September 2016 Newsletter

September 22, 2016




This Saturday I will be hosting a Child Car Seat Safety Clinic with trained professionals who will inspect your child's car seat and ensure it is correctly and securely attached. You'll also receive information on how to protect your children in vehicles. Joining me as co-sponsors of the free clinic are Councilmember Magdalena Carrasco, the California Highway Patrol, the Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford, and Stanford Children's Health.

Child Car Seat Safety Clinic
Saturday, Sept. 24; 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Target (parking lot)
450 N. Capitol Ave., San Jose

No appointments; first come, first served. For more information, please contact or call (408) 558-1295.



Upon the conclusion of regular session on Aug. 31, I sent 9 bills to Governor Brown's desk for his consideration. These bills tackle a spectrum of issues ranging from expanding mental health services for students in a cost-effective manner to allowing qualified individuals who are conserved homeowners to delay property tax payments.

SB 824 - Provides public transit agencies more flexibility in spending state funds on projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions by streamlining audit requirements, allowing transit agencies to support newly expanded transit service for multiple years, and allowing transit agencies to bank their funding shares to save up for more costly projects.

SB 884 - Increases school districts' accountability by requiring them to report funding allocations and spending on mandated mental health services and students outcomes to the California Department of Education. In addition, the bill increases transparency by requiring the department to analyze and post this data on the internet.

SB 906 - Improves graduate rates of foster youth, lower income students, and students with disabilities by making permanent a temporary policy that grants them priority registration.

SB 909 - Corrects an inequity in the law to allow the postponed payment of property taxes by conserved individuals whose homes are in a trust and who have low incomes or are disabled. The deferred property taxes are recouped by counties upon the sale of the home.

SB 944 - The Housing Omnibus Bill makes technical and conforming changes to existing law. The bill approves the use of the Mobile Home Park Rehabilitation and Resident Ownership funds for replacement of units in tenant- and nonprofit-acquired mobile home parks; extends the preservation notice requirement to certain mortgage revenue bond-financed projects; and allows Tribally Designated Housing Entities to be eligible sponsors of State Housing and Community Development-funded projects.

SB 955 - Allows state hospital inmates with less than six month to live who are neither a danger to society nor a sexual predator to be eligible for a medical compassionate release, saving millions of dollars in state medical costs. Institutes safeguards that require the original court of jurisdiction and prosecutors to be involved in decision making and the judge who committed the inmate has final approval over release.

SB 1113 - Enables school districts to provide mental health services to more students in a cost-effective manner. Allows school districts to partner with county mental health departments to deliver quality school-based mental health services to students through a competitive grant process. This is a companion bill to SB 884.

SB 1226 - Streamlines audit requirements for vendors working with the developmentally disabled, reducing costs borne by many vendors, enabling them to devote more funds toward services without compromising fiscal accountability.

SB 1291 - Increases accountability and oversight for the delivery of mental health services to children and youth in foster care by consolidating service data from multiple sources into a signal review process, the External Quality Review Organization, to improve the synchronization of services.



As chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee, I introduced Senate Resolution 87 to designate September as Pedestrian Safety Month. September was selected because schools are back in session and more children are biking, skateboarding, and walking to campuses.

Nearly 7,000 people in California were killed in pedestrian-related traffic accidents from 2006 to 2015. There were 813 pedestrian fatalities last year.

Please exercise caution while driving and crossing streets.

  • Slow down when driving - give yourself plenty of time to reach your destination.
  • Don't drive distracted.
  • Do not jaywalk; use cross-walks or intersections.
Do not use your phone or electronic devices when crossing the street; always pay attention to traffic.

Speaking at the State Office of Traffic Safety's news conference on pedestrian safety




This month, the Silicon Valley Independent Living Center marks 40 years of service to all people with disabilities who live in Santa Clara County. The non-profit center, also known as SVILC, provides them with the support tools and resources necessary to live interdependently. Over the decades, SVILC has spoken out for policies that ensure equal access and opportunity for all.

Because of SVILC's remarkable work, I was stunned and grateful to be presented with its Legislative Advocacy Award in recognition of my years of public service on behalf of local residences with disabilities. Thank you, SVLIC.