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Board of Directors
Karin Flood
Union Square Business Improvement District
Steven Welliver
Downtown Santa Monica, Inc.
Vice President
Andrew Thomas
Westwood Village Improvement Association
Maggie Campbell
Downtown Santa Barbara, Inc.
Blage Zelalich
City of San Jose
At-Large Directors
Downtown Association of Santa Cruz

Byron Best
Jessica Lall
Central City Association
Joseph Mariani
Hollywood Entertainment District BID
Steve Mulheim
Old Pasadena Management District
Steve Snider
Downtown Oakland and Lake Merritt-Uptown District Associations
Liz Studebaker
City of San Diego
Dominic Tartaglia
San Luis Obispo Downtown Association
Immediate Past President
Kent Smith
LA Fashion District 

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CDA Members
Arlington Business Partnership
Bixby Knolls Business Improvement Association
Central City Association
City of Citrus  Heights 
City of Dana Point
City of Folsom
City of Glendora
City of Lancaster
City of Los Angeles, Office of the City Clerk
City of Monterey Park
City of Ontario
City of San Diego - Economic Development Dept.
City of Temple City
City of Tracy
County of Santa Cruz - Office of Economic Development
Dinuba Chamber of Commerce
Downtown Association of Santa Cruz
Downtown Berkeley Association
Downtown Long Beach Associates
Downtown Los Angeles
Downtown  Modesto Partnership
Downtown Oakland Association/ Lake Merritt Uptown District Association
Downtown Oxnard Merchants Association
Downtown Pomona Owners Association
Downtown Roseville Partnership
Downtown Sacramento Partnership
Downtown San Diego Partnership
Downtown San Mateo Association
Downtown Santa Barbara, Inc.
Downtown Santa Monica, Inc.
Downtown Vacaville BID
Downtown Ventura Partners
Downtown Visalians, Inc.
Figueroa Corridor Partnership
Gateway to LA Airport Business District
Gilroy Economic Development
Hollywood Property Owners Alliance
Ironsmith, Inc.
LA Downtown Industrial District BID
LA Fashion District BID
MJM Management Group
North Tahoe Business Association
Old Pasadena Management District 
ParkSmart, Inc.
Paso Robles Main Street Association
Progressive Urban Management Associates, Inc.
R Street Sacramento Partnership
Riverside Downtown Partnership
San Jose Downtown Association
San Luis Obispo Downtown Association
South Park BID
The Downtown Burbank Partnership
The Placemaking Group
The River District
Tracy City Center Association
Tulare Downtown Association
Ukiah Main Street Program
Union Square BID
Urban Place Consulting Group, Inc.
Vista Village Business Association
Walnut Creek Downtown Business Association
Westwood Village Improvement Association  
Wilshire Center Business Improvement District
November 2017

As the smoke clears in California from the North Bay fires, our headlines in San Francisco this week read "Smoke Yet to Clear for Pot Rules." As we count down to January 1, 2018, (when recreational adult use marijuana will become legal in our state) I wonder if cities, including ours, will be ready? While the voters passed Proposition 64 in November 2016 to legalize the sales and distribution of cannabis, local operators will need permissions to apply for a state license to legally operate.

City councils across the state have been debating what local regulations should be positioned in time for the new year. Where should these new dispensaries be located and how far apart should they be to avoid saturation in any one neighborhood? State law says that they need to be located a safe distance from schools, but what about child care centers? And since cannabis consumption is illegal at the federal level, operators must do business strictly in cash. How do cities then collect permit fees or taxes? How do they ensure that these businesses do not become magnets for crime?

What should BIDs be concerned about when proposals to open dispensaries in their districts come before them? Santa Monica, for example, is not yet ready to support local legislation because they need more time to approve regulations, including appropriate storefront appearances. Downtown San Louis Obispo is concerned about the environment that these dispensaries will create in their college town if users decide to light up in public because no indoor facilities are available. Here in Union Square, safety is our number one concern, and ensuring that these new businesses operate responsibly with proper security measures in place.

While some Chambers of Commerce are saying "Yes we Cannabis!" because there is an opportunity for green tourism and money to be made, there is much for BIDs to still consider while ensuring our communities are safe and welcoming for everyone. As always, I welcome your thoughts on this hot topic.


Karin Flood
Executive Director
Union Square BID

Join Walnut Creek Downtown, California Downtown Association and IDA for the West Coast Urban District Forum March 13-15, 2018!

Master talks and breakout sessions will explore how downtowns serve as economic development resources beyond city boundaries, and the role social media plays in encouraging community engagement. Experts will share best practices on enhancing downtown quality of life and cultivating the next generation of leaders. More details and registration information coming soon.

W e look forward to seeing you all at the West Coast Urban District Forum in Walnut Creek, March 13-15, 2018. Kathy Hemmenway, her team, and the planning committee are working hard to develop interesting, relevant content and great networking events.
On the fundraising side, our goal is to help companies expand their business by introducing them to other districts. Your organization can contribute and support the efforts by passing along the sponsorship packet to your vendors. By supporting the conference, you will help enable CDA's budget to include legislative activities in 2018. Please consider stepping up as a sponsor and spreading the opportunity to your contacts.

Thank you for your consideration.

Karin Flood
Public Safety Reform Ballot Measure Draws Attention from CDA

Late last month the "California Public Safety Partnership", which includes law enforcement, prosecutors and crime victims groups, filed a statewide ballot initiative to reverse some of the elements of Proposition 47, which was approved by voters in 2014 and reduced some crimes considered "non-violent" from a felony to a misdemeanor. The initiative would seek to prevent the early release of child traffickers and other serious and violent offenders and reinstate DNA collection upon conviction for certain crimes. Most relevant to members of the California Downtown Association, the ballot measure would make repeat offenders eligible for felony prosecution when convicted of a third property theft valued at $250 or more - making serial theft a felony.

In 2014, the monetary value that triggered a felony grand theft charge was raised from $450 to $950. In each case, this amount is per incident, not an aggregated amount. As such, current law has incentivized career criminals to take advantage of criminal justice reforms meant to prevent low-level offenders from receiving lengthy jail sentences. Those committing crimes find it possible to steal up to $950 with little concern for the limited consequences (misdemeanor convictions carry little, if any, incarceration time), which are greatly outweighed by the potential financial gain of recurring thefts.

This year, CDA supported Assembly Bill 1326 (Cooper, D - Elk Grove), which would have aggregated the monetary value of property stolen by an individual and apply stricter penalties if the total value of multiple thefts exceeded $950 within a 12-month period. Unfortunately, the bill was shelved earlier this year.

Since the enactment of Proposition 47 in 2014 - Reduced Penalties for Some Crimes Initiative -businesses have experienced a significant increase in theft incidents. Many report twice the amount of incidents, and the value of merchandise taken has also increased. This is a substantial financial burden to businesses, has lowered employee morale, and has raised serious safety concerns within our downtowns.

The initiative sponsors need to collect roughly 370,000 valid signatures from eligible voters by April, 2018 in order to qualify the initiative for the November 2018 election. The California Downtown Association Board will continue to monitor the initiative effort and may consider taking a position if the measure qualifies.

Jason Bryant 
Bryant Government Affairs
November 2017 Legislative Update 

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CDA District Digest Leadership

Executive Editor:
Karin Flood
President, CDA
Allison Shashok
Marketing & Communications Manager, IDA

Do you have your ear to the ground when it comes to the latest downtown news in your region?
To submit news to be considered for inclusion in the newsletter, please contact Allison Shashok at allison@downtown.org.