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Assembly Democratic Caucus Selects Assembly Member Toni Atkins as Next Speaker

Future Speaker Committed to Helping Cities Address Economic Development and Post-Redevelopment Issues

January 22, 2014
Rumors circulating around the Capitol were confirmed yesterday when the Assembly Democratic Caucus recommended that Assembly Member Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) be selected to succeed Speaker John Pérez (D-Los Angeles) who is termed out of office this year.
With the Caucus’ recommendation, the final vote now goes to the full Assembly for consideration. The Democrats hold a super-majority in the Assembly so yesterday’s announcement essentially confirms Assembly Member Atkins’ ascent to Speaker.
Currently, Assembly Member Atkins serves as the Assembly Majority Leader, a high ranking post charged with representing the Speaker and maintaining parliamentary procedure during floor sessions. She also leads the Assembly’s internal Redevelopment Working Group. Before her 2010 election to the Assembly, Assembly Member Atkins served eight years on the San Diego City Council and as a staffer to then-San Diego City Council Member Christine Kehoe.
League President José Cisneros expressed his support of the selection of Assembly Member Atkins as the next Speaker: “The League of California Cities congratulates Toni Atkins on her caucus’ recommendation that she be selected the next Speaker. As a former city council member, Speaker Atkins understands how the vitality of cities is critical to the success of the state as a whole. Her leadership on post-redevelopment issues and economic development has been vital. We look forward to continuing to work with Assembly Member Atkins as she moves into her new leadership position.”
Assembly Member Atkins has been a leader in addressing local concerns following the dissolution of redevelopment agencies. She has actively worked to help cities and successor agencies, including agencies outside her district, resolve issues with the Department of Finance. As a testament to her leadership, Assembly Member Atkins authored League-supported inclusionary housing legislation AB 1229 last year. However, the bill was ultimately vetoed by Gov. Jerry Brown. Assembly Member Atkins is also a co-author of legislation seeking a revised form of redevelopment for disadvantaged communities, AB 1080, with Assembly Member Luis Alejo (D-Watsonville). In addition, she has worked on new economic development tools that cities can implement to help continue California’s economic and job recovery

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