This month is one of the busiest and most important during the legislative session.Problems viewing this E-mail? Please click here.
Senator Ben Hueso


Dear Friend,

It has been a fun and eventful May!

This month is one of the busiest and most important during the legislative session. May 31 marks the final day for the Senate and Assembly to pass legislation originating in their house so that those proposed bills can be considered by the other chamber.

I'm happy to report that a number of important bills that I am moving forward this session passed out of the Senate and now are eligible to be taken up by the Assembly committees. You can learn more about these legislative proposals on my website, or by contacting my offices.

We are also currently considering the state's 2019-2020 budget. Governor Gavin Newsom released his revised budget proposal in May, and the Legislature is working to finalize the budget by the June 15 deadline.

As always, if you have any questions about the legislative process and/or need assistance with a state agency, please do not hesitate to give my offices a call. We are here to help.


Ben Hueso
State Senator
40th District

Events Calendar
05/02: Holocaust Remembrance Day (Yom Hashoah)

Last day for policy committees to hear and report to the floor nonfiscal bills introduced in their house

05/05: Cinco De Mayo
05/06 Ramadan begins at sundown
05/10 Last day for policy committees to meet prior to June 3
05/12 Mother's Day
05/17 Last day for fiscal committees to hear and report to the floor bills introduced in their house. Last day for fiscal committees to meet prior to June 3
05/22 Harvey Milk Day
05/27 Memorial Day
05/28-05/31 Floor session only
05/31 Last day for bills to be passed out of the house of origin
For the complete legislative calendar, please visit: Legislative Calendar



Coronado Bridge Suicide Prevention Initiative

Senator Hueso, City of Coronado Mayor Richard Bailey, survivor Bertha Loaiza, and Wayne Strickland of the Coronado-San Diego Bridge Collaborative for Suicide Prevention hold a press conference in support of Senate Bill no. 656

This week, the State Senate unanimously passed a bill I authored that would create an advisory committee to provide input into the selection of a suicide deterrent system for the San Diego-Coronado Bridge.

The Coronado Bridge Suicide Prevention Initiative, Senate Bill no. 656, will ensure a broad section of regional stakeholders have a seat at the table to help inform the selection process and lead to a decision that best meets the needs of the community. More importantly, this bill will give community members the opportunity to provide feedback as Caltrans continues to review possible long-term solutions to help prevent these lamentable deaths. In addition, I sent a letter to the budget subcommittee chairs in both houses of the State Legislature asking them to allocate $10 million toward the permanent suicide deterrent system on the bridge.

It is imperative that we pass SB 656, as it will serve as an instrumental step in ending this tragic piece of history which prevails in our community today. I encourage you to contact your representative in the State Assembly to express your support for this bill - every call helps!

End Child Poverty Tour

Earlier this month, I took part in the End Child Poverty rally and statewide bus tour that kicked off in Chula Vista and then continued north to Sacramento, stopping in various cities along the way. The bus tour aimed to bring awareness to the issue of deep poverty and promote efforts to eradicate it.

I believe very strongly that a child's zip code should never determine that individual's destiny; however today, the community that a child grows up in impacts their odds of graduating high school, accessing healthcare, and lifetime economic opportunities. It is shocking to me that, despite being the fifth largest economy in the word, California has the highest number of children and highest percentage of children living in poverty of any state in the nation.

I have worked very hard in the State Legislature to support comprehensive work in underserved communities - I believe this is crucial to eliminating deep child poverty. This includes introducing legislation this year and in past years to support state efforts to complement the federal Promise Zone and Opportunity Zone programs. Both Promise and Opportunity Zones are characterized by high unemployment, low educational attainment, insufficient access to health care, concentrated poverty, and high crime. These programs have been very successful at bolstering communities that have historically been left behind.

San Diego is working collaboratively and strategically with all levels of government to enhance these programs to increase economic activity and job growth, improve educational opportunities, and enhance public health outcomes. I'm very proud to be a part of that coalition, and will continue to work to end deep child poverty in our state and beyond.

8% Funding Increase for Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

Earlier this month, I joined The Arc of San Diego and their clients and staff, family members and other stakeholders to support an eight-percent rate increase in the State Budget to provide for services that support people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. This increase is critical for local and state service providers like The Arc of San Diego, and would begin to stabilize California's crumbling developmental disabilities system and ensure vital services are protected.

At the direction of the State Legislature, the Department of Developmental Services recently completed a rate study to address the sustainability and quality of community-based services for Californians with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The draft report concluded that developmental services in California are underfunded by $1.8 billion.

This is unacceptable. We must take immediate action to stabilize the developmental disability system to ensure that the state is meeting its obligation to provide services to eligible individuals. I have joined a growing group of colleagues in the State Legislature to request an 8% across-the-board rate increase to serve as a "down payment" on the rate study to address the crisis in community services and temporarily stabilize the system so that we can begin to implement broader reforms.

San Diego Unified School District's 2019 Teachers of the Year

A huge congratulations to three exceptional teachers from San Diego Unified School District who were recently honored as 2019 Teachers of the Year! It is especially exciting that all three teach at schools located in the 40th Senate District:

-Hilda Martinez, Zamorano Elementary

-Roosevelt Johnson, Mann Middle School

-Jenny Lieu, Lincoln High School

Congratulations on this exciting honor, Hilda, Roosevelt and Jenny! And, thank you to the thousands of teachers throughout the district who every day make a difference in the lives of students throughout San Diego.


Citizen of the Month: Frank Cervantes

District Representative Mario Renteria presents Frank Cervantes with award

Our Citizen of the Month for May 2019 is Frank Cervantes, who was recently awarded the Imperial Valley Regional Occupational Program Community Foundation's Teacher of the Year Award! The Brawley Union High School welding instructor was recognized for his work in the classroom, and reputation among peers and within the industry. Admired by his students and colleagues alike, Mr. Cervantes has taught at BUHS since 2004. He began his career teaching entry-level Spanish classes and overtime transitioned into his current position.

During his 15 years at the school, Cervantes' leadership and management skills have helped the school in many ways. In addition to his mentorship of students, Cervantes serves as one of the school's instructional coaches and takes an extra period to help other teachers improve their day-to-day work. He also belongs to one of the school's leadership teams, which provides feedback on how the school functions. In 2016, Mr. Cervantes won the Association of California School Administrators Teacher of the Year award. Cervantes is originally from the Imperial Valley, growing up in El Centro and graduating from Central Union High School.

Thank you, Mr. Cervantes, for your dedication to bettering educational outcomes for your students and teachers alike!

Nonprofit of the Month: YMCA Camp Surf

In honor of National Beach Safety Week occurring this month, I thought that it was only right to highlight the amazing work being done in our district by YMCA Camp Surf. Founded in 1969 in Imperial Beach, YMCA Camp Surf is part of the YMCA of San Diego County and dedicated to improving the quality of human life, and to helping all people realize their fullest potential through the development of the spirit, mind and body.

A one-of-a-kind experience, Camp Surf aims to provide youth with year-round opportunities to learn social responsibility through programs ranging from summer camps to outdoor education and leadership trainings. Camp Surf is more than surfing, however. In addition to surfing, Camp Surf provides other traditional camping activities such as arts and crafts, archery, rock climbing, and campfires. Through grants and donations, the camp plays a huge role in supporting underserved communities by providing need-based scholarships to families who wish to participate but don't have the resources. In addition to scholarships, Camp Surf also provides free after school outreach to 14 schools throughout our area, including free family weekend events.

Thank you, YMCA Camp Surf, for continuing to provide a welcoming environment for all members of the community. Organizations like yours are vital to protecting our coastal waters and ensuring that the public continues to be educated on one of our most valuable resources - the ocean.


Addressing California's Wildfires

Late last month, California Senate President pro Tempore Toni G. Atkins announced the creation of a Senate Select Committee to assess policy options outlined in Governor Gavin Newsom's 2019 Report: "Wildfires and Climate Change - California's Energy Future." The Select Committee met this month and will again in early June to review, vet and accept public comment on the Governor's Wildfire Report recommendations and related issues. I was honored to be appointed to serve on the committee and vow to continue to focus on ensuring wildfire victims are treated fairly, minimizing impacts on ratepayers, and making sure all parties contribute towards the solutions.

For more information about efforts by the California State Senate to identify solutions and introduce legislation to protect utility customers, fire victims and the reliability of electric and gas service, please visit:

Senate Releases Bold and Responsible Budget Plan

The Senate Committee on Budget & Fiscal Review recently passed a $214 billion revised budget plan that prioritizes protecting services for middle and low-income families, while building prudent reserves to prepare our state for future economic downturns. Senate Democrats have set forth a bold and responsible budget plan that pays down debts, builds reserves, and makes investments that align with the priorities of our State. Despite shifting priorities at the federal level, California will continue to provide for our working families and set the example for the rest of the nation, without increasing middle class taxes.

The Senate's focus is on the priorities of working families, including early childhood education and childcare, expanded access to quality public education, affordable health care, long term care solutions for our aging population, public safety reforms in our criminal justice system and investments in affordable housing and housing infrastructure.

More detailed information is available here:

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California State Senator Ben Hueso - Fortieth Senate District
Representing portions of San Diego County and all of Imperial County.
Web site:
Contact: Senator Ben Hueso
Capitol Office
State Capitol, Room 4035
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: (916) 651-4040
Fax: (916) 651-4940
Chula Vista Office
303 H Street., Suite 200
Chula Vista, CA 91910
Phone: (619) 409-7690
Fax: (619) 409-7688
El Centro
1224 State Street, Suite D
El Centro, CA 92243
Phone: (760) 335-3442
Fax: (760) 335-3444

California State Senate Majority Caucus (c) 2019 California State Senate