More than one million American service members have lost their lives in conflicts from the American Revolution through the current military actions in the Middle East. It is a sobering reminder that freedom is not free. As President Reagan once said, “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.”
As Memorial Day approaches on May 28, let us take a moment to remember the men and women of the U.S. military who gave their lives in service to our nation. With the 36th Senate District also being home to one of the largest veteran populations in the U.S., let us also thank our veterans for their service. I have included a few Memorial Day-related events that you can attend in the “Upcoming Events” section.
While we can never fully repay our service members for their sacrifices, we can help make sure they and their families receive the benefits they earned. That is why I am pleased to help spread the word of the new “Forever GI Bill” which takes effect on August 1, 2018. This new law removes the time-limit for using the Post-9/11 GI Bill for certain veterans and dependents. Click here to learn more.
California State Capitol
Most of the bills that I have authored this year were considered in committee hearings in recent weeks. Click on the bill numbers below to learn more about each one.
- SB 902 - Requires a state and federal criminal background check for operators of a residential treatment facility. It earned bipartisan support from the Senate Health Committee.
- SB 976 - Prohibits the early release of many dangerous offenders into local communities. The Senate Public Safety Committee rejected the bill on a partisan vote.
- SB 1103 - Enhances criminal penalties for illegal distributors of fentanyl, which has been linked to numerous deaths in California in recent years. It failed in the Senate Public Safety Committee due to a lack of support from the majority party.
- SB 1109 - Educates the public, especially those who are involved with youth, by explaining to them the risk of addiction and overdose from prescription opioids. The Senate Health Committee approved it on a bipartisan vote.
- SB 1151 - Authorizes San Diego County to establish Neighborhood Electric Vehicle (NEV) transportation plans to serve the mobility needs of their communities.
- SB 1203 - Requires all public and private K-12 schools to conduct an active threat drill at least once per school year. It earned bipartisan support from the Senate Education Committee.
- SB 1204 - Addresses human trafficking. It failed in the Senate Public Safety Committee.
- SB 1226 - Directs the California Building Standards Commission to adopt a building standard that would clarify the authority for a local building official to permit an existing residential unit based on the date of construction. The Senate Transportation and Housing Committee passed the bill on a unanimous vote.
- SB 1290 - Ends the practice of treating people with drug addiction as commodities that can be bought, sold and exploited by residential treatment facilities. It earned bipartisan support from the Senate Health Committee.
- SB 1384 - Requires any state tax windfall from a federal repatriation deal to be spent on infrastructure. The Senate Governance and Finance Committee rejected the bill on a partisan vote.
Join me, Assemblyman Bill Brough, Board of Equalization Member Diane Harkey, and Carolyn Cavecche (the President and CEO of the Orange County Taxpayers Association) on May 18 at 8:30 a.m. in San Clemente for an update on how a Proposition 13 “split roll” tax would affect California’s businesses. Click here for more information.
I also recently co-authored an op-ed on Prop. 13 with Jon Coupal, the president of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association. Click here to read it.
The State Coastal Conservancy recently authorized the disbursement of an additional $594,435 to the City of Encinitas for a dune restoration project at Cardiff State Beach.
The project will provide natural sea-level rise protection to Cardiff State Beach and Highway 101 by utilizing a “living shoreline” approach that creates four acres of beach dunes.
I am glad that an effort to impose unnecessary burdensome requirements on home schools (AB 2756) was recently defeated in the State Assembly. Thousands of parents and students traveled to the State Capitol to voice their opposition to the bill. AB 2756 was so problematic that nobody on the Assembly Education Committee even made a motion to vote on it.
Want to dispose of your old mattress in an environmentally responsible manner? Bye Bye Mattress is a recycling program established by law and is operated by the Mattress Recycling Council, a nonprofit that uses a recycling fee collected on each mattress and box spring sold, making recycling easier in our communities.
Click here to learn more and to find a recycling location near you.
The California Department of Social Services is seeking to create a new “Imagine No Hunger” state license plate and is working with the California Association of Food Banks to help end hunger. Food banks in Orange and San Diego counties are doing important work to help people in need. Click here to learn more about the license plate.
I heard all the cool kids are on Instagram, so I created an account. If you are on Instagram, please follow me at www.instagram.com/senatorpatbates!
The events below are just a sample of what’s happening in our beautiful district. While my office strives to include accurate information at the time of publication, event details are subject to change by their organizers.
Laguna Niguel: Music and Arts Festival
Date: Friday, May 18
Time: 6:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
Location: Crown Valley Community Park (29751 Crown Valley Parkway, Laguna Niguel, CA 92677)
About: The Laguna Niguel Youth Committee hosts this annual music festival to give local high school and middle school students an opportunity to perform at the Crown Valley Park Amphitheater.
Oceanside: Operation Appreciation
Date: Saturday, May 19
Time: 5:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Location: Junior Seau Pier Amphitheater (200 North Strand, Oceanside, CA 92054)
About: Thousands of active duty military and their family members are treated to a day of free food, carnival rides and entertainment at the Oceanside Pier Amphitheatre. Open to the public.
Rancho Santa Margarita: Electronic Waste and Document Shredding Event
Date: Saturday, May 19
Time: 8 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Location: RSM City Hall Parking Lot (22112 El Paseo, Rancho Santa Margarita, CA 92688)
About: Safely and responsibly dispose of obsolete electronic waste and prevent identity theft during this “Spring cleaning” opportunity.
Vista: Used Oil & Filter Recycling Event
Date: Saturday, May 26
Time: 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Location: O’Reilly Auto Parts (1250 S Santa Fe Ave, Vista, CA 92084)
About: Bring in a used oil filter and get a new one for free.
Laguna Hills: Memorial Day Half Marathon 2018
Date: Monday, May 28
Time: 7 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Location: Community Center & Sports Complex (25555 Alicia Parkway, Laguna Hills, CA 92653)
About: Join the 20th annual Laguna Hills Half Marathon, 5K and 10K, honoring the U.S. Marine Corps Dark Horse Battalion. Runners of all skill levels are welcome to participate in the event of their choice, the Half Marathon (13.1 miles), 10K (6.2 miles), 5K (3.1 miles) or Kid’s Run (1/2 mile).
Mission Viejo: Memorial Day Remembrance
Date: Monday, May 28
Time: 8:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Location: 200 Civic Center, Mission Viejo, CA 92691
About: The City will honor those who lost their lives while serving our nation. The program includes local dignitaries, members of Headquarters Battalion, 1st Marine Division at Camp Pendleton, keynote speaker, guest speaker and a musical tribute by Dawn Wright, voice of the Anaheim Ducks.
San Clemente: Memorial Day Remembrance
Date: Monday, May 28
Time: 2 p.m. - 3 p.m.
Location: Marine Monument Semper Fi Park (Pier Bowl, San Clemente, CA 92672) About: Honoring all branches of the U.S. Military at the Marine Monument, in Park Semper Fi overlooking the San Clemente Pier and ocean. All service members welcome. Meet Marines from Camp Pendleton: 2nd Battalion 4th Marines, San Clemente’s adopted Marine Corps Unit.
In addition to many meetings, briefings and other Senate activities, I also:
- Thanked volunteers for helping to trim brush and shrubbery at the Carlsbad State Beach Tomato Fields. The cleanup was part of numerous events throughout the state held in observance of Earth Day.
- Met with Stephanie Ramsey (right), the chair of the Ladera Ranch Civic Council, and Ladera Ranch Councilmember Margaret Novak (left), to discuss local concerns.
- Welcomed Alan Johnson (below) to Sacramento who testified in support of my bill to end “patient brokering” in residential treatment facilities. Alan is the Chief Assistant to Florida State Attorney Dave Aronberg, who successfully championed a similar law in Florida.
- Attended the Aliso Viejo State of the City event.
- Met with Orange County city officials and representatives of the League of California Cities. As a former mayor and city council member, I appreciate their work to advocate for cities!
- Met with Hope2gether Foundation’s Sherrie Rubin, who testified in support of my opioid education bill (SB 1109). She shared the story of her son, Aaron, who nearly died after overdosing on OxyContin, with the Senate Health Committee.
- Presented a resolution to Ruby’s Diner and its founder/CEO Doug Cavanaugh on more than 35 years of successful business.
- And more!