Lamorinda Democratic Club To Consider Three Endorsement Recommendations at April 12 Meeting

The Lamorinda Democratic Club's dues-paying members will have the opportunity to vote on three endorsement recommendations made by the Board of Directors during the club's business meeting on Thursday, April 12. The business meeting will begin no earlier than 7:15 p.m. and no later than 7:30 p.m.

The Board of Directors has voted to accept the Issues and Endorsements Committee's recommendation that the club endorse Assemblymember Joan Buchanan (who will begin representing our area after redistricting), Assemblymember Nancy Skinner (who has represented us the past four years) and a Least Toxic Pest Management Ordinance for Contra Costa County.
Contra Costa County Departments applied 12,000 pounds of pesticide products in 2011 along roadsides, creeks and in open spaces. This includes more than 4,000 pounds of the most threatening chemicals, termed “Bad Actor” pesticides.

Contra Costa County applies considerably more pesticides than Santa Clara, San Francisco, and Marin Counties combined.  Our county needs an ordinance that would create an incentive for county staff to decrease pesticide dependency and look to solutions already being used by neighboring counties.

The Ordinance will enable the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors to hold County staff accountable for unnecessary pesticide use.

That's why our club's Board of Directors recommends the club endorse Contra Costa implementing a Least Toxic Pest Management Ordinance like our neighboring counties have. The Ordinance should, at a minimum, include the following 8 items:

  •  Disclose where and when pesticides are being applied, including along the 120 miles of roadsides, 70 miles of flood control channels/creeks, empty lots, and in thousands of acres of open space.
  •  Post signs on the County website and at locations where pesticides will be applied, at least 48 hours prior to application. Signs shall remain posted for 1 month.
  •  Post original pesticide use reports within 2 weeks of pesticide application. Within 2 months, post all raw data, calculations and graph the pesticide use trends in order to assess progress in each pest program.
  •  Document and Report how least toxic alternatives have been investigated and tried prior to choosing pesticides for each pest control program.
  •  Phase out Bad Actor Pesticides by the end of 2012 for pest control programs unless all other alternatives have failed.
  •  Prohibit County Staff addressing pest control from recruiting individuals for the IPM Advisory Committee.
  •  Create a Permanent Seat on the IPM Advisory Committee for a Public Health Expert (MPH, PhD or DrPH) with a track record in supporting public health and environmental health issues.


Community College Faculty To Hold March 22 Reception for Asm. Nancy Skinner

The United Faculty of Contra Costa Community College District and the Faculty Association of California Community Colleges invite you to a reception to re-elect Assemblymember Nancy Skinner on Thursday, March 22, from 6-8 p.m. at the home of Erik Preminger and Linda Michels in Orinda.

To RSVP or for more information, please visit this web site or contact Cynthia Brantly Pierce at 510-704-1657 or by email at You can also click here to download a pdf of the event flyer.

The co-hosts for the event include Ellen Beans, Craig Cheslog, Honorable Ken Chew, Jill & Jim Ellis, Tim Farley, Honorable Steve Glazer, Audrey Gordon, Anne Grodin, John Hall, Honorable John Hanecak, Elisabeth Jewel, Christie Batterman Jordan, Honorable Bev Lane, Honorable Karen Mendonca, Honorable Karen Mitchoff, Honorable Gail Murray, Katie Ricklefs, Honorable Shayne Silva, Edy Schwartz, Honorable Tomi Van de Brooke, Melody Howe Weintraub, and Honorable Amy Worth.

Contra Costa County Women's Summit with Assemblymembers Joan Buchanan, Susan Bonilla, and Nancy Skinner on Monday, Nov. 14

Assemblymembers Joan Buchanan, Susan Bonilla, and Nancy Skinner are hosting a Contra Costa County Women's Summit on Monday, November 14, from 1-6 p.m. at the Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Drive, in Walnut Creek.

Join our elected officials for a conversation about the state budget's impact on the health, safety, and educational services for women and children.

For more information, view the event flyer, or to RSVP for the event, please visit your Assemblymember's web site:

Celebrate Asm. Nancy Skinner's Birthday with Speaker John Perez

You are invited to help celebrate Asm. Nancy Skinner's birthday with Speaker John Perez on Thursday, September 15, from 5-7 p.m. at the Berkeley Repertory Theater Courtyard, 2025 Addison Street, Berkeley.

Tickets are available for $100, with sponsorships available. To RSVP or donate on-line, please visit the Nancy Skinner for Assembly web site. For more information, please contact Cynthia Brantly Pierce at 510-704-1657.

First Draft of Redistricting Commission's Maps Released: Lamorinda Moved to District with 680 Corridor South to Tri-Valley

The first draft maps from the California Citizens Redistricting Commission were released on Friday. They are slightly different from the ones we saw earlier this week.

If these lines are implemented, Contra Costa's political landscape in Congress and the State Legislature will change — especially in East Contra Costa County, where Oakley is separated from the rest of the county in all three maps (click here to see the Commission's first draft maps, click here to see the maps with additional analysis from Redistricting Partners).

For example, for Congress, Contra Costa would find itself split into four Congressional Districts. Rep. George Miller's district (click here for pdf map) would fit entirely within Contra Costa County, but taking Rep. Miller to Lamorinda and Danville and San Ramon. Rep. John Garamendi would still represent a portion of Contra Costa County, but now he'd have Pinole and Hercules in a district including Yolo, Solano, and Sacramento Counties. Antioch, Brentwood, and Oakley are included in a San Joaquin District. Part of Richmond is included in an Oakland District currently represented by Rep. Barbara Lee.

For the State Assembly, Contra Costa would also find itself split into four districts. Western Contra Costa continues in a coastal district with Albany and Berkeley. Asm. Susan Bonilla would find herself in a district that drops Western Contra Costa and adding Brentwood. Oakley, Discovery Bay, Knightsen and Bethel Island would be in a district with Isleton, Vacaville, Dixon and extending up to Woodland. Asm. Joan Buchanan has been drawn into a district including Lamorinda, the 680 corridor south to Danville and San Ramon, and Alameda's Dublin, Pleasanton, and Livermore.

In the State Senate, Sen. Mark DeSaulnier will lose all of West Contra Costa County and Oakley, picking up Alameda's Dublin, Pleasanton, and Livermore in a district that is reminiscent to the one in which now-State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson defeated sitting Senator Richard Rainey in 2000. West County again finds itself in a coastal district including parts of Alameda with Sen. Loni Hancock. Oakley is included in a district that is centered to the north — including Santa Rosa to the west, Dixon and Woodland to the north, and Lodi and Galt to the east.

Districts like that last one may have been among those that prompted KQED Radio's John Meyers to tweet:

The public often told during campaigns 2 reform #CARedistricting squiggly lines = gerrymandering. Today's maps show ain't always so.


Like, or don't like, what you see? You still have a chance to get involved. As the Commission's web site notes:

The Commission is now soliciting public comment on the draft districts. Testimony can be submitted online to, by mail to the Citizens Redistricting Commission, 901 P Street, Suite 154-A, Sacramento, CA 95814 or by FAX at 916-651-5711. The Commission will be holding 11 public input hearings in June on the draft maps. The hearing schedule and the draft maps can be found at the Commission’s website at