June 2019 District Report
A Message from Senator Bill Dodd
June marks the start of summer so I hope you’re able to get outside and enjoy our beautiful district.
The Legislature has adopted a balanced budget that bolsters our reserves while improving essential services. A number of my own bills have advanced, including those that protect us from wildfires, help us build more houses and increase the number of credentialed teachers in our public schools.
At the same time, I’m visiting communities as often as possible. I invite you to one of my next events on June 28 at Sonoma State University in Rohnert Park where I will be convening a hearing of the joint legislative wine committee.
There is still so much to be done. 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.
In this Issue:
Senator, 3rd District
This month, the Legislature passed our state budget and sent it to the governor. It reflects Californian values, investing in areas and programs that we know work.
A priority is keeping people safe from wildfires and preventing unfair utility rate hikes to cover damages. The governor’s revised budget includes about $800 million for prevention, response and recovery, enhancing the state’s ability to tackle more frequent and complex disasters.
Other highlights of the $215 billion budget are historic levels of K-12 education funding, money for two years of free community college tuition and universal preschool for 4-year-olds. It also includes funds for my initiatives including $9.25 million in funding for atmospheric river forecasting to alleviate flooding and help water retention, $1.5 million for my community college-teacher credentialing program and more money for the Sonoma Developmental Center transition to local control.
At the same time, the budget provides $16.5 billion in total reserves, fulfilling a mandate from Californians after the last recession to end the boom-bust cycle of state revenue.
For additional details on the budget, click here.
The beauty of California extends across our district. For less than the cost of tickets to the movies, a family can spend an afternoon or an entire vacation exploring one of the many state parks in our district and throughout California.
California State Parks contain hundreds of miles of coastline, thousands of miles of hiking and riding trails, nearly 1000 miles of lake, reservoir and riverfront areas. Wild and scenic lands, underwater preserves, family friendly destinations and an incredibly diverse collection of cultural holdings are available to all comers throughout the year.
You can learn more about the State Parks and other parklands in our area by clicking here.
Over the last 5 years California has faced a serious drought. While this year’s rains provided a temporary reprieve, we’ve seen the snow pack is already melting far too early. That’s why we must all work together to protect our environment, public health, and our economy – all of which depend on clean, sustainable water supplies.
I have authored two bills in recent years to increase water storage and efficiency. However, making it through this drought and preparing for future droughts will take residents across our state working to conserve water.
Many of our local cities and water districts offer financial assistance for retrofitting water fixtures or offer incentives for saving water. Please check with your water provider to inquire about the programs available to you. For detailed water conservation tips, visit www.saveourh2o.org or www.bewaterwise.com.
While California has made meaningful strides in a number of areas over the last year, there is still much work to be done. Of particular importance this year is expanding our progress as environmental stewards, building more homes to offset the housing crisis and protecting our streams and waterways.
Here is some of the latest news coverage that may be of interest to you. As always, please contact my office if you have any questions about state policy or want to express your position or ideas for legislation.
- PG&E agrees to $1 billion settlement to towns, counties affected by wildfires
- Budget includes $9.25 million in atmospheric river research funding
- Sen. Dodd’s elder abandonment bill goes to the governor
- Dodd gives commencement address at Pacific Union College
- Newsom extends price-gouging protections to North Bay counties
- Press Democrat Editorial: Keeping the ‘sport of kings’ safer
- Governor supports Sen. Dodd’s bill to protect racing horses
- Sonoma Ecology Center is Nonprofit of the Year