Yesterday, Mexico President Enrique Peña Nieto started his California trip in Los Angeles. And today he heads to Sacramento where he’ll address the Legislature.
Kate Linthicum and Tiffany Hsu reports in The Los Angeles Times: “Peña Nieto, who is making his first official trip to the U.S. since he was sworn in nearly two years ago, spoke in Spanish to a crowd of several hundred at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel. He entered a ballroom alight with the colors of the Mexican flag to thunderous applause and shouts of "Bienvenidos!"”
“His visit follows a recent trade mission to Mexico by Gov. Jerry Brown, who has promised to have the two governments work more closely on immigration, climate change, energy and trade issues. Mexico, which last year was the recipient of $23.9 billion of California's exports, is the state's largest trade partner.”
Exiting Senate Leaders Darrell Steinberg blocked legislation to delay cap-and-trade’s inclusion of transportation fuels.
John Howard reports in Capitol Weekly: “California’s air-quality enforcer, the Air Resources Board, and environmentalists had opposed the delays, while the fuel companies said the cost of the credits could force double-digit increases in the cost of gasoline. Perea said increases in the cost of fuels would have an adverse impact on the economic.”
“Steinberg, citing an array of health, air-quality and economic concerns, said the program should go forward as scheduled, and faulted the oil industry for seeking to head off the state law.”
A proposed ban on single-use plastic grocery bags was unable to get out of the Assembly yesterday – but expect this one to make a comeback.
Fentil Nirappil reports for the Associated Press: “SB270 failed Monday on a 37-33 vote that crossed party lines after an hour-long debate largely focused on a 10-cent fee grocers can charge for bags.”
“The bill by Sen. Alex Padilla, D-Los Angeles, makes an effort to encourage reusable bags by prohibiting stores from carrying single-use ones.”
New smartphones in California are now required to be equipped with “kill switch” technology to prevent theft.
Josh Richman and Jessica Calefati report for The Mercury News: “Gov. Jerry Brown signed the legislation, capping a long, contentious struggle in which California lawmakers and police went toe-to-toe with the smartphone industry over how best to curb an epidemic of thefts plaguing the Golden State.”
“The action came as Sacramento shifted into legislative overdrive Monday, with lawmakers starting to vote on hundreds of bills in the final week of their session. Among the highlights: A controversial ban on plastic grocery bags failed in an Assembly vote but is expected to get one more chance later this week. The Assembly did approve "Audrie's Law," a South Bay senator's bid to tighten juvenile sexual assault laws.”
In wake of the recent drunk driving arrest of a state senator, Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins is considering new rules on alcohol consumption in the Capitol.
Katie Orr reports for Capitol Public Radio: “Atkins says the end of session is typically a festive, but stressful, time that can contribute to people making bad decisions.
“I think this is a reminder that we probably need to think a little differently about how we say goodbye to each other, how we enjoy our time together,” she says. “But it is a stressful situation. But there really haven’t been rules around that.””
As his state Senate campaign heats up, Assemblymember Richard Pan sat down with the Sac Bee and talked about the controversy surrounding his residency.
Jon Ortiz reports for The Sacramento Bee: “He had purchased a condominium in the district to comply with the law, and began taking $28,000 in annual per diem payments from the state that local lawmakers typically decline.”
“Then last January, Southern California Democratic Sen. Rod Wright was found guilty by a jury of eight felony counts stemming from allegations that he did not live in the Inglewood home he listed as his residence when he ran for office in 2008. Wright has not yet been sentenced, but the convictions could send him to prison for up to eight years. No legal action was brought against Pan in Sacramento.”
Water bond monies, if approved, could go toward developing an early warning earthquake detection system.
David Perlman reports for The San Francisco Chronicle: “Proposition 1 would authorize more than $7 billion in general obligation bonds for state water supply infrastructure projects, including public water system improvements, drinking water protection and watershed protection and restoration. On that basis, Padilla and others said, it makes sense to use a fraction of the money to develop a system that would give officials time to protect water sources in the event of a major quake.”
“Richard Allen, director of UC Berkeley's Seismological Laboratory and a leading developer of the statewide early-warning system, said Monday an incomplete version operated superbly Sunday as the magnitude 6.0 earthquake began to rupture the ground under what scientists believe is the West Napa Fault near the Napa Valley city of American Canyon.”
Wedding bells rang for Kamala Harris this weekend.
David Siders reports for The Sacramento Bee: “California Attorney General Kamala Harris and attorney Douglas Emhoff were married Friday at the courthouse in Santa Barbara, her office said.”
“The attorney general’s sister, Maya Harris, officiated.”
“The wedding come five months after Harris and Emhoff, partner in charge of the law firm Venable LLP's Los Angeles office, were engaged.”