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Assemblymember Rodriguez Comments on Legislative Approval of the 2023-24 State Budget

For immediate release:

(Sacramento) – Today, Assemblymember Freddie Rodriguez (D- Pomona), Chair of the Committee on Emergency Management, issued the following statement following the Legislature’s approval of the 2023-24 State Budget:

“While California is currently in the midst of a budget problem, I am incredibly proud to announce that I have successfully fought to preserve $15 million to fund the Multifamily Seismic Retrofit Matching Grant Program. Last year, I successfully fought to obtain $250 million in this year’s General Fund to establish this retrofit program. Unfortunately, it was proposed to be cut at the beginning of this year. However, I am grateful to my colleagues and the Governor for seeing the importance of preserving a portion of the funding for this year. The remaining $235 million of my original allocation will be augmented should the funds be available in the future.

As a career first responder, Chair of the Emergency Management Committee, and Vice Chair of the Seismic Safety Commission, I understand the devastation that can follow an earthquake and know that California is overdue for our next big one. It is vital that we invest in retrofits to ensure our people and infrastructure are protected from a major catastrophe. This funding will enable us to do so.

I am also proud to see that $125 million has been provided to support the costs associated with the 2023 storms. Of that funding, the communities of Pajaro and Planada will each receive $20 million. Following the Pajaro levee breach, I visited the community and was disheartened by the lack of support they were receiving. That is why I authored AB 513 to establish the California Individual Assistance Act to provide direct assistance and also fought alongside my colleagues to obtain this funding in the Budget.

Last year, I authored AB 228 (Rodriguez, Chapter 138, Statutes of 2022), requiring the Department of Justice to conduct inspections of licensed firearm dealers at least every three years, beginning in 2024. I am pleased to see $5.7 million allocated this fiscal year to implement this legislation and other firearm-related pieces of legislation.

Finally, I am pleased to see $15 million provided as additional support to 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline centers. An influx of non-emergency calls has impacted our emergency medical services systems. Further implementation of 988 will help take some pressure off of our EMS system.”

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.