(Sacramento) – Speaker Toni G. Atkins’ Assembly Bill 96, which would close loopholes that prevent the effective enforcement of existing California law prohibiting the sale of ivory, has been approved by the Assembly Water, Parks and Wildlife Committee. “On average, 96 elephants per day are brutally killed for their ivory, translating into an average of over 35,000 elephants per year,” said Speaker Atkins (D-San Diego). “This type of species loss is unsustainable and African elephants are now being slaughtered faster than they are being born.” Here’s more from the Speaker in this Assembly Web Report. www.asmdc.org/speaker
(Los Angeles) – California has an affordable housing shortage and homelessness problem that must be addressed. That’s why Speaker Toni G. Atkins, Treasurer John Chiang, LA Mayor Eric Garcetti and Assemblymembers Ed Chau, Jimmy Gomez, and David Chiu gathered on a rooftop in L.A. to announce the Assembly Democrats proposal to create more affordable housing in California. The plan includes establishing a permanent source of funding for affordable housing, increasing the state’s Low Income Housing Tax Credit and using a portion of the Proposition 47 funds to reduce recidivism through rapid rehousing programs. Here’s more from Speaker Atkins and others in this Assembly Web Report. http://www.asmdc.org/speaker
(Sacramento) – Assembly Speaker Toni G. Atkins (D-San Diego), responding to the University of California’s plan to further limit enrollment of California students, says she’s frustrated by the UC’s latest attempt to use students as bargaining chips by agreeing to admit 2,000 new out of state students, but threatening to limit the enrollment of new California students. Speaker Atkins says, “Proposing a cap on out of state students at two UC campuses, while increasing out of state enrollment overall, does not solve the problem. UC’s job is to educate California students, not waitlist them.” Here’s more from Speaker Atkins in this Assembly Access video. www.asmdc.org/speaker
(Los Angeles) - Speaker Toni G. Atkins was joined by California Treasurer John Chiang, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Assemblymembers Ed Chau, Jimmy Gomez, and David Chiu, and other business and local leaders as she announced the Assembly Democrats proposal to create more affordable housing in California. “Housing instability is affecting more people than ever before, including more young people and families,” said Speaker Atkins (D-San Diego). “The Assembly is taking a comprehensive approach to increasing the amount of affordable housing in our state.” Learn more in this Assembly Access video.
(Sacramento) – Governor Jerry Brown recently said that California’s students should not be “the default financiers of our colleges and universities.” California State Assembly Speaker Toni G. Atkins (D-San Diego) wholeheartedly agrees. That’s why Speaker Atkins has directed the Assembly Budget Committee to take what’s called a “zero-based budgeting” approach to the University of California to find out exactly where student and taxpayer dollars are going and if that money is being spent prudently. This line item budgeting approach was sparked when UC Regents decided to raise tuition once again.
“With the Assembly beginning our top-to-bottom review of UC’s budget, I am sure we will be able to identify savings, as well as increased state funding, that will help ensure UC remains a world-class treasure,” said Speaker Atkins. “The Assembly is also committed to capping enrollment for out-of-state students and charging those students a reasonable higher rate to ensure a UC education remains available and affordable for the California students it was built to serve.”
Watch this Assembly Access Video to learn more about the Assembly’s review of the University of California’s budget and what students and lawmakers are saying about about it
(Sacramento) – Depending on where you drive in California, our state’s crumbling and congested roadways steal as much as 90 hours a year of your time, as you wait in traffic. That’s a quality of life issue that Californians should not have to endure. California State Assembly Speaker Toni G. Atkins (D-San Diego) and the Assembly Democrats have come up with a timely and reasonable plan to fix the Golden State’s freeways, bridges and other transportation infrastructure.
“California cannot have a strong middle class or a thriving economy if our roadways are congested and people and goods cannot move efficiently throughout the state,” said Speaker Atkins. “The Assembly is stepping up and proposing $10 billion for transportation infrastructure… $2 billion per year over the next 5 years… starting in 2015-16.”
Watch this Assembly Access Video to learn more about Speaker Atkins’s transportation infrastructure plan and why California needs to get the work started right away.
(Sacramento) - Assemblymember Rob Bonta (D-Oakland) was joined by Assemblymember Reginald Jones-Sawyer (D-Los Angeles), representing the California Legislative Black Caucus; Assemblymember Tony Thurmond (D-Richmond), representing the California Latino Legislative Caucus; former Assemblymember Mike Eng; and Members of the Asian Pacific Islander (API) Caucus, as he unveiled his Assembly Bill 176, the Accounting for Health and Education in API Demographics, or the AHEAD Act, to require institutions of higher learning and health agencies to disaggregate data for specified ethnic subgroups. “The population of California is uniquely diverse, especially within the API community. And it’s so important that our policy leaders understand this diversity and are sensitive to the fact that APIs are not all the same. While we share some of the same challenges, such as language access issues, racial discrimination, and obstacles born of immigration, each of our diverse communities has different social, economic and educational outcomes that need to be addressed appropriately,” explained Bonta. Here’s more in this Assembly Access video. http://www.asmdc.org/bonta
(Sacramento) – Assembly Speaker Toni G. Atkins (D-San Diego) delivered the keynote address for the 2015 California Women’s Policy Summit at the Convention Center in Sacramento. More than 500 women, and a handful of men, filled the hall to hear Speaker Atkins comment on the issues facing women in California and how those issues fit into the larger picture of state policies. Speaker Atkins praised the work being done at the annual Women’s Policy Summit, “The proposals and action plans developed at this summit will be important tools to make progress on the issues that brought us together today.” Here’s more in this Assembly Access video.
Assembly Speaker Toni G. Atkins responds to reporters moments after Gov. Edmund G. Brown Jr. delivered his unprecedented fourth inaugural address in the Assembly Chamber, Jan. 5, 2015.
(Sacramento) – Assembly Speaker Toni G. Atkins (D-San Diego) says Governor Brown’s remarks to the Legislature today – which served as both his record setting 4th inaugural address and State of the State speech – did a great job setting the foundation for serious discussions in the coming year. Speaker Atkins says she especially appreciated the Governor’s emphasis on long term solutions to the pressing infrastructure needs of California and the proper implementation of health care and social safety net programs.
(Sacramento) – A little pomp and circumstance before the real work begins, as 15 newly elected democrats are sworn-in as California State Assemblymembers at the State Capitol in Sacramento, retaining the democratic majority. Speaker Toni G. Atkins (D-San Diego) led the special session of the State Assembly and praised the Assembly’s freshman class for the accomplishments and experience they possess to do the people’s business. Speaker Atkins also tasked the new Members, as well as veteran Members of the Assembly, to take California to new heights.
“Although California is heading in the right direction, we still have a lot of work to do, from addressing the state’s drought, to improving our education system,” said Speaker Atkins. “We’re ready to get to work.”
Watch this Assembly Web Report to hear more from Speaker Atkins and to learn more about California’s newest democratic Assemblymembers.