Capitol Alert

AM Alert: California candidates convene in Sacramento

The weather is cooling, the days are shortening and the year is even: all signs we’re on the verge of full-on campaign season (you may have already noticed from the steady drumbeat of Sacramento legislative candidate sit-down Q&A’s and debate writeups published in the pages of The Bee).

Saturday condenses all the action into a single setting: the annual candidate forum sponsored by the Asian Pacific Islander American Public Affairs Association. In addition to getting a chance to interact with office seekers, attendees will absorb a debate on Sacramento’s ever-contentious “strong mayor” proposition featuring City Councilman Jay Schenirer and former Mayor Heather Fargo.

Campaigners planning to attend include both contestants from an array of local, Dem-on-Dem races: the 6th Senate District (Roger Dickinson and Richard Pan), the 7th Assembly District (Kevin McCarty and Steve Cohn), and the 9th Assembly district (Jim Cooper and Darrell Fong). Other forums include the 7th Congressional district (Democrat Ami Bera and Republican Doug Ose) and the 8th Assembly District (Democrat Ken Cooley and Republican Doug Haaland).

They’ll all be at California State University, Sacramento, for the daylong event.

HOLY WATER: Native American Day will bring a procession of tribes performing traditional games and displaying their culture at the state Capitol today, all under a Water is Sacred theme. Public officials expected to speak include Assemblyman Luis Alejo, D-Watsonville, and Gov. Jerry Brown’s adviser on Native American issues, Cynthia Gomez. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the north steps. In some related politics news, more money has been flowing into a fight over a controversial new tribal gaming pact.

CITIZENS RISING: The California Supreme Court already thwarted the anti-Citizens United ballot measure they supported, but the group 99Rise is still agitating to get money out of politics. Recently in the spotlight for a state-spanning march to the state Capitol that culminated in arrests and sparked a tiff over press access to the Legislature, a Sacramento chapter of the organization will be holding an inaugural event in Southside Park on Sunday afternoon.

CELEBRATIONS: Happy birthday to Assemblyman John A. Pérez, D-Los Angeles, who turns 45 on Sunday. He’ll be celebrating like most people do: with a fundraiser, in this case for Little Tokyo Service Center in L.A.