It is an honor and privilege to represent you in the California State Assembly. As your Assemblymember, I am working to protect our environment, create good jobs, lower the cost of prescription drugs, and combat the deadly fentanyl crisis.
This is a summary of the bills that I have introduced this legislative session:
Chair, Select Committee on Green Innovation
California is uniquely well-positioned to be the birthplace for the breakthroughs and innovations that will enable California and the world to solve the climate crisis. As Chair of the Assembly Select Committee on Green Innovation, I am working to ensure that California’s policy, rules and regulations are aligned to foster the burgeoning green innovation economy – and to achieve climate action on a global scale.
AB 508 will help law enforcement hold corporate polluters accountable by expanding the probation time limit for business entities convicted of environmental crimes. This will enable law enforcement agencies to ensure that corporate polluters complete the terms and conditions of their probation – a critical step to protect our local environment.
AB 655 – Protecting Marine Ecosystems from Invasive Species
Orange County oceans have been plagued by an invasive, non-native green alga called, Caulerpa, which kills native seaweeds and steals habitat from native marine life. AB 655 will ban the use of Caulerpa in California aquariums and require a safe alternative, in order to protect our delicate marine ecosystem.
The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 has made billions in federal dollars available for climate infrastructure. By cutting unnecessary “green tape,” California will be primed to optimally leverage these resources. AB 1182 will better align state and federal environmental regulations to enable California to take the action needed to achieve our critical climate goals. In addition, this bill will align state incentives and with federal monies to help meet California’s energy, water, air quality, and climate objectives.
California has enacted aggressive clean energy goals, but in order to meet them, we need a detailed and comprehensive ‘top down’ roadmap with benchmarks so the Legislature and the public can assess progress accurately, and, if needed, adjust course. AB 585 requires the California Council on Science and Technology to perform a bi-annual literature review of California’s various climate action agendas to access the projects and their timelines to ensure that they are achieving the quantities of renewable energy to meet our climate change goals.
Prescription drugs are the fastest growing share of healthcare costs in America. A significant share of this growth has been the result of profiteering by Pharmacy Benefit Managers – middlemen who sit between drug companies and your pharmacist and extract billions from the healthcare value chain. AB 913 will lower prescription drug costs by strengthening consumer protections and limiting rebates for Pharmacy Benefit Managers.
AB 1338 will add fitness and wellness services to the list of pre-approved Community Supports under California Advancing and Improving Medi-Cal (CalAIM) In-Lieu of Services (ILOS) program. Extensive research demonstrates that access to fitness and wellness services lowers healthcare costs and improve healthcare outcomes. This policy will advance health equity, improve quality of life and provide long-term healthcare savings for Medi-Cal recipients.
AB 90 will enhance our healthcare system by expanding access to long-acting reversible contraception. Expanded access to long-acting reversible contraception is an important step to help reduce unintended and short-interval pregnancies.
California’s constitution protects the legal right to abortion. But this right is meaningless without real access – and ensuring that providers are able to obtain malpractice insurance is a critical element to ensure access to services. AB 571 will prohibit an insurer from refusing to insure a health provider with malpractice insurance solely because they offer abortion or contraceptive services, and will prohibit an insurer from charging an arbitrary fee or surcharge to a health provider for providing those services.
California’s first in the nation Armed & Prohibited Persons System (APPS) helps keep guns out of dangerous hands – enabling law enforcement to remove weapons from people who have been convicted of a felony or if a judge has issued a mental health, domestic violence or other prohibition. But the program only works if it is being implemented effectively. AB 818 will improve the program by providing clear requirements for when and how weapons are to be removed once a Gun Violence Restraining Order is issued by a judge.
Fentanyl is one of the most deadly and dangerous substances in the world – just two milligrams, the equivalent of two grains of sand, is enough to kill. The fentanyl crisis has spilled from our streets into the virtual world, where traffickers target kids on platforms like Snapchat and Instagram. AB 955 increases the penalties for those caught selling fentanyl online.
Our second bill to address the fentanyl crisis, AB 1027 will strengthen protections online by requiring social media companies to store data for 168 hours to support law enforcement investigations. The bill also holds social media companies accountable by making them financially liable for trafficking and deaths that occur on their platforms.
JOBS & THE ECONOMY
AB 366 is a comprehensive approach to address major workforce shortages in county human services programs. This bill will adjust the minimum qualifications for counties using the state-administered Merit system when a county has a 20% or greater job opening rate and will establish a grant program to support the recruitment and hiring of people from underprivileged and underrepresented populations. In addition, AB 366 will establish a stipend program in rural counties for community college students, leveraging a federal match for training.
AB 743 follows the lead of 41 other states and permits a notary public to register with the Secretary of State and perform their duties online. This common-sense bill is good for both business and for consumers.
AB 1105 will leverage California’s tax code to provide growth capital for promising early-stage companies, enabling entrepreneurs and small business owners to further invest in expansion and development at a critical juncture in their growth. AB 1105 would allow small and start-up companies to sell their unused California Net Operating Loss (NOL) to eligible buyers, who would be able to purchase tax credits at a discount and apply them to reduce taxable income.
California is experiencing a crisis-level shortage of veterinarians. AB 1237 will attract existing veterinary professionals to practice where the need is the greatest by providing state funding to apply towards educational debt in exchange for their commitment to work for a California animal shelter or in communities in need for a minimum of five years. Funding for the program will be distributed by the California Student Aid Commission.
As wildfires have become an ever increasing reality in California, more and more victims receive financial settlements. These settlements are an essential component to help victims recover and rebuild. AB 294 will exempt California taxpayers who suffered damage from a wildfire or natural disaster and subsequently received a monetary settlement from paying state income tax on it – a statewide continuation of several specific exemptions the Legislature has already made for victims.
AB 52 will incentivize long-term investments and generate growth in the manufacturing industry in California by providing qualified entities a state tax credit equal to what they pay in local sales taxes for qualified manufacturing equipment. Ultimately, manufacturers will be able to grow, hire, and train skilled work forces for the future and provide high wage job for Californians.
ACCOUNTABILITY & OVERSIGHT
Chair, Assembly Committee on Accountability & Administrative Review
As Chair of the Assembly Committee on Accountability & Administrative Review, my role is to review and study the implementation, operation and effectiveness of state programs and agencies. My top priorities are to ensure that government is working for you, the people we serve, and that your tax dollars are being spent efficiently and effectively.
As devastating wildfires have ravaged the Golden State, California has made historic investments to combat wildfires and improve climate resilience. AB 788 will ensure that these historic investments deliver historic results, providing state policymakers and taxpayers with comprehensive data and information on state and federal investments into wildfire and forest resilience programs. This bill will ensure that taxpayer dollars are used effectively toward reducing the main drivers of catastrophic wildfires and improve the resilience of increasingly vulnerable communities.
AB 39 strikes a balance between protecting consumers from harm and fostering a responsible innovation environment. Under AB 39, digital financial asset companies such as cryptocurrency exchanges must be licensed by January 1, 2025, which will provide necessary regulatory clarity for both industry and California consumers.