Thursday, September 29, 2022     Volume: 23, Issue: 31

Santa Maria Sun / News

The following article was posted on September 21st, 2022, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 23, Issue 30 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [] - Volume 23, Issue 30

Political Watch: September 22, 2022

• U.S. Rep. Salud Carbajal (D-Santa Barbara) released a report detailing how Central Coast families will soon see more affordable prescription drugs for Medicare recipients and lower health insurance premiums made possible by the Inflation Reduction Act, according to a Sept. 12 statement from the congressman’s office. The report highlights how the new law signed in August will save Central Coast seniors more than $30 million on their prescription drug costs, avert massive increases in health care premiums, and lower out-of-pocket costs for thousands in California’s 24th Congressional District. By extending critical tax credits set to expire this year, the Inflation Reduction Act will help 31,385 people on the Central Coast currently enrolled in subsidized marketplace health insurance coverage through the Affordable Care Act save an average of $1,410 in premiums starting next year. “The Inflation Reduction Act is a landmark bill that meets the greatest challenges that we are facing today—from rising energy prices and health care costs to the worsening damage of the climate crisis,” Carbajal said in the statement. “But having worked for years to lower health care costs for Central Coast families, I am proud that this bill will deliver key savings on health care premiums and prescription drugs—helping our families and older Californians make ends meet and finally capping out-of-control health care costs.”

• U.S. Sen. Alex Padilla (D-California) and nine of his Senate colleagues wrote a letter to Senate Appropriations Committee leadership, urging them to provide additional humanitarian assistance for the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) in the upcoming government funding stopgap bill, according to a Sept. 15 statement from the senator’s office. These funds will ensure that nongovernmental organizations and communities are able to provide adequate support services such as food, shelter, transportation, and access to basic health care for asylum seekers and those coming across the border. Without adequate funding, these organizations would be forced to scale back or cease their operations. “We urge you to include the White House’s anomaly request for the Emergency Food and Shelter Program. Additionally, we request that you consider providing additional funding for this account based on the increased needs of the grantees providing humanitarian assistance and critical services for asylum seekers,” the letter stated. “Congress has an opportunity to reaffirm its commitment to protecting migrants and the right to seek refuge by extending funding for EFSP. Furthermore, Congress must ensure that communities have the tools necessary to treat migrants fairly and humanely as they flee violence and instability.”

• Gov. Gavin Newsom signed bipartisan legislation aimed at protecting the well-being, data, and privacy of children using online platforms, according to a Sept. 15 statement from the governor’s office. AB 2273 by Assemblymember Buffy Wicks (D-Oakland) and Assemblymember Jordan Cunningham (R-San Luis Obispo), establishes the California Age-Appropriate Design Code Act—which requires online platforms to consider the best interest of child users and to default to privacy and safety settings that protect children’s mental and physical health and well-being. This law prohibits companies that provide online services, products, or features likely to be accessed by children from using a child’s personal information; collecting, selling, or retaining a child’s geolocation; profiling a child by default; and leading or encouraging children to provide personal information. “We’re taking aggressive action in California to protect the health and well-being of our kids,” Newsom said in the statement. “As a father of four, I’m familiar with the real issues our children are experiencing online, and I’m thankful to Assemblymembers Wicks and Cunningham and the tech industry for pushing these protections and putting the well-being of our kids first.”

Weekly Poll
What are some of the priorities you want candidates to address this election?

Homelessness. Our state needs to address this growing issue and come up with creative solutions.
Mental health programs. We need more investments in programs to address staffing shortages and growing needs.
Climate change. I'd like to see initiatives like clean energy and wind farms move forward.
Our state is beyond fixing and there's nothing we can do.

| Poll Results

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