Assemblymember Lara Joins Bipartisan Delegation to Mexico City

September 13, 2011

Members Seek to Strengthen Economic Ties Between California and Mexico

SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) joins Speaker John A. Pérez (D-Los Angeles) and a bipartisan delegation to Mexico City this week in an effort to strengthen the economic ties between California's largest and most important trading partner. The delegation, led by Speaker John A. Pérez, includes Assemblymembers Nathan Fletcher (R-San Diego), Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley) and Ben Hueso (D-San Diego).

"I am honored to participate in this international visit and these important conversations. The 50th Assembly District, which I represent, has strong ethnic, cultural and business ties with. As a region and a state, we must work together to find common ground and ensure both economies don't just survive, but find ways to thrive in this time of global economic uncertainty," said Assemblymember Lara.

Since 1999, México has been California's main trading partner. The relationship between México and California generates over $159 billion per year for California and, even in the face of an economic recession, México continues be California's number one export market. In order to explore further opportunities for growth and to examine all factors that contribute to a healthy economy, the bipartisan delegation will meet with officials from the Foreign Commercial Service, the Mexican Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the México City Health Minister. Among the issues to be discussed by the delegation include: strengthening the commercial and trade ties between México and California, reviewing Mexico City and California's commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving public health, and strengthening education partnerships between California and Mexico.

The delegation will also meet with President Felipe Calderon, and members of the Mexican Cabinet, Senate and Chamber of Deputies and will culminate with the delegation attending Mexico's celebration of Independence Day on September 16.

The visit is an extension of the binational work that Assembly Member Lara has participated in this year. He currently serves on the Assembly Select Committee on California México Binational Affairs, which has explored the critical issues of "Trade and Commerce Relations between California and México and Job Impacts on California" and "Border Infrastructure and Its Effects on the Environment and Interstate Commerce." Earlier this year, Lara was also appointed by Speaker John A. Pérez to serve on the Border Legislative Conference, a joint program of the Council of State Governments (CSG) - WEST and its regional partner in the South, the Southern Legislative Conference (SLC), aimed at enhancing collaboration and communication among state legislators in the United States and México.

The trip is funded by the Council of State Governments, a national organization that fosters the exchange of insights and ideas that help shape public policy.