State Sen. Steve Glazer to be sworn in. (Again.)

The Bay Area’s newest lawmaker will be sworn in this week. Again.

Steve GlazerState Sen. Steve Glazer, D-Orinda, in May defeated fellow Democrat Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla won the special election to succeed Mark DeSaulnier, who was elected to Congress last November.

Glazer was officially sworn in by Gov. Jerry Brown at the State Capitol on May 28, and has cast dozens of votes since. But his in-district ceremonial swearing-in is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. this Thursday, Aug. 27 in the Danville Veterans Memorial Building, 400 Hartz Ave. Former Rep. George Miller, D-Martinez, will administer the oath of office and Contra Costa County District Attorney Mark Peterson will serve as master of ceremonies.

The event is open to 7th State Senate District residents.To RSVP, contact Glazer’s district office at 925-942-6082 or senator.glazer@senate.ca.gov.


Go talk to your congressman

With only two weeks left in Congress’ summer recess, there are still a few chances to see and be heard by your lawmaker.

Rep. Mark DeSaulnier, D-Concord, has several events coming up. First, I’ll moderate a Commonwealth Club of California discussion with him at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 25 in the Lafayette Library and Learning Center, 3491 Mt. Diablo Blvd. Tickets cost $12 for club members, $20 for non-members or $7 for students, and are available online.

DeSaulnier also is continuing his series of free, public town-hall meetings as well. The remaining three are scheduled for Wednesday, Aug. 26 in the Harding Elementary School auditorium, 7230 Fairmount Avenue in El Cerrito; Wednesday, Sept. 2 in the Orinda Library Auditorium, 26 Orinda Way; and Thursday, Sept. 3 in the Clayton Library’s Hoyer Hall, 6125 Clayton Road. All three will be from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Rep. Mike Thompson, D-St. Helena, will host a town hall forum on Social Security at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 25 in the Florence Douglas Senior Center, 333 Amador St. in Vallejo. Special guests will include Max Richtman, President and CEO of the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, and Sandy Goodman, District Manager of the Vallejo Social Security Administration field office.

Rep. Jerry McNerney, D-Stockton, will host a California drought solutions forum from 10 to noon Tuesday, Aug. 25, in the San Joaquin County Robert J. Cabral Agricultural Center, 2101 E. Earhart Ave. in Stockton. Open to the public, the forum will feature experts and voices that include farmers, water technology innovators, policy makers, federal and state government, academia, and others.


SD7: Steve Glazer gets his committee assignments

State Sen. Steve Glazer, the Bay Area’s newest lawmaker, will serve on the Governmental Organization, Insurance, and Public Safety committees, Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de Leon announced Thursday.

Glazer, D-Orinda, defeated Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla in May 19’s 7th State Senate District special election after a bitterly fought campaign rife with independent spending on both sides. The former Orinda mayor was sworn into the Senate last Thursday, May 28.


SD7: Steve Glazer has been sworn in

State Sen. Steve Glazer, D-Orinda, was sworn in this morning to represent the East Bay’s 7th State Senate District, a little more than a week after winning the fractious special election over Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla.

Gov. Jerry Brown, to whom Glazer has been a campaign advisor, administered the oath of office in a brief ceremony at the start of today’s floor session.

photo by Alex Vassar

Glazer issued this statement:

Steve Glazer”I was a 13-year old taking the bus on Freeport Boulevard to volunteer on a campaign for Governor in 1970 because I thought elections mattered.

“Even at that age, I saw the struggle for civil rights, concerns about the war in Vietnam, and worries about nuclear proliferation. I gave my Bar Mitzvah speech expressing hope for my future contribution to a better world and a healthier environment.

“I worked a minimum-wage job during high school sweeping floors at Orange Julius and cooking at Jim Boy’s Tacos just down the street from the Capitol. I was a bus boy during college to help pay the rent. After working in the State Capitol for a few years, I took a break and spent five months picking oranges and grapefruits in the orchards of a Kibbutz in Israel. I have great appreciation for all those who grow and harvest our food. I have always felt the pull of public service as the highest calling. And so I am here today humbled and honored to serve with some old and new friends in this State Senate.

“I thank the members of the Senate for their warm welcome. I especially thank the voters of the 7th district for their trust in my ability to represent them in the Capitol of the greatest State in the Union.”


SD7: The money and endorsements update

Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla has more money banked for the 7th State Senate District special election than any of her competitors, according to campaign finance reports filed this week.

Susan BonillaBonilla, D-Concord, reported $239,317.45 cash on hand with $1,323.41 in debts yet to be paid
as of Jan. 31; most of her money was transferred over either from her 2014 Assembly campaign committee, or from the committee she’d launched to seek this seat in 2016 (before this special election was called). Among the bigger new contributors to this latest campaign are the Peace Officers Research Association of California PAC ($8,500); New Jersey-based NRG Energy Inc. ($4,200); Florida-based Southern Wine and Spirits of America Inc. ($4,200); and Assemblymen Jim Frazier, D-Oakley, Jim Wood, D-Healdsburg, and Bill Dodd, D-Napa ($4,200 each).

Since filing that report, Bonilla on Tuesday collected $4,200 from the California Society of Anesthesiologists’ PAC and $4,200 from the California Ambulatory Surgery Association PAC.

Former Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan, D-Alamo, had $147,548.35 cash on hand but $45,110.45 in debts yet to be paid as of Jan. 31; most of her money was transferred over from her 2012 Assembly campaign committee. But since filing that report, Buchanan received $8,200 on Monday from the California Teachers Association’s Association for Better Citizenship political fund.

Michelle Henry, Buchanan’s campaign manager, said Buchanan’s campaign kickoff on Thursday night was well-attended, the money is flowing in, and the polling looks good.

“We are confident that we will have the resources to successfully communicate with voters about our positive campaign through Election Day,” Henry said. “We will not be responding to other campaigns’ self-serving comparisons, and Joan has said repeatedly that she is running a positive-only campaign”

Steve GlazerOrinda Mayor Steve Glazer, also a Democrat, reported $20,863.96 cash on hand with no debts as of Jan. 31. That includes $10,000 over from his 2014 Assembly campaign committee. The single biggest new contribution he received was $4,200 from Californians for Jobs and a Strong Economy, a political action supporting centrist Democrats; the PAC’s biggest donors in 2014 were Chevron, PG&E, the California Credit Union League, and AT&T.

UPDATE @ 1:13 P.M. MONDAY: Apparently Californians for Jobs and a Strong Economy is hedging its bets – it also gave $4,200 to Bonilla and $4,200 to Buchanan.

Since filing the report, Glazer this week collected $8,400 from David and Carla Crane of San Francisco; David Crane – formerly an economic adviser to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and a UC regent – is cofounder of Govern for California, a group that supports “courageous state legislators who put the interests of their fellow citizens ahead of personal, party or special interests.” Other big contributions to Glazer this week included $4,200 from Silicon Valley entrepreneur Thomas Layton of Palo Alto and $4,200 from Maryett Thompson of Orinda.

Glazer noted Friday that he entered the race later, and so had less time to raise funds, than Bonilla or Buchanan.

“I am surprised that Bonilla thinks that all of this fundraising from Sacramento special interests is worth touting,” he added. “I urge her to release her answers to the secret questionnaires that many of these groups require before they will contribute. I would also encourage her to back my plan to ban all fundraising during the final 60 days of each legislative session.”

Democrat Terry Kremin, a two-time Concord City Council candidate, reported no fundraising.

The special primary will be held March 17; if nobody gets more than 50 percent of the primary vote, the special general election will be held May 19.

Follow after the jump for a rundown of the endorsements made in this race in the past week…
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AD16: Warring complaints on Sbranti & Glazer

Allegations of ethical and legal violations are flying hot and heavy between supporters of 16th Assembly District candidates Tim Sbranti and Steve Glazer.

Barry Fadem, a Lafayette attorney backing Glazer, filed a complaint in December with the California Fair Political Practices Commission claiming improprieties in the transfer of $30,852 from Sbranti’s 2012 Dublin mayoral campaign account to his 2014 Assembly fund, including inconsistent names and dates for donations; a discrepancy between what the two funds show was transferred; and use of a private firm as an intermediary before Sbranti’s Assembly committee was officially qualified.

The FPPC sent Sbranti a warning letter in February that closed the case but warned it could be re-opened based on new information or future conduct.

Fadem filed another FPPC complaint in mid-January claiming Sbranti had omitted certain assets, income and gifts from the economic-interests disclosure he filed as mayor. Sbranti by that month’s end filed amended disclosure forms for several past years (including 2012 and 2010) showing previously unreported items. Fadem says the new additions include travel gifts from the California Teachers Association – for which Sbranti worked until recently – that far exceeded state limits, and income Sbranti earned from the Oakland A’s while voting on issues affecting the O.co Coliseum in which they play. The FPPC has taken no action so far. (Ed.Note – see update below for Fadem’s third complaint against Sbranti.)

On Friday, a married pair of Sbranti supporters from Dublin filed identical FPPC complaints claiming Glazer – an Orinda councilman and campaign strategist whose past clients include Gov. Jerry Brown – sent out a four-page campaign mailer this week that doesn’t carry the required “paid for by” disclaimer. The complaints filed by Eileen Barr and Heinz Gewing note Glazer’s past mailers carried the disclaimer, but this one does not.

Glazer Mailer 040314_8_8-page1
(click to enlarge)

“This race is highly contested and a number of independent expenditure committees have been formed to support or oppose candidates,” each of them wrote. “The failure to indicate who paid for the attached mailer leaves the voters without critical information that would help them evaluate the message contained in the mailer.”

It’s worth noting here that the biggest independent expenditure committee in this race is trying to help Sbranti beat Glazer, funded with at least $285,000 from teachers’ and public workers’ unions.

Those unions want Glazer’s head because he worked in 2012 as a strategist for the California Chamber of Commerce’s JobsPAC, which backed moderate Democrats over more liberal labor-friendly ones. That rift may explain why Glazer felt he had nothing to lose by capitalizing on public outrage over last year’s BART strikes by calling for a ban on transit worker strikes. Iin fact, this latest mailer’s cover photo shows Glazer standing with arms crossed next to a BART train, with the caption “Steve Glazer stood up against the BART strike. He’ll fight for us in the State Assembly.”

Glazer on Friday noted the FPPC’s Campaign Disclosure Manual for state candidates describes this requirement for a mass mailing by a single candidate:

The name of the candidate, his or her street address, city, state, and zip code must be placed on the outside of each piece of mail in no less than 6-point type and in a color or print which contrasts with the background so that it is easily read. If a single candidate’s controlled committee is sending the mailer, the name of the committee may be placed on the outside of the mailer if the committee’s name contains the name of the candidate. A post office box may be used as the address only if the committee’s street address is on its Statement of Organization (Form 410) on file with the Secretary of State.

But an FPPC regulation says the required identification “shall be preceded by the words ‘Paid for by’” in the same size and color as the candidate’s or committee’s name and “shall be immediately adjacent to and above or immediately adjacent to and in front of the required identification.” And a 2012 FPPC worksheet on mass mailings says “the disclaimer must include, unless otherwise noted: ‘Paid for by committee name.’”

Glazer and Sbranti both are Democrats; the other candidates are Danville Mayor Newell Arnerich, also a Democrat, and Republican Catharine Baker, a Dublin attorney. Incumbent Joan Buchanan, D-Alamo, is term-limited out. The district’s voter registration is 39.7 percent Democrat, 32.4 percent Republican and 21.5 percent nonpartisan.

UPDATE @ 9:11 A.M. SATURDAY: Fadem actually filed a third FPPC complaint against Sbranti on March 20, accusing Sbranti of an undisclosed conflict of interests. He claimed Sbranti in October voted as a member of the Alameda County Transportation Commission to extend a contract, but did not disclose at that meeting that he had received a contribution from that contractor in June and that the contractor had hosted a fundraiser for him in May.