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San Benito County Elections & Politics Digest

Opinion: Exploring the Role of County Central Committees


California’s Elections Code provides for County Central Committees for each of the state’s major political parties, to be elected every four years during the presidential primary.

San Francisco Set to Apologize to Black Residents for ‘Systemic Racism’


Members of the board gathered to put forward a resolution that takes responsibility for the history of discrimination against Black San Franciscans.

Why Adopting Sports Gambling in California Has to Involve Tribes


When and if California legalizes sports gambling, the policy should honor the laws established in partnership with tribes decades ago, says Assemblyman James Ramos.

Research: Immigration Enforcement Hinders Education; Schools Offer Support


Immigration enforcement lowers students’ ability to succeed academically and negatively affects their overall learning experience.

BenitoLink Releases Your Voice—Your Vote Primary Forum Videos, Survey


BenitoLink hosted an election forum at the Granada Theater in Hollister, and thanks to sponsors was able to record and edit short videos on each race.

Fact Check: “20,000 More Houses?” Election Flier


BenitoLink’s second fact-checking article of the election season examines a flier titled “20,000 More Houses,” looking into which statements are correct, false, misleading or taken out of context.

Candidates in San Benito County Raise Over $86k in Donations


Election candidates in San Benito County have reported receiving more than $86,000 in campaign contributions between Jan. 1, 2023, and Jan. 20, 2024.

Bill Package Takes Aim at AI and Elections


A suite of five bills introduced this weeks seeks to protect election integrity from bad actors using AI, especially on social media.

A Record Amount Went to Lobbying California’s Government. Who Were the Biggest Spenders?


Companies and organizations spent more than $480 million on lobbyists who sought to influence the Legislature, the governor’s office and state agencies.

Candidates Address Local Issues in BenitoLink’s Election Forum


Board of Supervisors hopefuls speak about repairing roads, providing affordable housing and the landfill expansion project.

California Senate Leader Mike McGuire Picks His Team


The new top Democrat in the state Senate announces his leadership team and new committee chairpersons. He rewarded some allies, and filled five of seven leadership posts with women or legislators of color.

Legislators Unveil Measure to Ask Voters for $1 billion Offshore Wind Bond


The funds would help California ports expand to handle giant wind turbines and other equipment. California’s first offshore wind farms are on a fast track off Humboldt County and Morro Bay.

2024 Primary Election: San Benito County Board of Supervisors District 5


Incumbent Bea Gonzales and challenger Ignacio Velazquez are running in the District 5 seat, which covers north county between Hwy 25 and Hwy 156, the Hollister Municipal Airport and downtown Hollister.

5 Major Candidates Want to be California’s New U.S. Senator


Here’s where they stand on the economy, crime and the border.

How a California Republican Helped Tank Mayorkas’ Impeachment Vote


California Republican Rep. Tom McClintock bucked his party to vote against impeaching Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.

An Initiative Promised 20,000 Homes for Mentally Ill Californians. It Delivered Far Less


California voters this spring are considering a $6.4 billion bond to house people with serious mental health conditions. A similar 2018 ballot measure offers lessons about the obstacles that stand in the way of construction.

Can You Vote for Any Candidate in California’s Primary Election? Here Are the Rules


There are different rules for the presidential contest and state races on the March 5 ballot. And each party has its own rules.

2024 Primary Election Voter Guide


California’s primary is March 5, and candidates running for county seats can win if they get more than 50% of the votes. If no candidate wins outright, the top two move on to the Nov. 5 general election.

Mike McGuire Wants to ‘Lift Up Every Person’ as New California Senate Leader


Sen. Mike McGuire of Healdsburg takes over as Democratic leader in the state Senate from Sen. Toni Atkins. He terms out in 2026, so has limited time to push his agenda.

Former Hollister Mayor Frank Valenzuela Dies at 91


Frank “Tito” Valenzuela, Hollister’s first Latino mayor, died Jan. 3 at age 91. He served on the Hollister City Council from 1964 to 1968 and was mayor in 1964 and 1965.

Former Supervisor Bob Tiffany Appointed to California Transportation Commission


Assembly Speaker Robert Rivas (D-Hollister) appointed Bob Tiffany, a fourth-generation San Benito County resident and business owner, to the California Transportation Commission.

California Recall Reform Moves Forward, But Other Bills Don’t


A sweeping change to California elections took a step forward. The proposed constitutional amendment aims to allow the lieutenant governor to be installed if a governor is recalled.

‘Just the Beginning’: California Reparations Backers Applaud Bills, Even Without Big Cash Payouts


Lawmakers introduced a package of bills designed to tackle some forms of reparations. The measures may face budget constraints and opposition.

California Lawmakers Unveiled 14 Reparations Bills. None Call for Cash Payments


The California Legislative Black Caucus released a list of 14 bills as a first set of reparations for the descendants of African Americans who were enslaved.

Voters Guide to the 2024 California Primary Election


Here is your guide to the 2024 California primary election.

Your Guide to Proposition 1: Newsom’s Overhaul of California’s Mental Health System


Gov. Gavin Newsom crafted the measure to reform California’s mental health system, including a $6.4-billion bond for new facilities.

A Bill for Every Problem? Why California Lawmakers Introduce Longshots


Faced with a huge budget deficit, legislators are on warning not to expect bills with a high price tag to pass. But that’s not always the goal of introducing bills.

California Lawmakers, Raising Fears of Political Violence, Want to Shield Their Properties


A bill would let state legislators, who say they fear for their safety, shield their property holdings from disclosure forms. But critics say that could conceal potential conflicts of interest.

How Fringe Anti-Science Views Infiltrated Mainstream Politics


Rates of routine childhood vaccination hit a 10-year low in 2023. That, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, puts about 250,000 kindergartners at risk for measles.

2024 Primary Elections: San Benito County Board of Supervisors District 1


Three candidates are running for the seat: incumbent Dom Zanger and challengers Dustin Weber and Stacie A. McGrady. District 1 is the northeast part of the county.

Key Takeaways From U.S. Senate Debate


The four leading U.S. Senate contenders in California tried to use 90 minutes of free air time to solidify their pitches to voters—and also to set themselves apart from their opponents.

2024 Primary Election: 18th Congressional District


Five candidates are running for the 18th Congressional District, which consists of San Benito County and parts of Santa Clara, Monterey and Santa Cruz counties. Members of Congress serve a two-year term.

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