Capitol Alert

Ballot measure $ totals; Obama endorses 10 CA candidates; Census impact



Here comes the money. Ballot measure committees are gearing up for the general election, and millions are about to be spent over the next few months to persuade voters.

Campaign finance reports filed ahead of a Tuesday deadline show ballot measure committees had large disparities of available cash as of June 30. Proposition 6, which calls for repealing California’s gas tax, is poised to be the most expensive fight, followed by Proposition 10, which allows cities and counties to pass comprehensive rent control laws

Here’s a breakdown of cash on hand for both sides of each ballot measure.

*Propositions 1 & 2 — $4 billion bond measure for housing; allows counties to use money from Proposition 63’s “millionaire’s tax” on permanent housing for the homeless that includes a direct connection to social services

SUPPORT: $1,464,134.23

*Committee supporting both measures, no committees opposed

Proposition 3 — $8.9 billion bond that would fund projects aimed at improving water quality, fixing dams and protecting habitats >> READ MORE

SUPPORT: $534,089.21

Proposition 4 — Authorizes $1.5 billion in bonds to build, expand, renovate and equip children’s hospitals

SUPPORT: $3,222,742.83

Proposition 5 — Gives a property tax break to homeowners over 55 buying a home >>READ MORE

SUPPORT: $574,036.45

OPPOSE: No filing

Proposition 6 — Repeals a $5 billion-a-year gasoline tax and fee increase approved last year to repair California’s roads >>READ MORE

SUPPORT: $1,154,571.84

OPPOSE: $9,749,997.29

Proposition 7 — Overturns a 1949 voter-approved initiative called the Daylight Savings Time Act, which established Standard Pacific Time in California (If approved by voters in November, Legislature would then decide how the state’s time should be set) >>READ MORE

No committees have been formed to support or oppose this measure.

Proposition 8 — Limits how much private outpatient kidney dialysis clinics could charge patients and requires them to report financial information to the state

SUPPORT: $442,823.57

OPPOSE: $4,302,116.54

Proposition 10 — Allows cities and counties to enact much more comprehensive rent control laws >>READ MORE

SUPPORT: $25,368.56

OPPOSE: $8,177,025.34

Proposition 11 — Requires workers at private emergency ambulance companies to remain on call during work breaks.

SUPPORT: $247,535.92

Proposition 12 — Establishes specific animal confinement/cage-free standards for egg-laying hens, breeding pigs and calves raised for veal >>READ MORE

SUPPORT: $20,800.49

OPPOSE: $542,954.79

NOTE: Proposition 9, which called for splitting California into three states, was struck down by the state’s Supreme Court and thrown off the 2018 ballot.


If the Trump administration is successful in fighting off a multi-state lawsuit against the new citizenship question on the 2020 census, it’s possible many California residents will decline to participate in the decennial survey. Undercounting could cause California to get less representation in Congress.

The Public Policy Institute of California released new interactive maps on Wednesday highlighting some of the toughest communities to count. Based on demographic traits and historical trends, PPIC estimates that one in 10 Sacramento County residents will be hard to count. One county along the U.S.-Mexico border could has 43 percent of people who will be difficult to count, according to PPIC.


Former President Barack Obama endorsed 81 Democratic midterm candidates on Wednesday, including 10 running for office in California. At the statewide level, Obama endorsed gubernatorial and lieutenant governor candidates Gavin Newsom and Eleni Kounalakis.

Obama also endorsed seven U.S. House candidates, all of whom are in districts currently occupied by Republicans. Besides the race for lieutenant governor, Obama only weighed in on one Dem-on-Dem race, backing Buffy Wicks over Jovanka Beckles for an East Bay Assembly seat. Wicks previously served on the senior staff of Obama’s 2008 and 2012 campaigns.


The American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California launched a campaign on Wednesday to support Assembly Bill 931 — a measure that limits a police officer’s use of deadly force to situations where it is necessary to prevent “imminent death or serious bodily injury to the officer or to another person.”

The ACLU plans to buy advertisements expressing support for the bill in the coming days. They’ve already launched a website and posted a video on Twitter urging people to demand senators pass it when they return from recess.


Rep. Ami Bera, D-Elk Grove, holds a town hall at 6:30 p.m. today at Elk Grove City Hall. He plans to talk about health care and his attempts at bipartisanship.


Former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer is making the rounds promoting his latest book. Next on the itinerary: a trip to San Francisco. The Commonwealth Club is hosting Spicer for a conversation with a CBS Bay Area reporter at 6:30 p.m. The event is sold out and will be held at the Marines’ Memorial Theatre.


The man behind the movement to impeach President Donald Trump, Tom Steyer, will deliver the opening-session keynote address at this year’s Netroots Nation conference in New Orleans — a three-day gathering of progressives. His Need to Impeach campaign is dividing California Democrats.


The California Energy Commission is holding a joint workshop today with the California Public Utilities Commission, the California Natural Resources Agency, the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research and the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services to discuss the impact of climate change on wildfire risks and how the energy sector can stay prepared.

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On Friday, the California Highway Patrol swears in 53 new officers. The graduation ceremony will be held at 10 a.m. in the CHP Academy gym in West Sacramento.


Beginning at 7 p.m. today on Capitol Mall, a group protesting the Trump administration’s family separation policy and “anti-immigrant policies” will launch a three-day hunger strike. NorCal Resist wants the federal government to reunite families and support those who have become traumatized by the experience. Santa Cruz will strike from Aug. 5-7.


Jack Ohman, The Bee’s editorial cartoonist, pays tribute to California firefighters:


Associated Press (@AP) — “BREAKING: US appeals court: Trump’s executive order threatening to withhold funding from ‘sanctuary cities’ is unconstitutional.”


California schools aren’t exactly leading the nation. What should we do about it? Influencers have plenty to say.

“The single most important thing we can do to improve California’s place in national rankings of education quality is to lessen the inordinate political power wielded by public employee unions that represent special interests. Fortunately, the United States Supreme Court in Janus v. AFSCME took a big step in that direction on our behalf by prohibiting the involuntary exaction of union dues from those who don’t want to be represented by a union.

“For decades, CTA has stymied even the most modest of educational reforms, including the ability of school boards to fire bad teachers or even teachers who engage in criminal conduct. Californians shouldn’t conflate the interests of students and parents with the interests of unions. Remember the notorious quote from Albert Shanker, a former president of the United Federation of Teachers? ‘When schoolchildren start paying union dues, that’s when I’ll start representing the interests of schoolchildren.’

“In a comprehensive analysis, Stanford professor David Crane noted that all of the Proposition 30 tax hike on the wealthy — represented as helping education — went to increased school spending on pensions and retiree health care costs.

“It is also important to remember that more taxpayer dollars does not correlate with higher test scores. Proposition 13 is frequently blamed for hurting education, but California is now spending 30% more on a per-student, inflation-adjusted basis than we were in the mid-70s when there was broad agreement that the quality of education in the state was very high.”

— Jon Coupal, president of Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

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