Category Archives: Meeting reflections

Meeting Notes – April 9, 2024

APRIL 9, 2024


Our April general membership meeting was held on Tuesday, April 9, 2024, at 7pm, via Zoom.


Our panel included BAAQMD‘s Executive Officer/Air Pollution Control Officer, Dr. Philip Fine, formerly a presidential appointment to the EPA and the South Coast Air Management Quality District; BAAQMD Board of Directors member and Benicia Mayor Steve Young; and BAAQMD’s Community Advisory Council Co-Chair Ken Szutu, who also founded the  Citizen Air Monitoring Network in Vallejo before serving as its director.  Other staff members of the Air District joined us as well.

Mayor and Board Member Steve Young described the role of the  BAAQMD Board and its membership; he also gave examples of some of the broader policy issues the Board is involved with.

Executive Director Dr. Fine described his role as director and explained what the Air District does and how it is structured.

Ken Szuto described the role and activities of the Community Advisory Council.

All panel members answered questions from the Steering Committee and from the audience.

Meeting Recording Link

Here is a link to the video recording of the panel discussion from this important meeting.


Meeting Notes – February 13, 2024

FEBRUARY 13, 2024


Our January general membership meeting was held on Tuesday, February 13, 2024, at 7pm, via Zoom.


  • Call to Order
  • Quorum
  • Treasurer’s Report
  • Acknowledgements/Announcements
  • Program
    • Measure C – Sheri Zada and Damon Wright
    • Update – Christopher Cabaldon campaign
    • Fiesta La Primavera – Sheri Leigh
    • Solano County Board of Supervisors District 1 Candidates Forum
      • Cassandra James
      • Michael Wilson
  • Wrap Up – Next Meeting March 12, 2024


  • Feb. 24 – Cooking with Alice – NSDC fundraiser with Congressman Mike Thompson
  • Feb. 24 – Passion for Performance, Fundraiser
  • Feb. 29 – Making the Democratic Process Work for You – Kathy Kerridge & Mary Ruth Gross, 350 Bay Area – Better World Event on Zoom
  • March 5 – Vote for SCDCC Representatives
  • May 18 – PDB Fundraiser – Champagne Brunch – SAVE THE DATE and join the planning committee to help with the event!


Measure C on the March 5th ballot will fund critical facilities improvements for our schools

  • Building repairs and improvements
  • Classroom renovation and upgrades
  • HVAC system
  • Science and technology lab construction
  • Student access to computer technology
  • Improves health, safety, student achievement and security

We heard from School Board President Sheri Zada and Superintendent Dr. Damon Wright in support of this important measure. Dr. Wright fielded questions.

Endorsed Candidate Update

Christopher Cabaldon updated us on his campaign.

Fiesta La Primavera

Sheri Leigh updated us on her advocacy to dismantle Benicia’s La Migra’ games, and announced an alternative Spring Break celebration event in collaboration with the Solano AIDS Coalition: Fiesta Primavera,   taking place on March 23 at Gazebo Park in Benicia.

Solano County Board of Supervisors District 1 Candidates Forum

We heard from the two candidates who are running for County Supervisor for District 1, and both candidates fielded questions.   The candidates (in alphabetical order) are Cassandra James, incumbent, and Michael Wilson. Both candidates fielded questions from members.

Membership Poll

We have offered members an opportunity to vote on which candidate to endorse via the PDB website.  The bylaws state “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 Link

Here is a link to the video recording of this important meeting! If asked, enter the passcode: skMZ^h59

Next Meeting: Tuesday March 12, 7:00 pm on Zoom

Don’t miss this important meeting!


Meeting Reflections – January 10, 2023, Birdseye, Scott, and ADEM election

JANUARY 10, 2023
New Councilmembers Birdseye and Scott and all about the ADEM election

Our first meeting of the year was held on Tuesday, January 10 via zoom.


We started the New Year by hearing from our newly elected city council representatives, Kari Birdseye and Terry Scott. Both gave an ambitious and detailed account of their goals for the City of Benicia in coming years. Members also took the opportunity to ask questions.

PDB member Susannah Delano gave a clear explanation of the California ADEM elections and helped members understand the importance of this election of our party delegates for our Assembly District 11. Mail-in ballots have been sent, and in-person voting will happen on Sunday, January 22.

  • Bonnie Hamilton on a Sustainability Challenge for Benicia, in-person at the Benicia Library Jan 26, 7pm, with the book All We Can Save, available at Bookstore Benicia. See also
  • Alan Zada on the District 5 Benicia School Board special election on April 11 at a cost of $60K to $80K. Only District 5 residents can vote. District 5 is purple on this map.
  • Terry Mollica on the Housing and Safety Element, which will The Housing Element will come before the Planning Commission on Thursday January 12th and the City Council on January 24th. More information on the City of Benicia website.
  • Mayor Young talked about the Brown Act and why we can’t have all 3 PDB members who are on the City Council present at our meetings at the same time. Complicated – here’s a link to the Brown Act as it appears on the City of Benicia website. Mayor Young also talked about the upcoming Council meeting, mentioning that downtown parking will be discussed.
Message from PDB Chair  – Your Membership in PDB

Thanks to dues and donations from our amazing membership, PDB supported our endorsed candidates in 2022 both financially and by creating a community bulwark to stand against wealthy, out-of-town business interests—and we saw this fight all the way through to victory! We also use these funds to compensate speakers, pay for utilities like Zoom, and keep the wheels of progress turning in Benicia as we work together for environmental, racial, and social justice.  Sooooo……..

For only $20, you can reactivate your membership by clicking this link to pay your annual dues. While you’re there, please consider making an additional donation to help fund PDB’s future activities. Not only will your generosity help us keep our forward momentum, it will also give you a voice in the club, allowing you to vote on important matters and help us execute essential club business.

Yes – Renew my Membership!

ANOTHER IMPORTANT way for you to help in 2023 –

As PDB continues to grow and create change, we are increasingly in need of active, committed volunteers who can help us in 2023 so our progressive momentum extends to the 2024 election. While Kari Birdseye is a very welcome presence on Benicia City Council, her absence from our Steering Committee will be deeply felt. Note also that Steering Committee Member Terry Mollica is taking a sabbatical.

With two members now gone from our Steering Committee, we really need you to step up and help out by joining our Steering Committee. Responsibilities are minimal, you don’t have to be any sort of political expert to pitch in, and we’re very friendly and supportive. If you’re interested, please reach out to us and we can go over exactly what’s involved and how you can fit in!

See you on January 10!