Archive for the ‘Government’ Category

Call for Applications: San Francisco Bay Restoration Authority, Independent Citizens Oversight Committee

Thursday, April 5th, 2018

Deadline Extended – Due April 18, 2018

Measure AA is expected to generate $25 million annually for San Francisco Bay restoration over the next 20 years. Funding from this voter-approved measure will allow for the restoration of thousands of acres of natural habitat for wildlife, support our local economy, improve access to public lands, address flooding issues, and create thousands of new jobs.

The San Francisco Bay Restoration Authority’s Governing Board seeks six individuals to serve on the Independent Citizens Oversight Committee. The Committee has three main roles:

  1. Annually review the Authority’s conformance with Measure AA.
  2. Review the Authority’s audits and expenditure and financial reports.
  3. Publish an annual report of its findings, which will be posted on the Authority’s website.

The Board seeks committee members from all four Bay Area regions (North Bay, East Bay, South Bay and West Bay) with special subject matter expertise. Each member of the Independent Citizens Oversight Committee must possess expertise in one or more of the following:

  • Water quality
  • Pollution reduction
  • Habitat restoration
  • Flood protection
  • Improvement of public access to the San Francisco Bay
  • Financing of these objectives.

Ineligibility Factors for Membership

No person may serve on the Independent Citizens Oversight Committee who:

  • Is an elected official or government employee;
  • Has had or could have a financial interest in a decision of the Authority; or
  • Is affiliated with an organization associated with a member of the Governing Board.

Apply to serve on the Independent Citizens Oversight Committee by April 18, 2018.

Application Submittal, Materials, and Deadline

Send your application to karen.mcdowell@sfestuary.org by April 18, 2018. Electronic signatures and scanned signatures will be accepted.

For more information, visit the SF Bay Restoration Authority’s website or contact Karen McDowell, Project Manager, SF Bay Restoration Authority or 415-778-6685.

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Rep. McNerney to host net neutrality town hall meeting in Antioch Sunday, March 4

Saturday, March 3rd, 2018

From Congressman Jerry McNerney

As your representative in Congress, I take very seriously my responsibility to be your voice in Washington. So when you called, emailed and wrote letters by the thousands, expressing your concerns about the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) plan to eliminate net neutrality protections, I took action.

Prior to the FCC’s vote to repeal net neutrality, I submitted a formal request to address the full Commission. I wanted to make the case for maintaining a free and open internet, and to share some of the stories you’ve shared with me – stories of small business owners, veterans, students and so many more who rely on the internet for nearly every aspect of daily life. Unfortunately, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai denied my request.

Thankfully, there was someone on the Commission who wanted to ensure your voice and the voices of Americans across the country were heard. FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn, who stood strong and voted against the repeal, submitted a written statement on my behalf and read her own compelling dissent in opposition to the repeal of these crucial protections.

Commissioner Clyburn will be joining me this Sunday, March 4th from 3:00-4:30 PM at the Antioch Community Center for a town hall on net neutrality. We’ll be discussing your concerns and talking about how we move forward in the fight for a free and open internet.

For more information or to RSVP please call (925) 754-0716 or email McNerneyRSVP@mail.house.gov.

I hope to see you there.

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Rep. DeSaulnier hosts 60th town hall meeting Saturday in Concord

Friday, March 2nd, 2018

Congressman Mark DeSaulnier (D, CA-11) announced he will host his 60th town hall and mobile district office hour since taking office in January of 2015. The town hall will be held at Ygnacio Valley High School in Concord tomorrow, Saturday, March 3rd at 11:00 a.m.

“I am proud to represent this community that is so civically engaged and invite all constituents to attend our 60th town hall to share their thoughts, opinions, and questions.”

Concord 60th Town Hall

Saturday, March 3, 2018

11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Ygnacio Valley High School

755 Oak Grove Road

Concord, CA 94518

DeSaulnier’s regular and frequent practice of holding town halls was among the reasons his office was recently nominated by the Congressional Management Foundation as a finalist in the first-ever Democracy Awards for outstanding Constituent Service. 

To confirm attendance, please by RSVP online at https://desaulnier.house.gov/town-hall-rsvp or call 925-933-2660. To request ADA accommodations, translation services, or for more information please contact one of Congressman DeSaulnier’s offices in either Walnut Creek or Richmond.

DeSaulnier’s district includes portions of Antioch.

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State Legislative Delta Caucus to hold public hearing on WaterFix proposal Nov. 30

Tuesday, November 21st, 2017

State Auditor to present findings of cost over-runs, mismanagement of project; Dep’t of Water Resources to also make presentation

SACRAMENTO – Assemblyman Jim Frazier (D-Discovery Bay) and State Sen. Bill Dodd (D-Napa), co-chairs of the California Legislative Delta Caucus, announce they will hold a public hearing on Thursday, Nov. 30 to examine mounting financial concerns connected to the proposed WaterFix project.

The hearing will be held in the Delta, at the Jean Harvie Community Center, 14273 River Road, in Walnut Grove, from 10 am. to noon. Members of the public are invited to attend.

“WaterFix is one of the largest, most costly public works project ever proposed in California,” said Frazier, who represents the heart of the Delta region in the Assembly. “There are a number of growing concerns surrounding the project’s financials. The recent state audit cited cost over-runs that are out of control. The audit also found the Department of Water Resources failed to complete a basic cost-benefit analysis and has mismanaged the project. The Delta Caucus decided to hold an informational hearing accessible to the public where these concerns can be thoroughly examined.”

The office of State Auditor Elaine M. Howle will present the findings of the recent audit: “Department of Water Resources: The Unexpected Complexity of the California WaterFix Project Has Resulted in Significant Cost Increases and Delays.”

Dr. Jeffrey Michael, executive director of the Center for Business & Policy Research at the University of the Pacific, will present the Center’s recent report, “Benefit-Cost Analysis of the proposed California WaterFix.”

The State Department of Water Resources, which is managing the proposed WaterFix project, has also committed to making a presentation.

Other presentations may be added to the agenda as the hearing date approaches. Members of the public will have an opportunity to comment during a public comment period at the end of the hearing.

“Ensuring a vibrant and sustainable Delta is absolutely essential for our region and our entire state,” said Senator Dodd. “I encourage Delta residents to join us and hear from the State Auditor’s Office regarding their recent findings. The Delta Caucus is working to educate the public and fighting to protect the Delta for our residents, visitors and wildlife.”

The Delta Caucus is a bipartisan mix of 12 members of the Assembly and Senate who represent the Delta region. The Caucus is co-chaired by Assemblymember Frazier and Sen. Dodd. Other members are Senators Cathleen Galgiani (D-Stockton), Steve Glazer (D-Orinda), Dr. Richard Pan (D-Sacramento) and Assemblymembers Cecilia Aguiar-Curry (D-Winters), Kevin McCarty (D-Sacramento), Jim Cooper (D-Elk Grove), Heath Flora (R-Ripon), Susan Talamantes Eggman (D-Stockton), Timothy S. Grayson (D-Concord) and Catharine Baker (R-Dublin).

For more information about the Delta Caucus, contact Adam Horn at (916) 319-2011.

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Americans are poorly informed about basic constitutional provisions

Thursday, September 14th, 2017

Constitution Day is September 17 – Take the Preamble Challenge

PHILADELPHIA –– Many Americans are poorly informed about basic constitutional provisions, according to a new national survey by the Annenberg Public Policy Center.

The annual Annenberg Constitution Day Civics Survey finds that:

  • More than half of Americans (53 percent) incorrectly think it is accurate to say that immigrants who are here illegally do not have any rights under the U.S. Constitution;
  • More than a third of those surveyed (37 percent) can’t name any of the rights guaranteed under the First Amendment;
  • Only a quarter of Americans (26 percent) can name all three branches of government.

“Protecting the rights guaranteed by the Constitution presupposes that we know what they are.

The fact that many don’t is worrisome,” said Kathleen Hall Jamieson, director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center (APPC) of the University of Pennsylvania. “These results emphasize the need for high-quality civics education in the schools and for press reporting that underscores the existence of constitutional protections.”

Illegal immigration and constitutional rights

The APPC survey, conducted Aug. 9-13 among 1,013 adults in the United States, finds that 53 percent think that people who are here illegally do not have any rights under the Constitution. That incorrect belief is especially strong among self-identified political conservatives – 67 percent think it is accurate, compared with 48 percent of moderates and 46 percent of liberals.

In fact, immigrants who are in the United States illegally share some constitutional protections with U.S. citizens. More than a century ago, in Yick Wo v. Hopkins (1886), a case involving an undocumented Chinese immigrant, the Supreme Court ruled that non-citizens were entitled to due process rights under the 14th Amendment’s equal protection clause. Other cases have expanded upon those rights. (For more on Yick Wo, see this video on Annenberg Classroom’s website.)

Most respondents, though not all, know that under the Constitution, U.S. citizens who are atheists or Muslim have the same rights as all other citizens. Seventy-nine percent of respondents know it is accurate to say that U.S. citizens who are atheists have the same rights as other citizens, and 76 percent know it is accurate to say that citizens who are Muslim have the same rights as other citizens.

What does the First Amendment say? 

Nearly half of those surveyed (48 percent) say that freedom of speech is a right guaranteed by the First Amendment. But, unprompted, 37 percent could not name any First Amendment rights. And far fewer people could name the other First Amendment rights: 15 percent of respondents say freedom of religion; 14 percent say freedom of the press; 10 percent say the right of assembly; and only 3 percent say the right to petition the government.

The First Amendment reads:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Contrary to the First Amendment, 39 percent of Americans support allowing Congress to stop the news media from reporting on any issue of national security without government approval. That was essentially unchanged from last year. But the survey, which followed a year of attacks on the news media, found less opposition to prior restraint (49 percent) than in 2016 (55 percent).

Many don’t know the branches of government 

Only 26 percent of respondents can name the three branches of government (executive, judicial, and legislative), the same as last year. People who identified themselves as conservatives were significantly more likely to name all three branches correctly than liberals and moderates. The 26 percent total was down significantly from APPC’s first survey on this question, in 2011, when 38 percent could name all three.

In the current survey, 33 percent could not name any of the three branches, the same as in 2011.

The phone survey, conducted for APPC by the research firm SSRS, has a margin of error of ±3.7 percent. For more on the methodology and questions click here.

Constitution Day and the Civics Renewal Network

APPC’s Annenberg Classroom, presented by the Leonore Annenberg Institute for Civics, has created a series of free, award-winning videos for educators and the public, including Yick Wo and the Equal Protection Clause, The Role of the Courts, and Freedom of the Press: New York Times v. United States.

Annenberg Classroom has joined with 30 other nonpartisan organizations to create the Civics Renewal Network, which offers free, high-quality educational materials online. Among CRN’s partners are the Library of Congress, the National Archives, the National Constitution Center, the U.S. Courts, the NEH’s EDSITEment Project and iCivics.

Constitution Day (Sept. 17) will be observed Monday, Sept. 18. To mark it, the U.S. Courts are holding naturalization ceremonies nationwide and educators will lead students in the “Preamble Challenge,” celebrating the Preamble to the Constitution.

The Annenberg Public Policy Center was established in 1994 to educate the public and policy makers about the media’s role in advancing public understanding of political, health and science issues at the local, state and federal levels. Find APPC on Facebook and Twitter: @APPCPenn. Follow the Civics Renewal Network: @CivicsRenewal.

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Antioch files lawsuit challenging Delta tunnels project

Saturday, August 26th, 2017

On August 17, 2017, the City of Antioch filed an action against the California Department of Water Resources challenging the Final Environmental Impact Report for the proposed California WaterFix Project – e.g. the Delta Twin Tunnel Project. The City’s action alleges the Final Environmental Impact Report violates the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).

In the action, the City describes some of the significant impacts from the Project to Antioch’s water supply and notes that such impacts remain unmitigated. Among the unmitigated project-related adverse impacts to Antioch are increased salinity levels at Antioch’s intake in the Delta.

The City’s Petition further describes how the WaterFix Project’s proposed operations remain largely undefined, making it difficult to determine the full extent of the impacts from the Project on the Delta. The City further contends that the WaterFix Project violates the dual goals of the Delta Reform Act of 2009 which required projects to reduce reliance on the Delta. Instead, the WaterFix Project, as presently proposed, will allow for the diversion of more water from the Delta including the diversion of much fresher Sacramento River water before it ever flows into the Delta.

Antioch as a city depends on the Delta for its quality of life, its drinking water supply, recreation and economic future. As one of the largest cities located entirely in the Delta, Antioch has been closely aligned with the protection of the Delta and its restoration. WaterFix is in conflict with both of these critical goals.

The City expects to work closely with other public agencies and environmental groups in opposing the Final Environment Impact Report for the WaterFix Project.

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Rep. McNerney defends sanctuary cities against DOJ threats to withhold funds

Saturday, August 12th, 2017

(Washington, DC) – On Friday, Congressman Jerry McNerney (CA-09), who represents portions of Antioch, sent a letter to the Department of Justice (DOJ), responding to the agency’s threat to withhold federal dollars from the City of Stockton, and several other cities, if local law enforcement does not notify the Department of Homeland Security regarding the detainment of illegal aliens.

In response to DOJ’s initial letter, McNerney issued the following statement:

“The City of Stockton has made significant progress combatting crime, in large part due to its highly capable police department. The Stockton PD is nationally recognized for its innovative and effective approaches to reducing crime, and in order to ensure they can best serve their communities, Stockton police and other local law enforcement must be able to decide on the best strategy to combat crime without federal interference.

“The funds DOJ is threatening to withhold come from the Public Safety Partnership (PSP), which was created to help keep cities and communities safe and to improve relationships between community members and law enforcement. These grants are essential to our local law enforcement and withholding them would be counterproductive to the progress these regions have made.

“I sent a letter to the Department of Justice, underscoring the benefits of this program and its role in the agency’s mission. If the DOJ is truly committed to public safety through federal leadership, they will seek other opportunities to support their local law enforcement counterparts, rather than handicap them.”

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Congressman DeSaulnier to host Town Hall Meeting in Concord, Wednesday

Tuesday, August 8th, 2017

Congressman Mark DeSaulnier (CA-11) will host a town hall meeting at Concord High School on Wednesday, August 9th at 6:30 p.m. Since assuming office in 2015, Mark has hosted 46 town halls and mobile district office hours throughout Contra Costa County.

Congressman DeSaulnier invites residents to attend the town hall to listen to a presentation and legislative update. During the town hall constituents will have an opportunity to ask questions, share their opinions on actions taken by the Administration, and discuss issues important to their communities.

Concord Town Hall 
Wednesday, August 9, 2017
6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Concord High School, Multi-Purpose Room
4200 Concord Blvd.
Concord, CA 94521

Please RSVP online at www.desaulnier.house.gov/town-hall-rsvp or call 925-933-2660. For more information or to request ADA accommodations contact Congressman DeSaulnier’s office in Walnut Creek or Richmond.

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