Capitol Alert

The latest on California politics and government

jerryBudget.JPGWill California lawmakers have to work this weekend? We'll find out by the end of business today: The deadline for passing a budget beckons, so if legislators don't ratify the latest budget accord today, they will have to do so Saturday before midnight.

The Assembly and the Senate both convene this morning, so stay tuned to see whether they manage to wrap things up in time to head back to their districts for the events they've planned for Saturday (of which there are plenty).

VIDEO: A look at California's changing demographics reminds Dan Walters why the state can claim the most complex society in the Western hemisphere.

AUDACIOUS ART: Quick, what names does the phrase "California first ladies" conjure? Nancy Reagan? How about Gov. Jerry Brown's first-term squeeze Linda Ronstadt, or Arnold Schwarzenegger flings Brigitte Nielsen and Gigi Goyette?

All of those women are subjects of a controversial collection of portraits by Sacramento artist Maren Conrad. The paintings were originally intended to adorn the walls of the new downtown bar Vanguard, which celebrates its opening tonight on L Street, but the owners reneged on that plan after a backlash. Someone appreciates the art, though -- it has been purchased by attorney Glenda Corcoran, wife of California Medical Association CEO Dustin Corcoran.

RUNNER RUMBLINGS: Board of Equalization member George Runner seems to keep a fairly busy speaking schedule, and he's maintaining the pace with a speech at the Mexican Consulate in Sacramento on Saturday. Runner, who has emerged as a vocal critic of California's controversial fire fee, is speaking at 8:45 a.m. as part of a Immigrant Entrepreneur Leadership Conference, which will include a presentation on the Board of Equalization.

CRUZ CONTROL: Ascendant tea party idol and freshman U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, will be in Orange County tonight to address the Orange County Republican Party's annual Flag Day dinner (by the way, today is Flag Day). The gathering is at the Hyatt Regency Irvine, starting at 5:30 p.m.

CELEBRATIONS: An advance happy birthday to lawmakers celebrating Saturday: Assemblyman Kevin Mullin, D-South San Francisco, is turning 43, and Assemblywoman Nora Campos, D-San Jose, will be 48. Their colleague, Assemblyman Allan Mansoor, R-Costa Mesa, turns 49 on Sunday.

PHOTO: Gov. Jerry Brown explains his budget proposal during a news conference at the California Capitol in Sacramento on Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013. The Sacramento Bee/Randall Benton.



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