Capitol Alert

AM Alert: California politicians push Obama for national monument designation

The view from the top of Berryessa Peak on Jan. 27, 2013.
The view from the top of Berryessa Peak on Jan. 27, 2013. The Sacramento Bee

California congressional delegates are lobbying President Barack Obama for protection of the Berryessa Snow Mountain region, a nature and recreation area in Northern California.

A legislative effort to declare the 346,000-acre stretch of Napa, Mendocino, Lake, Solano and Yolo counties a “national conservation area” – led by Rep. Mike Thompson, D-St. Helena, and Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer – has stalled in Congress for several years running. So now proponents are changing tactics and asking Obama for an executive action naming Berryessa Snow Mountain a national monument, similar to his declaration for the San Gabriel Mountains this fall.

U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell will be in Napa today to attend a public meeting discussing permanent protection for Berryessa Snow Mountain, 2 p.m. at the Napa Valley College Performing Arts Center.

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HOMELESS NO MORE: The Obama administration is making a big push to end veteran homelessness by 2015. Los Angeles, which has the country’s biggest homeless veteran population, begins the process this weekend with its first ever “stand down,” a three-day program that offers food, clothing, legal aid and other services to homeless and at-risk veterans. CalVet Secretary Peter Gravett is among the speakers at the event, which is sponsored by the U.S. and California departments of veterans affairs.

SING ANOTHER SONG: The Capitol holiday concert series is entering its final days, so if you want to enjoy free music in the rotunda, make sure you get there by Tuesday. The Capital Valley Harp Circle performs today at noon, while the State Capitol Museum Singers lead a sing-a-long tomorrow and “Holiday in Argentina” offers music and tango on Sunday.

Call The Bee’s Alexei Koseff, (916) 321-5236. Follow him on Twitter @akoseff.