January 2019 District Report
Here’s to a happy and healthy new year!
I recently introduced bills to make fixing roads faster and cheaper and to safeguard our precious waterways. In the weeks ahead, I’ll offer more bills to improve wildfire safety and help students get access to food assistance. Newly sworn Gov. Newsom released his draft budget and I will be working with him to invest in needed public services that are vital for the future of our state. At the same time, I will be frugal with your tax dollars and help maintain one of the largest rainy day funds in state history.
As a reminder, I am co-hosting an open house Feb. 1 in my district office in Napa. Please stop by and introduce yourself.
In this Issue:
- Cash for College - Grants Available
- Small Business Resources and Tax Credit
- Overview of Governor's Proposed Budget
- In the News - Universal Pre-K, Insurance Reforms & Wildfire Recovery
As always, my office is available to help you with a state agency or answer any questions you might have. You can contact me by visiting my website.
Senator, 3rd District
The application period for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which is required to access most financial aid, is now open. Paying for college can be difficult, but California has always been a leader in providing eligible students with an affordable college education.
The Cal Grant is a need-based state financial aid program that has been a big part of making college affordable for many California families. Qualified students can receive up to $12,630 in funding to attend almost any college in California – awards vary depending on economic need, grades and the college you attend.
Don't delay! The deadline to apply is March 2. For more information or to file your application, visit the California Student Aid Commission.
Undocumented students meeting certain criteria can apply for student aid through the California Dream Act program.
Additionally, we passed the California Community College Promise Program to provide tuition-free education at a Community College for one academic year for all first-time, full-time students. Learn more.
When small businesses thrive, California thrives. California’s 3.4 million small businesses are critical to the state’s economy. As a small business owner for over 25 years, I know that starting and maintaining a small business can be challenging.
The Governor's Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) has compiled valuable resources available for those currently in business and for those looking to do business in California.
GO-Biz administers the California Competes Tax Credit, which will be accepting applications from businesses that plan to add jobs and/or make new investments in California. The state will be awarding tens of millions of dollars in tax credits this fiscal year to small, medium and large companies across the state.
I hope to see local businesses take advantage of this opportunity and apply for these state resources through the California Competes Tax Credit (CCTC). Over $68 million will be available during this next application round, which takes place from March 6, 2017 through March 27, 2017. More information is available on the Go-Biz website.
The new governor, who was sworn in Jan. 7, unveiled a $209 billion spending plan that invests heavily in wildfire safety and K-12 education while continuing to sock away money in the state’s rainy day fund.
Highlights of the budget include:
- Providing universal full-day, full-year preschool for all income-eligible 4-year-olds, phased in over three years
- Increased funding to provide full-day kindergarten
- Two years of free community college tuition
- The more than doubling of the California Earned Income Tax Credit, which Sen. Dodd helped create several years ago by investing $1 billion in a new “Working Families Tax Credit” – reaching an additional 400,000 families.
- $13.6 billion to pay down debts and build reserves – including growing the state’s $13.5 billion Rainy Day Fund to more than $19 billion by 2022-23 and paying down $3 billion in CalPERS and CalSTRS pension liability
- Upgrades to the state’s 911 system, $200 million to augment Cal Fire’s firefighting capabilities, building on the $200 million for forest management approved in Sen. Dodd’s SB 901, and continuing $25 million in mutual aid prepositioning that Sen. Dodd secured in 2018.
I look forward to working with the governor in the weeks ahead as we fine-tune the budget. Please feel free to contact me if you have ideas on how we can invest in the state’s critical services.
- New bill seeks cheaper, quicker path for road projects
- Dodd demands changes to PG&E after utility files for bankruptcy
- KSRO: Sen. Dodd on Newsom budget
- Sen. Dodd calls for PG&E leadership change
- Dodd comments on Gov. Brown departure