Capitol Alert

AM Alert: The Kevin de León era begins

In this June 16, 2014 file photo, Sen. Kevin de Leon, D-Los Angeles, right, receives congratulations from Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, after he was elected as the new Senate President Pro Tem.
In this June 16, 2014 file photo, Sen. Kevin de Leon, D-Los Angeles, right, receives congratulations from Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, after he was elected as the new Senate President Pro Tem. AP

In case the campaign fliers inundating your mailbox or this photo didn’t cue you in to a time of transition, this evening’s festivities should: after six years of the Senate running under the auspices of Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, Senate Democrats will officially acquire a new leader.

Tonight Sen. Kevin de León, D-Los Angeles, takes the oath of office. And while de León’s Assembly counterpart ascended during a bipartisan hosanna-filled ceremony at the State Capitol, de León will be taking advantage of the legislative recess and marking the occasion on his home turf. That means a gala at the swooping Los Angeles Music Center. The California Latino Legislative Caucus Foundation is hosting the event at a cost of about $50,000.

If you’d like to read up on the incoming Senate leader, you can click here to learn about how the child of a low-income immigrant mother was elected one of the most powerful men in California.

VIDEO: Fantasy reigns in Los Angeles, Dan Walters says, where fabricating numbers seems to be common practice.

GOVERNOR GROUNDED: Typically, a Groundwater Resources Association of California conference might not register too much attention. But this has been a banner year for groundwater policy as California became the last Western state to regulate the subterranean resource. Gov. Jerry Brown will be honored with a special award for signing the package. The event is also scheduled to feature officials like California Department of Water Resources director Mark Cowin and California Department of Food and Agriculture secretary Karen Ross.

QUAKE A CLAIM: You may remember Brown signing a bill back in 2013 to launch an early earthquake warning system. A beta system has already yielded some results, and today the Senate Select Committee on Science, Innovation and Public Policy will be holding a hearing in San Francisco on the potential benefits and on where we stand – including on securing the necessary $80 million in funding. Testimony will come from a range of experts representing organizations like the U.S. Geological Survey, the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services and the California Energy Commission.

CELEBRATION AND FAREWELL: Happy birthday to soon-to-be-former Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, who hands off the baton on the day he turns 55.

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