State Legislative Update for West Sacramento

State Legislative Update for West Sacramento

By: Assemblymember Kevin McCarty

 

2017 marked one of the most productive years in memory for the California State Legislature.

We addressed a number of issues important to West Sacramentans and affirmed California’s progressive approach to the challenges we face. Though many of this year’s achievements aim to set a bright future for the next generation, many successes will be felt right away, right here in our local neighborhoods.

Let’s take cap-and-trade as an example.

The Legislature voted to extend California’s cap-and-trade program through 2030, sending a strong, bipartisan message to the world: California will take an aggressive and responsible approach to fighting climate change to protect our environment for our children, and will do so in a way that keeps our economy booming.

The program can be illustrated by several noteworthy local projects in West Sacramento.

In November, the California Natural Resource Agency awarded the City of West Sacramento $5.1 million from cap-and-trade funding to construct the Sycamore Trail Pedestrian Over-crossing, a bicycle and pedestrian route over Highway 50 that will connect Westmore Oaks Elementary School with the future Joey Lopes Park.

This new connection will especially benefit Westmore Oaks Elementary students living north of the freeway — about half of the school’s entire enrollment — and will serve as a new safe route to school that will also increase the mobility of non-motorized users.

Another significant Cap-And-Trade funded project in West Sacramento include the infill-housing West Gateway Place project off Capitol Avenue which provide affordable homes to 77 families and a $30 million earmark for the joint Sacramento/West Sacramento Street Car project.

This summer I proudly helped pass SB1, the Traffic Congestion and Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017.

West Sacramentans traveling to and from work will benefit from road improvements and new HOV lanes on Interstate 5 from Natomas to South Sacramento and Highway 50 from downtown Sacramento to Watt Avenue and along Interstate 80 in Yolo County. The City of West Sacramento will receive an additional $1.2 million annually to repair aging streets — which will roughly double the City road maintenance budget.

The Legislature also passed pivotal legislation making college more accessible and affordable for Californians.

My AB 19 — which I co-wrote with Assemblymembers Santiago and Chiu — will make community college free for all first time, full time Californians. This effort will be especially impactful for West Sacramento and help further expand college access with the existing City College Promise program.

 

(Assemblymember Kevin McCarty at River City High School, West Sacramento)

 

As Chair of the Assembly Education Budget Subcommittee, I also helped ensure that the 2017 state budget included millions in new revenues to expand UC, CSU and community college enrollment for Californians.

Finally, I am especially proud to report that Governor Brown signed my AB 1226, which will modernize the Sacramento-Yolo Port Commission, giving the City of West Sacramento greater opportunity to explore port improvements and increased business.

 

(Assemblymember Kevin McCarty presents AB 1226 during Assembly Floor Session)

 

From showing global leadership in our fight against climate change, working to address homelessness and the growing housing crisis and protecting our immigrant communities, we demonstrated what can be accomplished when Californians work together for the greater good.

Here’s a snapshot of additional legislative wins for California, budget wins for the Sacramento region, and my own legislative highlights.

As we look to 2018, my legislative work as Chair of Education Budget Subcommittee will continue to focus on building an educated workforce that will position our state to be competitive in a global economy. Access to high-quality, affordable education — from preschool to quality K-12 schools to higher education — is the key to prosperity for Sacramento and for California.

I will also soon be introducing legislation to expand after school programs, tackle the opioid epidemic, re-examine taxpayer funded sexual harassment settlements, help our local refugees resettling in Sacramento and further address the housing affordability crisis.

As always, I welcome your input, ideas and suggestions. Please feel free to email me your ideas to: Assemblymember.McCarty@Assembly.ca.gov or call the District Office at (916) 324–4676.

It is an honor to represent you in the California State Assembly.