Hello and happy Friday all,
As some of you know, April is a chaotic month in the Legislature with quite a bit of bill activity in both houses. Below is an overview of some of the latest that has happened since our Spring Conference. 🙂
Governor Newsom took time for a vacation this month, heading to South America with his family for nearly two weeks. In his absence, Lt. Gov Eleni Kounalakis acted as Governor and became the first woman to ever sign a bill into law in California’s history. Since his return, Newsom has sparred on social media with Florida’s Republican Governor over anti-LGBTQ+ legislation and addressed a new wave of misinformation about vaccines and voter fraud.
I did have a conversation with the Governor’s Deputy Cabinet Secretary late last week regarding the Administration’s focus on workforce development, apprenticeship programs, and ways to engage directly with system stakeholders, so I will be providing periodic updates on that initiative and potentially positioning CCCAOE as one of the main points of contact moving forward.
In the meantime, expect the Governor to be relatively quiet for the next few weeks as he leads up to his May Revise budget announcement.
The Legislature has been in full swing, taking action on over 1000 pieces of legislation as we head toward upcoming committee deadlines. On Tuesday, the Assembly Higher Education Committee held a marathon hearing to review 26 proposals, largely focused on college affordability and financial aid. Higher Ed will be holding one more hearing this month and will likely be addressing a series of contentious bills.
Among them, AB 1705 (Irwin) related to matriculation and assessments, will be brought up for a vote. CCCAOE adopted an Oppose Unless Amended position on this measure and included it in our Advocacy Day talking points. I’m happy to report that AB 1705 has been substantially amended and our concerns about impacts to CTE programs and pathways have been addressed. I’ve attached the latest version of the bill for those that are interested.
The measure now has the support of the Chancellor’s Office, but the Academic Senate and FACCC are likely to remain opposed as they do not feel the amendments went far enough to address their concerns about eliminating certain non-transfer coursework.
I also wanted to provide you all with an update on AB 2058 (O’Donnell) related to CTEIG and K-12 SWP, as I know this was an issue of concern that came up during the conference. I’ve had a series of conversations with other system stakeholders in hopes of pulling together a coalition to oppose the measure and will be meeting with budget staff and O’Donnell’s committee staff next week to discuss potential options. I am under the impression that O’Donnell may be willing to drop the bill if he can secure additional funds for CTEIG, but will continue to work on this issue as we move forward. At this time, the Chancellor’s Office remains neutral, and most districts are determining if they will have substantial impacts from the program’s elimination. Washington, DC
Congress has been on recess and, as a result, had very little news of interest to report. The Biden Administration has been focused on the ongoing conflict in Ukraine and the President himself leaves this week on a multi-state tour to discuss the economy and the US recovery from the ongoing pandemic.
Expect these types of roadshows to become more common (and Congress to do even less) in the coming months as we head into Primary and General Election season this year. As always, feel free to reach out with any questions. Hope that you are doing well and that you have a great weekend.
All the best,
Austin J Webster
Principal | W Strategies LLC