The porn industry has its day. So does the California Association of Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors.
Next up, “Aerospace Days” launch at the Capitol today.
So why do lawmakers care? Boeing, NASA, Lockheed Martin, Virgin Galatic and other players in the state’s air and space industry claim to collectively employ more than 200,000 workers in the state and contribute $2.9 billion in annual income tax revenue. The Golden State also serves as home base to NASA’s Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley, Armstrong Flight Research Center in Edwards Air Force Base and Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, among dozens of other facilities tied to the industry. And the industry is well-funded. Boeing alone ended the year with $673,000 in its political action committee registered in California.
A welcome on the Assembly floor at noon kicks off two days of events in Sacramento. A joint Assembly hearing about job opportunities for women in science, technology, math and engineering is scheduled for 3 p.m. in room 4203. Tuesday’s events include a breakfast in the Governor’s Council Room and an aerospace exhibition on the west steps. Here’s a full listing of events on Monday and Tuesday.
PENDING VOTE: Lawmakers are expected to vote today on a plan to broaden an expiring tax on health plans. About eight months ago, Gov. Jerry Brown called a special session focused on the tax, which helps pay for Medi-Cal and could net the state an estimated $1.3 billion in federal aid. The votes were initially anticipated last week.
WE CAN DO IT: Made popular in a government propaganda campaign to recruit women for the munitions industry, “Rosie the Riveter” became an iconic image of World War II. Today, eight real-life ‘Rosies,’ who filled positions at the Richmond shipyard during the war, will be honored on the Assembly and Senate floors. The event is tied to Women’s History Month in March.
POETRY SHOWDOWN: Today marks the conclusion of California’s Poetry Out Loud competition, in which some 35,000 high school students battle each year to deliver the most moving prose. The contest began last fall in classrooms throughout the state. Similar to a spelling bee, winners were selected from each school and advanced to a district or county competition.
Now the top 39 students are sparring in Sacramento for the title of best-in-state. The final rounds began Sunday and conclude today at the Capitol. The event kicks off at 8:30 a.m. in room 4202. The winner will represent California in the national championship. Let the best odist win.
ORGANICS: Assemblyman Mark Stone, D-Scotts Valley, plans to introduce legislation to remove some of the red tape for California organic farms, a $9 billion industry. Stone’s camp says Assembly Bill 1826 will reduce “duplicative paperwork and fees for producers” and supplement national guidelines. The press conference will begin at 10:30 a.m. in the Magnolia Ballroom of the Sheraton Grand Hotel.
FPPC: So far in 2016, the state’s top political watchdog, Jodi Remke, has increased transparency in lobbying reports and introduced a plan to essentially rewrite California’s dated Political Reform Act. Remke, the chair of the Fair Political Practices Commission, will be the featured speaker at a Sacramento Press Club lunch Monday at 11:45 a.m. at the Capital Plaza Ballroom, 1025 9th St. The club says Remke intends to discuss her plans to enforce campaign spending laws during the election cycle.
WEED BANKING: Through Assembly Bill 266 last year, the Legislature established regulations for the medical marijuana industry for the first time since it was approved by voters 20 years ago. But cannabis businesses still face a major unresolved setback: Most banks won’t take their money.
Matt Dababneh, an assemblyman from Encino and chair of the Assembly Banking and Finance Committee, hosts a hearing this afternoon to discuss issues blocking the industry from gaining access to traditional bank systems. Speakers include representatives of the medical marijuana and banking communities. The hearing begins at 2 p.m. in room 4202 of the Capitol. Watch a livestream here.