Garamendi Wins 10th Congressional District Seat
As expected, John Garamendi, California's Lieutenant Governor, won the special election to fill the vacant 10th congressional district seat. Due to the nature of the special election, Garamendi flew to Washington just hours after the polls closed and was sworn in on Thursday November 5. He cast his first vote the same day. For the time being, Garamendi will use the Walnut Creek office of former Rep. Tauscher. Now we wait to see which committee assignments he receives.
Now that Garamedi has been elected to The Congress, he has resigned his position as California Lt. Governor. By state law, the Governor may appoint a replacement to this post. Unlike federal law, which allows the president to make an appointment with the confirmation of only the U.S. Senate, California law requires confirmation by both houses of the legislature. Also, since Governor Schwarzenegger is a Republican and both the state senate and state Assembly have Democratic majorities, the appointment will be very sensitive as the 2010 state elections approaches.
While there has been some good news about the economy, state revenue continues to decline and fall behind projections. State Assemblymember Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley) recently met with Brother Ronald Gallagher to discuss the revenue decline and its impact on the state budget. According to Skinner Cal Grants should be protected in the 2010 state budget, but she is not sure about 2011 because a state sales tax increase is scheduled to sunset, which will further impact state revenue.
If you received a Cal Grant or know an SMC alum that did, I'd like to hear from you. My office is identifying as many Cal Grant recipients as possible so I can compile a roster of their stories. I hope to share these stories with our legislators and friends to demonstrate the positive impact Cal Grant has made in students lives. As well as how these individuals have contributed to our communities since they have graduated. Please send the name to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Cal Grant funding will be a big topic throughout 2010, and I will monitor and report on it throughout the year.
As the holidays approach I wanted to make you aware of the Moraga Season of Light community celebration. This is the 4th annual tree lighting and holiday celebration, which will be held on Saturday December 5th at both the Rheem and Moraga shopping centers. Merchants will have bargains and specials throughout the day. The college has donated sporting event tickets as prizes for the first 50 customers to make a purchase in each store. This will be a great way to spend time with family and friends and kick off your holiday shopping. If you have not done so lately, I urge you to stop by some of the local shops Moraga has to offer. This beats the hectic pace of the malls, and you can shop on your lunch break or on your way home.