Press Releases

Friday, January 8, 2021

Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco), Chair of the Assembly Budget Committee, released the statement below following Governor Gavin Newsom’s 2021-22 budget release:

“I’m optimistic we will reach the light at the end of the tunnel later this year, as vaccination rates increase. Until then, we must continue to stabilize Californians and small businesses struggling during these unpredictable times.  We can accomplish that by maintaining the programs and services they need, while also forging a path to economic recovery. I’m glad to see several of the Governor’s priorities are similar to those included in the Assembly Budget Blueprint, Preserve | Respond | Protect | Recover, such as:

  • Stabilization of critical programs and services: Retain reserves and restoration of past cuts
  • Persistent COVID-19 response: Continued investment in public health infrastructure, including vaccine distribution, and safe reopening of schools
  • Support For Working Families: More funding to head off homelessness and expand assistance programs, and increased refund amounts for all California Earned Income Tax Credit (CalEITC) filers
  • Economic Recovery: Prevent evictions and support mom-and-pop landlords, and invest in retraining programs for laid off workers and infrastructure strategies to prevent wildfires and stimulate green jobs while benefiting low-income communities

I’m ready to get to work, crafting a responsible plan that successfully navigates the state through the pandemic and helps us emerge stronger. We must also prepare of any more uncertainty and shore up reserves. Hearings will begin next week to give the public opportunities to weigh in, as we consider early action and shape the Governor’s plan into a final state budget before the June 15th deadline. Together, we will make sure people can rely on their government to get them through a crisis and lead the way to brighter days. ”

More information about the Preserve | Respond | Protect | Recover Budget Blueprint can be found here.

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Monday, December 28, 2020

Bills Championed by Ting  Become State Law on January 1Even in a year when COVID-19 added constraints to the legislative process, Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco) still had a successful 2020 with a number of bills taking effect on January 1, 2021, including:

           Economic Stimulus

                       AB 841 – Creates good paying green jobs to help CA’s economic recovery by:

  • Temporarily redirecting unspent energy efficiency funds to help schools upgrade their HVAC systems to improve air flow, helping to prevent the spread of the coronavirus in classrooms; new grant program can also be used to upgrade old pipes that potentially leech lead into drinking water; priority given to applications from campuses in low-income communities
  • Requiring the California Public Utilities Commission to act on its years-long application backlog of electric vehicle charging stations; faster approvals will get more people back to work

Criminal Justice Reform

AB 3234 – Allows judges to place first-time misdemeanor offenders into a diversion program; also modifies the Elderly Parole Program, so those aged 50 or above who have served a minimum of 20 years and don’t pose a public safety risk are eligible for a hearing to determine possible release

            Housing Supply

AB 3182 – Prevents homeowners associations from completely banning rental units (including Accessory Dwelling Units); permits limiting rentals to 25% of a community’s total units, so they still qualify for federal loans and insurance          

Environment

SB 212 with Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson and Assemblymember Adam Gray (2018) – Establishes a statewide take-back program for unwanted medication and needles with the help of the pharmaceutical industry. CalRecycle will be issuing regulations soon.

As with all urgency bills, Ting’s bill to help local jurisdictions address homelessness, AB 2553, took immediate effect upon the Governor’s signature in September. It grants city and county leaders the authority to temporarily suspend regulations in order to expedite the construction of emergency shelters and safe overnight parking areas.

In addition, ACR 165, designating a portion of State Route 35 in Daly City as the “Alice Peña Bulos Memorial Highway” did not require the Governor’s signature. The resolution’s passage in both houses this summer paved the way for supporters to raise private money for road signs honoring the local Filipina activist.

Finally, AB 793, the landmark law requiring manufacturers to include recycled materials in plastic CRV bottles, begins next year. Beverage containers must have at least 15% minimum recycled content in 2022, eventually reaching 50% by 2030 - the highest standard in the world.

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Thursday, December 10, 2020

2021-22 Budget Blueprint(Sacramento) - California continues to face challenges due to COVID-19. Thanks to a one-time boost in revenues, the state is in a position to not only reverse some budget cuts made last year, but also maintain critical health and human services programs. Unfortunately, however, deficits are projected in subsequent years. With that in mind, Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco), Chair of the Assembly Budget Committee, unveiled his 2021-22 Budget Blueprint, Preserve | Respond | Protect | Recover, calling for the restoration of funding in key priority areas to assist struggling Californians, while developing ways to stimulate the economy and grow reserves for future downturns.

“This is a time when people need their government the most. Until we have widespread vaccination rates, we will need to keep helping families and small businesses and provide a path to economic recovery,” said Ting. “But we can’t do this alone. Like other states, we need the federal government to step up with some relief.”

Among the highlights of Preserve | Respond | Protect | Recover:

  • Stabilization of critical programs and services: Repay school/community college deferrals; restore cuts to UC, CSU, Courts, Housing, Child Support, Health & Human Services; retain reserves
  • Persistent COVID-19 response: Continued investment in public health infrastructure; safe reopening of schools; protect vulnerable populations in nursing homes and prisons; workplace safety enforcement; greater transparency & oversight of all disaster-related funding
  • Support For Working Families: Ongoing funding to head off homelessness and expand assistance programs; implementation of TK-For-All; increase college financial aid and refund amounts for California Earned Income Tax Credit (CalEITC) filers; safeguard communities from wildfires
  • Economic Recovery: Prevent evictions and support mom-and-pop landlords; modernization of the Employment Development Department (EDD); more retraining programs for laid off workers; establish a Climate Crisis investment plan and infrastructure strategy to stimulate green jobs while benefiting low-income communities

The Budget Blueprint is here: 2021-22 Budget Blueprint

Monday, December 7, 2020

AB 10 Requires Schools To Reopen When COVID Cases Are Low(Sacramento) – Parents are worried about the effects distance learning is having on their children, especially when they look to markers such as student achievement, social development and emotional distress. Given the growing toll of shuttered classrooms, Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco) today introduced AB10, requiring public schools to reopen under most circumstances during the pandemic when infection rates drop.

“As a father, I worry about all the learning loss occurring and the millions of kids who are falling behind, as a result of our sole reliance on remote teaching – not to mention the impacts of social isolation. Schools in other states and countries have prioritized in-person learning during COVID-19 and have done so without major outbreaks. California ought to follow that path,” said Ting.

Last month’s Journal of the American Medical Association study found learning loss experienced by elementary students in the first three months of the pandemic could shorten their life span, collectively resulting in more than five million fewer years of life. Under AB10, starting March 1, 2021, schools allowed to open under state and county health orders (those in the Red, Orange, or Yellow tiers) must implement a plan to do so within two weeks, setting a clear threshold for when in-person instruction resumes. Local districts can still decide for themselves which in-person model best fits their student and workforce needs, including a hybrid format of both in-person and distance learning.

“Schools should be ready to open as soon as public health authorities allow it.  Distance learning is ineffective for many students.  We must bring students back into the classroom with safety measures in place as soon as possible to prevent further learning loss,” said Joint Author Assemblymember Patrick O’Donnell (D-Long Beach), Chair of the Assembly Education Committee.

"This bill is essential to guarantee the safe reopening of our schools. We have to make sure measures are already in place to reopen, and we must protect the kids who have fallen behind in distance learning,” said Joint Author Assemblymember Kevin McCarty (D-Sacramento), Chair of the Assembly Budget Subcommittee on Education Finance.

Monday, December 7, 2020

(Sacramento) – To ramp up California’s efforts to slash greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco) today introduced AB 33, aimed at cutting back natural gas usage in residential and commercial buildings. Natural gas is essentially comprised of methane, a pollutant that contributes to climate change.

After its release, methane is 84 times more potent than carbon dioxide over the course of two decades. Nearly 10% of the state’s carbon emissions comes from the use of water heaters, furnaces, dryers, stoves and other appliances powered by natural gas, but the percentage can be much higher in big cities.

“We need to confront rising GHG emissions by reducing these harmful air pollutants where we can. No adjustment is too small. Now that California has committed to transitioning to cleaner cars, we must take action across other sectors to help address our climate crisis and meet our goals,” said Ting.

AB 33 seeks to ban natural gas connections in new public schools and state buildings. It also prohibits utilities from subsidizing expansion of the natural gas network. For example, they could no longer grant discounts, or “allowances,” on infrastructure costs associated with new gas pipe installations.

Electricity usage has a lower carbon footprint than natural gas in California because of the state’s growing investments in renewable energy, such as solar and wind, as well as efficiencies associated with electric appliances. Electrification also decreases indoor air pollution, which contributes to respiratory problems.

The first committee hearing for AB 33 is expected to be in the Spring. If approved, AB 33 would not affect local ordinances banning natural gas in newly constructed buildings. San Francisco, Oakland, Berkeley, San Jose, and Santa Monica are among the 40 California communities approving such regulations.

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Wednesday, December 2, 2020

The San Francisco delegation, Assemblymembers Phil Ting and David Chiu, and State Senator Scott Wiener sent letters to all five school superintendents in their districts, calling on them to make a plan to bring back in-person learning. Full copies of the letters:

San Francisco Unified School District: SFUSD Letter

San Mateo County Office of Education: SMCOE Letter

Jefferson Union High School District: JUHSD Letter

Jefferson Elementary School District: JESD Letter

Bayshore Elementary School District: BESD Letter

 

Wednesday, November 25, 2020


350,000 Californians cannot access unemployment benefits because Bank of America froze their debit card or took funds away due to possible fraud. The bank must step up to help people resolve these issues. Ting is leading a bipartisan charge, urging them to do more. Read the letter: B of A Letter to CEO - FNL