February In Review
The year began with tremendous energy and focus as I came back to Sacramento as the representative of the newly formed 57th Assembly District in downtown Los Angeles, including Skid Row, Exposition Park, and portions of south Los Angeles.
In February, I introduced my legislative package and held the first of several informational Zoom forums. The topic was "Heart Healthy February: Understanding the differences between a stroke, a heart attack, and cardiac arrest."
I was also reappointed as the Chair of the Assembly's Public Safety Committee and am in the process of launching a podcast to help further connect me to constituents.
Finally, as a member of the California Reparations Task Force, I continue to encourage everyone to read the initial report that was published in June of 2022 to have a better understanding on the historic nature of racism in the United States and California and how laws based on chattel slavery continue to impact Black Americans today.
As always, my office is here to help with state issues including DMV and EDD matters. If you require any assistance with state matters, please call my office at (213) 744-2111.
Assemblymember Reggie Jones-Sawyer
Representative, 57th Assembly District
Chair, Public Safety Committee
Member, California Reparations Task Force
Fairness under the law, equitable assistance for all California residents, educational opportunities, and workable solutions to end homelessness remain priority issues for me.
In February, I requested the state conduct an audit of all cannabis operations to ensure all vendors meet licensing requirements and went through the correct protocols to obtain permits and licenses. As the state's cannabis cop, I am committed to eliminating illegal operations in the California cannabis industry.
I also authored the following bills:
AB 912 takes the $235 million dollars in cost savings from the closure of dilapidated and non-useful prisons and redirects those funds to community, youth, and crime prevention programs, including:
- $50 million annually to relocate the Youth Reinvestment Grant Program from the Board of State and Community Corrections to the Office of Youth and Community Restoration. Grants are available for local jurisdictions and California tribes for trauma-informed diversion programs for minors.
- $35 million annually to the Department of Justice for the purpose of programs that reduce gang violence and gang involvement, modeled after successful programs like Ceasefire in Oakland that resulted in a 43% reduction in homicides and a 50% reduction in non-fatal shootings.
- $50 million annually to the State Department of Education to provide operational grants to School-based Health Centers and provide health and mental health services to children on school sites.
- $50 million annually to the California Health and Human Services Agency to support a pilot program for Cognitive Behavioral Intervention for Trauma in Schools (CBITS) in Alameda, Fresno, Merced, Tulane, Kern and Los Angeles. This program supports early trauma-informed interventions for school-aged children experiencing extreme traumatic events in support of their health, well-being and community stability.
- $50 million annually to the Department of Parks and Recreation in support of grants to local governments and community-based organizations to create new parks and fund recreation and health-based opportunities during peak times of violence.
AB 617 is also known as the Representation, Equity, and Protections (REP) for All Immigrants Act. This Act will enhance and expand access to inter-connected immigration services provided across California for immigrants - regardless of the ability to pay, geographic location, language, or history with the criminal legal system.
California Reparations Task Force Updates
Public hearings continue as the Task Force moves closer to its required deadline of June 30, 2023 to deliver its final report to the state legislature.
In February, hearings were held in San Diego with good turnout and important input and feedback from experts, panelists, and the public.
Additional public hearings will be held in Sacramento on March 3-4. For the agenda and information on attending, please visit Reparations Task Force Meetings | State of California - Department of Justice - Office of the Attorney General
For those faced with rising costs of services and goods the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has announced a new program to help reduce the cost of internet service for those that qualify.
The Affordable Connectivity program ensures that qualifying households have access to broadband services by reducing monthly service costs.
There is a two-step process to apply.
- Go to affordableconnectivity.gov to submit an application or print out a mail-in application.
- Contact your preferred participating provider to select a plan and have the discount applied to your bill.
Some providers may have an alternative application that they will ask you to complete.
Eligible households must apply for the program and contact a participating provider to select a service plan.
For more information, please visit the Affordable Connectivity Program | Federal Communications Commission (fcc.gov).
I was honored and humbled to be recognized by the First AME Church of Los Angeles for excellence in public service and by True LA Church as their Black History Month Honoree for activism, leadership, and advocacy.