Wednesday, October 18, 2017

California has the highest population of homeless residents in the country, an especially acute problem in the metropolitan regions of the Bay Area and Los Angeles. This week, Governor Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill 932, which would expedite local approval of temporary supportive shelters on public land under the declaration of a shelter crisis. City governments in Berkeley, Oakland, San Francisco, San Diego, and Los Angeles have already declared a shelter crisis, with over 70% of their homeless populations remaining unsheltered.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

A bill to provide for a renters’ rebate for low-income California tenants passed a key committee earlier today. Co-sponsored by Tenants Together, the bill addresses a central demand of the Renters’ Day of Action held in Sacramento earlier this year. The bill is co-authored by Assembly Members Phil Ting (D – San Francisco) and Tom Daly (D – Anaheim). 

The bill comes on the heels of a report by the California Housing Partnership showing that rents surged 20% statewide from 2000-2012, while median income fell by 8%. Cost-burdened renters are struggling and need help. At the hearing, speakers emphasized the need for greater equity, as homeowners currently receive a range of tax advantages, while renters receive virtually nothing.

Monday, October 28, 2013

The .45-caliber pistol that killed Lucas Heagren, 3, on Memorial Day last year at his Ohio home had been temporarily hidden under the couch by his father. But Lucas found it and shot himself through the right eye. “It’s bad,” his mother told the 911 dispatcher. “It’s really bad.”

A few days later in Georgia, Cassie Culpepper, 11, was riding in the back of a pickup with her 12-year-old brother and two other children. Her brother started playing with a pistol his father had lent him to scare coyotes. Believing he had removed all the bullets, he pointed the pistol at his sister and squeezed the trigger. It fired, and blood poured from Cassie’s mouth.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Within minutes of the Asiana Airlines Flight 214 crash in July, San Francisco General Hospital administrators knew they needed language translation services to help victims of this horrific accident. The hospital's medical staff put out the call for anyone who could interpret, and hospital personnel were able to communicate with the injured by asking Korean-speaking staff to double as interpreters. These patients were fortunate that San Francisco General found enough medical interpreters, but the unfortunate truth is that access to translation services is a major gap in our health care throughout the state.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Bill would give property tax breaks to landowners who lease their parcels to urban farmers

Small-scale farming isn’t easy. The prices farmers receive for their goods are often low, the margins are tight, the days are long, and the chores never-ending. For farmers who don’t own their own property, land insecurity compounds financial instability. It’s tough to really dig in if you don’t know how long you can stay on the piece you’re farming.

Friday, February 15, 2013

State Assemblyman Phil Ting announced legislation today that would provide tax relief for people in same-sex relationships who receive health care benefits from their partner.

Currently, health benefits in same-sex partnerships are taxed by the federal government as income, although some California companies reimburse that tax to their employees.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Gun owners in California would have to buy liability insurance to cover any damage caused by their firearms under legislation proposed Tuesday by two state lawmakers.

AB 231 was introduced by Democratic Assemblymen Jimmy Gomez of Echo Park and Phil Ting of San Francisco in the wake of the killing of 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut.