Western Electrical Contractors Association, Inc.

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What We're Reading

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Contractors team with AI company to improve workplace safety Nine major construction companies have partnered with software firm Smartvid.io to develop predictive analytics that can prevent accidents and improve safety throughout the industry. Suffolk, which will serve as chair of the council, contributed 10 years of project data and photos to the predictive model, and other partners will contribute data anonymously as the system develops. More
Thanks for the Help Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon responded to Vice President Mike Pence, who had wished Rendon a productive session: "I would have to say you and the President have already done quite a bit to help us with that. Thanks to your policies, voters in California added five Democrats to the Assembly in the last election. In addition, one Republican has decided to jump to the Democratic party, citing the President's extreme positions." Read the letter here.
Lawyers Brace for Porter's Questions During Hearings: Freshman Rep. Katie Porter (D-Calif.), a former law school professor, has asked questions that have tripped up Wells Fargo and Equifax executives since she arrived in Congress and nabbed a seat on the House Financial Services Committee. Porter beat incumbent Mimi Walters in November. Her approach, according to The National Law Journal's C. Ryan Barber "has forced white-collar defense lawyers who specialize in congressional hearings to grapple with how to prepare clients for questioning that uses a company's own legal arguments against its top executive. Her repeated, effective use of that approach promises to make her a starring figure in preparations that have been known to include mock hearings, with lawyers playing the part of lawmaker during rehearsals. This tactic is a new and particularly effective example of what has long been the risk for a corporate executive, the face of a company, testifying in Congress," said David Leviss, a former senior investigative counsel for the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee who's now a partner at O'Melveny & Myers, in a Journal story.
And Then There Were None Sarah D. Wire from the LA Times profiles the now-unified force of Democrats representing the previous GOP bastion of Orange County. "Four of the newest members defeated Republicans in November to secure their seats. They joined Rep. Lou Correa (D-Santa Ana) who holds a seat that flipped to Democratic control in the mid-'90s, and Rep. Alan Lowenthal (D-Long Beach), one-third of whose constituents are O.C. residents." Story (registration may be required)
Thank You for being my Friend California's new online community college director, hoping to quickly establish her executive team, pushed Monday to grant a no-bid contract of up to $500,000 to an executive recruiter who is a friend and has long has been a part of San Francisco's political scene. Heather Hiles, president of the nascent online college, has a goal of starting classes this fall. The community college board approved Hiles' choice of executive recruiter Carolyn Carpeneti, even though some community college board members abstained, contending the contract should have been put out to competitive bid. Before becoming an executive recruiter, Carpeneti was a political fundraiser whose clients included then-San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown. Brown and Carpeneti became romantically involved and had a daughter in 2001. In 2003, the San Francisco Chronicle reported that "nonprofit groups and political committees controlled by the mayor and his allies" paid Carpeneti $2.33 million over a five-year period. Story