February 26, 2022
Weideman Group Weekly


Crisis in Ukraine

The Russian invasion of Ukraine is causing ripple effects across the globe. In addition to the humanitarian impact of the crisis, we have already seen this conflict create stock market volatility and experts are warning that supply chain issues will intensify and that we are likely to experience an increase in gas prices and grocery costs. In a recent address to the nation, President Biden stated he will order the release of oil from the nation’s strategic reserves as needed to head off spikes in gas prices. With the midterm elections coming up, all eyes will be on the President’s handling of the crisis – his performance is likely to play a key factor in determining whether Democrats can hold on to their slim majorities in Congress.

Lithium Valley

President Joe Biden joined Governor Gavin Newsom in recognizing California’s clean energy industry. During the virtual get together, they highlighted new investments and actions that will advance California’s commitment to clean and sustainable energy. A major component of the discussion was the development of lithium resources in the Imperial Valley, which is also being referred to as Lithium Valley. As California transitions to a cleaner economy, lithium is critical to battery technology for electric vehicles and other renewable technologies. The plan to develop the Lithium Valley includes extraction of the mineral, development of batteries, and recycling them when they move past their useful life cycle.

Budget Surplus

The Legislative Analyst’s Office latest budget outlook indicates that California may have a $23 billion budget surplus above the Governor’s January budget proposal. This is only a projection at this time. The state will have a better idea of what the surplus actually looks like after the tax filing deadline in April. Some lawmakers are saying the surplus is large enough to send every California resident a $1,100 stimulus check. While the state is not under a legal obligation to issue refunds at that level, the Gann limit does contain certain restrictions on the amount of tax revenue the state can spend year over year.

Welcoming Mike Fong

California’s newest Assembly Member was sworn in this week. Democrat Mike Fong is now officially representing the 49th district in the San Gabriel Valley replacing Ed Chau. Speaker Rendon has appointed Assembly Member Fong to serve as a member of the following committees: Appropriations, Banking and Finance, Privacy and Consumer Protections, and Rules.