August 1, 2021
Weideman Group Weekly
Energy Emergency Proclamation
Governor Newsom issued an emergency proclamation this afternoon to allow energy projects to be expedited in order to relieve demand on the grid as extreme weather events continue to stress the state’s power supply. The proclamation suspends a number of regulatory requirements in an effort to bring more energy onto the grid in a short period of time. For example, the proclamation allows large energy consumers to relieve demand on the grid by moving to backup generation by suspending specific permitting requirements. The Governor simultaneously called on regulatory agencies to work to expedite California’s transition to renewable energy. Weideman Group will assist clients who have the ability to answer this call to action. The text of the Governor’s proclamation can be found here.
Vaccines & Test Mandates
Governor Newsom announced that all state employees, public and private health care workers, and individuals in high-risk congregate settings (e.g. prisons, shelters) will be required to show proof of vaccination or be tested for COVID-19 on a weekly basis. This move comes as COVID-19 cases have been on a steep rise statewide – California now has a 6.2% positivity rate and hospitalizations are on the rise again. The California State University system has also announced that they will require all students and staff on campuses to be vaccinated.
Infrastructure Deal Close
The federal bipartisan infrastructure framework (BIF) is closer to becoming reality. Final text of the bill is still pending, but we do know it will include $550 billion in new spending that will fund transportation, water, power and broadband infrastructure. However, the deal appears to cut funding for President Biden’s goal of 500,000 new EV charging stations in half. The Senate is aiming to make significant progress before their scheduled recess on August 9.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention and California’s Department of Public Health have updated their mask guidance in the wake of increased COVID-19 rates across the nation. Both recommend all persons, regardless of vaccination status, wear masks indoors. Several counties are either recommending or mandating that everyone wear masks indoors once again as well. Californians are being encouraged to check in with their local county public health office for the latest status.
Recall Polling Tightens
The Berkeley Institute of Government Studies released a recent recall election poll showing 47% of likely voters will support the recall and 50% of likely voters poised to vote against it. This near-even split among likely voters is reason to cause some concern for the Newsom campaign. The poll indicates that this narrowing is taking place as a result of an enthusiasm gap with Democratic voters who just assume Governor Newsom will win. The Governor will need to start unloading some of the money in his massive $40M warchest to convince people that the recall threat is real and that he remains the best person for the job. We expect to see messaging aimed at how bad the replacement candidates are and that stoke fear with the base about the damage a “power grab” will do to the state if it’s successful.