Long Beach — The League of California Cities honored Sen. Anthony Portantino (D – La Cañada Flintridge) today for his unwavering support and dedication to local communities with its Distinguished Legislative Leadership Award. League First Vice President and Yountville Mayor John Dunbar and League Executive Director Carolyn Coleman presented the award before more than 1,900 city officials during the League’s Annual Conference and Expo in Long Beach.
League First Vice President Dunbar thanked the Senator and commended him for his years of support and commitment to protecting California’s cities. “Throughout his tenure, Senator Portantino has remained relentless in his fight to ensure cities have the tools they need to address the state’s housing affordability and homelessness crisis,” said Dunbar. “On behalf of all California cities, we are grateful to have a partner in Senator Portantino.”
Senator Portantino has a long and distinguished record of service, with nearly eight years on the La Cañada Flintridge City Council, two terms as Mayor, and as vice chair of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy Advisory Committee.
He also served as Regional Director for the League of California Cities Los Angeles County Division from June 2002 to May 2005, and was president of the League of California Cities Mayors and Council Members Department from 2005 to 2006.
Senator Portantino has consistently been an advocate for finding solutions to the state’s housing affordability and homelessness crisis, even when it means breaking from his colleagues. In 2011, as an Assembly Member, he was the only democrat to actively oppose the dissolution of redevelopment agencies.
“Senator Portantino has played a pivotal role in supporting important legislation that will help cities address the state’s housing crisis,” said Carolyn Coleman, League of California Cities executive director. “As local governments continue to work collaboratively with the legislature and administration to find solutions to house our residents, the League is thankful that Senator Portantino, a true champion fighting for local democracy, remains a key partner and advocate.”
Senator Portantino was integral in pausing Senate Bill 50 for the year, due to legitimate concerns expressed from cities, both large and small, about the impacts of the bill on their unique and diverse needs when it comes to land use.
Senator Portantino was a principal co-author of Senate Bill 5, a vitally important measure that would have helped to jump-start the construction of affordable housing across the state.
“Thank you to the League, and all of California’s cities for this great honor,” said Senator Portantino. “I have dedicated my career to lifting up cities and protecting local democracy, and have worked tirelessly to ensure communities have the resources they need to help solve our state’s housing crisis. I look forward to this continued partnership with the League in finding solutions to help our cities accomplish these goals.”
Founded in 1898, the League of California Cities is an association of California city officials who work together to enhance their knowledge and skills, exchange information, and combine resources so that they may influence policy decisions that affect cities. The League’s mission is to restore and protect local control for cities through education and advocacy to enhance the quality of life for all Californians.