PV Democrats June 2024 Meeting Report

—By Nancie Silver

The Palos Verdes Democrats met in person at the Peninsula Center Library and on Zoom on Sunday, June 23. The featured speaker was State Senator Ben Allen, who joined the meeting remotely via Zoom. Congratulations to him and his wife on the recent birth of their daughter! We were very excited to hear that he will be attending our annual picnic at St. Luke’s church on Sunday, July 21. Ben is a very interesting and energetic speaker who covered a lot of information during our meeting; here are a few highlights.  

Ben spoke about the recent flurry of legislative activity, focused on passing the budget and meeting the June 27 ballot eligibility deadline. There are two ways a measure can be placed on the ballot – the Legislature can place constitutional amendments, bond measures, and proposed changes in law on the ballot, or any California voter can put an initiative or a referendum on the ballot through the initiative process. The legislature put an Education Bond and a Climate Bond on the ballot, and there were several initiatives put forward, several of which could do damage to existing laws. 

Ben has been working to extend the producer responsibility model (used in SB 54) to EV batteries and household hazardous waste, and other legislators are working on photovoltaics, food waste, and textiles. The goal is to have producers be responsible for recycling or reusing their products rather than them ending up in landfills. 

As we all know, there has been a lot of land movement in Palos Verde, especially recently. First there was the landslide on Peartree Lane in Rolling Hills Estates, which destroyed several homes.  Also, Rancho Palos Verdes has been experiencing increased land movement along PV Drive South through the slide area. Ben has been working to add landslides to the list of eligible events for disaster relief with the California Disaster Assistance Act. Currently, eligible disasters are one-time disasters such as earthquakes or storms. 

Watch the meeting video to hear all the details of his comments and his responses to the important and varied questions posed during the 35-minute Q & A period:

  • Question is about recycling programs, the reduction in recycling and what consumers can do to keep things out of the landfill?
  • Respectfully, why would you think consumers would do anything if the legislature is not passing any laws to address this plastic bottle recycling issue?
  • Do you see any shift in the Democratic party and California legislature on addressing the three problematic issues in the November election – immigration, crime, inflation?
  • Can we do the same thing for oil that you have done for plastics – polluter pay bill? Climate issues are impacting consumer costs for insurance, affecting economy, health, etc. 
  • Where do you stand on California’s recent housing bills that affect local control in Palos Verdes, especially ADUs?
  • Concerned about the housing laws and builder’s remedy from a political perspective – your thoughts on this?
  • What will California’s budget deal mean for the state’s efforts to mitigate climate change?
  • California’s YIMBYs are doing damage to the rest of us in the Democratic party (housing, damage to the CA Coastal Act); what can we do to stop them? 
  • Neighborhood Voices and RHNA and CA Zoning issues – what are your thoughts on these?

Lastly, we enjoyed learning that Ben worked to pass a resolution declaring June 11 as International Day of Play and officially recognized Mattel for its role as a leader in the world of play (CA is first west coast state to do this and UN General Assembly officially adopted the holiday this year).

To see our meeting charts, please click here.

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