One of the rarest events in politics took place this morning as the California Air Resources Board was considering its adoption of a detailed framework to implement the state's landmark global warming law: An elected official turned down an offer to speak into a microphone in a room packed with people.
That official was new Ventura County Sen. Fran Pavley, who was a co-author of the landmark law as a member of the Assembly in 2006.
Pavley's presence in the auditorium was noted by board Chairwoman Mary Nichols. "It's always good to have the author of the bill you're implementing in the room," she said. "If we don't do it right, I'm sure we'll be hearing about it."
Nichols then asked Pavley if she'd like to make a public comment, but -- remarkably -- the senator demured. "I don't want to take up your time," she said from her seat near the back of the auditorium.
Before the implementation process is over, rest assured, Pavley intends to have plenty to say. The first bill she introduced in the Senate is a measure that will become the vehicle to implement whatever fees are ultimately included in the Air Board's plan.