California’s gas taxes are the highest in the nation, and they are set to go even higher. Most of you probably know that we have yearly, built in gas tax increases, and they are scheduled to go up by another two cents per gallon on July 1st.
Last week, the Governor released his “May Revise,” which is based on revenues received since January when the preliminary $291.5 billion budget proposal ($208.7 General Fund) was released. The Revise now estimates a $27 billion budget deficit, even though a report from the Legislative Analyst’s Office forecasts a much higher deficit of $55 billion.
Encouraging young women to fulfill their life’s potential by taking full advantage of available educational opportunities is one of my passions. As a member of the Legislative Women’s Caucus, I am happy to spread the word about the Minerva Scholarship program, established by the Women in California Leadership Foundation to educate, support and empower young women and girls.
As many of you know I have served on the Assembly Health Committee for most of my term in the State Legislature, and I am now the Committee’s Vice Chair. The Committee’s jurisdiction includes healthcare, behavioral and mental health, medical insurance, Medi-Cal and other public healthcare programs, and long-term care licensing. The lives of millions of Californians are impacted by legislation that comes before this committee.
As you know, the placement of Sexually Violent Predators (SVPs) in rural areas of California, including San Diego County, has been an ongoing problem. SVPs have been placed in Jacumba Hot Springs, Campo, Boulevard, Borrego Springs and other locations, often near homes, parks and schools.
In 2011, the legislature worked in an effort to abolish California’s Redevelopment Districts (RDAs). Although some RDAs were poorly managed, their abolition deprived cities of an important tool that had often been successfully used to stimulate business, create new housing and revitalize blighted areas, especially for older cities  
Millions of children and young adults throughout the nation are active social media users. Last week two bills dealing with social media’s impact on child and adolescent mental health passed the Assembly Health Committee.
Last week Assembly Bill 1965 (AB 1965), introduced by Assemblywoman Blanca Rubio (D – Baldwin Park), passed the Assembly Health Committee, where I serve as Vice Chair. Once implemented, AB 1965 will take aim at the public healthcare crisis impacting tribal communities throughout California.
There are 99 legislative chambers throughout the 50 states.  Of these, 16 states have enacted term limits, including California. Other term limited states include Ohio, Florida, Missouri, Michigan, Arizona, Kansas and Nevada.
California is the country’s leading agricultural state. In recognition of the importance of agriculture to our economy, ceremonies recognizing Ag Day were held at the State Capitol March 19th.