$46,000 in Grant Funding Awarded to
Senator Hueso presented Ballington Academy for the Arts and Sciences of El Centro a check for over $46,000 under the Charter School Facility Grant Program. The funding will go towards facility improvements and lease expenses.
"It is with great honor that I present over $46,000 dollars to Ballington Academy, said Senator Hueso. "I am thrilled that this funding will improve the learning environment for the students. Our children can continue to learn in a comfortable setting and take advantage of the arts and science programs that greatly add to their foundation of learning."
The Charter School Facility Grant Program was enacted by SB 740 in 2001, and provides funding assistance to charter schools for rent and lease expenditures that meet specific eligibility criteria. The law was updated in 2015 by the state budget bill, codified in statute by Assembly Bill (AB 104).
Senator Hueso Pushed for Schools to Adopt
Reading Plan for Struggling Readers
Senator Ben Hueso, Superintendent of South Bay Union School District Dr. Katie McNamara, Assistant Superintendent Cindy Wagner and Principal of Nicoloff Elementary Rigo Lara discussed the importance and benefits of Senate Bill 1145, which requires teachers and parents of struggling readers to work together to formulate a reading plan from kindergarten through the third grade.
At the event Senator Hueso expressed, "Reading is the foundation of learning and it develops the mind. Senate Bill 1145 will ensure that our schools are fully equipped to support students struggling with reading and empower them a tailored reading plan. I strongly believe that this legislation is imperative for the future of our state."
According to the 2015 National Assessment of Educational Progress Report, 72 percent of California fourth graders are not reading proficiently, and unfortunately, our public schools often do not have the resources to reach every student. Requiring the Golden State Reading Guarantee Act will ensure that every student has an equal opportunity to succeed.
Dr. McNamara, Superintendent of South Bay Union School said, "As educators, we know that reading is essential for academic success in all subject areas. South Bay Union is committed to providing our students with frequent opportunities to read, as well as ensuring that students have access to informative and engaging books that are appropriate for each child's reading level. We are very proud of the work we have done this year to assess student reading levels and adjust instruction based on the results. We thank Senator Hueso for his ongoing support of education and for sponsoring a Senate Bill that highlights the importance of reading."
Senator Hueso Urges Congress to Appropriate
$248 Million for Calexico Border
Senator Ben Hueso, joined by Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia and Imperial County Supervisors John Renison and Ray Castillo, urged Congress to appropriate $248 million to complete Phase II of the Calexico West Land Port of Entry Reconfiguration and Expansion project.
"We need to continue to push for infrastructure improvements in our ports of entry, said Hueso. "By expanding Calexico's Port of Entry, we have a greater opportunity to improve our economic prosperity and success. These enhancements will broaden our options and will transform the way we travel by making it more convenient, fast and accessible."
Phase II funding will ensure completion of the project, which will improve domestic supply chains, strengthen our national security, reduce the Port's carbon footprint, and facilitate economic growth, not only for the Imperial County and California, but for the entire nation. The project includes additional site-work, an expanded pedestrian processing facility, administrative offices and six additional northbound Privately Owned Vehicle (POV) inspection lanes.
"The inclusion of $248 million in funding for Phase II of the Calexico West Land Port of Entry reconfiguration and expansion project in the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations bill will bring the needed resources to our border region in order to enhance the quality of life to our residents," said Assembly member Eduardo Garcia, co-author of SJR 22. "It is our goal to create greater opportunities to address a series of issues that are affecting not only the economic vitality opportunities in the region, but more importantly, the public health and well-being of the people that live here."
Senate Joint Resolution 22 has bipartisan support and is currently on the Assembly Jobs, Economic Development and the Economy Committee.