State Parks are back in business! For less than the cost of tickets to the movies, a family can spend an afternoon or an entire vacation exploring their state parks. Read More
Statement from Assembly Speaker Toni G. Atkins (D-San Diego)
“The Governor’s signature is the next step for a prudent and progressive budget that will make California a better place to live, work and play. We are sending more money to schools, helping working families by expanding child care and preschool and establishing a state Earned Income Tax Credit, and we improve higher education funding and financial aid. The budget the Governor signed today makes important investments and pays down debt while adding to state reserves. It is not only a reflection of our state’s economic health, but a plan that will continue to help build California’s fiscal fitness.
“While the budget signed today is clearly the best one we’ve had in years, there is more work to do on Medi-Cal, DDS and infrastructure. Today, I will be appointing the members of the Assembly committees for the special sessions that have been called on health care and infrastructure. Those committees will take the lead in resolving the important issues still before us.”
(Sacramento) – Assembly Speaker Toni G. Atkins (D-San Diego) joined over 100 small business owners from across the state for the 2015 California Small Business Day at the Sacramento Convention Center. Speaker Atkins praised small businesses for being the “economic engine that drives California.” Eighty two small businesses were honored for their hard work and success. Speaker Atkins recognized “The Belly Up”, a premier live music venue in San Diego for the past 40 years. It’s hosted diverse artists from Etta James to Jimmy Buffet to the Red Hot Chili Peppers to Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga. Here’s more from the Speaker in this Assembly Access video.
This appeared in the Huffington Post on June 5, 2015.
To a young woman facing an unplanned pregnancy and few health care options, the promise of a free pregnancy test and medical advice from a crisis pregnancy center sounds like a saving grace. Yet, in reality, many crisis pregnancy centers are not licensed medical facilities; they are not qualified to preform medical procedures and often use misinformation and scare tactics, such as linking contraception to disease and depression, in order to convince vulnerable women that the only reproductive choices available take place after a pregnancy is carried to term.
An investigative report by NARAL Pro-Choice California found that 91% of crisis pregnancy centers told women that abortion was linked to breast cancer, infertility, miscarriage or suicide. These centers often push resources for pre-natal care or adoption services, but refuse to inform women of alternate options such as contraception or abortion. Nor do they disclose to patients that their facility is unlicensed and therefore not subject to privacy-protection laws like doctors' offices or medical clinics.
SACRAMENTO—The following bills by Speaker Toni G. Atkins (D-San Diego) have passed out of the Assembly this week and now move to the Senate for consideration:
AB 96 – This bill closes loopholes that prevent the effective enforcement of existing California law prohibiting the sale of ivory. On average, 96 elephants per day are brutally killed for their ivory, translating to an average of more than 35,000 elephants per year. This type of species loss is unsustainable. African elephants are now being slaughtered faster than they are being born, eventually resulting in their extinction.
Assembly Speaker Toni G. Atkins (D-San Diego) recently hosted the State Bar of California’s Public Protection Town Hall to help San Diego residents learn how to ward off “Schemes, Scams & Rip-offs.” The panel included experts from the California Statewide Law Enforcement Association, the California Bureau of Real Estate, the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office and the Educating Seniors Project. Preventing fraud, Speaker Atkins said, is possible when we make the effort and inform “ourselves and our communities.” That knowledge is important, said Kenneth Ehrman of the CSLEA, who warned the crowd, “if I called everybody in this room, at least five of you would give me enough information to steal your identity.” The experts covered a variety of scams in the 90-minute town hall, including identity theft, real estate fraud and financial services fraud. For some of the highlights, see this Assembly Access video. www.asmdc.org/speaker
SACRAMENTO—Legislation that would help boost small businesses passed out of the Assembly today on a 69-0 vote. AB 437 by Speaker Toni G. Atkins would allow small businesses to receive a grant from the state in proportion to the amount of research and development tax credits they have earned, but have had trouble using.
“Small businesses are crucial to California’s economy and we must be creative in supporting these job-creators so they can succeed,” said Speaker Atkins (D-San Diego). “Establishing a grant program as part of the California Research Tax Credit helps small businesses by allowing them to cash out some of the research and development tax credits they receive. They can then pour those resources back into their businesses, leading to growth and overall momentum for the state economy.”
SACRAMENTO—A bill that would close loopholes that prevent the effective enforcement of existing California law prohibiting the sale of ivory today passed the Assembly today. Speaker Toni G. Atkins’ AB 96 moves to the Senate for consideration after a 53-12 vote.
“California is a top market for ivory with illegal sales of ivory estimated to have doubled over the past eight years,” said Speaker Atkins (D-San Diego). “Today we closed a loophole that had kept California a leading market in the sale of illegal ivory. By passing AB 96, we make it harder for illegal sellers to hide and we better protect elephants and rhinos from senseless slaughter and extinction.”
SACRAMENTO—Assembly Speaker Toni G. Atkins and the Assembly architects of the state’s expanded Film and Television Production Tax Credit, Assemblymembers Ian Calderon, Mike Gatto and Adrin Nazarian, today welcomed the announcement that the first new projects have been approved under the expanded program.
According to the California Film Commission, 11 projects have been selected to receive tax credits under the new Film and Television Tax Credit Program 2.0, which expanded funding from $100 million to $330 million annually. The projects include six new TV series, one TV pilot, and four TV series relocating to California. The program’s first application period, held May 11-17, was open only to television projects scheduled to begin production on or after July 1.
(Sacramento) – The State Assembly has given final approval to legislation to keep the San Diego River Conservancy operating beyond 2020. Authored by Speaker Toni G. Atkins (D-San Diego), Assembly Bill 392 removes the sunset provision on the San Diego River Conservancy, ensuring its permanence. “Over the past 13 years the San Diego River Conservancy has established its value in the region,” said Speaker Atkins. “The Conservancy has allocated $20 million in state funds for the watershed while leveraging millions more in federal, local and private funds. With the conservancy’s success, the time has come for it to join with its fellow conservancies as a permanent agency of the state.” Here’s more from the Speaker in this Assembly Access video. http://www.asmdc.org/speaker
SACRAMENTO—To urge all citizens to join in celebrating the many contributions of women to our military forces, the Assembly today passed Speaker Toni G. Atkins’ ACR 33, which proclaims June 12, 2015 as Women Veterans Day.
“Women are an integral part of our armed services and their contributions to our nation’s defense have often been overlooked,” said Speaker Atkins (D-San Diego). “Today, California is home to nearly 166,000 women veterans. This population is sure to grow as the many women who currently dedicate themselves in all branches of our armed forces complete their service and return home. It is important that we officially recognize the contributions and the sacrifices of women veterans.”
SACRAMENTO—The Assembly today passed two environmental bills by Speaker Toni G. Atkins. AB 392 removes the sunset on the San Diego River Conservancy, ensuring the permanence of the Conservancy. AB 1071 requires the California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA) to establish policies that will help communities most in need of environmental justice.
“Over the past 13 years the San Diego River Conservancy has established its value in the region,” said Speaker Atkins (D-San Diego). “The Conservancy has allocated $20 million in state funds for the watershed while leveraging millions more in federal, local and private funds. With the conservancy’s success, the time has come for it to join with its fellow conservancies as a permanent agency of the state.”