California Museums Advocacy Plan 2009-2012 (pdf, 656 KB)
ABOUT CALIFORNIA MUSEUMS
About California Museums Fact Sheet (pdf, 60 KB)
California Museums, Schools, and Education (pdf, 184 KB)
California Museums Brochure (2007) (pdf, 773 KB)
2012 LEGISLATIVE HIGHLIGHTS
At the beginning of the 2012 Legislative Session, CAM delivered an informational letter to all the Assemblymembers, Senators and key staff. The letter outlined the important role museums play in California.
CAM held a Museums Roundtable for 21st Century Schools on February 24, 2012 at The Huntington Library in Pasadena. The goals of this meeting were to articulate how museums can help meet the needs of California's K-12 students and to identify ways in which the museum field can be partners in achieving the vision outlined in Superintendent Tom Torlakson’s report, A Blueprint for Great Schools. Superintendent Torlakson attended the roundtable discussion and acknowledged the dynamic role museums play in education. A report from the Museums Roundtable for 21st Century Schools is now available online.
CAM took positions on five bills in the 2012 Legislative Session to represent the interests of California museums, on subjects such as nonprofit filing requirements, protecting veterans’ cemeteries, and supporting California State Parks:
AB 1225 Cemeteries: veteran’s commemorative property was introduced by the Committee on Veterans Affairs and would prohibit any person or entity that owns or controls a cemetery where veteran's commemorative property has been placed from selling, trading, or transferring that property. This bill would require any person or entity that owns or controls a cemetery where veteran's commemorative property has been placed that wishes to sell, trade, or transfer that property to petition the Cemetery and Funeral Bureau for permission to do so; it would establish procedures for the bureau to grant this permission. CAM wrote a letter of support for this bill.This bill was signed by the Governor on September 29, 2012 (Chapter 774, Statutes of 2012).
AB 1677 Corporate income taxes: filing requirements: tax exempt organizations, sponsored by the Navy League of the United States, would increase the gross receipts threshold for the application of the exemption from the annual filing requirement from $25,000 to $50,000. CAM wrote a letter of support for this bill.This bill was signed by the Governor on September 30, 2012 (Chapter 858, Statutes of 2012).
SB 789 Public School Performance Accountability Program: Creative and Innovative Education Index,as amended on June 20, 2012, would require the advisory committee appointed by the Superintendent of Public Instruction to advise on all appropriate matters relative to the creation of the Academic Performance Index (API) and on the development of a voluntary Creative and Innovative Education Index, to be based in part on the creative opportunities in each participating school. The bill would require the advisory committee to make recommendations by June 1, 2014 to the Superintendent on the extent to which this index may be used to foster creative and innovative education in the public schools. CAM wrote a letter of support for this bill. This bill failed deadline in the Assembly Appropriations Committee and is dead.
SB 974 State parks proposed closures would declare that it is the intent of the Legislature that the Department of Parks and Recreation should achieve any required budget reductions by implementing efficiencies and increasing revenue collection, or reducing services at selected units of the state park system. The bill would revise the factors the department is required to use as a basis for selecting which units of the state park system are to be closed, and would, for any parks proposed or designated for closure on or after January 1, 2013, require the department to document and publicly disclose the methodology, rationale, and scoring system used to evaluate and select parks designated for closure. CAM wrote a letter of support for this bill. This bill failed deadline in the Assembly Appropriations Committee and is dead.
SB 1341 Corporation Tax Law: charitable corporations: exemptions: revocation would require the Franchise Tax Board to mail a notice to a charitable corporation that has not filed its required registration or periodic reports with the Attorney General, stating the intent of the Franchise Tax Board to revoke the exemption unless the charitable corporation files all past due and currently due documents, as provided, within a specified applicable period. This bill would remove the requirement that a charitable corporation whose exemption is disallowed pay the minimum tax for any year or years its exemption was disallowed and would allow a charitable corporation whose exemption has been revoked to reestablish its exemption by filing and paying specified applications, fees, returns, statements, and payments. CAM has written a letter of support for this bill. CAM wrote a letter of support for this bill. This bill was signed by the Governor on September 28, 2012 (Chapter 710, Statutes of 2012).
In partnership with the Superintendent of Public Instruction, CAM launched and coordinated the inaugural Superintendent’s Award for Excellence in Museum Education award competition. Six California museums were selected to receive an award for excellence in museum education, chosen by Superintendent Torlakson. For current information see Superintendent's Awards.
CAM was a co-convener of the American Association of Museums’ 2012 Advocacy Day.
2011 LEGISLATIVE HIGHLIGHTS
In addition to writing letters to both the Senate and Assembly Education Committees communicating museums’ contributions to K-12 and college education and curriculum, CAM met with Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson, Senator Alan Lowenthal (Chair of the Senate Standing Committee on Education), California PTA, and other education policymakers and stakeholders. The discussions focused on the potential benefit to California’s learners if we created a stronger alliance between the statewide museum field and the State's educational system. As foremost educational institutions, museums play a key role in educating our State's children in the 21st century and are increasingly partnering with schools and school districts to leverage limited resources.
SB 769 was designed to provide an exemption for the possession of a mountain lion carcass if it is prepared for display at a nonprofit or government-owned museum generally open to the public or at an educational institution. CAM requested amendments which were adopted by the author to clarify that possession of a mountain lion carcass in collections and storage is also appropriate. CAM submitted a letter of support to the Legislature after these amendments were adopted on June 30, 2011. Governor Brown signed this bill on September 30 and included a signing message.
The State budget includes drastic cuts to the California State Parks system, an amount which could cause the shutdown of some state parks. CAM sent a letter of support for State Parks to all California legislators in February 2011, after Governor Jerry Brown’s budget. Three bills designed to keep California state parks open to the public passed the Legislature: SB 356 (Blakeslee, R-San Luis Obispo), requiring the Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) to enter into operating agreements with willing counties or cities for the operation of parks that are proposed to be closed, SB 386 (Harman, R-Huntington Beach), requiring DPR to use its website to post the information on parks intended to be closed with DPR contact information for any organization who may be interested in keeping a park open, and AB 42 (Huffman, D-San Rafael) allowing DPR to enter into operating agreements with nonprofit organizations. The Governor vetoed SB 386 on September 21 and included a veto message. He also vetoed SB 356. He signed AB 42.
CAM supported SB 789, a bill that would require the Academic Performance Index (API) advisory committee to consult with experts in the fields of business, science, technology, mathematics, engineering, and visual and performing arts education to develop a voluntary “Creative and Innovative Education Index” by June 1, 2013. Concepts of this bill were incorporated into SB 547 Public School Performance Accountability which would require the Superintendent of Public Instruction to develop an Education Quality Index (EQI) to replace the Academic Performance Index (API). Governor Brown vetoed this bill on October 8, 2011, including a veto message.
AB 165 Pupil fees was introduced by Assemblymember Ricardo Lara (D-South Gate). This bill was designed to reinforce the constitutional prohibition of imposing pupil fees on educational activities (including extracurricular activities such as field trips) in the state’s schools. Schools are still allowed to raise funds and collect donations to support athletics and other extracurricular activities. Museums were monitoring this bill because of its possible impact on after-school programs, field trips and other extracurricular activities. Governor Brown vetoed this bill on October 8, including a veto message.
SCR 46 would declare the Legislature’s recognition of the importance of access to local parks, trails, open space, and facilities for the health and development of all Californians. The measure would also declare July 2011 as “Parks Make Life Better!” Month in California. CAM has submitted a letter of support.
In December, shortly after the new 2011-12 Legislature was sworn into office, CAM delivered an informational letter to all the Assemblymembers, Senators and key staff. The letter introduced CAM and outlined the important role museums play in California. See Introductory Letter.
2010 LEGISLATIVE HIGHLIGHTS
AB 1777, a bill which would allocate 20% of state sales and use tax revenues derived from art-related sales to the California Art Council. The bill did not pass the Legislature.
SB 1034, a bill which would increase the penalties and and clarify the restitution for theft of archaeological resources. The bill passed the Legilsature and was signed by the Governor in September 2010.
SB 1076, a bill which would allow taxpayers to make voluntary contributions to the California Arts Council on their state personal income tax returns. The bill passed the Legislature and was signed by the Governor in September 2010.
AB 2765 (CAM's Letter of Concern), a bill that extended the statute of limitations for actions against a museum for allegedly stolen artworks. CAM negotiated with the author in accepting some amendments that reflected the concerns of the museum field.
2009 LEGISLATIVE BRIEFS
AB 700, a bill which would allocate 20% of state sales and use tax revenues derived from art-related sales to the California Art Council. The bill did not pass the Legislature.
AB 1245, a bill which would establish a procedure by which the Secretary of State could recover official governmental records belonging to the state or a local agency that are found in possession of non-governmental entities or persons
AB 2687, a bill that would require the Department of Parks and Recreation to develop guidelines for a competitive grant process that would begin implementation of the $100 million in Proposition 84 for nature education.
AB 2728, a bill which would allocate 20% of state sales and use tax revenues derived from art-related sales to the California Art Council at a time when the California state budget is balanced.
MUSEUM MONTH RESOLUTIONS & PROCLAMATIONS
2009 Resolution from the California State Legislature
2009 Proclamation from the Governor
2008 Resolution from the California State Legislature
2008 Proclamation from the Governor
LOBBYING, ADVOCACY, AND NONPROFITS
Online Advocacy Training, provided by the American Association of Museums
The Nonprofit Lobbying Guide: Advocating Your Cause and Getting Results (HTML) by Robert Smucker, Independent Sector
Rules of Nonprofit Lobbying (HTML), American Association of Museums
Make a Difference for Your Cause in Three Hours a Week (pdf) Center for Lobbying in the Public Interest
Lobbying and Political Action: What is Permissible by 501(c)3 Organizations? (pdf), National Trust for Historic Preservation
Advocacy for Museums Matters (HTML), American Association of Museums
ABOUT CALIFORNIA STATE GOVERNMENT
NATIONAL MUSEUM ADVOCATES