Assemblymember Kansen Chu secured more than $40 Million in State Budget for Public Safety, Emergency Preparedness, and Senior Services
CONTACT: Annie Pham (916) 319-2025
(SACRAMENTO, CA) – Today, the California legislature approved a sound and thoughtful state budget that will improve funding for education, mental health services, affordable housing, and more. As part of the statewide budget, Assemblymember Kansen Chu was able to push for funding to help Assembly District 25 and statewide to prepare for emergencies and disasters, combat the rising number of car break-ins, and support the aging population.
Assemblymember Kansen Chu successfully pushed for $3.75 million to support a taskforce on addressing car break-ins and personal theft in addition to $32.3 million to fund statewide senior services, and $5.5 million for San José to plan and prepare for natural disasters and emergencies. The budget will become effective once signed by Governor Gavin Newsom.
$3.75 Million to Address Increasing Number of Car Break-ins and Personal Property Theft
The Newark Police Department reported a 30 percent increase in car break-ins from 2015 to 2018 and projected a 93 percent increase in 2019 due to a high number of incidents from January to February. The Fremont Police Department indicated a 27 percent increase and the San Jose Police Department reported a 14 percent increase in the same period with 6,721 cases in 2018. The Santa Clara Police Department saw an escalation of 125% from January to March of 2019 compared to the previous year during the same time frame. Each police department in Assembly District 25 will receive $750,000 this year to support efforts that will reduce the number of property crimes.
“I want to do more to protect our friends and neighbors,” said Assemblymember Kansen Chu (D- San José). “Some areas in my district reported an increase of 125% in the number of smash and grabs from January to March this year. This is unacceptable. These crimes might seem minor but they instill fears and insecurities. Daily tasks like going to the grocery store or pharmacy and leaving your car unattended should not be a stressful experience. A broken window could mean financial hardship for families that are already struggling. This new funding will give our local police departments needed resources to keep our communities safe.”
$32.3 Million to Fund Senior Nutrition Program and Services for Medi-Cal-Eligible Seniors
As a result of the 2008 recession, funding for senior services was significantly reduced. In the last decade, the funding has not been restored. The population of older Californians age 65+ has grown by over 40% to 5.5 million since 2008. By 2030, this cohort will have more than 9 million people – making up more than 20% of the population in California. As the elderly population has grown, it has also become poorer with 54% of Californians over 65 living below 200% of federal supplemental poverty level. The new funding in this year’s budget will increase the number of seniors served through state programs, bringing services to their homes, and ensuring that our aging population is not living poorly and in isolation.
“Our population continues to grow older and for many of our seniors, poorer,” said Assemblymember Kansen Chu (D- San José). “This ongoing support in the budget will mean healthier meals, transportation to services, and in-home support for a group of our population who has contributed so much to our state. More importantly, this budget allocation tells our seniors that we care and we have not forgotten about them or their struggles.”
"We are excited that policy makers have finally recognized the need to invest in the safety net of services that older Californians rely on, and we are so thankful to the Assemblymember for his leadership,” said Kweli Kitwana, Associate Director of Policy & Advocacy for the Senior Services Coalition of Alameda County. “These multiple new investments will shore up programs and benefit seniors in communities across the state. We still have much work ahead to build capacity to serve the state's growing older population, and meeting this challenge will require serious partnership with legislators like Assemblymember Chu."
$5.5 Million for Emergency Preparedness and Hazard Mitigation in the City of San José
In February of 2017, San José’s Coyote Creek experienced flooding resulting in nearly $50 million in damages to surrounding neighborhoods. There have been 12 Presidential major disaster declarations in the State of California since 2013, yet local government resources dedicated to emergency resilience and management have progressively diminished.
“Disasters, whether natural or manmade, are a reality for our state,” said Assemblymember Kansen Chu (D- San José). “We cannot just sit around and wait to react. Being prepared will mean more lives saved and less damage. Inaction is not an option and support for San José City is a start. This funding will have lasting impacts for San Jose that will also spread to surrounding communities.”
“Thank you to Assemblymember Kansen Chu for his tireless efforts to secure $5.5 million in critical funding for emergency preparedness in San José,” said Mayor Sam Liccardo. “This budget allocation will help San José meet its emergency management, preparedness, and resiliency goals by providing essential resources for our emergency operations center and fire training facility.”
“Thank you to our state elected officials for the $5.5 million budget allocation to help the City of San José meet its emergency management, preparedness, and readiness goals,” said Vice Mayor Chappie Jones. “These funds will contribute to San Jose’s resiliency and ability to prepare for future disasters, which in turn will save property and more importantly, lives.”
Assemblymember Kansen Chu is proud to represent the 25th Assembly District, comprised of the cities of Fremont, Milpitas, Newark, Santa Clara and San Jose.