Capitol Alert

AM Alert: Child care workers to push for unionization

Tisa Kelley a Sacramento child-care provider in the La Riviera area of Sacramento puts away some of the chairs after lunch on Thursday, May 28, 2015.
Tisa Kelley a Sacramento child-care provider in the La Riviera area of Sacramento puts away some of the chairs after lunch on Thursday, May 28, 2015. hamezcua@sacbee.com

Child care advocacy group Raising California Together will bring children to the Capitol on Wednesday to push for the passage of SB 548, which would allow state-paid child care providers to unionize.

Child care providers and children will read, sing and make art on the Capitol grounds beginning at 12:30 p.m. They will be joined by Senate President Pro Tem Kevin De León, D-Los Angeles, the bill’s sponsor.

The measure passed the Senate in June and is scheduled to come up before the Assembly Appropriations Committee on Wednesday. Proponents say the bill would protect underpaid child care workers and expand access to child care for working-class families. Opponents have raised concerns about the rising cost of child care.

MINIMUM WAGE: The Assembly Appropriations Committee is scheduled to hear a variety of bills Wednesday, including one to raise California’s minimum wage to $11 next year.

SB 4, sponsored by Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, would raise the state minimum wage to $11 an hour by January 2016 and $13 an hour by January 2017. The minimum wage, currently $9 an hour statewide, is already being raised by a dollar next year.

Other bills before the committee include one allowing undocumented immigrants to enroll in Covered California and receive other state health services.

TOP-TWO PRIMARIES: California Secretary of State Alex Padilla, several state lawmakers and elections experts will speak about California’s primary election system Wednesday.

The California Nonpartisan Primary Summit, hosted by the non-profits Independent Voter Project and California Forward, will address the state’s “top-two” primary system and its effect on voters.

The top-two primary was adopted in California with the passage of Proposition 14 in 2010. It allows voters to select any candidate in a primary regardless of party, with the top two candidates then facing each other in the general election.

The summit takes place 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Citizen Hotel, 925 J St.

ROAD REPAIRS: Gov. Jerry Brown will speak to the press on transportation and infrastructure with Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins, D-San Diego, on Wednesday in Oakland.

Brown has called for “permanent and sustainable funding” to fix the state’s roads and highways. According to Brown’s office, California’s fuel excise tax only allows $2.3 billion of road repair work a year – $5.7 billion short of what is needed.

Jeanne Kuang: 916-321-1188, @jeannekuang

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