Maviglio, Steven

Steven Maviglio is a Sacramento-based public affairs and political consultant. He is the former Deputy Chief of Staff to Speakers Karen Bass and Fabian Nunez. This article originally appeared in the California Majority Report.

"Vulture Capitalists" Dominate California Pension "Reform" Funders, Links to Bain Revealed

By Steven Maviglio

Nearly 60 percent of the contributions to a political committee that hopes to put two pension measures on November ballot come from three Silicon Valley venture capital firms, including one tied to Bain & Company, the controversial firm formerly headed by Mitt Romney whose practices of terminating workers and businesses has become a major issue in the Republican presidential campaign.

GOP's California Pension Reform Initiative Gets the One, Two Punch

By Steve Maviglio
California Majority Report

The truth hurts.

That's the verdict on the two GOP pension proposals that have been reviewed by the nonpartisan Legislative Analyst's Office and Attorney General.

Just before the new year, the LAO noted that the proposals would cost governments more than $1 billion per year for up to 30 years. That alone should have put a stake in the heart of the ballot measures. On top of that, the LAO also noted that the measures probably wouldn't survive in court, along with a host of other problems.

Now we learn that proponents don't have anywhere near the financial backing they claimed. The Sacramento Bee is reporting that the "Sacramento-based California Pension Reform reported raising $128,600 late last month, mostly from Silicon Valley venture capitalists."

The GOP's California Pension "Reform" Plan Continues to Get Bad Reviews

By Steve Maviglio
California Majority Report

With the Attorney General expected to release its Title and Summary for the pair of GOP pension-gutting measures any day now, we can only hope she comes to the same conclusion the Legislative Analyst did when it put its lump of coal into the stockings of the millionaires behind the proposals: The revelation that their sloppily-drawn "reform" plans in fact will cost state and local governments billions MORE in pension costs.

LAO’s Incisive Report Should be the Death of GOP Pension Ballot Measures

By Steve Maviglio
California Majority Report

The Legislative Analyst's Office has found that ballot measures being sponsored by leading state Republicans would bring "large uncertainty" to the state's pension systems, cost governments $1 billion more per year for the next 30 years, and likely would force state and local governments to pay more to compensate teachers, firefighters, police officers, and other public employees. And that's just for starters.

The LAO hit the nail on the head about these sloppily-drafted and extreme ballot measures being advanced by right-wing Republicans. These unworkable initiatives will be an economic disaster for our state, be tied up in the courts for years, result in no significant savings for decades, and squeeze California's middle class even more.

The LAO, which had generally good things to say about Gov. Jerry Brown's pension proposals, found dozens of other flaws with the GOP proposals.

California League of Conservation Voters 2012 Scorecard Reveals GOP on Side of Polluters 82% of Time

By Steven Maviglio

The California League of Conservation Voters (CLCV) - the political arm of the environmental movement in California - released its annual California Environmental Scorecard. The record of the year's most important environmental votes (available at reveals how members of the state legislature and Governor Jerry Brown performed on the environment in the 2011 legislative session.

And to no one's surprise, the scorecard shows that California's GOP legislators are in bed with the polluters lobby. GOP Assemblymembers voted against the environment 81 percent of the time, while GOP senators voted with the polluter's lobby 82 percent of the time. Meanwhile, Assembly Democrats had an average pro-environment rate of 92 percent while the slightly more moderate Senate Democrats voted against polluters 86 percent of the time.

GOP Pension Initiative Backers Misinformation Campaign Misses the Mark

By Steven Maviglio

Not a single signature has been affixed to paper and the Capitol insiders and rich ideologues pushing the latest effort to attack California’s middle class are grossly twisting the facts. Their bogus claim? That anybody who opposes their extreme, probably illegal proposition doesn’t want to do “anything” to repair pensions in California.

Funny thing, the very “unions” and public employees to whom they refer are the only ones who have already actually done something.

Assembly Health Committee Approves Senator Hernandez's Low-Cost Health Plan Legislation

By Steven Maviglio

The California Assembly’s Health Committee approved health care legislation authored by State Senator Ed Hernandez, D-West Covina, to provide basic coverage to low-income families for as little as $30 a month.

Senate Bill 703, which creates a Basic Health Plan, would provide coverage to more than 720,000 qualifying uninsured California residents, according to estimates. It would provide health care coverage for monthly payments that are lower than any other option under the new federal health care law slated to take effect in 2014.

The committee’s approval signifies another key win for the measure, which now heads to the Assembly Appropriations Committee. In May, the State Senate passed the bill 25-14.

Redistricting Commission Should Reject Latest GOP Ploy to Affect Maps

By Steven Maviglio

Former California GOP Chair Shawn Steele is over on the Flash Report threatening the Citizens Redistricting Commission to draw more Republican districts or, he says, conservatives will gather signatures to force a referendum on the commission's maps.

Never mind that his accusations of partisan bias have been utterly refuted by fellow Republicans. As my favorite foil Tony Quinn put it, “The maps are balanced in partisan terms; both parties have reason to be pleased and displeased. There is no partisan advantage in these first maps.”

Steele is not mad that the Commission drew an anti-Republican map. They didn’t. Steele is angry that the Commission didn’t draw a pro-Republican map. They didn’t do that either. I know this is a disappointment to him but certainly no grounds for outrage.

Tony Quinn Admits He’s No Redistricting Expert

By Steven Maviglio

For months, Tony Quinn has been attacking the Citizens Redistricting Commission, accusing it of falling victim to  a vast left-wing conspiracy of individuals who, gasp, actually care if people’s federal voting rights are protected.
Now he is saying, oops, never mind, I guess they are actually doing an ok job after all.  No evil partisanship to be found.  No great plot to pack white people into reservations.

So here we are. Some people are happy.  Some are mad.  But it is looking like the process is fair.
Of course Mr. Quinn can’t be gracious. He can’t give any credit to commissioners. He can’t give credit to the consultants he spent months bashing. Nope, all he can do is pound his fists on the table demanding peer review (in hopes that the Republican-leaning organization he sits on the Board of will get the state contract).

Pension "Reformers" Confess: It's All About Politics, Attacking Unions

By Steven Maviglio

If there were an ounce of doubt for the real reason behind the Republican call for "pension reform," you need only look at the comments of two leading GOPers with connections to the California Foundation for Fiscal Reform, the Astroturf group leading the assault on public employee benefits.

In Ed Mendel's CalPensions blog, former Schwarzenegger aide Dan Pellissier said his yet-to-be-announced ballot measure was all about labor bashing. Here's an excerpt: "Pellissier said he thinks defeating other initiatives that may be on the ballot next year (a spending limit and 'paycheck protection' making it difficult to use union dues for campaigns) could be a greater priority for unions than hot-polling pension reform. 'The unions may find that they can't wage nuclear war and spend hundreds of millions of dollars on four different initiatives. They may have to pick and choose.'"