Assembly, Senate Budget Falls Short on Key Environmental Justice Priorities

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE June “Placeholder Budget” Requires Deeper Investments in Low-Income, Communities of Color Sacramento, CA — On June 14th, the California State Legislature narrowly passed a placeholder budget before the June 15 budget deadline with substantially different allocations than those proposed in Governor Newsom’s May Revision. Negotiations on the June budget are anticipated to continue into July. This week, the California Environmental Justice Alliance (CEJA) continues to urge lawmakers to pass an equitable 2021–2022 Budget through a letter to the Governor and Senate and Assembly Leadership. In the letter, CEJA requested that State leaders incorporate key environmental justice priorities into the final budget. In response to the passing of a June placeholder budget, CEJA Policy Manager Raquel Mason issued the following statement: As California residents brace for yet another year of severe drought and record-setting wildfires, CEJA calls upon Governor Newsom and the Legislature to eliminate funding for costly and dangerous false solutions that derail our state’s efforts for a just recovery; and, instead, invest deeply in programs that strengthen community well-being and address environmental and climate-related crises. With a record budget surplus, now is the time to prioritize life-sustaining programs and infrastructure such as community resilience centers, and make

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Historic Surplus Should Invest in Low Income Environmental Justice Communities

Read and download CEJA’s budget priorities here. Last month, the Governor announced a historic budget surplus along with a proposal for the 2021 state budget. The Governor’s budget included some good starting points:  $2 billion for energy and water utility debt  $5.2 billion for housing debt relief $420 million for the Transformative Climate Communities Program (TCC) But as drought conditions worsen, fires start to burn through Southern California and state regulators resolve to keep polluting gas power plants online, we know our communities will face blackouts and continued heatwaves this summer. Meanwhile, the oil and gas industry has spent $4.3 million in Sacramento to oppose life-saving bills – and it’s only June.   That’s why we’re fighting to add these environmental justice priorities to the budget: We urge the Governor and legislature to support community resilience and community-led solutions to the climate crisis as we continue to fight for utility debt relief for the most vulnerable communities and necessary investments in critical environmental justice programs.  Now is the time to invest in disaster preparedness and plan to create historic high roads climate job training and continue to strengthen existing programs for emissions reductions, including AB 617.  Here are three actions you can

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CA Environmental Justice Alliance Action Announces 2021 Legislative Agenda

Oil and gas safety buffer zones and community resilience investments lead the 2021 EJ agenda  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Contact: Isa Flores-Jones | isa@caleja.org Sacramento, California  | April 20, 2021 – On Tuesday, the California Environmental Justice Alliance (CEJA) Action announced its priority bills for the 2021 Legislative session. As the state enters the second year of the COVID-19 pandemic, CEJA Action is prioritizing a health and safety buffer zone between homes and to neighborhood oil drilling in California with SB 467 (Wiener and Limon), and critical investments in clean energy infrastructure with AB 1087 (Chiu).  CEJA Action is adopting supporting positions on SB 222 and 223 (Dodd),to ensure access to clean and affordable drinking water to low-income Californians; SB 342 (González), to add two environmental justice board members to the South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD); and AB 339 (Lee), to ensure that all local agency meetings are accessible to frontline residents. Read more about our priority bills here at ceja-action.org.  “California cannot claim to be a climate leader while it continues the dangerous practice of oil drilling next to where people live, work, learn, and play,” said Martha Dina Arguello, Executive Director with Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles

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Coalition Supporting SB 467 Vows to Continue Fight for Setbacks

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEKobi Naseck, VISION, kobi@vision-ca.org, (214) 609-2439Riddhi Patel, CRPE, rpatel@crpe-ej.org, (661) 865-4881Catie Stewart, Senator Wiener’s Office, catie.stewart@sen.ca.gov, (610) 675-6342 Coalition Supporting SB 467 Vows to Continue Fight for SetbacksOpposition from 3 Democratic Senators kept the bill from moving forward Sacramento, CA (April 13, 2021) – Yesterday, Senate Bill 467 (Wiener, Limon) – the bill tocreate health and safety buffer zones; phase out the most dangerous fracking methods inCalifornia; and provide steps to protect workers from volatile oil markets – was blocked in aninitial vote by members of the Senate Committee on Natural Resources and the Environment. One Democrat, Senator Eggman (D-5) joined Republicans to oppose the broadly popularfracking and setbacks bill, while two Democrats, Senators Hueso (D-40) and Senator Hertzberg(D-18) abstained from casting their votes. Following their no vote on Assembly Bill 345 last year,this is the second time these moderate Democrats, Sen. Hueso and Sen. Hertzberg haverefused to support a major oil and gas regulation bill that would protect frontline communities.The bill will be reconsidered in two weeks time before the Sen Natural Resources Committee. At the April 12th hearing, residents and advocates called on Senators to consider the healthimpacts of oil and gas drilling, including, “birth defects,

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California’s Leading Environmental and Environmental Justice Groups Reject Recall

March 29, 2021 For Immediate Release Contact: Kathryn Phillips, Director, Sierra Club California (mobile: 916-893-8494) Denis Dison, Communications Director, NRDC Action Fund (mobile: 202-280-0018) Mabel Tsang, Civic Engagement Manager, California Environmental Justice Alliance Action (mobile: 650-387-8638) Stefanie Lao, Press Associate, California League of Conservation Voters (mobile: 424-282-0922) Sacramento– Today three major statewide environmental groups and an environmental justice alliance representing more than 10 local and regional organizations, announced their opposition to the gubernatorial recall measure expected to be on a fall ballot. The groups are Sierra Club California, NRDC Action Fund, California Environmental Justice Alliance Action, and California League of Conservation Voters. The ballot measure is the sixth effort to recall Governor Gavin Newsom since he took office in 2019. Through a decision by a Sacramento Superior Court judge, the latest petition was given an additional 120 days to circulate due to COVID restrictions on gatherings. As spelled out in the petition circulated for signatures, the proponents are trying to recall Newsom because they disagree with common-sense policies that most Californians embrace. These include policies as varied as those that protect Californians who are immigrants from harassment, eliminate the use of the death penalty, and require water conservation. California is

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Millions of ballots. Decades of organizing.

Millions of voters delivered a decisive democratic future this November. As CEJA Action reflects on the victories and losses of this year’s elections, we turn to the words of Guinean freedom fighter and anti-colonial leader Amilcar Cabral. Cabral reminds us that we are fighting for survival and liberation: “to win material benefits, to live better and in peace, to see [our] lives go forward, to guarantee the future of [our] children.” No matter what politicians tell us, it’s clear that Black, indigenous, Latinx, AAPI, and working class frontline leaders delivered the final blow to the Trump administration this year. Grassroots organizing by BIPOC leaders led to key victories in Maricopa County, Detroit, Philadelphia, and Atlanta. In California, our beloved allies at the Million Voters Project led a vibrant, people-centered movement to take on Republicans, white supremacists, and corporations at the ballot box. CEJA members made thousands of calls and texts to ensure that our families, neighbors, and community members understood the key decisions to make on this year’s ballot and had a clear and easy pathway to vote in an increasingly challenging year. Thanks to decades of work by frontline and migrant organizers, and tribal nations, working class, young folks, and

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Environmental justice alliance seeks to grow progressive legislative force in California with slate of 2020 endorsements

Environmental justice alliance seeks to grow progressive legislative force in California with slate of 2020 endorsements

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE  September 8, 2020 CONTACT Mabel Tsang | mabel@caleja.org Environmental justice alliance seeks to grow progressive legislative force in California with slate of 2020 endorsements  As Californians hurt from multiple crises, EJ alliance endorses 14 candidates to lead on climate and racial justice  Los Angeles, CA—Today, the California Environmental Justice Alliance Action (CEJA Action) announced the endorsement of 14 candidates for critical seats in California’s Assembly and Senate, and U.S. Congress. Communities throughout the state are suffering from wildfires, while fossil fuel and other polluting industries are seizing the opportunity to weaken health regulations. While Californians are seeking representatives who will advocate to protect their health and wellbeing, CEJA Action has endorsed proven environmental and social justice champions who will lead alongside the communities most impacted by disasters.  The November endorsements include returning elected leaders Monique Limon (SD-19), Abigail Medina (SD-23), Eloise Gomez Reyes (AD-47), Shirley Weber (AD-79), Lorena Gonzalez (AD-80), and Georgette Gomez (CD-53), among a slate of powerful and committed candidates including Jackie Fielder (SD-17), Fatima Iqbal-Zubair (AD-64), Susan Eggman (SD-5), John Laird (SD-17), and Dawn Addis (AD-35).  CEJA Action presented this bracket of powerful and committed candidates along with a recommended YES vote on Propositions

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2020 Voter Guide Endorses Bold Environmental Justice Leadership in California Primary

2020 Voter Guide Endorses Bold Environmental Justice Leadership in California Primary

Sacramento, CA | January 15, 2020 – Today, the California Environmental Justice Alliance Action released their 2020 Primary Election Environmental Justice Voter Guide. The guide recommends eight women of color – all environmental justice champions – for seats in the Assembly, state Senate and US House. More information on the candidates, as well as the recommended YES vote on Proposition 13, is available at www.ceja-action.org/voterguide..

Katie Valenzuela, CEJA’s Political and Policy Director, stated: “This is a pivotal moment for environmental justice communities. This voter guide builds on the strong foundation of our statewide advocacy by enumerating environmental justice principles – in order to set clear expectations for elected officials in California. We can pass strong policy only when we have strong allies in elected office. We hope to see the field of EJ Champions grow.”

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Celebrating Local and Statewide Victories in the 2018 Election

Celebrating Local and Statewide Victories in the 2018 Election

This election undeniably showed that every vote matters and that California’s election has national consequences.

13 of 16 candidates CEJA Action endorsed were elected!  These candidates are proven leaders and people of color who won through a vibrant ground campaign. We congratulate all the elected representatives on their successful campaigns!

We’re proud of CEJA Action members’ work and the results we helped achieve this election. Together, we knocked on over 11,000 doors, made over 8,000 phone calls, equipped over 8,000 voters with English, Spanish, Vietnamese and Lao voter guides, and sent over 13,000 text messages to get voters to complete their ballots and get to the polls. Alliance members displayed courageous leadership to help make local and statewide victories possible in Alameda County, Contra Costa County, San Francisco, Kern County, Ventura County, Riverside, San Bernardino, Los Angeles and San Diego.

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