Assemblymember Rodriguez Responds to Governor Newsom’s Proposed Budget

For immediate release:

(Sacramento, CA) – Today, California Governor Gavin Newsom unveiled his 2023-24 State Budget proposal in Sacramento. Assemblymember Freddie Rodriguez (D – Pomona), Chair of the Emergency Management Committee, responded with the following comments:

“As we are facing a different financial climate than we have in recent years, I am proud that Governor Newsom, my colleagues in the Legislature, and I have made significant investments in reserves to prepare for this setback. The state has a total of $35.6 billion in Reserves, with $22.4 billion in the Rainy Day Fund.”

“As Chair of the Emergency Management Committee, I am thrilled to see the significant investments proposed for wildfire and forest resilience. Additionally, the Governor has proposed $8.6 billion in funding for water and drought. Our state has been in a multi-year drought, but we must invest in flood protection and control operations now that we have recently been facing atmospheric rivers and storms.”

“While I am pleased with the emergency preparedness investments relating to wildfires and water, it is disappointing to see little to no investments in earthquake preparedness. Last year, I obtained $250 million in the 2023-24 General Fund of the Budget Act to establish and implement the Seismic Retrofitting Program for Soft Story Multifamily Housing. This funding has been removed from this proposal and must be reimplemented. Should an earthquake of a similar scale to the 1994 Northridge earthquake strike, our most vulnerable populations will face destruction they may not be able to recover from. We must invest in protecting these Californians and our infrastructure.”

“As a career first responder, I understand how important access to healthcare is. A total of $4.8 billion is proposed for universal access to healthcare, regardless of immigration status. Moreover, over $8 million is proposed for investments in mental health services, with $4.7 million focusing on children.”

“As fentanyl is plaguing the nation, specifically amongst our young people, there is $97 million proposed to be invested in opioid and fentanyl response. Funding is proposed to provide overdose medication to all middle and high schools statewide. We must protect all Californians from this growing epidemic.”

“As our homeless population continues to rise, it is exceptional to see $15.3 billion proposed to aid Californians who struggle to obtain housing.”

“Although the state is in a deficit this year, I am committed to bringing all the necessary resources back to the 53rd Assembly District. My staff and I have been strategizing how to obtain funding best so we can continue improving the lives of my constituents.”

Assemblymember Rodriguez (Twitter) represents the 53rd Assembly District which includes the cities of Chino, Montclair, Ontario, Pomona, and Upland. He is Chair of the Assembly Committee on Emergency Management.