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

El Monte Measure H soda tax proposal draws $1.3 million response from beverage industry

The American Beverage Association has put $1.3 million into the campaign to oppose Measure H, a proposed penny-per-ounce tax on sweetened drinks sold in the city of El Monte. This image is from a campaign video, depicting the charge that would be imposed on a gallon jug of sweetened juice drink.
No on Measure H website

The modest campaign for El Monte's Measure H, a proposal to add a penny-per-ounce tax to soda sales, is drowning in a deluge of ads paid for by the soft drink industry.

The American Beverage Association, which represents the soft drink industry, has spent some $1.3 million to oppose the tax issue the El Monte City Council placed on the Nov. 6 ballot in hopes of balancing the city budget and fund anti-crime and wellness program.

Mayor Andre Quintero said he expects more to be spent in the week remaining before the Nov. 6 election.

"They're spending it on everything," he said. "Every single imaginable tool you can imagine in a campaign arsenal, they have. They have paid walkers, paid callers, they've got a campaign manager, they've got billboards, signs, literature in the mail, polls, tracking polls."


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Hurricane delays hearing on $11 million Arizona donation to California campaign

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Hurricane Sandy is even affecting the fight over California's Proposition 30.

A court hearing had been scheduled for Tuesday regarding the source of an $11 million dollar donation from an Arizona-based organization that is working to defeat Governor Jerry Brown's proposed tax hike.

California’s elections watchdog, the Fair Political Practices Commission, wants the donors’ names to be revealed. But Virginia-based attorneys for Americans for Responsible Leadership — the Arizona non-profit behind the donation — said they couldn’t reach Sacramento in time for the hearing because of travel delays caused by the hurricane. The judge overseeing the case gave them an extra 28 hours.

The Arizona group made the donation to a California campaign seeking to defeat Prop 30 and pass Prop 32 — a ban on payroll deductions for political contributions.


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Prop 30 supporters expected to unleash media blitz in final stretch

California Gov. Jerry Brown is stepping up his appeals on behalf of Proposition 30.
Sharon McNary/KPCC

Proposition 30 has a narrow lead in the polls, though support has been dipping, with less than 50 percent of likely voters in favor. The campaign to raise taxes for public education is in the homestretch. 

Expect to see a lot of the Governor in the coming days—in a lot of different places. Over the weekend he stumped at Downtown L.A.’s Grand Central Market, and Wednesday he’s scheduled to make his case at a Los Angeles Town Hall gathering.

The Governor’s full court press generates a lot of free media attention. But expect to see the campaign for Prop 30 boost its spending on paid advertising. Expenditure reports filed with the Secretary of State show the campaign has spent $21 million so far — mostly on media. That leaves Brown and his supporters with $40 million to burn before election day.


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Maven's Morning Coffee: Opposition to Expo Line, Election Night in Grand Park, registering jailhouse inmates

The Los Angeles Times looks at neighborhoods' opposition to building out the Metro Expo Line.
Ashley Myers-Turner/KPCC

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

The Maven's Morning Coffee is also available as a daily email. Click here to subscribe.

Today is Monday, Oct. 29, and here is what's happening in Los Angeles:


Los Angeles Times writer Jim Newton looks at neighborhood opposition to the Expo Line. "The line is crucial to completing a desperately needed rail network, one undeniably integral to the future of L.A., and the route was sensibly chosen along an existing right of way," he writes.

In Rick Orlov's Tipoff column, Grand Park plans an Election Day party and the Civic Alliance opposes former Mayor Richard Riordan's pension plan.


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'Get out the vote' efforts go behind bars into LA's jails

The iconic Twin Towers Correctional Facility stands just northeast of L.A.'s skyline.
Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images
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In the last few weeks before the Presidential election, "get out the vote" drives are in full gear nationwide. In L.A. County, there's even an effort to go behind bars to register jail inmates to vote.

On a recent Wednesday, Lt. Edward Ramirez joined a group of volunteers and L.A. County Sheriff's deputies heading into Twin Towers Correctional Facility in downtown Los Angeles to register inmates in a pod on the second floor of the eastern tower. 

Twin Towers is across the street from another famous L.A. lockup: the Men's Central Jail. The skyscrapers sit just northeast of LA’s classic skyline and have the look of a late century office complex. But their thin slats of window distinguish the buildings as what they are— home to L.A.’s maximum security inmates and those inmates needing psychiatric care.


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