Who would like to be governor? – Press company

As the year progressed, and continued COVID-19 fatigue, the state has seen a high turnover among the more than 3,000 people the governor appoints to California boards and commissions.

There are a total of 164 vacancies as Governor Gavin Newsom enters his final year in office.

Appointments are usually given some attention when a governor takes office, as he occupies high-profile positions such as the head of the High-Speed ​​Rail Authority or seats on the influential Air Resources Board. But there are dozen of seats for members of the public at any one time on bodies overseeing everything from cannabis control to managing sex offenders.

“There really is something for every interest and specialty,” said State Sen. Josh Newman, D-Fullerton, who hosted an online workshop Thursday night to “ease the scheduling process” for residents.

Cathryn Rivera-Hernandez, appointments secretary for Newsom’s office, said that given the current churn, her team will meet with the governor every week or two with 30 to 50 new appointments to approve.

“We will continue to see changes at all levels of administration, boards and commissions through the end of this year,” she said. “But it also creates opportunities.”

Which positions are open?

The latest job listing includes a few dozen spots on the county’s fair boards, including the fair boards of San Bernardino Counties, Antelope Valley, and San Fernando Valley.

There are also openings for a number of cultural positions, including the African American Museum, Arts Council, and Cultural & Historical Endowment.

Then there are places in the healthcare sector, including the Chiropractic Examination Board, the Dental Board, and the Medical Board. These members help make important decisions about regulations and guidelines in these areas.

Other openings are tied to everything from education to building standards, earthquake safety to the state lottery.

For example, while vacancies with the film commission are often very competitive, Rivera-Hernandez said it can be difficult to fill positions with local water authorities or other lesser-known commissions.

New jobs pop up every month as people quit or end their terms. If there is a position someone is particularly interested in that is not listed as vacant, Rivera-Hernandez recommended reaching out to the alternate overseeing that board or commission.

“Establish these relationships with the MPs,” she said. “You can provide the most up-to-date information.”

Who can apply?

Many jobs are open to all California residents. There is no compulsory citizenship. And in some cases, Rivera-Hernandez said they are actually looking for undocumented immigrants to fill roles so that those voices can be represented on state bodies.

Many licensing cards have both licensee and public slots. On the optometry board, for example, there are slots for licensed opticians and for the public.

Don’t assume that you need a background in the subject to apply, Rivera-Hernandez said. For some positions, the assignees may not have a direct personal financial interest in the area, which makes it unlikely that they will work in this area. But Rivera-Hernandez said they need those outside voices to keep their balance.

Political attitudes undoubtedly play a role in the nomination of the democratic governor to high-profile paid positions and positions on key boards. But Rivera-Hernandez insists that partiality is not a factor in most appointments unless there is a need to balance perspectives on certain boards. For example, she noted that they recently appointed a Republican to the horse racing committee.

Some positions require that you live in certain counties or parts of the state, such as B. a position for a resident of the High Sierras with the Travel and Tourism Commission.

Other vacancies have historically been geographically limited as they required regular face-to-face meetings in Sacramento. Now that the coronavirus pandemic has pushed these meetings to Zoom, Rivera-Hernandez said it will make it easier for people to serve from across the state. And she said there was talk of some of these changes being permanent.

What is the obligation?

The terms of these appointments are usually between two and five years. People can apply for reappointment, although some boards have tenure limits. License boards, for example, are limited to two terms.

However, Rivera-Hernandez said the biggest obstacle they encounter is their appointed staff underestimating the amount of time they need to spend on the board of directors or the commission.

“We have a few boards of directors that I would call part-time jobs,” said Rivera-Hernandez. “Others only take a few hours a month to attend monthly meetings.”

She recommends looking at the minutes of past board meetings to get a feel for how long the meetings are and how involved they are. You can also ask the assistant supervisor on this panel to get a feel for the time spent each month and see if this is in line with your work, school, and family schedule.

Simple online searches can also reveal just how senior the position could be, Rivera-Hernandez warned, as some volunteers may not be fans of seeing their names in the papers when the board of directors has controversial issues to deal with.

Do i get paid?

While there are paid full-time and part-time positions that can gross in excess of $ 200,000 per year, the vast majority of the positions – including the 164 executive board positions now open – are for volunteers.

Volunteers typically receive $ 100 per day for each meeting, which Rivera-Hernandez says is aimed at compensating them for the time it takes to attend or prepare for meetings.

As soon as they return to some face-to-face meetings, she said they will start reimbursing the commissioners for travel expenses as well.

The experience itself has also proven valuable to many former appointees who sometimes use their term in office to transfer to other government or political roles.

How are agents selected?

The governor’s office has 12 staff who sift through all of the applications submitted through their website. They select candidates for a series of interviews, and then typically take the top candidate to Newsom so that they can unsubscribe before many positions go open for approval by the State Senate.

Occasionally, Rivera-Hernandez said, they bring Newsom a list of potential candidates and he will make the decision. But she said they often only bring their first choice.

Rivera-Hernandez said Newsom typically asks two key questions of candidates they recommend: why do they want to serve, and what is their background that makes them good choices? She said Newsom likes candidates who have a story to share. This includes comeback stories that make candidates want to serve.

“That sense of purpose will get you very far in the process,” she said. So she advised people not to take themselves out of the game for a position just because they had a bankruptcy or something else in their past that they feared would disqualify them.

“I repeat what (this governor) has said many times, and that is that he wants a government that looks like the people he serves.”

You can find more information about appointments or how to apply at gov.ca.gov/appointments/.

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