Welcome to Monitor Notes, a weekly roundup of news items, event announcements, and updates on past Bay Area Monitor articles.
Wait for It…
As expected, the final push of the 2020 election involves correctly counting the crush of mail-in ballots due to COVID-19. There’s no winner yet in the presidential race, so we sit tight, which isn’t entirely easy. But 2020 is different and that’s okay, said Virginia Kase, CEO of the League of Women Voters (pictured here from Bay Area League Day 2019), in a blog entry reminding us “Our Democracy Is Worth Waiting For.”
The wait isn’t as long for some races in the Bay Area, however, as local election results pour in. As a brief snapshot, Measure RR — implementing a sales tax to shore up beleaguered Caltrain — appeared to be on a victorious path Wednesday morning. State proposition vote tallies also are coming in, with voters approving closely watched Proposition 22 that allows app-based drivers to stay independent contractors for tech companies.
Even with some uncertainty, there are lots of League activities to ride out the election’s wake. That starts with the next installment of Notes on November 11. Monitor reporter Aleta George will recap her experience as a poll worker at Suisun City Hall in Solano County.
LWV Cupertino-Sunnyvale has something restorative in mind. It’s laying out “Scenario Planning in a Post-Election World” as part of a November 14 webinar at 2 p.m. Topics on the table include result distrust and voter healing when some people are pleased with results and others feel the opposite.
Groups also are getting back into local policy issues. LWV Berkeley-Albany-Emeryville welcomes Mike Lynes, policy director for Audubon California, on November 9 at 7:30 p.m. to hear about an initiative to protect land and coastal waters.
Later, LWV Bay Area is hosting a November 21 educational forum called “A Community Dialogue on Regional Decisions” covering housing, transportation, and other policy planning needs like sustainability. From 10 a.m. to noon, the forum will delve into broad initiatives like Plan Bay Area 2050 and the Regional Housing Needs Allocation.
Putting Fares on the Map
Nonprofit Seamless Bay Area has reimagined Bay Area transit without the tangle of disparate fare structures that has long frustrated riders. Check out its “integrated transit fare vision map” to see how a unified fare system — with one fare and free transfers — could operate. The group will talk in more detail about the map’s development and how to advance fare reforms during a November 10 webinar at 1 p.m. Better fare coordination is something groups like Seamless Bay Area have been encouraging for a while but would require steps to address transit governance in the region. The Metropolitan Transportation Commission earlier this year kicked off a study to identify regional fare coordination and integration strategies for the Bay Area’s more than two dozen transit agencies.
Rise to the Occasion
The San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission is hosting a public workshop on November 18 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. to talk about a joint platform for collaborating on sea-level rise planning and preparation. The platform, discussed in a recent Monitor article on the ways shoreline flooding could affect commuters, is a shared set of actions to address regional sea-level rise adaptation. Register to attend.
Notes routinely points you toward webinars about air quality policy. If you’re interested in having a say about specific topics, now’s your chance. Nonprofit group Coalition for Clean Air is looking for feedback about air quality and climate topics to cover in webinars it’s planning. Answer a few questions in this survey to help the group filter its programming. Gather ideas about current policy topics like diesel reduction, ventilation, and air pollution after reading recent articles by the Monitor’s Leslie Stewart.
Rapt-or in Thought
Shake off this week’s election events and fall prey to a raptor webinar this Friday, November 6 at noon with the Peninsula Open Space Trust. Naturalist Jeff Caplan, director of Common Language Nature, will speak about the integral role raptors play in the health of our ecosystems. He’ll also share how to identify migratory and resident raptors when out on the coast or hiking in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Register here.
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