Commemorating the dead can also be political.
Amid family members’ complaints that fallen veterans such as those who died outside of combat zones were not getting their due, legislators in 2013 passed a bill allowing more names to be added to the Vietnam War Memorial in Capitol Park. The committee overseeing the process began debating new additions last year.
On Sunday, the first 32 new names will be unveiled during a special ceremony. That includes 10 veterans already etched into the national memorial in Washington, DC and another 22 whose Long Beach-based ship sank during a training exercise in the South China Sea.
VIDEO: Gov. Jerry Brown still holds out presidential hopes, Dan Walters says.
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ROAD CHARGING AHEAD: With dwindling gas tax revenue making it harder to fix California’s infrastructure, legislators are examining alternative funding sources like a road user fee. A new legislatively ordained advisory committee tasked with examining the feasibility of user fees will be meeting all day today in Irvine.
IN THE WEEDS: There are plenty of stresses on the fragile Delta ecosystem, among them non-native weeds that are infiltrating aquatic habitats. A special Senate agricultural subcommittee will be looking at the issue today during a hearing in Stockton featuring officials from the state Department of Food and Agriculture and from California State Parks.
HUG IT OUT: Should you venture by the Capitol on Saturday and see a ring of people encircling it, don’t be alarmed: they’re trying to set a world record for biggest group hug. Sponsored by a Christian-inflected organization, the event is expected to require some 3,500 huggers to break the record.
CELEBRATIONS: Happy birthday to Assemblyman Luis Alejo, D-Watsonville, who turns 41 today. And we have several more this weekend: Assemblywoman Marie Waldron, R-Escondido, turns 55 on Saturday. Assemblyman Jose Medina, D-Riverside, will be opening presents on Sunday, when he turns 62. Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance, will blow out 46 candles on Sunday.
Call Jeremy B. White, Bee Capitol Bureau, (916) 326-5543.