Winter Newsletter 2018
Last month, Governor Brown released his proposed budget with his goals and objectives for the 2018-19 fiscal year. His $131.7 billion General Fund budget plan fully implements the state’s K-12 school funding formula two years ahead of schedule and provides $4.6 billion for the first year of a 10-year transportation improvement plan.
Eight years ago, California faced a $25 billion budget shortfall. Since that time, the Legislature and the Governor have made tremendous strides in building the fiscal strength of the state to ensure California is positioned to protect the critical services and programs that citizens depend on should another economic downturn occur. The 2018-19 proposed budget reflects this hard work by securing $15.8 billion in reserves.
Additionally, the budget would provide additional funds to early childhood education and career technical education, along with increased funding for fire response and affordable housing.
I was also pleased to see that Governor Brown’s budget included language to enact my Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund. This will establish a new special fun for the State Water Board to assist communities, particularly disadvantaged communities, in paying for the short-term and long-term costs of obtaining access to safe and affordable drinking water. The language in the proposed budget is consistent with my Senate Bill 623, introduced last year, to establish a program that provides grants, loans, and administrator contracts or services to assist eligible communities and households to secure access to safe and affordable drinking water.
The Governor’s proposal provides us with a very solid foundation as we begin negotiations and I anticipate that the final budget will continue to advance the economic prosperity of the state and all of its residents.
Senate Resolution (SR) 73: National Offshore Oil and Gas Drilling
I am honored to be a coauthor of SR 73. This resolution expresses the state Senate’s opposition to any new oil and gas activities off our coast and asks that the Pacific Coast Outer Continental Shelf be excluded from any National Outer Continental Shelf Program. We strongly urge the President and Congress to permanently safeguard and protect the Pacific Coast from new oil and gas leasing.
Select Committee on End of Life Health Care Oversight Hearing
Recently, I participated in the first Select Committee on End of Life Health Care oversight hearing. In 2015, I was a coauthor of the End of Life Options Act, which was enacted in the summer of 2016. This first oversight hearing provided legislators with an opportunity to hear from several families who have had loved ones who exercised their rights under this new law, as well as from healthcare professionals and researchers who provided updates on the efficacy of the implementation of the law throughout the state. I was extremely moved by the stories provided by family members and appreciate the thoughtful comments provided by all those who participated.
Santa Clara County
The South County California Student Opportunity and Access Program (Cal-SOAP) in Santa Clara County is a pre-college program that assists low-income and first-generation students with college readiness, including academic advising, financial aid awareness, tutoring, college tours and more. I want to thank the Santa Clara County Cal-SOAP Program Director, Erin Gemar, for taking the time to meet with me. She and her team are doing a tremendous job in helping students attain their academic goals.
Santa Cruz County
This past fall, I attended the Dientes Community Dental Care’s 25th Anniversary celebration. Dientes provides affordable, comprehensive quality dental care to under-served families in Santa Cruz County and surrounding communities. The organization is to be commended for its quarter century of service to the greater Santa Cruz region!
Senator Monning with Dientes Board President Steve Moody, Vice President Camille Smith-Ballon, Secretary Alexandra Navarro, and Executive Director Laura Marcus (left to right)
On January 15th, I was proud to participate in the 32nd Annual Martin Luther King Jr. March and program in Seaside. This event honors Dr. King’s legacy in the fight for civil rights. More than 2,000 people participated in this tremendous event and it was great to see the Monterey County community come together to celebrate such a critically important part of our nation’s history.
Senator Monning with activist Lynn Johnson, Marina Mayor Bruce Delgado, and former President of the Monterey County Branch of the NAACP, Mel Mason.
San Luis Obispo County
I had the opportunity to tour the new Coastal Valley Academy, which serves as a safe and effective alternative to traditional group homes for moderate to high risk youth who are in need of residential treatment. Youth placed at the Academy receive intensive case management, as well as educational services, through collaboration with local treatment providers the Family Care Network Inc. and the County Office of Education. Thank you to the Coast Valley Academy for all of your hard work and dedication!
Senator Monning with San Luis Obispo County Chief Probation Officer Jim Salio, Chief Deputy Probation Officer Marguerite Harris, Assistant Chief Probation Officer Robert Reyes, and Chief Deputy Probation Officer Tom Milder
Thank you for taking the time to read my newsletter!
Senator Bill Monning