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Please join me and District 1 Supervisor Connie Chan, as we host the Seventh Annual Richmond District Autumn Moon Festival on Saturday, September 9 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. It'll be held on Clement Street between Seventh and Tenth Avenues, which is accessible by Muni Bus routes 1, 28, 38, 38R, and 43.

San Mateo County leaders are looking for input on how to spend funds generated by Measure K, the half-cent sales tax extension approved by local voters. Listening sessions are underway, and I wanted to make sure your voice is heard, so that a variety of perspectives are considered.

Priority issues are in four key areas: children and families, housing and homelessness, emergency preparedness, and mental health.

While there are several meetings, two are specifically in our Assembly District:

School bells are ringing across our Assembly District again! As a father and Chair of the Assembly Budget Committee, I’m thrilled to see California continue to maintain historic funding levels for TK-12 public schools, despite a decline in state revenues.

Our per-pupil spending is nearly $24,000, which is slightly higher than last year and keeps us in the nation’s Top 20 in this category. The increase shows our commitment to transform public education. Just a decade ago, California ranked near the bottom.

Among this year’s other state budget highlights:

Early childhood experiences have important lifelong impacts. That’s why parents, educators, and state leaders strive to create educational environments where children can learn and thrive. As Assembly Budget Chair, I’m proud our latest state budget helps build these strong foundations, getting kids ready to excel in school and pursue their dreams.

Assembly District 19 has a new dental clinic that takes Medi-Cal patients! This week, I was honored to be part of the grand opening of another North East Medical Services (NEMS) location at 1033 Clement Street in San Francisco. I believe this site is a sign of greater things to come for the rest of the state, in terms of access to oral care, thanks to a recent move we’ve made in the state budget.

Grand Opening

The annual recruitment period for the California Climate Action Corps is underway! I am excited to see how the next group of young talent will transform our communities for the better. The program offers ways to collaborate with local organizations on cutting-edge environmental projects in urban greening, organic waste, wildfire recovery, and more.

California consistently falls short on housing. For decades, under-production and lack of dedicated resources have contributed to a supply and demand imbalance, leading to a statewide housing crisis. To address this, we must build more places to live to stabilize housing, and eventually lower prices for homebuyers and renters.

As your Assemblymember, affordable housing has always been one of my top priorities, and I will continue to prioritize housing production, as well as open more avenues for homeownership. Among the highlights in the 2023-24 state budget:

Some encouraging news from the California Department of Justice. Hate crimes against the Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) community decreased 43 percent in 2022. Some credit can be given to the API Equity Budget, which made historic state investments in the Asian community during the last couple of years and were aimed at stopping AAPI hate. However, despite the downward trend in numbers, we must continue this work, supporting programs that help victims and prevent violence.

Two of my bills from last year took effect this month, which I hope will have a positive impact on people’s lives. The first is relief from bridge toll penalties.

After toll takers were removed at the start of the pandemic, many drivers, especially unbanked individuals who can’t get FasTrak transponders, accumulated fines and late fees after crossing one of the Bay Area’s state-owned bridges. Some balances escalated to thousands of dollars.

The Governor just signed the remaining budget bills. As Assembly Budget Chair for the last eight budgets, I’m glad to see that our years of fiscal responsibility has positioned our state well to deal with declining revenues. This enables us to protect the progress we’ve made in key priority areas, avoid cuts to core programs and maintain a $38 billion reserve to safeguard against economic uncertainty in our new state budget. Highlights include:

Getting people off the roads and into public transit and active transportation has long been a goal of mine since I was elected to the Legislature. That’s why last year I was proud to lead the Assembly as Chair of the Budget Committee in championing $5.65 billion for transit and $1 billion for active transportation over three years.

Every year, Assemblymembers get to name an organization as their district’s Nonprofit of the Year. For 2023, I chose Japanese Community Youth Council (JCYC) because of their decades-long impact on our youth, planting the seeds to be leaders across many industries since 1970. I proudly honored them in Sacramento this month.

This is one is for the books! As the first state in the country to implement its own Universal Meals program at all public schools this past school year, California nourished millions of students and supported their academic success.

As Chair of the Assembly Budget Committee, I’m proud of the $1.2 billion investment we made to offer free breakfast and lunch to any child attending transitional kindergarten through high school, regardless of income.

Please join me at this year’s San Francisco Pride Parade for a joyous celebration of the LGBTQ+ community. It will be held on Sunday, June 25, 2023.

Many rely on buses, trains and/or ferries to get to school, work and other destinations. But the crucial services they provide are in jeopardy because the agencies running them are facing a “fiscal cliff,” – a situation in which declining fare revenue and the end of pandemic funding from the federal government could result in significant operational cuts. In addition, our Bay Area operators rely on fare box revenue to fund operations more than transit agencies in other regions such as Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas and Los Angeles.