Capitol Alert

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RCB_20110622_SALVATION_ARMY_0009.JPGEarly childhood education has gained some traction as a strategy for reducing schooling discrepancies -- President Barack Obama called for universal pre-K in his State of the Union speech this year -- and advocates are hosting a conference on the issue this week at the Sheraton Hotel in Sacramento.

Today is the second day of the symposium, co-hosted by the Advancement Project, Proposition 38 backer Molly Munger's group. State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson gives opening remarks this morning after former state schools chief Delaine Eastin welcomes the group.

Other listed speakers include Erin Gabel of the California Department of Education, Thomas Schultz of the Council of Chief State School Officers, California Teachers Association President Dean Vogel, Democratic Assemblywoman Holly Mitchell of Los Angeles, and Republican Assemblyman Brian Nestande of Palm Desert. Munger moderates an afternoon panel on funding priorities.

VIDEO While Gov. Jerry Brown is making his case in China, his agenda is starting to unravel in Sacramento, Dan Walters says.

Advocates for the developmentally disabled are rallying in Sacramento today, citing a record of abuse in California's system of developmental centers and demanding that Brown shut down the network of institutions for the disabled. The 10:15 a.m. demonstration is on the Capitol's west steps before today's Senate Budget Subcommittee on Health and Human Services hearing in room 4203 that will examine the Department of Developmental Services.

You may recall Torey Van Oot's recent story about the legislative spat over clothing donation bins. In the spotlight today is another bill that deals with used consumer goods -- mattresses. Sen. Lou Correa, D-Santa Ana, is holding a press conference highlighting Senate Bill 245, which would create a program for recycling used mattresses via nonprofits. His measure is sponsored by the trade association Californians for Mattress Recycling. (Sen. Loni Hancock, D-Berkeley, has a rival bill.) Correa's event starts at noon on the west steps.

The University of California speaker series continues today with a lunchtime talk on what lies ahead for the rollout of the Affordable Care Act, an undertaking that has already involved a string of special hearings at the Capitol. It features Gerald F. Kominski of the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research and the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, from noon to 1:30 p.m. at 1130 K Street.

Were term limits a good idea? It's an ongoing debate that experts are examining during a talk hosted by Sacramento State today. Listed speakers include Dr. Stacy Gordon Fisher, an associate professor at the University of Nevada, Reno; Ben Adler of Capital Public Radio; Clyde Macdonald, retired chief consultant for the State Assembly; and Gary Winuk, chief of the Fair Political Practices Commission's enforcement division. The talk runs from 2 to 4 p.m. in the Capitol's room 437.

PHOTO CREDIT: Twins Capri Panattoni, 2 1/ 2 , left, and Jiada Panattoni, right, play with their brother Adone Panattoni, 4, at a Salvation Army child development center in Sacramento on June 22, 2011. By Renée Byer for The Sacramento Bee.


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