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League Leadership Meets with State Leaders to Discuss League’s Strategic Goals

January 15, 2016
On Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016 League President and Rancho Cucamonga Mayor Dennis Michael led a team of League officers and staff in a series of meetings with Gov. Jerry Brown, legislative leaders from both parties, and other key legislators and staff about the League’s 2016 strategic goals.
President Michael was joined by First Vice President and Lodi Council Member JoAnne Mounce, Second Vice President and Palos Verdes Estates Mayor Jim Goodhart, Past President and Scotts Valley Council Member Stephany Aguilar, Executive Director Chris McKenzie, Legislative Director Dan Carrigg, and other key legislative staff depending on the meeting.

In all of the meetings the League officers urged their state partners to support passage of a comprehensive transportation funding program to help address the mounting local and state road and bridge maintenance deficits, provide new local financing tools for water infrastructure, and to improve  housing affordability, including for the chronically homeless. Governor Brown spent time exploring the affordable housing and homelessness problems facing cities, and ways to address the growing crisis. Senate President pro Tempore Kevin de Leon (D-Los Angeles) offered support for passage of a transportation funding package and his new proposed program for housing the chronically mentally ill.
Assembly Republican Leader Chad Mayes (R-Yucca Valley) discussed the priorities of his caucus on public safety and infrastructure. Senate Republican Leader Jean Fuller (R-Bakersfield), discussed water and transportation infrastructure issues with the League officers, expressing sensitivity to the serious infrastructure challenges facing the state and how her caucus believes they can be addressed. She also indicated considerable concern about the need to respond to the growing homelessness problem in the state. Assembly Speaker-Elect Anthony Rendon (D-Lakewood) expressed interest in our efforts to give local agencies additional tools to deal with stormwater and water conservation issues and discussed the prospects for action on transportation funding.
In a meeting with the new chair of the Assembly Housing Committee, Assembly Member David Chiu (D-San Francisco), the officers discussed how to develop support for additional funding for affordable housing. With Assembly Member Jay Obernolte (R-Big Bear), who serves on the legislative conference committee on transportation, the officers discussed prospects for legislative action on transportation funding and tax reform were the main topics of discussion. Finally, the Special Assistant to Speaker Toni Atkins (D-San Diego), Katie Kolitsos, met with the officers on all priority issues and pledged to work with us on them closely this session.  
“We were delighted that part or all of the League’s strategic goals are shared by the Governor and so many legislative leaders,” President Dennis Michael noted. “We assured each of them that we were ready to work closely with them in partnership to advance our common goals to adequately fund transportation maintenance, expand tools for funding needed water infrastructure, and expand housing affordability, including for the chronically homeless. We deeply appreciated their time and interest.” 

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