Capitol Alert

The latest on California politics and government

California Republican Party members can look forward to hearing not only from GOP presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich at their convention next weekend, but also from one of his former rivals.

Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty will speak at Saturday's dinner along with Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus. KSFO (560 AM) radio host Brian Sussman will emcee the event.

Pawlenty, who quit the presidential race last August after a disappointing finish in the Iowa straw poll, is now co-chairman of Mitt Romney's presidential bid.

Gingrich will be headlining Saturday's luncheon at the convention, held Friday through Sunday at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco Airport hotel in Burlingame.

Also on the convention's speaker list are California Reps. Kevin McCarthy and Darrell Issa, who share the main attraction at Friday's dinner with Republican National Committee Co-Chairwoman Sharon Day. The Sunday prayer breakfast will feature the Rev. Lou Sheldon, founder and chairman of the Traditional Values Coalition, which has offices in both Washington, D.C., and Anaheim.

Day, meanwhile, will give an update on California's new top-two primary system at a luncheon Friday for members of the executive committee.

Convention sessions include the "Ground Game" workshop on this year's elections, which was already full up late last week, as well as a workshop on social media plus three town halls aimed at Asian, Latino and young voters. Read an agenda at this link.

LEGISLATIVE CALENDAR: The Legislature has a short week, with sessions scheduled today at noon in the Assembly and at 2 p.m. in the Senate. An Assembly Budget subcommittee looks at state procurement and contracting out, starting at 1:30 p.m. in the Capitol's Room 447. And a joint legislative hearing will consider Gov. Jerry Brown's proposals to eliminate the departments of Mental Health, and Alcohol and Drug Programs and reorganize other behavioral health programs. That hearing will start around 3:30 p.m. in Room 4202.

SCHOOLS CHIEF: State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson is touring Lincoln High School's Engineering Construction Academy in Stockton at 1 p.m. to highlight career technical education.

PENSIONS: The Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research and California Common Sense are releasing a report today on California's local pension systems, including Sacramento County's. Stay tuned for details.



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