People's Democratic Club
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            Meeting Minutes


1.    PDC Priorities: The executive board is doing a midyear check in on our goals and priorities. Gail Jack updated us on each priority for action that was set at the Summer Retreat.

           a.  Nancy Abbey is working on gathering information about initiatives.

  b.  Nancy and Gail Jack are working on affordable housing; there was a victory on curtailing the use of  granny   units for short term rentals within the City of Santa Cruz.  Gail reported that Cynthia    Chase, Cynthia  Matthews, Don Lane and Micah Posner supported this new law.  


Michael Levy - Report from Paris

Thursday, January 7
          6:20 potluck*
        7:00  speaker

  Live Oak Green Grange
                     1900 17th Avenue, Santa Cruz

Sponsored by: Santa Cruz Climate Action Network and Santa Cruz WILPF
*kitchen will open by 6pm
**rides can be arranged from Westside Santa Cruz or downtown
More Information: paulineseales120@gmail.com   

Brews for Bernie Special Edition with Movie Screening
Wed Jan 13, 6:30-8:30pm   Robert Reich's Inequality For All.

Santa Cruz Mountain Brewing Co, 402 Ingalls St #27, Santa Cruz 95060  [RSVP]

 for more actions:    www.santacruz4bernie.us

BY ALEXEI KOSEFF  akoseff@sacbee.com

A disputed advisory measure on the merits of unlimited independent campaign spending may proceed to the ballot after all.

The California Supreme Court ruled 6-1 on Monday that Proposition 49, a nonbinding query to voters on whether Congress should overturn the U.S. Supreme Court's controversial Citizens United decision, is constitutional.

The measure, which was intended for the November 2014 ballot, is no longer eligible for consideration. But lawmakers are now free to pursue an identical inquiry in 2016 - as well as other advisory questions that could similarly inform the the pursuit of a federal constitutional amendment.

"As a matter of state law, the Legislature has authority to conduct investigations by reasonable means to info…


When: Friday evening February 5 (doors open at 6:00 PM, program begins at 7:00PM)

Saturday morning February 6 (9:00 AM to 1:00PM).

The forum is open to the public and free of charge.

Where:  Peace United Church, 900 High Street, Santa Cruz

Why: Climate change is most often discussed in terms of scientific findings, economic policies, and political strategies. In this week-end event, organized by the Progressive Christian Forum of Santa Cruz, we seek rather to address the esthetic and moral dimensions of the issue. How can the arts as well as our moral traditions and religious teachings inform our understandings of climate change and guide our conscientious actions as we respond to this rapidly …

Your help is needed. 

If you're available and interested in helping then please email Brent compassionman@hotmail.com or phone  234-9848

Volunteer Roles:

  • Street Team - putting the word out on the street during the daytime to those who'll benefit that night.
  • Mobilization - Wednesday only 5pm - help load the materials transport vehicle (1 hour)
  • Soup! - Wed. & Thurs. - We serve 4 gallons of soup at both the Shuttle Stop AND at the all-night Warming Center (can be different people) 
  • Shuttle & Soup Stop host - Wed. & Thurs. 7pm-10pm - Serve soup to people waiting for the shuttle and keep a warm and friendly vibe.
  • Load in & Set up - Wed. & Thurs. 8pm - help us load a large amou…

       Sunday, Jan. 31  1:30-3:30pm
       Main Library, Church St. Santa Cruz

There are 22,000 nuclear weapons in our world; there have been over 2000 nuclear tests - and the latest one was last week in North Korea!!! While there is only one nuclear weapons abolition bill in the U.S. Congress -- H.R. 1976 (The Nuclear Weapons Abolition and Economic and Energy Conversion Act) -  there is much positive activity in the UN now regarding nuclear weapons abolition, disarmament in general and ending war!   

For the past three or four years NGOs, facilitated by WILPF and ICAN (International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons), have been working with governments to move the abolition action to th…

Housing California Reacts to Lack of Housing Investment in Governor Brown's Proposed Budget


In reaction to Governor Brown's proposed 2016-17 state budget, released today, Housing California issued the following response: 

"California has the nation's highest poverty rate, highest number of people experiencing homelessness, and the second highest housing costs, yet today, Governor Brown proposed a budget that provides no new help for the many people struggling to stay in their homes," said Shamus Roller, executive director of Housing California. "Every day the media runs stories about how California's cost of housing is creating more homelessness, about teachers being priced out of the communities they serve, about college students sleeping in their cars during the wee…

Dear Friends,

In the days before President Obama's 2015 State of the Union address, we wrote about the promising dimensions of his new direction in Cuba policy - it's strong emphasis on expanding travel, encouraging diplomacy, broadening engagement by "ball players and marine scientists, artists and experts," and bringing the business community farmers, businesses, and individuals with property compensation claims into the process to increase the momentum for reform.

In the last year, all of this - and more - has come to pass.

During the first days of the New Year, we got to see first-hand the benefits of the policy when we joined a trade delegation led by Virginia's Governor Terry McAuliffe - a visit that produced cooperation agreements between the Cuban and Virginia Port A…

By Jeff Mason and Daniel Trotta

WASHINGTON/HAVANA (Reuters) - The U.S. government is considering putting an end to a program that encourages Cuban doctors and nurses on overseas assignments to defect, a senior aide to President Barack Obama said, in a gesture emblematic of improving U.S.-Cuban relations.

The Cuban Medical Professional Parole Program, which started under President George W. Bush in 2006, targets one of Cuba's proudest achievements: sending doctors, nurses and other medical professionals abroad, either on missions of mercy or to raise cash for the Communist government.

The program grants U.S. officials discretionary authority to allow Cuban medical professionals into the United States, providing assistance at U.S. embassies in the countries where the doctors are pos…

Join the Economic Justice Alliance (EJA) from 10 am to 12:30 pm on Saturday, January 23, at Resurrection Catholic Church in Aptos! This workshop centers around 3 breakout opportunities to learn, connect, and take action:

  • Know your rights - direct worker outreach & education
  • Affordable housing advocacy
  • Organizing to raise the minimum wage

For those in Santa Cruz County paid under $15.00 per hour, the ability to afford housing, food, childcare, transportation, healthcare and other essential needs has become an untenable and endemic crisis. A recent report by the UCSC Center for Labor Studies noted the poverty level for a family of 4 in Santa Cruz County is a yearly income of $32,884, or an hourly rate of pay of $15.81. With this minimum level of needed income at …

Our local libraries provide amazing resources, programs and services, but the library facilities themselves are seriously outdated and inadequate. Each branch is in need of major repair, remodeling or even replacement in order to meet the current and future needs of our community. Now the Library System* is planning a revenue measure** on the June 2016 ballot to fund improvements to all our branches, and library advocates are already organizing to build a strong campaign. We can provide GREAT libraries for all our communities.

Your early support will help! 

The Santa Cruz Public Library System includes the following branches: Apto, Boulder Creek,  Branciforte,  Capitola,  Downtown Santa Cruz,  Felton,   Garfield Park,  Live Oak, and   Scotts Va…

What is the Voters' Right to Know Act?

A Statewide Ballot measure for the November 2016 ballot, the Voters' Right to Know Act, will give Californians the state constitutional right to know the true sources of political spending and establish California as the national model for campaign finance disclosure.

Why is it necessary?

Citizens United opened the floodgates of "dark money" in state and national politics. Hundreds of millions are spent annually in California lobbying and elections -- much of it untraceable to the true source. Many millions more are unknown due to uneven reporting and outmoded systems. Together, these forces are an assault on democracy. 

What is "Dark Money" and is it Really a Problem?

"Dark money" is a term for funds given to nonprofit organizat…


BY SCOTT KEYES   SEP 22, 2015 2:22 PM 

From:  Think Progress     http://thinkprogress.org/

After arguing last month that local ordinances criminalizing people for being homeless are unconstitutional, the Obama administration will now tie federal funding to whether municipalities are cracking down on criminalization measures.

Every year, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) gives out $1.9 billion in grants to local Continuums of Care, public-private partnerships that tackle homelessness in a specific area. These grants are doled out in a competitive process whereby applicants must fill out a lengthy questionnaire about how they plan to use the money, as well as their current policies.

Last week, though, H…

Now Collecting Signatures

(15-0068)  Voters Right to Know Act:  Donor Disclosure. Initiative Constitutional Amendment And Statute. Creates a constitutional right to public disclosure of money used to finance campaign activity and influence government actions. (Similar to California Disclose Act)

  • Requires corporations and nonprofit organizations that spend $50,000 or more on political activities in California to disclose their $10,000 donors, including where donations passed through other entities.
  • Requires that a political campaign's advertisements disclose its top three donors contributing $50,000 or more.
  • Expands Secretary of State's online campaign finance database.
  • Extends bar against former legislators lobbying Legislature or state agencies to 24 months.
  • Requires disclosure of lobbying…


YES to Sustainable Solutions

in a transportation sales tax ballot measure

Thurs, Feb 4th

6:20pm potluck 7pm program

Live Oak Grange, 1900 17th Ave.

Weds, Feb 24th

7pm program

YWCA Watsonville, 340 E. Beach St.

Bruce Van Allen & Rick Longinotti will discuss:

  •  Studies of the effectiveness of highway widening on relieving congestion.
  •  Highway widening's impact on greenhouse gas emissions.
  •   The potential of solutions such as rail transit, express buses on the Highway 1 shoulder, incentives for reducing travel demand, and safe routes for pedestrians and bicycles.
Co-sponsors:  350 Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz Climate Action Network


In Santa Cruz, advocates for people experiencing homelessness, including the Freedom Sleepers whose continuing actions at the Santa Cruz City Hall have been the subject of several reports in Street Spirit, have been working to directly address the criminalization of homelessness and calling for the repeal of the city's camping/sleeping ban.

Beginning on July 4, 2015, activists have been consistent in their position that ordinances prohibiting and criminalizing lying, sitting, and sleeping in public are unconstitutional and pose a grave danger of being selectively enforced against an entire class of people.

In August, this position found unexpected support from the Obama administration. A Statement of Interest submitted by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) in the U…

The California Suspension of Legislators Amendment (Senate Constitutional Amendment 17) is on the June 7, 2016 ballot in California as a legislatively referred constitutional amendment.

The measure, upon voter approval, would require a two-thirds vote in the respective chamber of the state legislature in order to suspend a state legislator. A proposed suspension would first require a resolution containing "findings and declarations setting forth the basis for the suspension."[1]

Furthermore, the amendment would prohibit a suspended legislator from exercising any of the rights, privileges, duties, or powers of his or her office, or from utilizing any resources of the legislature while the suspension is in effect. Additionally, the suspended member …

Pillar One: Building Trust and Legitimacy

Building trust and nurturing legitimacy between police and citizens is the foundational principle underlying the nature of relations between law enforcement agencies and the communities they serve. Law enforcement cannot build community trust if it is seen as an occupying force coming in from the outside to impose control on the community.

Pillar Two: Policy and Oversight

If police are to carry out their responsibilities according to established policies, those policies must reflect community values. Law enforcement agencies should collaborate with community members, especially in communities and neighborhoods disproportionately affected by crime, to develop policies and strategies for deploying resources that aim to reduce crime by improving r…

Members are encouraged to sign petitions for the following ballot measures which were endorsed by the membership 1/21/16.

Tax Extension to Fund Education (15-0065)   - Extends by twelve years the temporary personal income tax increases enacted in 2012 on earnings over $250,000 [for single filers; over $500,000 for joint filers; over $340,000 for heads of household].     More Information:  www.ballotpedia.org/California_$15_Minimum_Wage_Initiative_(2016) ; www.cabinetreport.com/politics-education/school-advocates-look-to-extend-tax-hike-on-wealth

Campaign Finance. "Voters Right to Know" (15-0068)  - Requires corporations and nonprofit organizations that spend $50,000 or more on political activities in California to disclose their $10,000 donors, including where donatio…

At the Supreme Court, a Big Threat to Unions

By The New York times Editorial Board   Jan. 9, 2016

A case the Supreme Court will hear on Monday morning threatens to undermine a four-decade-old ruling that upheld a key source of funding for public-sector unions, the last major bastion of unionized workers in America.

In the 1977 decision Abood v. Detroit Board of Education, the justices ruled that public unions may charge all employees ? members and nonmembers alike ? for the costs of collective bargaining related to their employment. For nonmembers, these are known as "fair-share fees." But nonmembers may not be compelled to pay for the union's political or ideological activities.

The Abood ruling was a sensible compromise between the state's interest…

Attending: Nancy Abbey, Glen Schaller, Paul Johnston, Nora Hochman, Brian Murtha, Joy Hinz, Phil Posner, Gail Jack, Patty Threet, Ron Pomerantz, Paul Elerick, Tom Batley, Cynthia Matthews, Vanessa Sadsad, Pete Shanks

 Treasurer's Report: We paid for a new banner (union made), and paid rent for Galleria. Rent is $ 25.00 per month for use of Galleria space. We had $ 3,506.68 balance as of January 21, 2016.

Committee on Initiatives:  three initiatives were  proposed for endorsement:  (a) Casey reported on the renewal of Prop. 30 which benefits Higher Ed and K12 Education,  (b) Nancy reported on Campaign Finance Measure, requires disclosure of campaign donations over $10,000.;   (c)  Glen Schaller reported on Minimum Wage Increase Measure, sponsored b…

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