You may have noticed there has been a high concentration of posting here lately about California state legislation. This happened entirely by chance, not by design — but then it occurred to me that it may be an angle worthy of continued coverage in the future. After all, a great deal of what happens in the cities and counties of the Bay Area is mandated by California law, so even a discussion that is mostly devoted to local issues cannot help but to expand at least occasionally to the state level. Just as important, though, is the fact that many crucial opportunities to improve and provide better funding for transit lie in Sacramento rather than in local jurisdictions. Mainstream media tends to report about state legislation when all is said and done, usually when the bill is sitting on the Governor’s desk. It is not hard to see why they do this — it’s simply much easier, given the trying stop-and-go process of amending and negotiating a piece of legislation. Unfortunately, this style of eleventh hour reporting affords members of the public little to no opportunity to convey their thoughts to elected officials.
Despite an (over)abundance of local issues to discuss, I would like to cover pieces of state legislation, and at least attempt to do so in a more timely manner — particularly those bills relevant to land use, transportation, and climate change, so as to highlight how creative thinking in Sacramento can effect positive changes in our cities and counties. Working towards that goal, I posted in the sidebar a link to a new reference sheet that lists pieces of state legislation — just a few of the recent bills for now, but the list will expand in time. The page includes a basic summary and the current status of each bill, with links to relevant posts for more detail.
Still, this site is primarily about local issues, and I do not intend to change that focus, even though there has been a cropping of relevant state bills recently and still others on the way. Readers: if you have thoughts about the extent to which you want to see (or not) more coverage of topics like state legislation, feel free to leave your thoughts and ideas in the comments.