NEWS FROM Sacramento » Laura FRIEDMAN

Here we are – it is the beginning of a new year and the start of the 2017-18 legislative session. I want to formally introduce our team and myself as well as give you a few updates on my progress as your new assemblymember.

Thank you so much for allowing me this great opportunity to serve as your representative.

Since taking the oath of office at the beginning of December, I have set up both my Capitol and district offices and am ready to represent you at the state level. I have pulled together a strong team in Sacramento and here at home that is ready to turn our ideas into action.

At the district level, I have built a team that reflects the diversity of our community with a focus on outreach so that every neighborhood has a voice. I want you to know that it will be through your voice and your ideas that our policies will be shaped – and for that reason we have assembled a district team ready to work with you.

My goals remain the same – I want every resident of the 43rd Assembly District to have access to excellent public schools, quality health care, safe and reliable housing, transportation and sustainable economic growth.

There is no shortage of challenges facing our district and our state. We have critical services that still haven’t recovered from the Great Recession. Our economy and jobs depend on a reliable public transportation infrastructure and yet it remains underfunded and underdeveloped.

Families across the region are still struggling with a lack of affordable housing. We remain in an epic drought.

Just last week, Gov. Brown released his budget proposal. True to form, he’s cautious about declining revenues and any expansion of state programs. I agree that we are stewards of California’s resources, and that our goal should be to avoid the boom and bust cycles that have led to devastating cuts to the safety net services that thousands rely upon.

However, I also firmly believe that we have to acknowledge successful programs, especially those that help families build a better tomorrow. We support higher education, and particularly the landmark Middle Class Scholarship program that has opened the door to opportunity for thousands of students and their families.  We’re lucky to have some of the leading universities and colleges here in California, but, let’s face it – affordability is a problem. If we can help students earn the degree they need for a promising career, and do it without piling debt upon them, it doesn’t just benefit that student – it boosts our overall economy.

Whether it’s balancing the state budget or considering the hundreds of bills that will come before the legislature, complex challenges require thoughtful solutions. I’m ready to get to work in Sacramento on all of the issues you care about. As Californians we’ve long been the pioneers and have led the nation in innovation; we’ve weathered adversity and grown only stronger. It’s time again for us to show the nation and the world all of the good that comes out of embracing our diversity of identities, perspectives and ideas.

We have only a few more weeks to propose new legislation for this session, so if you have any ideas or concerns that you would like to see addressed by the legislature we welcome you to share them with us.

If we work together we have the best chance at the brightest future, and only together can we stand strong against the challenges we face now and down the road. I’m ready to work with you to protect the California Dream for all.

You can reach us at our website to share your ideas, thoughts or concerns at the following address:

Laura Friedman represents Burbank, Glendale, La Cañada Flintridge, La Crescenta, Montrose, and the Los Angeles neighborhoods of Atwater Village, East Hollywood, Franklin Hills, Hollywood Hills, Los Feliz, and Silver Lake.