League of Women Voters of Southwest Santa Clara Valley May, 2010 www.lwv-sw-santaclara-valley.org P.O. Box 2865, Saratoga, CA 95070-0865 (408) 867-VOTE (8683) Officers President, Ann Roberts First VP-Administration, Dale Hill Candidates Forums Program VP, Shirley Hill District Attorney & Sheriff Candidates’ Forum Membership VP, Jane Ellis Secretary, Joan Sarlo Treasurer, Marge Gorrell Directors May 12th, Wednesday, 7:00 – 9:00 PM Action, Michelle Shimada Cupertino Community Hall Bay Area Representative, Meg Giberson Education, Fred Armstrong 10350 Torre Ave. Observers, Patty Weber Natural Resources, Nancy Hobbs “Between the library and City Hall”, Cupertino 95014 Public Relations, Nora Mason All candidates for these closely watched offices are expected to Voter Editor, Cherri Nelson Voter Service Coordinator attend. Each will deliver introductory remarks and then respond to & Voter Registration, Josie Geisen questions from the public. Off-Board Clip ‘n Come, Margaret Rezowalli Communications, Jeanne Roths Cmmunications Assistant, Judges Candidates’ Forum Raquel Durand Finance Drive, Dick Kelkenberg May 15th, Saturday, 9:30 – 11:30 AM Fund Raising Co-Chair, Sharon Kelkenberg Campbell Community Center, Roosevelt Room Fund Raising Co-Chair, Zina Lou Dyer Great Decisions Co-Chair, Anne Stewart 1 W Campbell Avenue, Campbelll 95008 Great Decisions Co-Chair, Al Stewart Assistant, Sharon Kelkenberg Health Care, Barbara Lea There are three seats on the Superior Court and there are two Hospitality, Janis Maurry candidates for each seat. The terms are for six years. Assistant, Marge Lester Housing, Margaret Bard Pros and Cons, Five Ballot Measures Immigration, Patty Weber League Phone, Carol Petersen Membership Assistant, Rita Osman Database, Linda King Nominating Committee May 8, Saturday, 2:30 – 3:30 PM Chair, Marge Bunyard Willow Glen Library, 1157 Minnesota Ave. Member, Barbara Lea Member, Barclay Slade San Jose, 95125 Program Assistant, Hana Itani Publications, Sharon Snyder Telephone Tree, Shirley Hill May 12th, Wednesday, 7:00 PM Voter Service Assistants Candidate Forums, Terry Cabrinha Campbell Library, Pros & Cons, Doris Sanders Web Page Co-Chair, Barbara Lea (co-sponsored with AAUW) Web Page Co-Chair, Sharon Snyder May 13th, Thursday, 7:30 PM Saratoga Library, 13650 Saratoga Ave. Saratoga 95070 May, 2010 League of Women Voters of Southwest Santa Clara Valley President's Letter Board Bytes If you live in Los Gatos, Monte Sereno, Campbell Board Meeting of April 7, 2010 or Saratoga you have probably already seen your local paper with the great cover story on the League. • Voter Services – Voter registration is currently Originally, the Los Gatos paper ran a story about our taking place at various venues. Scheduled forums candidates’ forum for Santa Clara County District are noted in your Voter. One, which ran just before the forum. The paper • Instant Runoff Voting (IRV) – This issue is under then sent reporters and a photographer to the forum discussion at the League County Council. where they gathered information for the cover story. The reporter, Judy Peterson, interviewed Margaret • Proposition 15 – The League is working with Rezowalli, Cathy Johnson, Fred Armstrong and me. many other groups campaigning for the passage of We can thank Nora Mason for arranging all this. Proposition 15. This proposition creates a voluntary Bravo, Nora!! system for Secretary of State candidates to qualify for public campaign grants with strict enforcement You will find an article in this Voter about the League’s and accountability. stand on Propositions 15 and 16. The Voter Service chairs are preparing Pros and Cons sessions to inform • Water District Ground Water Issue – The water the electorate on the issues, but will not discuss the district is seeking support from the Leagues in League’s position because our Pros and Cons events our county on the issue of ground water taxation. are committed to presenting an unbiased view of the Even if you do not own a well, the ground water issues. That doesn’t mean that the League does not tax would be applied to the entire county. More take a position. Remember, the League only takes information will follow. positions on issues after careful study and it has Joan Sarlo, Secretary definite positions on both of these propositions. In fact, the League is a co-sponsor of Proposition 15. Read about this proposition and as an informed Letter (cont.) member of our organization, encourage your family and friends to look at the League position on these Sonali Batra, was in India. She decided to have the issues and then vote. fliers printed in India since it would be in color and would be cheaper having them printed there than Many members of the League were happy that the here. She would then bring them home on the plane. Health Care plan passed through the legislature We have heard about all the air travel problems and was signed into law. One member who was associated with the volcano in Iceland. Our fliers especially happy was Barbara Lea. She has been were still in India when this message was written. In Health Care chair for several years and has served the meantime, Cherri Nelson and Sharon Kelkenberg on the state Health Care Committee. Barbara has are deciding how to get a flier printed here in time kept us up to date on what was happening and we for the mailing of this Voter. It’s nice to have such appreciate her efforts. That’s not all Barbara does for resilient members. the League. She takes care of the League website, is on the nominating committee, helps edit the Voter, The fundraiser party should be fun. Invite your works on Voter Service and will, in general, help friends to come and enjoy wine, food and music out whenever needed. It’s great to have a member in a beautiful setting. One thing I enjoy about the who not only does their own job well, but also helps party is that people we don’t often see attend this out in other areas. Members like Barbara keep our function. It’s a good chance to see old friends and League strong. catch up on what’s happening in their lives. It’s also a good chance to meet new people. Plans for the League fundraiser at the Summer Winds Nursery are well under way. The committee has In addition, mark your calendar to save June 10 to been meeting and is quite enthusiastic about the hear a great speaker, Thad Kousser, on the California party. You will find a flier in this Voter. There is an constitution, the problems and how to solve them. interesting story behind this beautiful flier that the Thad is a visiting fellow at Stanford’s Bill Lane Center committee collaborated on and designed together. for the American West and the Hoover Institution. This was done by email because one of the members, Ann Roberts, President 2 League of Women Voters of Southwest Santa Clara Valley May, 2010 Come One, Come All to California Dreamin’ Green On Sunday, May 23 from 6:30 – 8:30 PM our League Programs which include candidates forums, Pros will hold a garden party at Summer Winds Nursery and Cons on ballot measures, and the Smart Voter to benefit the Education Fund. There will be door website. The nursery has a large variety of indoor prizes, raffles and a silent auction of art work and plants, garden plants, furniture and decorations as vacations. Live music by Las Muchachas, tasty hors well as bird feeders and seeds. Also, they will be d’oeuvres, desserts, wine and other beverages will happy to create custom arrangements and planters be part of the fun. (See flier insert for details.) for you. The nursery will provide a beautiful setting with To reserve a space for yourself, friends and/or demonstrations on the use of native and drought neighbors, please send a tax deductible check resistant plants, the control of pests with plants rather for $25. Make check payable to Voter Education than insecticides, and how to attract birds, bees and Fund of LWV SWSCV. Include Name(s) for name butterflies to your garden. Lois Munson, landscape tags and your phone number. Then mail to Voter designer will show how artifacts and hardscape as Education Fund, c/o of Dale Hill. Dale’s address is: well as plants can be used in yards and gardens. 150 Robin Way, Los Gatos, CA 95032 Bring your gardening questions and talk one on one For questions: Call Sharon Kelkenberg at 408 867 with nursery staff. 0588 or Zina Lou Dyer at 408 356 2445 Summer Winds will donate 20% of all purchases Sharon Kelkenberg, Fundraising Co-chair and orders made that day to our Voter Education Cupertino-Sunnyvale and SW League’s Candidate Forums The Southwest and Cupertino-Sunnyvale League of candidates for each seat. The candidates offer a range Women Voters are cooperating to sponsor Candidate of backgrounds—and perspectives—in criminal, Forums in our corner of the County. Please try to civil, and family law practice. Two years ago the support these events. ( See cover for details.) Saturday morning Judges’ Forum was well attended with lively exchanges between the candidates and District Attorney & Sheriff Candidates’ Forum the public. All candidates for these closely-watched races expect to attend. Each will deliver introductory remarks and Did you know? Superior Court Judges’ terms are for then respond to questions from the public. 6 years, with elections staggered every two years. They can be either appointed by the Governor or Judges Candidates’ Forum – May 15 elected. The contested seats in this race are open Candidates for three seats on the Superior Court will for election because the judges who hold them are state their qualifications and respond to questions retiring close to the end of their terms. from the public. In this forum there are two attorney Expectations for November Be a Smart Voter! “The Primary Election Has Occurred: What During an election year, what is the one web site that Can We Expect for November?” provides candidates with their own web pages, links Come hear Thad Kousser, visiting fellow at Standford’s to the candidates' official web sites, information on Bill Lane center for the American West, and the candidate forums and pro's & con's, links to articles Hoover Institution. on candidates and ballot measures by the media, as well as information on ballot measures? Why, Smart June 10th, 7:30 PM , Campbell Community Center, Voter of course! It is the League's online source of Roosevelt Room nonpartisan election information. You can also find polling locations, candidates and ballot measures on New Member your personal ballot. So, be an informed voter and The League Welcomes New Member be a Smart Voter! Remember, elections are coming up on May 4 and June 8! h Helen Athey g Michelle Shimada, Action Chair & Smart Voter Liason She is a national league member and we will get to meet her at our annual meeting May 1. 3 May, 2010 League of Women Voters of Southwest Santa Clara Valley Ten Things Every American Should Know About Health Care Reform from Representative Mike Honda’s Office 6. Seniors on Medicare will pay less for their prescrip- 1. Once reform is fully implemented, over 95% of tion drugs because the legislation closes the “donut Americans will have health insurance coverage, in- hole” gap in existing coverage. cluding 32 million who are currently uninsured. 7. By reducing health care costs for employers, reform 2. Health insurance companies will no longer be allowed will create or save more than 2.5 million jobs over to deny people coverage because of preexisting the next decade. conditions — or to drop coverage when people 8. Medicaid will be expanded to offer health insurance become sick. coverage to an additional 16 million low-income 3. Just like members of Congress, individuals and people. small businesses who can't afford to purchase 9. Instead of losing coverage after they leave home insurance on their own will be able to pool together or graduate from college, young adults will be and choose from a variety of competing plans with able to remain on their families' insurance plans lower premiums. until age 26. 4. Reform will cut the federal budget deficit by $138 10. Community health centers would receive an billion over the next ten years, and a whopping additional $11 billion, doubling the number of $1.2 trillion in the following ten years. patients who can be treated regardless of their 5. Health care will be more affordable for families insurance or ability to pay. and small businesses thanks to new tax credits, submitted by Barbara Lea subsidies, and other assistance — paid for largely References available upon request. by taxing insurance companies, drug companies, and the very wealthiest Americans. The League of Women Voters Recommends… This article is taken from the California League web site: Oppose Proposition 16 http://www.ca.lwv.org/action/prop1006/flyer.html This proposition imposes a new two-thirds voter Support Proposition 15: approval requirement for local public electricity California Fair Elections Act Providers. Proposition 16 would amend the state Huge amounts of money are raised in California Constitution to require a city or special district that politics, giving special interests unfair influence and provides electricity to obtain the approval of two-thirds access, shutting out the rest of us. Proposition 15 of the voters before expanding its service territory takes an important step toward getting politicians or providing new service to its customers if public out of the fundraising game. It is a pilot project funds are involved. Two-thirds approval by the voters to make voluntary public financing available to would also be required for a local government to buy Secretary of State candidates in 2014 and 2018. Only power at wholesale prices to sell to residents through candidates showing broad support and agreeing to a Community Choice Aggregation program. The strict reporting and spending limits would receive LWVC opposes this supermajority vote requirement funding. Violators would face fines, possible jail that would allow a minority to prevent decisions on time, and prohibitions from running for office in electric supply favored by a majority of the people the future. The pilot program would be funded to be served. PG&E, the largest for-profit utility in primarily by fees on lobbyists, lobbying firms and the state, is the sole sponsor of Prop 16 and would lobbyist employers, with no taxpayer dollars going to benefit from this measure’s stifling of competition. candidates. Proposition 15 will allow elected officials The impact would be fewer choices and thus higher to focus on the public’s interest, instead of returning rates for consumers, and fewer opportunities for local political favors to their campaign donors. agencies to offer renewable green power. 4 League of Women Voters of Southwest Santa Clara Valley May, 2010 Landmark Federal Case Upholds Ranked Choice Voting Election method also known as Instant Runoff Voting by Blair Bobier, Deputy Director of the Political Reform Reform Program. “The city has saved millions of Program at New America Foundation a nonprofit, dollars by eliminating the high-cost and low-turnout nonpartisan public policy institute that invests in new runoff elections which used to take place in December. thinkers and new ideas to address the next generation of Many more voters now have a say in who their challenges facing the United States. elected officials are.” In a landmark opinion issued late on Friday, Federal “This is a landmark decision,” said Gautam Dutta, District Court Judge Richard Seeborg upheld the Political Reform Program Deputy Director and author constitutionality of San Francisco's Ranked Choice of the Amicus Brief submitted by New America Voting method, the first time a federal court has for this lawsuit. “Although the Supreme Courts weighed in on the subject of Instant Runoff Voting of Minnesota and Massachusetts have upheld the (IRV). Judge Seeborg decisively rejected a legal constitutionality of Instant Runoff Voting, this is challenge which claimed the city's voting method the first time a federal court has directly addressed was defective because it limited voters to ranking the issue. The opinion is a ringing endorsement of three candidates in any one race. IRV,” said Dutta. “Judge Seeborg's opinion confirms what we have been Ranked Choice Voting has been used for San saying all along. IRV is clearly constitutional and also Francisco municipal elections since 2004. This year, the superior in many ways to plurality elections,” said Blair cities of Oakland, Berkeley and San Leandro will begin Bobier, a lawyer who is Deputy Director of the New using Ranked Choice Voting for their local elections. America Foundation's Political Reform Program. Two bills, SB 1346 and AB 2732, which would allow the Judge Seeborg's opinion quoted approvingly from a use of Ranked Choice Voting for special elections are Massachusetts Supreme Court decision which said currently pending in the California Legislature. that Ranked Choice Voting “seeks more accurately to reflect voter sentiment and to provide for the Further analysis of the court's decision can be found representation of minority groups....” on the Political Reform Blog. The entire decision can be found here. “San Francisco has been well-served by Ranked Choice Voting,” said Steven Hill, Director of the Political submitted by Karlina Ott Join the League of Women Voters Mail this coupon with your dues to: The League of Women Voters Name: ____________________________________________________ Southwest Santa Clara Valley Elected Official: c Appointed Official c PO Box 2865 Saratoga, CA 95070-0865 Address: __________________________________________________ Jul – Jun Jan – Jul City, State, Zip: _____________________________________________ 1 year 6 months __ Individual $70.00 $35.00 Telephone, Day: ____________________________________________ –– Household $105.00 $52.50 Telephone, Evening: ________________________________________ –– Student $30.00 $15.00 E-mail: ____________________________________________________ Membership year is from 7/1 – 6/30. Dues and contributions to the League are not tax deductible. Contributions to the Education Fund are deductible to the extent allowed by law. Joining at the local level makes you a member at all levels: County, Bay Area, State, and National. Please address questions regarding membership to Jane Ellis at firstname.lastname@example.org, 408 374-0741, or 408 867-VOTE (8683). 5 h Calendar g May 1 Saturday Annual Meeting, 9:30 – 2:00 PM, The Terraces 800 Blossom Hill, Los Gatos May 8 Saturday Pros & Cons, Five Ballot Measures May 12 Wednesday Pros & Cons, Five Ballot Measures May 12 Wednesday District Attorney & Sheriff Candidates Forum May 13 Thursday Pros & Cons, Five Ballot Measures See cover for details on events from May 8 –13 May 13 Thursday 12 Noon, Clip n Come, bring salad/food and clipping to share at Renate & Bill Lytle's home, 15860 Poppy Lane #8, Los Gatos, CA Please let hostess know if you will be coming. May 15 Saturday Judges Candidates' Forum See cover and page 3 for more information May 23 Sunday 6:30 – 8:30 PM, California Dreamin' Green fundraiser, Summer Winds Nursery 1491 S. DeAnza Blvd., Cupertino, CA See page 3 and flier insert for details. Mission Statement: The League of Women Voters, a non-partisan political organization, encourages the informed and active participation of citizens in government and influences public policy through education and advocacy. The League neither supports nor opposes political candidates and parties, but does take action on issues. League membership is open to all women and men who are U.S. Citizens and of voting age.
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