Capitol Alert

AM Alert: Kevin de León shares policy priorities for 2015

After being elected the new Senate President Pro Tem, Kevin de León receives congratulations from other lawmakers on June 16, 2014.
After being elected the new Senate President Pro Tem, Kevin de León receives congratulations from other lawmakers on June 16, 2014. The Associated Press

Fresh off a caucus policy retreat, Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León goes before the Sacramento Press Club, 11:45 a.m. at the Capitol Plaza Ballroom on 9th Street, to talk about his 2015 priorities and perhaps make some news.

De León, who became Senate leader in October, has previously identified combating climate change and funding California’s public universities as major focuses of his tenure.

Last fall, he promised to set policies “laying the foundations of a green economy with green jobs that will be an example for the world.” He later called on California’s two major pension funds to divest from coal. And after the University of California threatened a tuition hike next year, he put forward a higher education funding proposal that would keep fees flat.

Helping the state’s undocumented population also has been a recurring interest of de León, who was raised by his immigrant mother and began his political career as an immigration-rights activist.

VIDEO: The first beneficiary of a new vote-by-mail law may be its own author, Dan Walters notes.

HERE COMES THE SUN: Gov. Jerry Brown, U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julián Castro and local San Francisco leaders will announce a joint state and federal program to expand financing for solar energy projects on multifamily housing in California, 11 a.m. at the Marlton Manor in San Francisco.

NEW HACK SWING: From credit card data theft to the Sony Pictures hack, cybersecurity has been all over the news in recent years. The National Cyber Security Alliance, which promtes online safety, brings its “Two Steps Ahead: Protect Your Digital Life” tour to Sacramento to educate consumers and businesses on improving their digital security, 10:30 a.m. at the Tsakopoulos Library Galleria on I Street. Mark Ghilarducci, director of the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services, and Joanne McNabb, who oversees privacy education and policy at the attorney general’s office, will join cybersecurity experts for a panel discussion.

IN THOSE GENES: Can our genes help determine our risk of, and treatment for, disease? Esteban Burchard, professor of bioengineering and therapeutic sciences & medicine at UC San Francisco, discusses how racial and ethnic background influence health, noon at the UC Center Sacramento on K Street.

WHERE HAS ALL THE SNOWPACK GONE?: As Californians continue to cross their fingers for drought-busting storms, snowpack in the Sierra stands at about a quarter of its normal level for this time of year. The state Department of Water Resources will conduct its second manual survey of the season, 11 a.m. at Phillips Station in Echo Summit.

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