Everyone should have access to a job that pays them well and expands their skills. I have been leading efforts to bring new jobs to the district by expanding existing job-creation programs and investing in the infrastructure improvements that will attract new businesses to our area. By expanding high-speed internet access throughout the district, we’ll be able to attract clean energy and tech jobs and improve the competitiveness of existing businesses.
As Chair of the Agriculture Committee, I will continue to work to protect our water and our local farms. I have lived in a farming community my entire life and understand the importance of agriculture to our region. I continue to stand up for our farmers, who are the backbone of our local economy, and I am proud of the bill I authored - The Farmworker Housing Act of 2019 that was signed into law, that provides quality, dignified housing for farmworkers.
Astronomical housing costs have made the dream of homeownership unaffordable for many residents of the district, and costs are rising every year. California must develop more affordable housing while preserving and rehabilitating our current supply. I strongly support increased housing density where appropriate. Higher density results in more affordable housing, creates a smaller footprint (which is better for the environment), and makes provision of public services more efficient. I am proud of the affordable housing bill I authored that identifies surplus government property and builds housing on these sites, which may have been overlooked or unknown.
As a parent and former educator, this issue is extremely important to me. We must do a better job of preparing our students for higher education, and for the job market. California must make a greater investment in public education and ensure that its curriculum is adequately preparing students for the challenges they will face in a rapidly changing economic landscape. I am excited to have co-authored the Golden State Teacher Grant Program which provides grants for students in exchange for their commitment to teaching in a shortage area, including STEM and Special Education.
We live in one of the most beautiful and diverse natural environments in the United States. I stood up to big oil during the successful fight to ban fracking that threatened our groundwater. In the Assembly, I am an advocate for renewable energy and environmental justice, and a fierce opponent of the special interests that damage our planet in the pursuit of profits. I authored the oil spills safety bill AB-936, which addresses response contingency planning and ensures that safety standards are regularly updated to incorporate the best possible tools for oil clean-up. I am proud to have spearheaded environmental justice legislation that updates the state’s definition of “environmental justice” to include the “meaningful involvement” of people of all races, cultures, incomes, and national origins.
I believe access to quality health care is a fundamental right. No one should be forced to choose between paying for food or rent and taking a sick child to a doctor. As the world’s sixth largest economy, California should set the example for the rest of the country by leading the way in expanding public access to high-quality healthcare. In response to COVID-19, I fought to ensure prioritization of ag workers for PPE and testing and put forward a bill to fund outreach and informational campaigns for our workers to help protect the health and safety of our ag employees and our food supply chain.
ROADS & TRANSPORTATION
Our roads are in desperate need of maintenance. Traffic congestion is a daily headache for many residents of the district. To protect our quality of life and reduce pollution, we need urgent solutions to our transportation problems. I have been working with community leaders and with my colleagues in Sacramento to secure additional funding for our district and speed up the pace of much-needed maintenance and repairs. We must think creatively about long-term solutions, including increased investments in public transportation.