eAlerts

Today is World Mental Health Day, a time to raise awareness about this issue. In California, nearly one in six adults experiences some sort of mental illness. While suicide hotlines have been around for years, we shouldn’t wait until people are in crisis to help them.

The legislative year ended Friday, and while there's still work to do to make California a better place to live, I'm proud of our accomplishments. Through the state budget, I was able to secure nearly $40 million more dollars for San Francisco to help address its homeless crisis. Funds from the prior year were used for this week's expansion of the Navigation Center at Division Circle and will be used to open the Navigation Center at 1925 Evans, as announced this summer. The latest infusion of state money will lead to even more openings.

 

Gilroy. El Paso. Dayton.

The latest mass shootings have renewed talk about the need for strong red flag laws, which create a court process to temporarily take away someone’s firearms because of the danger they pose to themselves or others. 17 states have a variation of such laws in effect, including ours. A dozen of them were enacted after the 2018 Parkland, FL school shooting.

Facial recognition technology is not ready for prime time. Case in point: the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) recently ran the photos of all 120 California lawmakers against an arrest database, and the software incorrectly matched mugshots with 26 legislators, including me – even though I have never been arrested. Even more disturbing, more than half of the falsely identified were people of color.

California is in the midst of a housing and homeless crisis. For decades, we have not been building enough housing units. As demand exceeded supply, prices skyrocketed, pushing families to live farther from their jobs, or worse, forcing them onto the streets.

I’m proud the new 2019-2020 state budget takes significant steps to address these issues, dedicating $2.75 billion toward housing and homeless solutions - the largest investment in recent history. Highlights include:

Housing

Roughly half of the country’s zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs), 613,000 clean cars, can be found on California roads today. But the state has a long way to go to reach its goal of five million clean cars by 2030. That’s why I introduced AB 1046, which reforms the way we give rebates to consumers who buy or lease ZEVs, so people make the switch sooner rather than later.

California begins its new fiscal year with an incredible and historic state budget - one that makes me proud to be the Chair of the Assembly Budget Committee. Throughout the month of July, I'll highlight some of the investments we've made and how they will make life better for our residents.

With two daughters in public schools, I'm excited to see the state devoting additional resources to public education. From early childhood through college, we want to make sure every kid has the opportunity to succeed.

Dear Friend,

I’ve never been more proud to hail from California. Our state has the largest LGBT population in the country and is home to more than 40 local pride celebrations, from San Francisco to Palm Springs. We have always unofficially observed the month of June as LGBT Pride Month. But this year, for the first time, California officially proclaimed June as LGBT Pride Month, under state statute. Governor Newsom eagerly carrying out his official duty is a reminder of how great California is. People here are encouraged to embrace who they are and who they love.  

It's time to talk about our plastic problem. All those plastic beverage bottles we use are piling up in landfills. Why? Because there's very little demand for used plastic materials, and China and other overseas markets are refusing to buy any more of our waste. These containers now have nowhere to go but warehouses and landfills … or worse, our environment. By one estimate, there will be more plastic in our oceans than fish by 2050 if we don't do anything about our plastic bottle dilemma.

Momentum is building to move California toward e-receipts. A few days ago, the Los Angeles Times Editorial Board endorsed my bill, AB 161, which allows consumers to choose whether they want a paper proof-of-purchase, an electronic version, or nothing at all. In today’s digital age, the Board calls physical receipts wasteful and bad for your health. Please click here to read more.

San Francisco’s famous Lombard Street sees more than two million visitors a year. The crowds and traffic congestion have become too much for the neighborhood, especially during the summer months. The problem has increasingly become a public safety issue and is negatively affecting the quality of life for area residents.

On Monday, April 22, we will celebrate the 49th anniversary of Earth Day, a recognition of our support and commitment to the environment. As Californians, it’s in our DNA to do what’s best for our planet. We adopted the nation’s first vehicle emissions and energy efficiency standards; enacted policies aimed at preserving the wilderness and coastline; and invested in clean technology. Reducing and recycling waste are also second nature to us.