in the KNOW

December 14, 2013

Registration Opens for Annual Meeting

Dan Schnur, Director of the Unruh Institute of Politics at USC and the former Chair of the Fair Political Practices Commission, will speak during Ag Council's Annual Meeting.

Dan Schnur, Director of the Unruh Institute of Politics at USC and the former Chair of the Fair Political Practices Commission, will speak during Ag Council’s Annual Meeting.

Ag Council members are invited to register online for our 95th Annual Meeting to be held March 2-4, 2014 at the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort and Spa. Click HERE for the registration website.

Ag Council’s General Session speakers include Dan Schnur who is Director of the Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics at the University of Southern California (USC), as well as Director of the USC Dornsife/LA Times Poll. He is past Chair of the California Fair Political Practices Commission. Also, Mike Kirkpatrick with Nationwide Insurance will discuss farm transition planning in a presentation entitled, “Land as Your Legacy.”

In addition to the online registration website, Ag Council members will soon receive packets in the mail with information about our Annual Meeting, including the golf tournament, tentative itinerary, and hotel details.

The Annual Meeting is held in conjunction with CoBank’s Pacific West Customer Meeting.

Please contact Rebecca Osumi at ph. 916.443.4887 or email rebecca@agcouncil.org with any questions about the Annual Meeting.

Annual Meeting Sponsorship Opportunities

Ag Council is seeking 2014 Annual Meeting sponsors. Our sponsors play a major role in helping us deliver the highest quality meeting possible for attendees.

Ag Council is also seeking sponsors for our Golf Tournament and PAC Fundraiser event to be held during the Annual Meeting on March 2, 2014 at Oak Creek Golf Club in Irvine.

We offer various sponsorship categories. Sponsors are acknowledged in our printed program at the meeting and in signage at the event. Click HERE for further details about both annual meeting and golf tournament sponsorships.

Rebecca Osumi is available to answer any questions relating to sponsorship. Feel free to contact her at ph. 916.443.4887 or at rebecca@agcouncil.org.

Assembly Democrats Regain Supermajority

Speaker John Perez (D-LA)-photo courtesy of the Los Angeles Times

Speaker John Perez (D-LA)-photo courtesy of the Los Angeles Times

After two recent special elections, Assembly Democrats have emerged once again with a two-thirds supermajority in the Legislature.

Democrat Matt Dabenah narrowly squeaked out a win in November against Republican Susan Shelley in the 45th District that includes Los Angeles, Calabasas and Woodland Hills. In the other race, Democrat Sebastian Ridley-Thomas won the 54th District race, which is also based in the Los Angeles area.

After the recent special election, Speaker John Perez (D-Los Angeles) said, “Although Democrats once again enjoy a two-thirds majority in the Assembly, we will continue to work on bipartisan solutions to the challenges facing our state. Creating jobs, keeping our budget balanced, and improving the way state government works will continue to be our priorities, just as they have during the times we did not enjoy the two-thirds supermajority during the past year.”

A two-thirds supermajority gives the majority party the ability to approve taxes and pass constitutional amendments without the need for support from the minority party.

With the two recent wins, Democrats hold 55 of the 80 seats in the Assembly. Democrats also hold a supermajority in the Senate with 28 of the 40 seats.

California Water Action Plan

Ag Council recently commented on the draft California Water Action Plan, which was released in late October. The plan is a result of Governor Brown directing the California Natural Resources Agency, the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) and the California Environmental Protection Agency (Cal/EPA) to put together a multi-agency working group to outline actions for the next one to five years to address urgent water issues and develop a plan for sustainable water management moving forward.

The recently released public review draft proposes 10 action steps to “move California toward more sustainable water management by providing reliable water supply for our farms and communities, restoring important wildlife habitat and species, and helping the state’s water systems and environment become more resilient.”

Ag Council’s comments discuss voluntary water transfers, water rights and storage. Click HERE to read Ag Council’s comment letter.

To review the draft Water Action Plan, click HERE.

Next Newsletter

Given the Legislature is in adjournment, and with the upcoming holidays, Ag Council’s In the Know newsletter will be on a brief hiatus and will return in January. In the meantime, if there is any pertinent news, we will be sure to communicate it to our members.

Ag Council wishes you a happy holiday season.