Category Archives: Past meetings

Meeting of October 8, 2019 – Dodd & Grayson / Solano Fair Elections

Senator Bill Dodd and
Assemblymember Tim Grayson guest speakers

Our October 8 General Membership meeting featured Benicia’s two elected officials representing us in the state Legislature – Senator Bill Dodd and Assemblymember Tim Grayson.  The session was recorded on video by Benicia Filmmaker Constance Beutel.

Speaking: Bill Dodd, California Senate District 3. Seated: Tim Grayson, California Assembly District 14. October 8 2019 meeting of Progressive Democrats of Benicia

Grayson and Dodd discussed their views on the recently completed 2019 Legislative Session, including bills related to the Northern California wild fires and PG&E’s bankruptcy and restructuring.

PDB also asked each to respond to the following question:

What are the three most important things that should be done to address the climate change crises and what are you doing to make those actions happen?

Following Sen. Dodd and Asm. Grayson, we discussed election security issues in the 2020 primary and general elections.

Is the vote we cast truly secure? Can an outside party manipulate the voting results in our elections?

John Michael Schwab, Chief of Staff to Secretary of State Alex Padilla, and John Gardner, Solano Co. Asst. Registrar of Voters, shared what steps the state of California and Solano County, respectively, have taken to address cybersecurity and hacking concerns in local and state election processes.

Should a paper trail for all votes be mandated as an anti-hacking protection? Should there be a prohibition on the inclusion of any connectivity-enabling devices in election-related equipment? Has California already adopted these provisions? Or, are they necessary?

These issues are extremely important to the viability and integrity of voting in the U.S.

Meeting of September 10, 2019 – Climate issues in California legislature

September 10, Tues 7:00 pm
Benicia Library
Dona Benicia room

  • How are actions on climate change issues faring in the CA Legislature? Still time to help?
  • Also, a vote on a bylaws change.

We heard from our powerful and highly informative featured speaker, Kathy Dervin, Co-Chair of 350 Bay Area Legislative Committee and a consulting professional with a Master of Public Health (MPH) focused in Health Education/Environmental Health.

Kathy presented a compelling overview of pending legislation relating to Climate Change (see bold text below).  She also covered

We made plans to post here and send out by email an URGENT CALL TO ACTION!  > With only three days to the close of the California Legislature’s  session (until Sept 13th), everyone was asked to call Assembly member Grayson and Senator Dodd’s office ASAP to advocate on the following bills: (see details at URGENT! Call our representatives today!! or download the list)

The vote on a bylaws change passed unanimously.  New language for Bylaws Article V. C. – New Members shall be entitled to vote on all Club matters sixty (60) days after payment of dues. Existing members, upon payment of membership renewal dues, shall be eligible immediately to vote on all Club matters.

Meeting of May 14, 2019 – All about our Air, Monitoring, and Pet Coke

All about Air Quality and Air Monitoring
May 14, Tues 7:00 pm, Benicia Library

Most of our program on May 14 was about air monitoring and air quality in Benicia.  Agenda.

Concerns and questions:

    • What air quality monitors do we have?
    • Where are they?
    • What’s in Benicia’s air? What information is being monitored and collected?
    • What else do we need?

Constance Beutel offered a highly informative powerpoint on air quality, air pollution and its health implications, air monitors and steps we can take in our own lives.

Pet Coke. CBE scientist Greg Karras led us in a discussion of pet coke, which is produced and used by Valero – what pet coke is and what are its uses, and how it affects our environmental health.

Kathy Kerridge shared about the rebirth of Benicia’s community air monitoring program, BCAMP, and Mayor Patterson updated us on efforts between the City of Benicia and Valero to create an MOU to follow-up on actions Valero agreed to after defeat of the proposed Industrial Safety Ordinance.

After the program, the members voted to endorse a candidate for California Democratic Party Chair.  Roger Straw presented the recommendation of the Progressive Democrats of Benicia Steering Committee to endorse Kimberly Ellis.  (Vote results to be posted later…)