South Coast Legislative Update
Last Friday, December 10th, the Chamber hosted our virtual South Coast Legislative Update. The Chamber was joined by Supervisor Gregg Hart and Senator Monique Limón, and heard remarks from Congressman Salud Carbajal. Congressman Carbajal opened by acknowledging the significant impacts the pandemic has had on local businesses and the different funding programs that the federal government has worked to provide like PPP loans, the Restaurant Revitalization Fund, the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant, and EIDL loans which are still open through December 31st. Congressman Carbajal also touched on the passing of the bipartisan infrastructure law, as well as the progress of the Build Back Better Bill which passed the House of Representatives on November 19th.
Supervisor Gregg Hart followed by highlighting one of the silver linings of the pandemic as increased collaboration between the county government and the Chamber. Supervisor Hart mentioned the countywide Broadband Strategic Plan, in which SBCAG is working with local city governments to rollout high-speed broadband internet throughout the county. Supervisor Hart also touched on some of the key aspects of economic recovery the county has dedicated their $86.7 million of ARPA funds to. The county has set aside $2 million to help with the current lack of childcare contributing to the local labor shortage. The money will be provided as direct grants to struggling childcare providers, as well as aid new providers in opening to fill the gaps. While the county has made significant progress towards homelessness, over 1,400 individuals transitioned out of homelessness over the last two years, there is still progress to be made. Supervisor Hart outlined that the county will be spending $22 million for housing and homelessness.
Senator Monique Limón closed the event with an update on her work at the state level. Senator Limón spoke about SB 542 which provides tax exemptions for zero emission high duty vehicles and SB 50 which would extend eligibility of childcare programs. Senator Limón also touched on her work regarding new safety standards for code enforcement officers, and a new Alzheimer’s bill which allows medical providers to create an assessment tool for the early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s. Senator Limón also mentioned the state’s commitment to $6 billion multi-year funding for broadband infrastructure to improve access to broadband across the state.
Thank you to Congressman Carbajal, Supervisor Hart, and Senator Limón for your informative updates. If you missed this South Coast Legislative Update and would like to watch the recording, click here.