May SWM & Legislative Visits

Submitted by Lacy Litten

CWA members Lacy Litten, Brenda Kelsch, Amber Rappozo, and CWA San Luis Obispo County member Dana Byrd attended the Statewide Meeting and Legislative Visits in Sacramento May 7th and 8th.  We had a productive SWM with informative speakers.  Dr. Jerry Meral spoke about California Water Bonds: Past and Present, and Gail Delihant with Western Growers gave us an in-depth look into SB 623.  California Assembly member Catharine Baker talked to us about women taking on leadership roles and how we need more “chicks in politics.”  Her speech was light-hearted and inspiring.  Assembly member Baker has demonstrated interest and support in agriculture making her the perfect recipient for the 2018 CWA Cornucopia Award.

The legislative visits are a great experience, and we would recommend all members try to attend at some point.  Our State Legislative Committee narrows down all the bills and educates us on which bills were chosen for us to touch on with our assigned representatives.  This year, we pitched the following bills to legislators and their staff:

  • SB 623 – Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund – SUPPORT
  • AB 1913 – Foreign Labor Contractors – OPPOSE
  • AB 1743 – Career Technical Education Funding – SUPPORT
  • AB 2008 – CA Renewables Portfolio Standard Program – SUPPORT
  • SB 1300 – Unlawful Employment Practices, Discrimination and Harassment – OPPOSE

We met with several staff members representing different areas of the state, including:

  • Deepen Gagneja, Associate Consultant for Assemblymember Mike Gipson, 64th District
  • Sergio Reyes, Communications Director for Senator Connie Leyva, 20th District
  • Bethany Westfall, Legislative Director for Senator Bill Monning, 17th District
  • Victor Torres, Senate Fellow for Senator Robert Hertzberg, 18th District

We’d like to extend a special thank you to Assembly Member Jordan Cunningham.  Not only was he the only representative to meet with our group directly, but he was gracious enough to give us extra time to argue our case in support of SB 623.  (For more information on SB 623, keep an eye out on the News page of our website.)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *