SACRAMENTO – Today, Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Senate Bill 107, a measure to address the remaining redevelopment agency bond proceeds that have sat idle since the 2011 dissolution of redevelopment. This legislation represents a compromise between the California Legislature and the Department of Finance. The agreement will resolve ongoing issues with the definitions of redevelopment loans and the interest rates that apply them. Assemblymember Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica) has authored multiple pieces of legislation to address the fallout from redevelopment’s dissolution and actively participated in the negotiations that led to the successful passage of SB 107. Assemblymember Bloom made the following statement on this historic agreement:
“I applaud Governor Brown for signing this important legislation. I was serving as an elected city official when redevelopment was dissolved and many cities were left with unresolved issues. In some cases, these issues resulted in an inability to break ground on important projects or, worse, litigation. Since being elected to the Legislature in 2012, I have worked diligently with cities and stakeholders throughout the state to resolve these remaining issues,” said Assemblymember Bloom. “The compromise signed by the Governor today will have many positive impacts across the state. Releasing a substantial portion of the redevelopment bond proceeds for their intended projects, including funding for affordable housing and parks, will generate thousands of jobs and create hundreds of millions of dollars in statewide economic activity, as well as millions of dollars in state and local tax revenues."
SACRAMENTO – Today, the California Legislature and the Department of Finance reached an agreement on the remaining redevelopment agency bond proceeds that have sat idle since the dissolution of redevelopment. Furthermore, the agreement will resolve ongoing issues with the definitions of redevelopment loans and the interest rates that apply them. In 2011, facing a severe budget shortfall, the Governor and Legislature dissolved redevelopment agencies and redirected an annual amount of $1.7 billion away from various community development and affordable housing projects. Unfortunately, many redevelopment agencies had already legally issued bonds for local projects and were forced to make debt payments even though they cannot reap the economic benefits of projects stalled by the dissolution. Statewide, approximately $715 million in 2011 redevelopment bond proceeds have sat untouched. Prior to today’s compromise, cities were expected to make debt payments for a decade, costing them nearly $1 billion while not completing a single redevelopment project with these bond proceeds.
Legislation would give California the strongest protections in the country
SACRAMENTO – Legislation to ban micro-plastic particle abrasives, commonly referred to as “microbeads,” from being used in products such as facial scrubs, soaps, and toothpaste was approved by the state Assembly and is now on its way to the Governor’s desk. The legislation, AB 888, authored by Assemblymember Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica), would set up the strongest protections in the country against the use of these unnecessary and toxic micro-plastic beads.
SACRAMENTO –Assemblymember Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica) has announced that Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins has reappointed him to the Budget Conference Committee. This will be Assemblymember Bloom’s second year serving on the committee. He will be joined by Assemblymembers Shirley Weber (D-San Diego) and Melissa Melendez (R-Lake Elsinore).
“Providing a balanced and responsible Budget is one of the most important functions of the Legislature,” stated Assemblymember Bloom. “In recent years, the Legislature has worked diligently with the Governor to produce budgets that reduced debt and encouraged responsible spending. I look forward to working with my Assembly and Senate colleagues to craft a budget that will promote economic stability and plan for a sustainable future for California.”
SACRAMENTO – Last week, AJR 16, authored by Assemblymembers Eduardo Garcia, Richard Bloom and Evan Low, and sponsored by Equality California, was introduced in the State Assembly in response to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) new blood donor guidelines that continue to discriminate against gay and bisexual men. The new proposed guidelines would prohibit blood donation from all sexually active gay and bisexual men. Specifically, all men who have had sex with another man within the past 12 months would be prohibited from donating blood. The resolution calls on President Barack Obama to encourage the Secretary of Health and Human services to direct the FDA to develop science-based guidelines that focus on risk-assessment of individuals instead of discriminatory standards that discriminate against gay and bisexual men.
SACRAMENTO – Legislation that would impose a fee on distributors of sugary drinks and create a dedicated revenue source to address the alarming health impacts of childhood obesity, diabetes and heart disease failed the Assembly Health Committee today by four votes. The Legislation, AB 1357, authored by Assemblymember Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica) and jointly sponsored by the American Heart Association, Latino Coalition for a Healthy California, and California Dental Association and supported by numerous health advocates around the state, would generate an estimated $3 billion a year to prevent and treat obesity, diabetes, heart and dental disease. Currently, California does not allocate any state funds towards the prevention and treatment of diabetes.
“I am disappointed that the committee failed to act today on one of the biggest health crises facing our nation,” said Bloom. “Diabetes is now the seventh largest cause of death in the nation. If current trends aren’t reversed, one-in-three children born after 2000—and specifically one-in-two African-American or Hispanic children—are expected to develop type 2 diabetes. The overwhelming view of health experts is that the single most significant cause of obesity and diabetes is overconsumption of sugar.”
Assemblymember Richard Bloom presents AB 1357, legislation that that would impose a fee on distributors of sugary drinks and create a dedicated revenue source to address the alarming health impacts of childhood obesity, diabetes and heart disease, before the Assembly Health Committee on May 12th, 2015. The legislation was supported by the American Heart Association, Latino Coalition for a Healthy California, California Dental Association, California Nurses Association and approximately 80 other health advocacy organizations around the state and would generate an estimated $3 billion a year to prevent and treat obesity, diabetes, heart and dental disease. Currently, California does not allocate any state funds towards the prevention and treatment of diabetes.
Assemblymember Richard Bloom unveils his legislation to fight childhood obesity, diabetes, and heart disease at a press conference in Sacramento on Monday, May 4th, 2015. Joining him are Eric Batch, Vice President of Advocacy for the American Heart Association, Alice Benjamin with the Council of Black Nurses Los Angeles Chapter, Dr. Raul Gutierrez with the Youth Heart Health Center & La Clinica de la Raza, Xavier Morales, Executive Director for the Latino Coalition For A Healthy California, and Rebecca Berner, Mexico’s Alianza por la Salud Alimentaria (Nutritional Health Alliance).
SACRAMENTO – Legislation by Assemblymember Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica) that seeks to clarify existing law and eliminate a falsely perceived barrier to allowing the recycling of biosynthetic motor oils, a biodegradable and nontoxic alternative to traditional motor oil passed its first legislative hurdle yesterday evening. The bill, AB 628, passed the Assembly Environmental Safety and Toxic Materials Committee on a 6-1 vote.
“The market for recycled biosynthetic oil, a much cleaner alternative to tradition motor oil, has been severely restricted by a misinterpretation of the law,” said Bloom. “By making this seemingly simple clarification to existing law, we will take a major step in reducing our reliance on foreign oil and accelerating our transition away from dirtier fossil fuels.”
California will attempt to have strongest protections in the country
SACRAMENTO – A proposed ban of mirco-plastic particle abrasives, commonly referred to as “microbeads,” from being used in products such as facial scrubs, soaps, and toothpaste passed the Assembly Environmental Safety and Toxic Materials Committee late yesterday on a 6-0 vote. The legislation, AB 888, authored by Assemblymember Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica), would set up the strongest protections in the country against the use of these unnecessary and toxic additives.
“Toxic microbeads are accumulating in our rivers, lakes and oceans at alarmingly high levels. We can and must act now,” said Bloom. “Continuing to use these harmful and unnecessary plastics when natural alternatives are widely available is simply irresponsible and will only result in significant cleanups costs to taxpayers who will have to foot the bill to restore our already limited water resources and ocean health.”