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Saturday, July 26, 2014     Volume: 15, Issue: 20
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Santa Maria Sun / News

The following article was posted on June 26th, 2013, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 14, Issue 16 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 14, Issue 16

Politcal Watch 6/27/13

• In addition to math and spelling, schoolchildren across the country could soon be learning life-saving skills such as CPR and how to use automated external defibrillators, thanks to a bill recently introduced by U.S. Rep. Lois Capps (D-Santa Barbara). If passed, the Teaching Children to Save Lives Act (H.R. 2308) would give schools the tools necessary to teach students how to help people who go into cardiac arrest. Funding could also be used to train teachers and school officials and to purchase defibrillators and other materials. “Every second counts when someone is suffering from sudden cardiac arrest, yet few people know what to do in an emergency. That is why it’s so important to teach students the life-saving skills of how to perform CPR and use an AED—skills they could use to one day save the life of a classmate, family member, or even a complete stranger. By training a generation of students in emergency response, we can dramatically reduce the rate of death from sudden cardiac arrest in our country,” Capps said in a press release. According to information from Capps’ office, more than 350,000 people die annually from sudden cardiac arrest, including nearly 6,500 young people. The American Heart Association estimates nearly 100,000 of these lives could be saved each year if more people knew how to perform CPR and use an automated external defibrillator before first responders are able to arrive. The Teaching Children to Save Lives Act is endorsed by numerous health organizations, including the American Heart Association, Children’s Cardiomyopathy Foundation, Parent Heart Watch, and WomenHeart: The National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease.

• The California Assembly recently approved a bill that would raise the state’s hourly minimum wage by 50-cent increments over the next three years for a total of $9.25. Assembly Bill 10 by Assemblyman Luis Alejo (D-Watsonville) passed 45-25 on May 30. It would be the first bump in the state’s minimum wage since 2008. It currently stands at $8. “The last time the minimum wage was increased, gas was $3.25 a gallon in California,” Alejo told the Sacramento Bee in an interview. “I don’t know about you, but I haven’t seen gas prices at that level in a long time.” Under A.B. 10, the hourly minimum wage would increase to $8.25 in 2014, $8.75 in 2015, and $9.25 in 2016. Beginning in 2017, the minimum wage would be adjusted annually according to the rate of inflation. There would be no changes in years in which inflation was negative. The Bee reports that the California Chamber of Commerce listed Alejo’s bill on its annual list of “job killers,” saying it unfairly raises employers’ costs of doing business in the state. Alejo disagreed that his bill would slow the economic recovery. “When minimum wage workers have more money, they spend it,” he told the Bee. The bill now heads to the Senate for consideration. m