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The following article was posted on September 22nd, 2021, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 22, Issue 30 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 22, Issue 30

Political Watch: September 23, 2021

• U.S. Rep. Salud Carbajal (D-San Luis Obispo) and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minnesota), along with a bipartisan coalition of legislators, introduced the Safe Skies Act of 2021, Carbajal announced in a Sept. 17 statement. With the support of the Air Line Pilots Association, the Coalition of Airline Pilots Associations, and the Independent Pilots Association, the bill “ensures cargo pilots are operating under the same rules to fight fatigue and keep our airspace free from danger as other pilots,” according to Carbajal’s office. “Currently, cargo pilots are operating under weaker flight, duty, and rest regulations than their commercial airline counterparts. The discrepancy in safety regulations leads to increased pilot fatigue and duress, which can have damaging consequences for everyone who uses our shared airspace.” The bill would apply the same safety standards to cargo pilots that already exist for passenger airline pilots. Carbajal introduced the bill in the House, while Klobuchar introduced the companion legislation in the Senate. “It should go without saying that cargo pilots and crews deserve to be safe in their workplace. More needs to be done to ensure pilots, crews, passengers, and all who share our skies are safe. The bipartisan Safe Skies Act is a commonsense bill that puts safety first,” Carbajal said in the statement. “By applying the same rules that keep commercial pilots safe to cargo pilots, we can close a dangerous loophole that puts undue stress and fatigue on our cargo pilots. We need one strong standard of safety and this bill would make that standard a reality.” Klobuchar added that it’s critical we address pilot fatigue. “Closing this loophole will help prevent potential tragedies and ensure the safety of all involved,” she said in the statement.

• Assemblymember Jordan Cunningham (R-San Luis Obispo) announced Sept. 14 that his Assembly district will receive $11 million in Cal Fire grants for fire prevention. “The grants, awarded from funds the Legislature inserted into the budget earlier this year via SB 85, will fund fire mitigation and prevention projects to protect communities at risk of catastrophic fires,” a statement from Cunningham’s office said. “Funds will also be used to protect critical escape routes in the event a community is threatened and residents need to evacuate.” Cunningham said in the statement that the state is experiencing some of the worst fire conditions it’s ever seen. “With more than 2 million acres already burned this year, and the peak of fire season still to come, communities throughout the Central Coast and California remain at risk,” he said. “Experts have said that California needs to treat upwards of 1 million acres per year to cut down on catastrophic wildfires. The projects funded under these Cal Fire grants will help California meet that goal, and help keep Central Coast residents safe.” Some of those projects include $6.44 million to the Santa Barbara County Fire Department to work on fire prevention and mitigation projects near Sisquoc, $2.33 million to San Luis Obispo Fire Safe Council to treat 4,150 acres and protect more than 2,600 structures in SLO County, and another $2.41 million to San Luis Obispo Fire Safe Council to protect more than 1,600 structures in eight at-risk Wildland Urban Interface communities. These communities include Lake Nacimiento, Atascadero, Pozo, Creston, Cambria, San Luis Obispo, Santa Margarita, and San Simeon, the statement said.










Weekly Poll
How do you feel about Santa Maria's drive-in potentially closing for affordable housing?

I think it's a great option—no one goes to the drive-in anymore.
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The drive-in is a staple in our community and it shouldn't be considered for a housing location.

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