Monday, April 28, 2014

GNP: Gatto's social media bill headed to a vote

By Arin Mikailian, - April 26, 2014 | 2:05 p.m.

A state bill that sets social media-monitoring standards for schools is now heading to the full State Assembly for a vote.

Introduced by Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Silver Lake), AB 1442 passed with a 7-0 vote by the Assembly Education Committee. It would require educators monitoring bullying online to inform parents when their child’s Facebook, Instagram or Twitter account is being viewed.The proposed legislation would also require schools to delete any collected photos or other posts to be deleted within a year of a student turning 18.

“Imagine the harm that could be caused if a hacker, mean-spirited employee or even a careless IT worker were to expose a database of all the things a person said or did as a teenager,” Gatto said in a statement.

Follow Arin Mikailian on Twitter: @ArinMikailian.

You can read this article and more at the Glendale News Press by clicking HERE

Cal. Newswire: Mike Gatto’s AJR 1 Historic Constitutional Resolution Passes California State Assembly

Campaign finance reform is so important. This weekend, I participated in a panel at UCLA School of Law sponsored by Common Cause (See photo above), on this topic and my AJR 1, which is discussed in the California Newswire article below:

by  on Thu, 30 Jan 2014

SACRAMENTO, Calif. /California Newswire/ — This week, California Assemblyman Mike Gatto’s (D-Los Angeles) AJR 1, a measure to begin the process to amend the United States Constitution to address the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, took a major step forward, passing the California State Assembly by a vote of 51-20. In Citizens United, a deeply divided Supreme Court held that corporations are due the same free-speech rights enjoyed by natural persons.

The decision spawned “Super PACs,” which have flooded unlimited and largely anonymous corporate money into federal elections. According to the Federal Election Commission, Super PAC spending in 2012 federal elections totaled more than $567 million.
“Most Americans are fed up with the notion that money is speech and that moneyed interests can therefore drown out the speech of average citizens,” said Gatto.
Historically, all amendments to the U.S. Constitution have started in Congress, and been ratified later by 3/4 of the states. AJR 1 takes advantage of the rarely-used Article V process for amending the federal Constitution, which allows states to demand that Congress act. If 2/3 of the states make such a demand, Congress must call a constitutional convention on the topic. Several states and municipalities have already passed informal resolutions condemning the Citizens United decision, but Gatto’s AJR 1 is the first to utilize the Article V process which could compel Congress to act.
The state-initiated process in Article V has been tried several times, with limited success. Although the process has never resulted in a constitutional convention, it has spurred Congress to take action several times. According to a 2007 article in the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, at least four different amendments to the U.S. Constitution have been proposed by Congress in part because of Article V actions. For example, the amendments that repealed prohibition and allowed for the direct election of Senators were first demanded by state legislatures under Article V.
AJR 1 calls for a convention that would be expressly limited to campaign-finance and corporate-personhood issues. Now that it has passed the State Assembly, the resolution will next go to the California State Senate, after which other states could similarly act, triggering the convention. Its passage is further significant because it is the first time in recent memory that a Democratic-controlled legislature has passed an Article V demand. Several Republican-controlled statehouses have recently passed Article V resolutions for the Balanced Budget Amendment or simply to establish rules for a future Article V convention. Today’s passage of AJR 1 signifies broad, nationwide, bipartisan action, by the legislators closest to the people, to demand action on Congress on big issues.
“I doubt our Founding Fathers had the free-speech rights of multi-national and foreign corporations in mind when they drafted the First Amendment,” said Gatto. “But the Founding Fathers did anticipate that every once in a while, the states would need to prod Congress to act to amend the Constitution. That’s what we are doing.”
Mike Gatto is the Chairman of the Appropriations Committee in the California State Assembly. He represents Burbank, Glendale, La Cañada Flintridge, La Crescenta, Montrose, and the Los Angeles neighborhoods of Atwater Village, East Hollywood, Franklin Hills, Hollywood Hills, Los Feliz, and Silver Lake.

WATCH IT HERE: KNBC on Safeguarding Students' Social Media and AB 1442

Watch the NBC-Los Angeles story on my AB 1442, which provides safeguards for when governments use tax dollars to store students' social media.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Glendale News-Press: Gatto: New legislation would protect victims of on-campus rapes, other crimes

Mark Kellam- Glendale News-Press
January 6, 2014

If legislation introduced Monday by Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Silver Lake) becomes law, college officials across the state would be required to report certain crimes occurring on or near campuses to law enforcement to investigate, if the victim does not request anonymity.

AB 1433 comes after several California colleges have been accused of covering-up on-campus sexual assaults because of concerns that higher crime statistics would lead prospective students to choose elsewhere, Gatto said.

The unwillingness of campus officials to involve proper non-campus law-enforcement professionals greatly diminishes the chance that a perpetrator is arrested and convicted, he added.

“Victims of crime should not see their chances of justice hurt, nor should perpetrators be allowed to victimize others, because a school values its public image more than victims' rights,” Gatto said in a statement. “Colleges should focus on teaching, and leave the investigation of crimes to the professionals -- local police and sheriffs.”

Two southern California colleges are currently the subject of a federal investigation for their handling of on-campus sexual assaults and other violent crimes, Gatto said.

 “Crimes that occur on campus should not be treated any differently than those that occur elsewhere in our community,” Gatto said. "California law needs to make sure that college administrators involve law enforcement when appropriate."
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This article originally appeared in the GLENDALE NEWS-PRESS. You can read this article and more by visiting the GLENDALE NEWS-PRESS HERE.
Mike Gatto is the Chairman of the Appropriations Committee in the California State Assembly.  He represents Burbank, Glendale, La Cañada Flintridge, La Crescenta, Montrose, and the Los Angeles neighborhoods of Atwater Village, East Hollywood, Franklin Hills, Hollywood Hills, Los Feliz, and Silver Lake.

California Newswire: Calif. 2014 Water Conservation Bill Clears First Committee as Drought Looms

LA Times: California film tax credit bill OKd by Assembly panel

The proposal, which aims to stem so-called runaway film and TV production, would renew and boost a state tax credit to better compete with subsidies and studios elsewhere.

Proposed legislation would extend the California film tax credit program… (Michael Robinson Chavez)
Marc Fisher - LA Times
March 25, 2014

SACRAMENTO — Proposed legislation aimed at providing more tax credits to attract so-called runaway movie and television productions back to the industry's birthplace in California won initial approval from a legislative committee Tuesday. The proposal would renew and increase a state tax credit — amounting to as much as $400 million a year — to better compete with generous tax subsidies available in more than 40 states, including New York, Louisiana, New York and Michigan, as well as studios in Canada and Britain.
The tax credit would allow most film and TV production companies to reduce their tax liability by 20% of the cost of many production expenditures.

The movie industry, supporters said, is too important to California's economy, history and image to be allowed to slip away. "This is our industry to keep or lose," said Assemblyman Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica). "We need to send a message to New York, England and other states competing for our jobs and say, 'It stops here.'"

The bill, AB 1839 by Assemblymen Mike Gatto (D-Los Angeles) and Raul Bocanegra (D-Pacoima), passed Tuesday on a 7-0 bipartisan vote by the Assembly Arts, Entertainment, Sports, Tourism and Internet Media Committee. Gatto said he expects an easy transit through the Assembly but conceded that the bill might face more skepticism in the Senate and governor's office. Gov. Jerry Brown has not taken a public position.

Representatives from movie-related trade unions, studios, caterers and other service providers, film commissions and local governments, including the city and county of Los Angeles, filled the ornate Capitol hearing room with spontaneous applause. The measure now moves to the Assembly Revenue and Taxation Committee.

"We can't afford to let any more jobs abandon our state," Gatto said. "This effort is a rare example of government appropriately taking steps to ensure well-paying jobs stay in California."

About 70 lawmakers have signed on as coauthors of the bill, which has solid support across party lines and in all regions of the state. The only public opposition came from the California Teachers Assn. and the California School Employees Assn. The two groups said they opposed giving special tax breaks to a particular industry. The money, they suggested, would be better spent on K-12 education.

The Gatto-Bocanegra bill, if passed, would replace a 2009 law that has provided $100 million a year in credits. To date, it has funded about 270 projects, generated $4.75 billion in economic activity and created 51,000 mainly high-paying jobs, many for skilled workers such as electricians, carpenters, animators and cinematographers, the legislators said.

The proposed legislation would extend the program until 2022. It would broaden eligibility to include big movie productions, all television series and provide a special incentive for shooting outside the traditional Los Angeles-centered area.

According to Gatto's office, film production in California has declined by half in the last 15 years. Just last year, 21 of 23 prime-time television series were filmed outside California, transferring jobs to other states and forcing many longtime California residents to move away, Gatto's office said.
"I don't want to move, but there's tons of work in Atlanta," said Ed Gutentag, a Topanga cameraman who says he's moving to Georgia in a few weeks.

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This article originally appeared in LOS ANGELES TIMES by Marc Lifsher.  You can read this article and more by visiting LOS ANGELES TIMES HERE.
Mike Gatto is the Chairman of the Appropriations Committee in the California State Assembly.  He represents Burbank, Glendale, La Cañada Flintridge, La Crescenta, Montrose, and the Los Angeles neighborhoods of Atwater Village, East Hollywood, Franklin Hills, Hollywood Hills, Los Feliz, and Silver Lake.

Asbarez: Community Makes Homenetmen, Woodbury Leadership Seminar a Success

Speakers and organizers of the 'Elevate 2014' Leadership Seminar at 
Woodbury University's Fletcher Jones Foundation Auditorium
 Participants hear from distinguished leaders from government, medicine, business, entertainment, and academia

April 4, 2014

BURBANK–Well over 250 excited and eager attendees packed the Fletcher Jones Foundation Auditorium at Woodbury University early on Saturday morning to participate in “Elevate 2014” Leadership Conference Seminar. Hosted by the Homenetmen Glendale “Ararat” Chapter and the Woodbury University Center for Leadership, this one of a kind event was originally conceived in 2012 through a partnership of the aforementioned entities and sought to unite and engage concerned community leaders who recognized its tremendous and immediate need and was established in response to growing community calls for a vehicle to exist which develops and instills, within its youth, the leadership skills that elevate and empower them to become productive citizens and influential members of society.

“We are beyond pleased with this event. It was so uplifting to see so many young people here so early on a Saturday morning to attend a leadership seminar,” remarked Homenetmen Glendale “Ararat” Chapter Chairman Tomik Abrahamian. “When you put so much time, energy and effort into an event of this kind and it yields the positive response and interest it does, you cannot help but be proud, reinvigorated and encouraged. We thank all of our speakers, sponsors, participants, attendees and Dr. Calingo and his staff at Woodbury University for their cooperation and support in this effort and hope to build on our unique partnership with Woodbury University on future events and projects.”

 Homenetmen Glendale 'Ararat' Chapter Chairman Tomik Abrahamian, Academy Award winning producer at Pixar Animation Studios Katherine Sarafian, and Homenetmen Glendale Chapter Executive Director Armond Gorgorian
This capacity room event featured a unique list of accomplished and renowned speakers which included: Katherine Sarafian, Academy Award winning producer at Pixar Animation Studios; Luis Ma. R. Calingo, Ph.D., President of Woodbury University; Mikayel Israyelyan, entrepreneur and CEO of Muse Lifestyle Group; Scott Ochoa, City Manager for City of Glendale; Arby Nahapetian M.D., VP of Medical Affairs and Quality at Glendale Adventist Medical Center; and longtime community leader and philanthropist and founder and President of Massis Kabob, Hacop Baghdassarian, who was honored with the “2014 Elevate Leadership Award.” Also attending were California State Assembly member Mike Gatto, Mayor of the City of Burbank Emily Gabel-Luddy, City of Burbank Councilmember Jess Talamantes, Glendale City Clerk Ardashes “Ardy” Kassakhian, and Glendale Community College Member of Board of Trustees Dr. Armine Hacopian.

Certificates of Recognition were provided to the participants and honorees by the offices of Congressman Adam B. Schiff, Calif. State Assembly Speaker John A. Pérez, Calif. State Assembly Members Adrin Nazarian and Mike Gatto, Calif. State Controller John Chiang, LA County Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich, Calif. State Senator Carol Liu, City of Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, and Los Angeles Councilmembers Paul Krekorian and Felipe Fuentes.

“I was very impressed with the large turnout and assemblage and quality of speakers who participated in today’s seminar. There was something special for everyone that came here today to learn to lead and grow effectively,” stated Dr. Luis Ma. R. Calingo, President of Woodbury University. “The various fields and disciplines represented here was extraordinarily unique and we are extremely proud to host this event, for the second time now and look forward to partnering with the Homenetmen Glendale “Ararat” Chapter on the next ‘Elevate’ Seminar and other similar events.”

After the event, attendees were treated to a special luncheon hosted by the University at its Alumni Quad, during which they had further opportunities to meet and mingle with the speakers and one another. Through an extra special arrangement, UFC and MMA superstars Edmond Tarverdyan (UFC Bantamweight Champ Ronda Rousey’s trainer), Jessamyn “The Gun” Duke, Shayna “The Queen of Spades” Baszler, and Marina Shafir were on hand to sign autographs and participate in photo opportunities with attendees.

The “Elevate 2014” Leadership Development Conference Seminar Series of the Homenetmen Glendale “Ararat” Chapter and the Woodbury University is the largest and only Armenian-American Leadership Incubator of its kind and draws and directs the wisdom and experience of the nation’s top Armenian-American corporate and business leaders, public figures and accomplished and recognized leaders from the fields of the arts and sciences, entertainment, athletics and civic and community leaders and academics and identifies and instills within today’s Armenian-American youth the leadership skills and organizational tools required to prepare them to become tomorrow’s influential citizens and community leaders. This Leadership Development Incubator focuses on character shaping and leadership development.

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This article originally appeared in ASBAREZ.  You can read this article and more by visiting ASBAREZ HERE.
Mike Gatto is the Chairman of the Appropriations Committee in the California State Assembly.  He represents Burbank, Glendale, La Cañada Flintridge, La Crescenta, Montrose, and the Los Angeles neighborhoods of Atwater Village, East Hollywood, Franklin Hills, Hollywood Hills, Los Feliz, and Silver Lake.