Post Election Night Results What We Knew the Morning of November 4
A Brief Overview from Brian White FLC Legislative Advocate
As of the early morning of November 4 – post election night, most California precincts had tabulated their votes but there were still thousands of mail-in-ballots that had not been counted yet where some precincts have only partially reported their results. At that moment, we knew Democrats will continue to hold solid super majorities in both the Senate and Assembly where Democrats will have at least 70% of the seats in each house. In the Senate, Democrats likely picked up two seats and the possibility of two additional seats. In the Assembly, the Democrats appear to have held their current numbers with a possibility of two pickups.
There are some very close legislative races in a few contested seats so updates to come. The results on Proposition 15 were also too close to call (Prop 15) as it was currently losing by 400,000 votes (51% No to 48% yes). As you know, Prop 15 would significantly change California’s property tax laws by adopting a so-called “split roll” property tax that would impose higher property taxes for commercial properties to help fund education.
Bottom line, we may not know the full extent of some of the results until the week of November 9 and maybe even by end of the month. To get updates on the full results, you can view the Secretary of State’s website here - https://electionresults.sos.ca.gov/. In the meantime, below are some key election results:
- Democrats are on the verge of flipping at least two seats. Incumbents currently losing include Senator John Moorlach (Costa Mesa/Orange County) and Senator Ling Ling Chang (Diamond Bar/Orange County). With Democrats possibly picking up at least two additional seats, this means they may have increased their current supermajority from 29-11 to a 31-9 advantage.
- In two other tightknit races, incumbent Republican Senator Scott Wilk (Santa Clarita/Los Angeles County) is barely hanging on to his seat with only a 553 vote lead. And in an open Republican seat, Democrat candidate Abigail Medina was leading Republican candidate Rosilicie Bogh by a mere 141 votes.
- If Senate Republicans lose the two close seats and the other two seats they are currently losing, this would increase Democrat pickups by four seats and extend their numbers to 33-7. It remains to be seen how this all plays out, but either way this will make it even more challenging for business groups to stop negative legislation in the Senate. But it remains to be seen whether the Democrat pickups will increase the influence of Moderate Democrats which could help balance out some of the progressive legislation that will be pushed by Democrat allies (i.e. labor unions, enviro groups). On forestry/wildfires, resources, environment and climate change issues, it may be a mixed bag depending on the specific issue but it will continue to be challenging for landowners and the business community.
- In the Assembly, two incumbent Republican seats are still close with Republican Assembly Member Steven Choi (Irvine/Orange County) leading Democrat candidate Melissa Fox by 4 points, and Republican Assembly Member Jordan Cunningham was leading (San Luis Obispo) Democrat candidate Dawn Addis by 4 points. On the Democrat side, incumbent Assembly Member Cottie Petrie Norris (Laguna Beach) was leading in a close race against Republican candidate Diane Dixon by 3 points.
- Taken as a whole, Assembly Democrats at worst will keep their current supermajority of 61-19 with the possibility of picking up two seats.
Appellate Decision on WFMP Case
Good News -- Exemptions and NTMPs
CAL FIRE has reversed its policy change regarding the acceptance of exemptions for NTMPs. Please refer to the link below to view the letter from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Ken Pimlott) to the California Board of Forestry and Fire Protection (Keith Gilless).
Should you have any questions, please send an email to the FLC Legislative Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Letter and Supporting Content from CAL FIRE to Board of Forestry
Legislative Committee Assignments
Public Policy Institute of California
The Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) issued a report in mid-September on the status of forest health in the Headwaters Forests. On September 20, there was a panel debriefing on the report. Click on the links below to download the documents.
If you are interested in wathcing the panel debrief, the video is posted on the PPIC's website: