Represent! | Politics, government and public life for Southern California

Maven's Morning Coffee: Mayor Garcetti's first year, a talk with Hilda Solis, thoughts on improving voter participation

Zocalo Public Square considers Mayor Eric Garcetti's performance in his first year in office.
Zocalo Public Square considers Mayor Eric Garcetti's performance in his first year in office.
Noel Vasquez/Getty Images

Good morning, readers. Welcome to the Maven's Morning Coffee -- a listing of the important headlines, news conferences, votes and announcements you need to know to fuel up and tackle your day.

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Today is Tuesday, June 24, and here is what's happening in Southern California politics:


Zocalo Public Square says the jury is still out on Mayor Eric Garcetti's first year in office. "Is Eric Garcetti a rock-star-in-waiting who has laid the groundwork to make major change in Los Angeles? Or is he a bureaucrat who lacks direction and big vision for the future of the city?" per the group's website, which recaps last night's discussion on the topic.

Which Way, LA? talks to Supervisor-elect Hilda Solis. The show describes her as "may be the most powerful figure in LA politics with a low profile."

Republican Pete Peterson, a candidate for secretary of state, penned a Daily News op-ed on California's low voter turnout. "Structural barriers to voting can be addressed by the government: providing early voting options and looking at ways to simplify registration. But 'attitudinal barriers' can only be met by institutions and leaders inside and outside of government: promoting civic engagement, expanding civics education, and being more creative with “get out the vote” campaigns," he writes.

The LAUSD Board of Education is expected to approve a $7.3 billion budget today, according to the Daily News.

Former state Sen. Gloria Romero wrote about a bill to expand teacher tenure in a column for the Orange County Register. "It was a disturbing public display of the disconnect between Sacramento politicians and the majority of Californians, who support reform of teacher employment and dismissal laws that have made it too easy to hire ineffective teachers and too hard to fire them – even when they have committed egregious acts of criminal misconduct against kids," she said.

The U.S. Forest Service says the 2013 Powerhouse Fire was caused by electrical lines, reports the Daily News. Officials did not say who owned those power lines but victims are already suing the Department of Water and Power. The fire burned 30,000 acres and destroyed 53 structures in the Angeles National Forest.

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