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    California Senior Legislature Session Day 1

    by Charles Bush

    Long first day - mainly because I chose to drive to Sacramento at 4:00 in the morning for the Monday session. Over Highway 20 in the dark, and out past Clear Lake under a red glowing sunrise, slipping into Sacramento just before the heavy morning traffic. Then a stroll through the extraordinary rose garden in the State Capital Park, on my way into the Capital Building.

    Registering for the California Senior Legislature felt a bit like coming to lunch at the Senior Center, but in a palace instead of our lovely old redwood building. Everybody was approximately my age!

    The building looks and feels more like a palace than a place for the business of democracy. I guess I just like things plain and business-like. I am not sure whether this is an appropriate setting for a government " of the people, by the people and for the people". On the other hand, I bought a tie and white shirt at the Hospice Thrift Store to wear with my best old suit - so I look the part - never though I'd wear a tie again!

    Spent the day learning about how the legislature works. I am assigned to the Health Committee of the Assembly. We will examine about ten proposed bills, hold hearings, hear testimony, and then recommend which ones will be sent to the full Senate and Assembly for consideration. A total of eighty bills will be considered by all the various committees. We will then meet in full session to consider those that survive the committee process, and ultimately select ten state bills, and four federal bills that will be delivered to the appropriate state and federal legislative bodies for their consideration and hopefully, adoption.

    This morning I have been plowing through 311 pages of proposed legislation, trying to get ready for today's session - although I really only have to be completely familiar with the Health Bills. Schedule is a bit intense - 9-12 morning sessions, and 1-4 afternoon session - plus evening banquets with many speeches. I think I will become a master listener by the time this is over!

    Charles (signature)

    Charles Bush
    Senior Senator

    490 North Harold Street, Fort Bragg, California 95437 : 707.964.0443