Posts Tagged: commission

Opinion

Drawing CA’s political lines: One person’s foray into redistricting

Illustration of California by ymgerman, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: Ten years ago, I sat in my office cubicle. I squinted to make out the grainy online image of Elaine Howle, the California State Auditor, pulling out a series of bingo balls. My desktop speaker crackled, and it was hard to read the numbers on the balls. I kept the volume low so my coworkers couldn’t eavesdrop.

News

CA120: Say hello to the ‘Lucky Eight’

A portion of California and its key regions in the 2021 redistricting. (Photo: Victor Maschek)

The 2021 redistricting has begun in earnest with the seating of the first eight members of the California Citizens Commission, the so-called “Lucky Eight” because they were seated after a random draw of ping-pong balls. In the quarantine era, this drawing, carried live, likely qualified as riveting entertainment.

Podcast

Capitol Weekly Podcast: Redistricting Commission’s representation problem

Detail of an antique California Bear Flag handerkerchief with detailed Grizzly Bear. Photo by the Bear Flag Museum

California’s Citizens Independent Redistricting Commission is generally regarded as a model of its kind, achieving balance and representation through a carefully constructed mix of quotas, political gamesmanship and random selection. How then, did the first round of new commissioners selected on July 2 (eight of a total of 14) fail to include a single Latino, the state’s largest ethnic group?

Opinion

Health care workforce crisis: Need more diversity, access to care

Health care workers in a hospital corridor. (Photo: Pixel-Shot, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: California has a healthcare workforce crisis. Over the next decade, this state’s 39 million residents face a health worker shortfall of 4,100 primary care physicians and 600,000 home care workers, and we will have only two-thirds of the psychiatrists and mental health providers needed.

Opinion

Fair ‘exit fee’ critical to renewable energy future

A concentrated solar energy thermal plant in the Mojave Desert. (Photo: Piotr Zajda, via Shutterstock)

While utility responsibility related to California’s devastating wildfires is dominating headlines and the agendas of policymakers, flying below the radar is a pending decision from the California Public Utilities Commission to change the formula for a fee charged to energy consumers who leave the power supply of investor-owned utilities (IOUs) like PG&E and instead get power from local community choice aggregation programs, also known as CCAs.

News

Independent governance eyed for State Water Project

The California Aqueduct, part of the State Water Project, flows by an almond orchard in the Central Valley. (Photo: Alabn, via Shutterstock)

The State Water Project comprises 700 miles of tunnels, pipelines, aqueducts and siphons that transport water from California’s north to its more arid south, serving 26 million people and 750,000 acres of farmland along the way. It’s a huge project with a lot of infrastructure, and it’s most of what DWR does. But more than 60 years later, there is a move under way to take control of the project out of the hands of DWR and place it in an independent commission.

Opinion

Energy, CCAs and the seniors’ cost burden

San Francisco skyline at sunset, as its electricity usage kicks in. (Photo: Joseph Sohm)

OPINION: A current law that is supposed to protect seniors and all electricity customers from paying for power that was purchased for other customers is not working. A broad coalition of senior groups and dozens of others is encouraging the Senate committee to discuss the fair allocation of costs for clean energy and other long-term contracts that were purchased to meet our state’s clean energy goals

Analysis

CA120: The redistricting commission, lines and political pressure

The House of Representatives, which may wind up with new members following the 2020 redistricting. (Photo: House of Representatives)

ANALYSIS: California’s independent Citizens Redistricting Commission was established by two ballot measures in 2008 and 2010, following several unsuccessful pushes by Republicans who saw themselves as perpetually sidelined when it came to drawing the state’s political boundaries. Success came when they were joined by a coalition of non-partisan groups and deep-pocket Silicon Valley funders, who saw the commission as a part of overall reforms, like the creation of an open primary.

News

California’s new marijuana era

Illustration by Tim Foster, Capitol Weekly

At the heart of California’s Emerald Triangle is Humboldt County, a legendary locale in the world of weed, as prized by marijuana aficionados for its cannabis as Napa Valley is for its wine. “Humboldt is the absolute, undisputed leader in cannabis,” said Luke Bruner, a local resident who has advised state and local officials on marijuana issues.

News

A Capitol dispute over disclosure

A photo illustration of an ad campaign program on a laptop. (Photo: Tashatuvango, via Shutterstock)

California’s political watchdog, which fights to reveal the political money trail, is opposing legislation that appears to do exactly that. The Fair Political Practices Commission, which enforces campaign rules, has come out against two bills aimed at disclosure.

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