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Santa Maria Sun / News

The following article was posted on January 7th, 2020, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 20, Issue 45 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [] - Volume 20, Issue 45

Political Watch: January 9, 2020

• U.S. Rep. Salud Carbajal (D-Santa Barbara) cautioned against war on Jan. 3 as the news of President Donald Trump’s authorized assassination of a top Iranian general spread. Carbajal stopped short of decrying the choice to kill Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the commander of the Iran’s Quds Force. “Tensions with Iran are already high,” Carbajal said in a Facebook post. “We need a strategy to de-escalate and protect troops, diplomats, and civilians. Soleimani was a U.S. enemy. That doesn’t mean we should act recklessly and enter into another conflict. Congress must be part of next steps; we do not want war.” The U.S. later announced the deployment of 3,000 paratroopers to the Middle East.

On Dec. 31, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a new program to help mitigate forest fires. Called the “California Vegetation Treatment Program,” it will streamline regulatory processes to boost the efficient removal of debris known to increase risk of wildfires. It’s part of the state’s goal to treat 500,000 acres of non-federal land each year. “I commend the Board of Forestry and Fire Protection for working with the environmental community, state regulators, and public safety officials to develop a long-term solution to increase the pace and scale of critical vegetation treatment in a way that safely and responsibly protects our environment,” Newsom said in a release. “The scale of the wildfire crisis in California is unprecedented, and we need a response to match the scale and severity of this challenge.” Assemblymember Jordan Cunningham (R-San Luis Obispo) called the announcement good news in a Facebook post. “Onerous forestry regulations made it nearly impossible to take down dead trees and protect communities with severe fire risk. Easing the regulatory burden will make it easier to thin our forests and protect local communities,” the post stated. State Sen. Hannah Beth-Jackson (D-Santa Barbara) also lauded Newsom in a Facebook post. “Thank you @GavinNewsom for your actions to speed up vegetation and forest management projects made possible as a result of my legislation, SB 1260, last year. In this era of catastrophic climate-change-driven wildfires, fuel breaks and prescribed burns are an important tool in our fire prevention toolbox.”

• Assemblymember Monique Limón (D-Santa Barbara) recently announced that she received a 100 percent pro-equality score from Equality California, an LGBTQ advocacy group. 

• California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said in a Jan 3 announcement that more than 648,000 immigrants have renewed their legal status in the last two years. He was talking about Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), also called Dreamers. They were protected by an injunction secured by California in January of 2018, according to a press release from Becerra’s office. Since President Donald Trump took office, his administration has fostered a hard-line stance on immigration. DACA has survived the administration’s attempts to rescind protections, Becerra’s office said in the release. “DACA is an American success story; Dreamers are teachers, health care providers, neighbors, leaders, and so much more,” Becerra said in the release. “Their heart and tenacity in the face of a concerted effort to rip them from the only home they know is an inspiration. But it will take all of us working together in our communities and our courts to win the day.” 

Weekly Poll
What do you think should happen at the Oceano Dunes SVRA?

Ban vehicles for good. It's actually enjoyable without all the traffic.
Open it to off-roading now! Oceano needs the revenue now more than ever.
Open off-roading to locals only. We need to get COVID-19 under control before we let visitors in.
Keep it closed until the pandemic is over.

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