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April 2019
Andrew Thomas
Westwood Village Improvement Association

Steve Snider
Downtown Oakland and Lake Merritt-Uptown District Associations
Vice President
Liz Studebaker
City of San Diego
Downtown Association of Santa Cruz
Austin Metoyer
Downtown Long Beach Alliance
At-Large Directors
Emilie Cameron 
Downtown Sacramento Partnership

Karin Flood
Union Square Business Improvement District

Kathy Hemmenway
Walnut Creek Downtown

Suzanne Holley
Downtown Center Business Improvement District (LA)
Steve Mulheim
Old Pasadena Management District

Chloe Verrey
San Jose Downtown Association
Immediate Past President
Steven Welliver
Downtown Santa Monica, Inc.
Arlington Business Partnership
Bixby Knolls Business Improvement Association
BLVD Association
Carmichael Improvement District, Inc.
Central City Association
City of Los Angeles, Office of the City Clerk
City of Monterey Park
City of Ontario
City of San Diego - Economic Development Dept.
City of San Jose - Office of Econ Dev
County of Santa Cruz - Office of Economic Development
Dinuba Chamber of Commerce
Downtown Association of Santa Cruz
Downtown Berkeley Association
Downtown Long Beach Alliance
Downtown Modesto Partnership
Downtown Oakland Association/ Lake Merritt Uptown District Association
Downtown Pomona Owners Association
Downtown Roseville Partnership
Downtown Sacramento Partnership
Downtown San Diego Partnership
Downtown Santa Barbara, Inc.
Downtown Santa Monica, Inc.
Downtown SLO
Downtown Vacaville BID
Downtown Ventura Partners
Downtown Visalians, Inc.
Figueroa Corridor Partnership
Gateway to LA Airport Business District
Gilroy Economic Development
Greater Broadway District
Hollywood Property Owners Alliance
Ironsmith, Inc.
Kono CBD
LA Downtown Industrial District BID
LA Fashion District BID
MJM Management Group
North Park Main Street
North Tahoe Business Association
Old Pasadena Management District 
ParkSmart, Inc.
Paso Robles Main Street Association
Playhouse District Association
Progressive Urban Management Associates, Inc.
R Street Sacramento Partnership
Riverside Downtown Partnership
San Jose Downtown Association
South Park BID
Sunnyvale Downtown
Telegraph BID
Temescal Telegraph BID
The River District
Times Square Alliance
Tracy City Center Association
Tulare Downtown Association
Walnut Creek Downtown Business Association
Westwood Village Improvement Association 
Wilshire Center Business Improvement District

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Andrew Thomas VP
It is the mission of the California Downtown Association to take positions on legislation that impacts public space, housing, economic development, and the operations of business improvement districts. To date in 2019, CDA has taken positions on five bills: SB 23, SB 50, SB 516, SB 518, and AB 1184. A summary of our top priorities is listed below in the CDA Policy Corner section of this newsletter. I encourage you to read this excellent section provided to us by Jason Bryant of Bryant Government Affairs.

While we as individual downtown practitioners are focused on improving our unique urban districts, CDA is focused on these statewide issues that impact all of our BIDs. Know that the CDA Board of Directors puts a great deal of thought and research into our decisions to take positions on legislation. In fact, the majority of time spent at our regularly scheduled Board meetings and sub-Committee meetings is to discuss pending legislation that will impact all of our communities.

If you ever have questions regarding legislation in which CDA has taken a position, or if you have a question regarding pending legislation that CDA should review, please do not hesitate to contact me. I am happy to discuss these items with you.

Andrew Thomas, CDA President
Executive Director
Westwood Village Improvement Association
CDA Tackles Policy Priorities as the Legislature Kicks into High Gear   

With the California Downtown Association’s policy priorities coming into focus during last month’s Board meeting at the West Coast Urban District Forum in Los Angeles, the organization’s legislative priorities are now seeing major action in the Legislature. Ranging from the creation of new housing opportunities in job centers, to litigation reform, to changes to the California Public Records Act (CPRA), CDA’s advocacy efforts are focused on enhancing the vibrancy of our downtowns and protecting our members from unnecessary costs and litigation. 

This month is dominated by several important deadlines in the State Capitol. The first, April 26th is the last day for policy committees to hear bills that have a cost impact to the state. Looking ahead, May 17th is the final day for all bills with a price tag to be considered by the fiscal committees. May 31st marks the last day for all bills to be passed out of the house they were introduced in.  All bills have to clear these legislative hurdles in order for them to continue to move through the process.   

With legislative activity in full swing, our advocacy efforts are focused on three top priorities: 

SB 50 (Wiener, D-San Francisco) SUPPORT 
The bill will allow denser housing around public transit and job centers by prohibiting a local jurisdiction from restricting zoning to only single-family homes. SB 50 cleared a key policy committee on 4/24 after the author and the Chair of the Committee reached agreement to amend the bill to exempt cities of less than 600,000 residents as well providing protections for communities near the state’s coastline. It’s likely the amendments made to SB 50 will broaden the bill’s support in the Legislature as the bill strikes a balance between the concerns of small communities yet allows for higher density units to be built on lots that are zoned for single-family today.  The bill now heads to the Senate Appropriations Committee for consideration.  

AB 1184 (Gloria, D-San Diego) OPPOSED 
The legislation would place a new mandate on all public agencies, including BIDs, to require storage of every transmitted email for at least 2 years. As written, the bill creates no new disclosures or exemptions of any records, but still requires all emails to be saved, regardless if the email is a public record or not. CDA believes there is no value to saving inconsequential emails – particularly if they will never require to be released. CDA is helping to lead a coalition of public agencies including the California Special Districts Association and the League of California Cities who oppose the bill. As was expected, the bill was approved by the Assembly Judiciary Committee on 4/23, the bill now heads to the Appropriations Committee who will assess the costs the bill will impose on the state and local governments.  

SB 518 (Wieckowski, D-Fremont) OPPOSED 
Working with a broad coalition including the California Special Districts Association, the League of California Cities, the California State Association of Counties, and the Rural County Representatives of California, CDA is opposed to the bill because it removes an important tool that reduces excessive litigation, court costs and attorney’s fees in disputes involving the CPRA. Specifically, the bill eliminate the utility of the “Section 998 settlement” offer in lawsuits between parties where a public agency is involved. A “Section 998 settlement” allows a plaintiff or defense to make an offer to settle a dispute before proceeding to trial. If an offer is presented but not accepted, the litigating party is not entitled to post-offer costs and attorney’s fees should a litigant fail to receive a better result than the offer made. The “Section 998 settlement” encourages settlements of disputes and avoids unnecessary attorney’s fees and court costs. However, as we expected given the make-up of the committee, the bill was approved by the Judiciary Committee and the next stop will be the Appropriations committee.  

Jason Bryant 
Bryant Government Affairs
April 2019 Legislative Update 
The 2019 West Coast Urban District Forum was held last month in Los Angeles. Co-hosted by The LA Fashion District, California Downtown 
Association and IDA, WCUDF master talks and breakout sessions explored how downtowns serve as economic development resources beyond city boundaries, and how social equity plays an important role in the work that we do. Experts shared best practices on enhancing downtown quality of life and cultivating the next generation of leaders.

If you missed this year's forum or you'd like to revisit session presentations, visit  CaliforniaDowntown.com to view available presentations now.
Paying and Scraping in Pursuit of Zero Waste
Next City 
The promise of composting and pay-as-you-throw, in part two of Next City’s zero-waste feature.

SLO City Leaders Look to Improve Downtown
The city of San Luis Obispo is looking to boost the economy of downtown and make streets safer, cleaner and prettier.

Electric Scooters Now More Popular than Docked Bikes in Cities
Love them or hate them, electric scooters are everywhere — zipping along city streets and littered on sidewalks, to the...

Who’s Really Buying Property in San Francisco?
A lot of software developers, according to an unprecedented new analysis.

A Big Homeless Shelter Could Go in this Historic Downtown Sacramento Building
The Sacramento Bee 
Sacramento Councilman Steve Hansen is proposing the city open a homeless shelter in the Capitol Park Hotel...

CA DMV Releases Proposed Regulations for Testing Autonomous Trucks on Public Roads
Wait--the DMV is in charge of writing regulations for autonomous vehicles???

Warner Music Turns Former Ford Assembly Plant into Arts District Music Factory
Los Angeles Times
Employees of Warner Music Group Inc. for the last several weeks have been toiling in the same red brick building...

Think Pot Policy Is Settled? Think Again
The New York Times
While the high holiday may feel like a relic now that recreational marijuana is legal, California’s pot policies are far from settled.

Business Group Reconnecting SF Union Square Homeless With Long Lost Loved Ones
One of San Francisco’s biggest tourist destinations is tackling homelessness with a new approach, connecting with those...

State of California Prepares for Downtown Building Spree
Sacramento Business Journal 
If you’re a fan of construction cranes hovering over the Sacramento skyline, your best bet for more of them looks...

What the Rise in Renting Means for Cities
Like many cities, Allentown, Pa., has experienced a slow but seismic shift in its housing market in recent decades.
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Do you have your ear to the ground when it comes to the latest downtown news in your region? To submit news to be considered for inclusion in the newsletter, please contact Allison Shashok at allison@downtown.org .
CDA District Digest Copyright 2019
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