Northern California Bias?

A lobbyist for a large Southern California interest opined recently that Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, a Sacramento Democrat, stacked his recently announced committee assignments to favor Northern California. 

That would appear to be the case looking at the composition of Senate Appropriations.

Although San Diegan Christine Kehoe is chair, six of the remaining eight Democrats on the 13-member committee represent Northern California districts. The GOP vice-chair is Dave Cox of Carmichael.

But there isn’t a single Northern California on Banking. Of the six Democrats on the 10-member committee, five – including the chair – hail from Southern California and he final one from the Central Valley. 

The Education budget subcommittee has two Democrats and one republican – all from the south. Resource has a Democrat from the south, a Republican from the Central Valley and a chair – Joe Simitian – from the north. 

The Health and Human Services budget subcommittee has two Northern California Democrats, while the chair of the general government subcommittee is from the north and the other Democrat from the south. 

All three members of the Revenues and the Economy subcommittee come from the south. 

The Business, Professions & Economic Development Committee has seven Democrats, four of whom are from the south including chairwoman Gloria Negrete-McLeod. Two are from the north. One from the Central Valley. 

It’s a wash on the Education Committee – three from the north and three from the south although chairwoman Gloria Romero is from Los Angeles. 

Loni Hancock of Berkeley chairs the Elections committee. The remaining two Democrats are split. 

On the energy committee, five of the seven Democrats, including chairman Alex Padilla, come from the south. 

The edge on Environmental Quality goes to the North. It’s a three-to-two split with the chair being Joe Simitian of Palo Alto. 

Food and Ag’s three Democrats are one north, one south and the chair, Dean Florez, comes from the Central Valley. 

Governmental Organization, a juice committee with 13 members has nine Democrats. Chair Rod Wright is from Los Angeles. Another five come from the Southland, two from the north and the final Democrat is Florez. 

Health also has majority from the North. It’s the home of four of the seven Democrats, including chairwoman Elaine Alquist of Santa Clara. The remainder are from the south. 

Human Services chair Ted Liu comes from the south, the other two Democrats from the north. 

Ellen Corbett of San Leandro, chairwoman of Judiciary, is joined by Mark Leno of San Francisco and Florez.  

The North dominates Labor & Industrial Relations. Three of the four Democrats, including chair Mark DeSaulnier, are from the north.  Negrete-McLeod is the fourth. 

The Legislative Ethics Committee is chaired freshman GOP Sen. Mimi Walters. The remaining two members of the committee are Democrats, one from the north and one from the south. 

Local Government has a northern edge. Sonoma’s Pat Wiggins chairs. The remaining two Democrats are split. 

Natural Resources and Water, the committee Steinberg chaired before becoming pro tem has four Democrats from the north and three from the south although one of the three is the chairwoman, Fran Pavley. 

Public Employees and Retirement is a near shutout for the north. Chair Lou Correa and three of remaining four Democrats are from the south. 

Public Safety’s five Democrats are split three to two in favor of the north. Steinberg is one of the three. 

Revenue and Taxation breaks north. Of the four Democrats, three – starting with chairwoman Lois Wolk – come from the north. Florez is the fourth. 

Two of the three Democrats on the Rules Committee, which governs the Senate’s operations, are from Southern California. The chair, however, is Steinberg. 

Transportation has a four to three split, south to north. The chair is Alan Lowenthal of Long Beach. 

The Veterans Affairs Committee, chaired by Central Valley Republican Jeff Denham has three Democrats from the south, one from the north. 

Reviewing the results, there is a heavy advantage to the north on the upper house’s most important committee, Appropriations although San Diego’s Kehoe chairs. 

Three of five budget subcommittee chairs come from the north. The north has a one-seat advantage over the south on Elections, Environmental Quality, Health, Human Services, Judiciary, Local Government, Natural Resources and Public Safety and outnumbers the south three to one on Revenue and Taxation and Labor. 

The south dominates Banking – there isn’t even a member from the north. The south outnumbers the north on Business & Professions, Energy and Governmental Organization. The south holds a one-seat edge in Transportation. Education is evenly divided. 







1 Comment »

  1. Maybe the south is the new north.

    Comment by Gus Turdlock — 1.22.2009 @ 2:53 pm

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