Compiled by RADC Members - Tracy Wise and Jeff Poggi
1. Keep Pushing—The Clock Is Ticking: Ensure Voting Rights Legislation Is Passed in the U.S. Senate:
The slim Dem majority in the Senate has a lot on its plate right now, but senators cannot and must not push voting rights legislation back any further. We must get voting rights passed and stop with the doomed vote theater and carve out an exception in the filibuster for voting rights at the very least.
Please write to Senators Feinstein and Padilla ASAP with this message (feel free to replace with your own words):
Dear Senator Feinstein/Padilla--
I am one of your California constituents who believes that passing voting rights legislation ASAP is vital to pushing back against efforts across the country to disenfranchise voters and block access to the polls. It is urgent that all Senate Democrats at least implement a carve out in the filibuster for voting rights or cancel the filibuster altogether so that this bill can be passed ASAP. You are our voices in the Senate. We are running out of time.
Senator Diane Feinstein, 11111 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 915, Los Angeles, CA 90025 - (310) 914-7300 or [https://www.feinstein.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/e-mail-me].
Senator Alex Padilla, 11845 West Olympic Blvd., Suite 1250W, Los Angeles, CA 90064 - (310) 231-4494 [https://www.padilla.senate.gov/]
2. Support Our School Board
At our last RADC meeting, RUSD Board Member Alex Vara joined us to discuss his background, what brought him to run for our local school board, and the threats he and his family have received. School boards across the country continue to be targeted by extremists, either local or tied to national organizations. So far, the Proud Boys have not taken part here in Redlands, but they have elsewhere.
The next RUSD Board meeting is Tuesday, December 14 at 7:00 pm via Zoom. The meetings are virtual because of the unsafe behavior exhibited by the extremists who have attended to protest mask wearing and vaccination. The local, grassroots organization Safe Redlands Schools is coordinating attendance for those wishing to speak up. You can RSVP via https://actionnetwork.org/events/rusd-school-board-meeting-12142021?source=RADCNews or email [email protected] .
3. Begin to Think about the Mid-Term Elections
To secure our 2022 mid-term elections, we must have voting rights passed. Without those legal protections in place, it will make the ability of Americans across the country to exercise their basic rights of voting problematic. (See this week’s Action Item #1.)
The other requirement is that we will need to expand the Democrat majority in the House and the Senate. That will not only mean supporting local candidates in their races but also choosing one or two campaigns outside California so that we can either flip to or ensure we retain Dem seats.
For example, you can take a few minutes to learn about a candidate running for a Wisconsin Senate seat, Mandela Barnes. See whether you wish to support his campaign over the next year. From the Progressive Change Campaign Committee aka BoldProgressives.org:
"Over the last few weeks, many dreaded the outcome we just witnessed [Rittenhouse being declared not-guilty]. The presumption of innocence until proven guilty is what we should expect from our judicial system, but that standard is not always applied equally. We have seen so many black and brown youth killed, only to be put on trial posthumously, while the innocence of Kyle Rittenhouse was virtually demanded by the judge." -- Mandela Barnes
"Across Wisconsin and across the country, countless people are coming together in this moment to remember Jacob, Anthony, JoJo, and call for justice. Here is what gives me hope: We have seen communities -- especially Kenosha -- step up to demand action from those in power and work to bring about positive change. We have the power to elect leaders at every level who represent our highest aspirations, who will fight alongside us for reform and progress. We all have the power to heal Kenosha and our nation."
Imagine Mandela Barnes being the deciding vote in the Senate instead of Joe Manchin. We can win this seat, and summon hope out of outrage.
- REMINDER: Voting Rights: New *City* Redistricting Information/Action
Upcoming City of Redlands public meetings are scheduled:
- January 18, 2022 (time, etc. tbd)
- February 15, 2022 (time, etc. tbd)
- April 17, 2022 – adoption of the final maps
- REMINDER: Voting Rights: New *County* Redistricting Information
Here is the website, with the list of upcoming meetings *and* information on how to submit a map to the redistricting committee: https://sbcountyredistricting.com/ The final meeting is:
December 7, 2021, 1:00 pm-3:00 pm
San Bernardino County Government Center
385 N. Arrowhead Avenue, 1st Floor
San Bernardino, CA 92415-0835+ Google Map
Special Meeting - Board of Supervisors
REMINDER: Voting Rights: New *Congressional* Redistricting Information/Action—Redlands may be split into two!!
- Please submit your comments to the Commission as they are holding final discussions now on the maps. You can contact them via the website - https://www.wedrawthelinesca.org/contact - or via EM - [email protected] .
- The CCRC meeting schedule can be found at this URL and you can also follow the links there to access the proposed maps: https://www.wedrawthelinesca.org/ .
- Live meetings can be watched at this URL: https://videossc.com/CRC/ .
- REMINDER: Voting Rights: New *Water* Redistricting Information
No new information available. Here is a link to the current maps of the IE’s water districts: https://www.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=e1a0b6df610f490892a970b01952274d&entry=3
We will continue to keep you up-to-date on redistricting efforts around our county (they voted NO on any meeting[s] in Redlands) and water districts and any further City redistricting news.
- REMINDER: Replacement process for Councilmember Paul Foster in motion
At the November 2, 2021 City Council meeting, with a vote of 3-2, “the City Council authorized Mayor Barich and Mayor Pro Tem Tejeda to speak to the five former Council members, residing in District 5, to determine their willingness to serve the remainder of Council Member Foster’s term, while also holding no interest in running for election in November 2022; the City Council authorized Mayor Barich and Mayor Pro Tem Tejeda to bring their recommendation to the full City Council; and agreed that in the event that none of the five former Council Members agreed to serve the remainder of the term, Council approved to fill the vacancy through an application and interview process as presented by Assistant City Manager McConnell.”—this quote is from the Minutes which can be found at: https://destinyhosted.com/agenda_publish.cfm?id=73352&mt=ALL&get_month=11&get_year=2021&dsp=min&seq=262
STICK A PIN IN THIS
- The Rittenhouse trial demonstrated to us that judicial elections are incredibly important. Let us pledge together to become better informed prior to the next election where judges are on the ballot to ensure that we are electing qualified, non-partisan members of the bench to serve the judiciary in our region. #NoRittenhouseJudgesHere
- UPDATED: The California 2021 Legislative Session ended with Governor Newsom signing his last bills prior to the October 10th deadline. The next Legislative Session should reconvene in December.
The final set of approved bills included:
- Providing Immediate Relief for those Hardest Hit by COVID-19
- Confronting the Homelessness & Housing Affordability Crisis
- Transforming Public Schools as Gateways for Opportunity
- Building Infrastructure for the Next Century
- Combating Wildfires & Tackling Climate Change
- The final set of approved bills included:
Of the 836 bills presented to him for approval, he signed 770 or 92%. Some of those signed include the following (from CalMatters):
- Making ethnic studies a high school graduation requirement, as CalMatters’ Joe Hong reports. Under a bill Newsom signed last year, California State University students must also take an ethnic studies course to graduate.
- Mandating mental health instruction in middle and high schools that have an existing health education course.
- Requiring public colleges, universities and secondary schools to provide free menstrual products on campus.
- Requiring large department stores to maintain a gender-neutral section of toys and child care items.
- Restricting sentence enhancements for many crimes, as recommended by an obscure committee examining California’s penal code.
- Ensuring police can’t block journalists from covering protests and demonstrations.
- Cracking down on sideshows and illegal street racing by allowing courts to suspend convicted motorists’ licenses for up to six months.
- Giving cities more authority to reduce their speed limits.
- Making it illegal to harass people entering vaccination clinics. First Amendment experts say several aspects of the law — including an exemption for “lawful picketing arising out of a labor dispute” — may be unconstitutional.
- Ending “surprise billing” for COVID-19 tests and vaccinations.
- Extending a phone tax to fund high-speed internet in underserved areas.
- Allowing restaurants to continue selling to-go cocktails, using parking lots for expanded seating, and serving alcohol in parklets.
- Offering year-round fishing licenses.
- Banning the sale of new gas-powered leaf blowers, lawn mowers and other small off-road engines by as soon as 2024.
- Phasing out controversial donor dog facilities to create a new canine blood bank system. https://calmatters.org/newsletters/whatmatters/2021/10/new-california-laws/
- For the full text of the bills, you can go to: http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov
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