In the News

The Guardian: Los Angeles aims to make Obamacare universal in more than just name

April 21, 2014

On a sunny weekday morning just east of downtown Los Angeles, a crowd of about 75 people rallied outside the LA County/USC Medical Center. They toted signs with slogans like “Healthcare is a Human Right” and “Salud Para Todos” (“Health for All”).

“How can we say we live in a just and humane society,” said one speaker, “without providing for the sickest and most vulnerable among us?”

LA Times: University officials support loans for undocumented students

April 10, 2014

SACRAMENTO -- Administrators from California’s two public university systems called Wednesday for the state to provide student loans to some immigrants in the country illegally to cover expenses not met with state scholarships.

Sac Bee: Ricardo Lara proposes undocumented student loan program

April 10, 2014

Seeking to close a gap undocumented students face in funding their education, state Sen. Ricardo Lara, D-Bell Gardens, has proposed a new loan program for California's public universities.

Senate Bill 1210 would make available $9.2 million for University of California and California State University campuses to administer loans to undocumented students, who are ineligible for federal financial aid and most private loans.

LA Times: Affirmative action non-action still causing waves in Sacramento

April 02, 2014

"SACRAMENTO — When the state Senate took up the issue of affirmative action in late January, it was a relatively tepid affair.

After 20 minutes of polite debate, senators passed a measure that, if approved by voters, would overturn California's ban on affirmative action in public higher education.

But within weeks, the debate turned fractious. Backlash arose among some Asian Americans who feared their children could lose access to the state's universities if more places were granted to students from other minority groups.

Press Telegram OpEd: Reduce air pollution for region’s health, economy

March 18, 2014

"Clean ai­r is a right, not a privilege. A child’s health should not be determined by where they live or how much their parents make. But one-third of Californians still breathe levels of soot and smog that violate U.S. health standards, and cause asthma, cancer, heart attacks and strokes."

http://www.presstelegram.com/opinion/20140317/reduce-air-pollution-for-regions-health-economy-guest-commentary

Sac Bee: Another View: Senate ethics package is a good start

March 13, 2014

"The California Senate introduced a package of bills last week aimed at increasing transparency and accountability in political practices, including banning all gifts from lobbyists, substantially lowering the limit on gifts from others and doubling the number of reporting requirements for elected officials."

LA Times: California Legislature considers ethics reform bills

March 06, 2014

"SACRAMENTO — Trying to counter ethics scandals in which lawmakers stand accused of voter fraud, bribery, money laundering and other misdeeds, Democratic leaders Thursday proposed sweeping changes to state political laws aimed at restoring public confidence in the Legislature."

Read the full story here: http://www.latimes.com/local/la-me-legislature-ethics-20140307,0,3890797.story#axzz2vfuq9Ff5

SF Chronicle: SoCal legislator takes on previously untouchable bilingual education ban

February 21, 2014

"Just when we thought that no one was willing to take on the 15-year-old state ban on bilingual education, a Los Angeles legislator has decided to be the first to venture forth.

California Sen. Ricardo Lara introduced legislation Thursday afternoon that would put a measure on the November 2016 ballot to repeal Proposition 227."

Jill Tucker

LA Times: California senator proposes restoring bilingual education

February 21, 2014

"SACRAMENTO -- Sixteen years after California voters approved an initiative requiring public school instruction in English, state Sen. Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) introduced a measure Thursday to repeal the requirement of Proposition 227.