaign finance filing and disclosure. State candidates and political committees submit required filings through Cal-Access for online publication. With heightened public alarm about money in politics, the outdated Cal-Access system - now more than 15 years old - is inadequate to provide meaningful transparency.

How can we modernize campaign disclosure?

SB 1349 (Hertzberg) would direct the SOS to develop a modern campaign finance disclosure system that is more user-friendly, and will allow voters to access important information that may inform their vote. The goals are to:

  • Create a data-driven system
  • Allow integration of city, county, and state-level data
  • Track and aggregate contributions, to allow voters to see…
Introduced by Assembly member Rich Gordon http://asmdc.org/members/a24  

Status: 2016-05-05 - Enrolled and presented to the Governor at 12:30 p.m.


Existing provisions of the Political Reform Act of 1974 regulate the activities of lobbyists, lobbying firms, and lobbyist employers in connection with attempts to influence legislative and administrative action by legislative and other state officials, including requirements that lobbyists, lobbying firms, and lobbyist employers register and file periodic reports with the Secretary of State. For purposes of these provisions, "lobbyist" is defined, in part, as an individual who receives $2,000 or more in economic consideration in a calendar month, or whose principal duties as an employee are, to communicate …

AB 700, the toughest disclosure law in the nation, passed in the Assembly on a historic 60-15 vote and is now in the Senate.  

Now there are 8 anti Big Money bills in the legislature https://act.myngp.com/el/-2262594102713317376/10969396887488512 , including bills for lobbyist reform, public financing of campaigns, and overturning Citizens United.  Including AB 700, four of the bills

1.      AB 700 (Gomez-Levine), California DISCLOSE Act:  Make political ads show who REALLY pays for them!  Sign petition!

2.      SB 1107 (Allen):  Start on the road to public financing of campaigns!  Sign SB 1107 petition!

3.      SB 254 (Allen-Leno), Overturn Citizens United Act:  Let us vote to urg…

Gov. Jerry Brown has proposed sweeping statewide legislation that would allow new market-rate projects with onsite affordable housing to be approved "as of right," in potentially California's most significant housing policy change in years.

The proposal has big ramifications for the Bay Area, where many cities and well-organized residents' groups have long fought residential development.

The trailing legislation to the state's 2016-2017 budget would require state assembly and senate approval. Under the proposal, new projects with 20 percent affordable housing for tenants making no more than 80 percent of the area median income or projects with 10 percent affordable housing near transit would be exempt from most local reviews.That would be a sharp break from the current policy…

Are rents in the District actually rising? Maybe on Class A properties, but not overall.

"Rents Rise in the District (ofColumbia) Despite a Crush of Class A Units," shouts the most recent headline from the real estate newsletter Urban Turf. The article points out that developers were worried that the wave of new Class A apartments that came online in 2014 would actually force rents down, when in fact the opposite has happened. (Class A properties are defined as large buildings that came online after 1991 with full amenity packages.)

But are rents in the District actually rising? Maybe on Class A properties, but not overall.

Statistics compiled by Real Estate Business Intelligence show that rents in the District have actually fallen overall by?3.89 percent in 2014 vers…

1)   Introductions:  Ken Smith, Patty Threet, Ron Pomerantz, Sandy Brown, Gail Jack, Nancy Abbey, Judy Geer, Chris Krohn, Rachel O'Malley, Tom Batley, Jim Logsdon, Tom Donohue, Nora Hochman, Gary Patton, Dru Glover, David Foster, George Knoll, Linda Kerner, Pauline Seales, Paul Elerick, Pat Dwyer, Coco Walter, Tom Burns, Steve Pleich, Dean Lundholm, Patrick Dwire, Jodi Nunes, Ken Smith, Matt Bruner, Wendy Macias, George Newell, Daryl Dichek, Peter and Sandra Nichols, Josh Brahinsky, Rick Longinotti, Bruce Larson, Jeff Ringold, Paul Johnston, Micah Posner.

2)   Nominating Committee: Nora Hochman explained that officers are nominated every year in May and voted on at the June meeting to serve from July 1 to June 30.  She reported the slate of officers p…

Developed by League of Women Voters:  Money in Politics
For more information about money in politics go to https://lwvc.org/issues/money-and-politics

For convenience, unofficial definitions of some of these terms and others follow, but it is important to know that for legal purposes many of these have detailed and well-established meanings in law  that are only approximated here.



Coordination. An expenditure for express advocacy made in "cooperation, consultation or concert" with or at the request of a candidate, or an agent of the candidate's committee or of a political party committee. However, the FEC's interpretations exclude many common-sense examples of cooperation.

Corruption. In Buckley v. Valeo (1976), the Supreme Court ruled that corruption or…

May 25, 2016

Senator Bill Monning
State Capitol, Room 313
Sacramento, CA 95814 

Re.  SB 968

Dear Senator Monning,

We are writing this letter after careful reflection to express our concerns with SB 968. Because the issue of closing Diablo Canyon power plant is so critical to our welfare, we believe there needs to be a high level of specificity about the intent and application of the measures proposed.

It is the position of the Peoples Democratic Club of Santa Cruz County that: 

1.   Nothing must further delay the closing of Diablo Canyon power plant.  The plant poses a threat to our lives and the lives of future generations.

2.   We don't need another "economic impact assessment study" because one was done 3 years ago.  It is…

1. Why Water for Santa Cruz County?  

The solution To Santa Cruz, Soquel Creek and Scotts Valley water supply and storage needs is a regional solution.  If Santa Cruz shares its winter water in the North Coast Streams and San Lorenzo river with the other two districts, and Scotts Valley and Soquel Creek share their storage available in their underground aquifers, the problem is solved.

 2. Background:  

The Water Supply Advisory Committee of Santa Cruz spent 18 months investigating the supply problem.  The investigation included the likelihood of significant climate change and change in precipitation patterns.   One of the WSAC conclusions:  in-lieu water transfers and storage can solve the problem.


When: 7pm-9pm Thursday June 16, 2016

Where Aptos Library Community Room,  7695 Soquel Dr., Aptos

Based upon evidence driven data, there is actually an abundance of water in this county. Yes, you heard that correctly, and this water is available now. Therefore, we have formed a group - Water for Santa Cruz County - to promote regional water transfers because this solution is the least expensive and most environmentally friendly alternative. It can be implemented right now!

Here's why: 

  1. The cost to implement the water transfers between the City of Santa Cruz and Soquel Creek is only a fraction of the projected $70 million to build a recycled sewer water facility. It has been calculated based on the data that a recycled sewer water plant proposed by Soquel Cr…
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