Capitol Alert

The latest on California politics and government

DAN WALTERS DAILY: Bee columnist Dan Walters dives into the debate over taxing oil and gas extraction in today's video clip.

Sacramento takes center stage in the U.S. Senate showdown today.

Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein and one of her chief rivals, Republican Elizabeth Emken, both have events scheduled within blocks of each other - and the Capitol - today.

Feinstein will swing by the Citizen Hotel at noon to talk about "the economy, housing, international affairs and California's water infrastructure" at an event organized by the Sacramento Area Council of Governments and the Next Economy Partnership, according to her office. She'll follow that event with a tour of the Natomas levees alongside Rep. Doris Matsui, D-Sacramento.

Emken, who beat out 13 other GOP challengers on the June ballot for the California Republican Party endorsement, has scheduled a press conference of her own ahead of Feinstein's remarks. She plans to address the federal deficit, unemployment numbers and "why new leadership is needed during this critical election year." The longtime advocate for children with autism will head to the Arden Hills Resort Club and Spa later today for a 6:30 p.m. reception with the Republicans of River City.

BILLS, BILLS, BILLS: Policy committees in both houses continue to churn through measures up for consideration ahead of upcoming deadlines for bills to move to fiscal committees and the floor. Click on the links to the see full Senate and Assembly committee schedules.

HONORING TROOPS: A trio of legislators will stage a press conference on a resolution aimed at honoring veterans who serve in Iraq and Afghanistan. The measure would ask state agencies to plan a privately-funded memorial for troops who served in the two wars and encourage communities throughout the state to organize parades or other events to welcome back members of the military. Sen. Sam Blakeslee, R-San Luis Obispo, Senate Veterans Affairs Committee Chairman Lou Correa, D-Santa Ana, and Assemblyman Jeff Gorell, the Camarillo Republican who returned to Sacramento yesterday after a yearlong deployment in Afghanistan, will headline the 11:30 a.m. presser at the California Veterans' Memorial in Capitol Park.

LEGISLATIVE PAY LAWSUIT: Today's court date in the lawsuit Democratic legislative leaders filed over Controller John Chaing's decision to withhold lawmakers pay after the budget they approved was vetoed by Gov. Jerry Brown has been rescheduled for April 18. To brush up on the lawsuit, which raises the question of who decides what constitutes a balanced budget under Proposition 25, click this link.


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