The CADEM Business and Professional Caucus will hold elections for officers at the Caucus meeting during the May 2023 California Democratic Party Convention. The following officers will be elected:
Vice-Chair South
Vice-Chair North

The current officers are
Chair: Cecile Bendavid
Vice-Chair South – Mark Henderson
Vice-Chair North – Brigette Hunley
Secretary – Sharky Laguna
Treasurer – Judith Walters

The nominating committee is headed by Andrew Lachman, Chair and current Parliamentarian.
Election information from the by-laws:
All candidates for Caucus Chair must be members of the Democratic State Central Committee and must have been members of this Caucus for the last three meetings prior to the election meeting or as of the beginning of the two-year Democratic State Central Committee term in which nominations are opened, whichever requires a period of membership; and all officer candidates must be members who have paid, or had waived, their dues ten days prior to the date of the election meeting.

Nominating Committee information – Andrew Lachman, Nominating/Election Committee Chair
An Election Committee of three members shall be appointed by the Chairperson by no later than 60 days before the date of election and the names and contact information for the Election Committee shall be communicated to the membership in writing by email (for those who consent to receive notice by email) or, otherwise, US mail by not later than fifty (50) days before the election meeting.
All nominations for Caucus Office shall be made in writing not more than fifty (50) nor less than ten (10) days before the date that balloting commences. Written nominations shall be sent to Election Committee. The written nomination form must contain the following information: name, address, email (if applicable), telephone number, occupation if applicable, Assembly District Number, a statement whether the candidate is a Member of Democratic State Central Committee. Nomination forms, which may be self-nominations, may include a brief statement of qualifications and special interest in serving. Nominations do not need to be seconded.
The Treasurer is to prepare for the Election Committee a roster of the members of the Caucus who paid or had waived their dues as of the date ten days before the election meeting. If the Office of Treasurer is vacant or, the Caucus Chairperson may appoint another member of the Caucus other than a member of the Election Committee for the purpose of fulfilling these responsibilities.

Voting and related actions concerning recommendations for support/endorsement taken, by the Caucus, on behalf of candidates for partisan or nonpartisan public office will occur in accordance with CDP Bylaws, including any prohibitions contained therein. The CDP Bylaws rules on endorsement shall be followed by the Caucus. Appeals of any decision that any member feels are inconsistent with the CDP Bylaws rules on endorsement shall be made first appealed to the membership of the Caucus at the meeting at which the allegedly violative conduct took place and then as provided in the CDP Bylaws.

Business and Professionals Caucus Recommendations to the Platform Committee

Thanks to the hard work and efforts of the Business & Professionals Platform Committee, which has been chaired by Omar Hashwi, the Caucus today made eight recommendations to the CADEM Platform Committee to update and amend the California Democratic Party Platform to help small businesses:

  1. CADEM pledges to support increased investment in small business and entrepreneurship infrastructure such as mentorship, after-school care, and workforce development, particularly for women, people of color, and those with limited access to entrepreneurship experience.
  2. CADEM pledges to promote and expand access to underserved groups of color who don’t have access to capital through Community Development Financial Institutions and micro-loan programs.
  3. CADEM pledges to promote and guarantee low-interest small business loans to provide the seed capital to launch and expand job-creating small businesses and provide for the growth of already successful businesses. 
  4. CADEM pledges to support an Equitable Preparedness Strategy and Response for future pandemics or crises.
  5. CADEM pledges to support a 58-county strategy as we move forward in rebuilding after the pandemic and in our preparations for the future, including support for rural business, which is a vital component to help ensure equitable resources for all of our citizens.
  6. CADEM pledges to support policies that protect businesses from organized retail crime and vandalism. 
  7. CADEM pledges to support efforts to protect small and medium sized businesses from cyber attacks.
  8. CADEM pledges to support the separation of retail and investment banking to free capital for loans to businesses and individuals.

At the hearing several Caucus officers spoke in support of these recommendations: Chair Bendavid was the very first to speak! Other officers testifying included Treasurer Judith Walters, Secretary Sharky Laguana, and Parliamentarian Andrew Lachman. Our lead for the Platform Committee Omar Hashwi spoke, as did several other caucus members, including State Assembly candidate Bilal Mahmood. Thank you everyone for all your hard work, and taking the time on a weekend to support small businesses, workers, and families in California.

POLL: CA Small Businesses Support Vaccine Mandates

New opinion polling from Small Business Majority reveals that small businesses in California are facing setbacks from the current surge in COVID-19 cases, and they’re supportive of proposals to mandate vaccinations and testing at places of business that will help ensure local economies can stay open safely.

  • Sixty-one percent support a state mandate requiring certain public-facing businesses like restaurants, theaters and gyms to require customers to provide proof of vaccination and/or a recent negative COVID-19 test.
  • The majority (59%) of small businesses with employees would support a state law requiring businesses to mandate vaccinations and/or weekly testing for employees.
  • Nearly half of small businesses in California (47%) already require all or some of their employees to be vaccinated, and another quarter (24%) are considering doing so.
  • Three in 10 (29%) already require proof of vaccination from some or all of their customers, and another 11% are considering requiring it.

    Learn More Here

California Rebuilding Fund

Small businesses are critical for an inclusive and equitable economic recovery. That is why we’re glad California is supporting the small businesses that make up the backbone of our economy. The California Rebuilding Fund will help close the funding gap. Learn more: www.CALoanFund.org

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