April 27, 2013 (Sacramento) – Legislation by Assemblyman Brian Jones (R-Santee) to require photo identification prior to casting a ballot was killed by Assembly Democrats today in the Assembly Committee on Elections and Redistricting.
“I am passionate about this issue because the integrity of the ballot must be safeguarded so that the voices of lawful voters are not diluted or disenfranchised due to fraud and illegal conduct; this is equally as important to the credibility of elections,” said Jones. “The right to vote is a fundamental responsibility given to us by the founders of this country.”
But a Voting Rights Institute report titled “The Real Cost of Photo ID" concludes that “the problem of voter impersonation, which is the only type of fraud photo ID could conceivably address, is less likely to occur than a person being struck by lightning.” Moreover, the report found that in states that have enacted Voter ID requirements, the costs have been high. In California, the report estimates the cost of implementing Voter ID requirements during the first year would range from $37.86 million to $113.58 million.
April 18, 2013 (El Cajon) – Have you paid $150 for the state fire fee? Have questions? You’re invited to join Assemblyman Brian Jones and Cal Fire at a town hall meeting on Thursday, April 25 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. The event will be at the P2K range at 2082 Willow Glen Drive in EL Cajon.
To reserve a seat, call (619)441-2322.
Surplus expected to grow to $12.7 million under little oversight, legislators contend
April 9, 2013 (San Diego's East County)--Assemblyman Brian Jones (R-Santee), Senator Jean Fuller (R-Bakersfield), and 29 Republican legislators have requested the Joint Legislative Audit Committee approve an audit of the Dealers Record of Sale (DROS) Special Account of the General Fund. The DROS Account is funded by fees paid by individuals who purchase or register firearms in California. Generally, a DROS fee is paid by a buyer to a firearms dealer at the time of purchase. The dealer is required to remit the fee to the Department of Justice (DOJ) to cover the cost of performing a background check on the purchaser.
By Assemblyman Brian Jones
March 20, 2013 (San Diego’s East County)--Did you know that Cal Fire bureaucrats have joined the ranks of state agencies hiding taxpayer dollars? It’s sad, but true – recent Cal Fire headlines are less about the brave duty of firefighters and more about secreting taxpayer dollars away in a non-profit association.
Not only did Cal Fire hide $3.5 million, but they did so while Governor Brown and the Democrat-controlled Legislature slapped a $150 fire tax on rural residents from San Diego to the Northern California border.
March 18, 2013 (Sacramento)--Assemblyman Brian Jones, R-Santee has issued the following statement on the passage of HR 9, a resolution he co-authored that outlines the many characteristics of California’s historic vineyards and their vast contribution to the agricultural legacy of the state:
“Almost 250 years ago, Father Junipero Serra planted grapes at Mission San Diego, and since that time, historic vineyards have grown throughout the state – from northern California and the Central Coast to our own Ramona, Alpine and Riverside County’s Temecula Valley,” said Jones. “I am proud the 71st Assembly District is home to such beautiful and diverse grape growing areas – each of which has achieved worldwide recognition and contributes greatly to our local economy. I am very pleased the Assembly took the time to recognize the extraordinary contribution of our living historic vineyards to the agricultural and social heritage of the state as well as to the enjoyment of wine enthusiasts throughout California and the world.”
By Miriam Raftery
Governor Jerry Brown, in his State of the State Speech in January, praised legislators for casting “difficult votes to cut billions from the state budget. You curbed prison spending through an historic realignment,” he said among other cost-cutting measures listed.
The realignment shifts responsibility for tens of thousands of prisoners from the state to local governments by 2014. The action is fueled in part by a court ruling that ordered California to reduce overcrowding in state prisons by 33,000 prisoners, though the Governor’s move goes further in an effort to cut the budget.
The action, however, shifts responsibilities for those prisoners to local counties and cities. It is also forcing some jurisdictions to release some prisoners early to avert overcrowding in local jails--and raises questions on how best to address the state's crime problems overall.
February 12, 2013 (Santee)--Assemblyman Brian Jones (R-Santee) today released comments on a case of teacher misconduct in California’s public education system. Brentwood Unified School District refused to fire a teacher after she kicked a five-year-old “special needs” student to the floor.The district stated that its hands were tied due to “flaws in the California Education Code” which prevented it from firing the teacher, Jones noted.
“Are you kidding me?” said Jones.
The teacher was ultimately convicted of misdemeanor child abuse, but was allowed to continue teaching for two years, the Mercury News reported. An investigation found that at least 11 employees failed in their legal duty to report suspicion of child abuse in earlier incidents.
By Miriam Raftery
January 5, 2013 (San Diego)—Assembly Speaker John Perez has announced committee assignments for the new term. San Diego’s delegation will be well represented on several key committees. San Diego County members will control 3 of 7 votes on Housing and Community Development, with two or more members on several other key committees, notably education and the budget committee. Our region lacks representation on several committees however, such as transportation, revenue and taxation, and natural resources, where San Diego doesn’t have a single member. Below are the assignments of our region’s members.
By Nadin Abbott
August 11, 2012 (El Cajon)--The mood at the Cuyamaca College Water Conservation Garden was relaxed. People came to have good food, drink, and listen to some of our local politicians debate in a friendly forum.
Participants were Congressman Bob Filner (D-50th), currently running for Mayor of San Diego, California Senator Joel Anderson (R-36th District), Assemblyman Brian Jones (R-77th District) and County of San Diego Supervisor Dianne Jacob.
July 15, 2012 (Santee)—Now you can meet your legislator and beat the heat—all at the same time. Assemblyman Brian Jones, whose district includes most of East County, invites constituents to the second annual Ice Cream Social Open House at his Santee office on Thursday, July 26, from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Budget aims to eliminate deficit, cuts key services
Deeper cuts ahead if Governor’s tax initiative on Nov. ballot is not approved by voters
By Miriam Raftery
June 25, 2012 (Sacramento) – California's Legislature has approved a budget bill, AB 1464, on time by the constitutional June 15 deadline. The budget deal aims to eliminate the state’s $20 billion structural deficit and result in a balanced budget for each of the next several years, resulting in a $2 billion reserve by the 2015/16 fiscal year.
By Miriam Raftery
“With California’s new `top two’ primary system, only two candidates will advance to a November run-off. I’m running against two Republicans, so it’s important for Democrats to vote on Tuesday.” – Pat Hurley, candidate, 71st Assembly District
June 2, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – Pat Hurley has worked in factories and on railroads. He’s turned around troubled businesses in mobile electronics, finance and sales. He’s led efforts as a nonprofit executive to create job-training programs, help low-income communities, and forge a sustainable future for our region. Now he wants to bring his experience—along with Midwest, middle class values—to the state capitol.
Hurley is the only Democrat running for the new 71st Assembly district (formerly the 77th), which includes nearly all of East County. The seat is currently held by Republican Brian Jones. Another Republican, engineer John McLaughlin from Temecula, is also in the race.
Looks Forward to Working with Leadership Team in Sacramento
May 2, 2012 (Sacramento)--Assemblyman Brian Jones, R-Santee, today announced that Assembly Republican Leader Connie Conway, R-Tulare, appointed him as Assistant Republican Leader on the Assembly Republican Leadership Team.
“I am eager to continue working with Republican Leader Conway to get Californians back to work. The most important issues facing our state are jobs and the economy – we have to remove the regulatory and tax burdens from California’s middle class and release our creative energy and entrepreneurial spirit. California can be the Golden State again.”
April 20, 2012 (Sacramento) – AB 1902, authored by Brian Jones, did not muster sufficient votes to pass out of the Assembly Local Government Committee on Wednesday. Introduced at the request of East County Magazine, the bill would allow online media to run paid public notices, such as new business announcements.
In his statement, Assemblyman Jones told Committee members that permitting online publications to post public notices is a” reasonable response to changing technology.” He noted that “California is customarily on the cutting edge of supporting new technologies and industries—and the online news business is both.”
Editor's note: Assemblyman Brian Jones has issued the following response to Ms. Disenhouse's editorial: “To give a small group of people a monopoly over deciding what is true or false does a great disservice to public debate in this country. Those who believe Lord Monckton has his facts wrong are welcome to continue in that belief, but he is still entitled to participate in this critical debate. As someone who does not blindly accept conclusions arrived at without conclusive evidence, I am more than happy to accommodate Mr. Monckton sharing his point of view.”
By Masada Disenhouse
March 23, 2012 (San Diego)--It is ironic that freshman Assemblyman Brian Jones has chosen this Saturday, March 24 to emcee one of the world’s most egregious actors on the climate denial stage – after a winter of broken heat records. Regardless of your opinions on climate change, sponsoring an inflammatory charlatan such as self-titled Lord Christopher Monckton is offensive to many in San Diego County.
An ECM exclusive interview by Miriam Raftery
March 13, 2012 (Santee) – Assemblyman Brian Jones (R-Santee) announced last week that he is running for reelection. In an exclusive interview, the conservative legislator shared highlights and frustrations from his first term in the Legislature, as well as his priorities for the future if reelected in November.
With reapportionment, Jones 77th district will become the 71st Assembly District. The district picks up some new areas including Pine Valley, Julian, Ramona, and Borrego Springs in San Diego County, as well as portions of Riverside County.
By Miriam Raftery
March 8, 2012 (Sacramento) –An antiquated California law written before the Internet was invented restricts the running of public notices to only print newspapers. Today, with the majority of Americans seeking out news online, Assemblyman Brian Jones (R-Santee) has introduced legislation to update the law and allow online media outlets to publish public notices such as new business announcements.
“AB 1902 will provide residents greater access to legal notices, and will more appropriately fulfill the intent of the law to insure the public is adequately made aware of public notices,” a fact sheet on the bill provided by Jones’ office states. “Permitting online publications to sell and post public notices is a reasonable response to changing technology."
February 27, 2012 (San Diego) – Over half of California counties currently have no abortion provider. To remedy the situation, Senator Christine Kehoe (D-San Diego) has introduced SB 1501, a bill which would allow trained nurse practitioners, certified nurse midwives and physician assistants to provide early-term abortions.
“SB 1501 will ensure that all women have access to providers they know and trust in the communities where they live,” Senator Kehoe said.
But the measure has drawn criticism from Brian Jones (R-Santee), who denounced the measure as a "moral failing."
Dozens of toys, hundreds of dollars donated for East County Toy & Food Drive
December 15, 2011 (La Mesa)—Thanks to all of our generous guests , sponsors, and VIP visitors who made this year’s East County Magazine holiday party very merry indeed! As always, we invited community leaders and officials in all parties, plus other special guests.
Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego), whose district will soon include much of East County, joined the festivities. Assemblyman Brian Jones (R-Santee) sent Assembly commendations for our award-winning writers and photographers. Santa and Mrs. Claus heard children’s Christmas wishes, while an elf handed out prizes.
By Miriam Raftery
August 25, 2011 (Rancho San Diego) – The weather was sultry and the political discourse even hotter at Politics in Paradise last Friday night, hosted by the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce in the Water Conservation Garden at Cuyamaca College.
Congressmembers Bob Filner and Duncan Hunter, Assemblyman Brian Jones and former Senator Denise Ducheny fielded questions on a broad range of issues, from jobs and healthcare to a new stadium for the Chargers. The evening yielded insights, humor, and surprises.
June 15, 2011 (Santee) -- Assemblyman Brian Jones, Republican representing the 77th district, announces opening of a new district office location at 10152 Mission Gorge Road in Santee.
June 2, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – Assemblyman Brian Jones (R-Santee) has issued a press release sharply criticizing Governor Jerry Brown for signing a contract for Will Lightbourne to head up the state’s Department of Social Services. The contract totals $1.25 million, spread over the next three and a half years.
May 24, 2011 (San Diego) Parents from around the county, objecting to years of cuts to public school funding, will demand action from lawmakers at a 4:30 p.m. rally on Tuesday, May 24th at Park Boulevard and Presidents Way in Balboa Park.
“California public schools are among the lowest funded in the country – it’s time to make education a priority again, not only for our children but for the future of our state,” said Fran Shimp, a parent of two elementary students and a volunteer organizer of the event. Since 2008-2009, education spending, which represents 40% of the state budget, has incurred 60% of the budget cuts. In 2008-2009, California ranked 44th in per pupil spending (adjusted for cost of living).
East County’s representatives, State Senator Joel Anderson and Assemblyman Brian Jones, have steadfastly opposed the Governor’s plan to extend expiring taxes in order to more fully fund education.
April 18, 2011 (San Diego's East County)--Assemblyman Brian Jones (R-Santee) needs help finding a veteran in his district to honor. The 77th Assembly District is looking for a veteran to honor who is a veteran of Iraq/Afghanistan/Desert Storm and has contributed significantly to the community. (View map of 77th district.)
By Jeremy Los
March 30, 2011 (Sacramento) – Governor Jerry Brown yesterday declared budgetary talks with Republicans “dead.” The GOP issued 53 proposed alternatives, leading the Governor to accuse Republicans of obstructing the process with new demands that would widen the budget gap, not close it. View Governor Brown's video message to the people by clicking the above image.
READERS' EDITORIAL: ELECT A FIRE SURVIVOR, AWARD-WINNING TEACHER, AND GREEN ENERGY LEADER TO STATE ASSEMBLY
November 2, 2010 (Lakeside) -- I'm Mark Hanson and I’m running in the 77th Assembly District to represent you as a fellow East County resident. I’ve spent my entire life serving the public – and hope to continue doing so in Sacramento.
I will fight for stronger fire protection for our region. As a Cedar Fire survivor, I know how important it is to have fire warning and protection. My nonprofit, Heartland Coalition, raised money to help fire victims rebuild their lives. Heartland also founded the Viejas Wildfire & Emergency Alerts and East County Magazine to help keep people in East County protected and informed.
As a former educator twice named teacher of the year, I’ve taught at our local colleges and also served as an administrator of the Grossmont Union High School District back when it was among the best school districts in the state. I will work hard to restore our public schools to their former high achievement levels for our children.
East County Magazine Editor Miriam Raftery was interviewed on KPBS Radio’s “These Days” program today regarding several East County political races: 77th Assembly, La Mesa Mayor, El Cajon Mayor, Padre Dam Municipal Water District, and 52nd Congressional District. Here is a link to the program: http://www.kpbs.org/news/2010/oct/11/east-county-election-races-heating/
Here are links to recent ECM articles with in-depth coverage of the races discussed:
ASSEMBLY CANDIDATE MARK HANSON REVEALS COMMITMENTS TO BRING 32 GREEN MANUFACTURING COMPANIES TO CALIFORNIA & CREATE 2,200 JOBS
New jobs include many slated for East County;
Cedar Fire survivor also calls for stronger fire protection and improved emergency notification in region
By Miriam Raftery
September 2, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – Most candidates only talk about creating jobs. But Mark Hanson (D-Lakeside) aims to hit the ground running if elected to fill the open 77th Assembly seat vacated by Joel Anderson, who is running for State Senate.
“I’ve already met with over 200 companies around the country, and I’ve identified 32 who have committed to bring green manufacturing jobs to California,” he told East County Magazine, adding that his plan includes a facility in Boulevard to manufacture parts for wind turbines. “Those companies will generate 2,200 jobs within the next two years.” Asked to name a few of the firms, he listed these:
Update: Watch full video of the debate now posted here in 8 parts: http://www.youtube.com/user/EastCountyMagazine (on right, or click direct link to this debate:
By Miriam Raftery
June 3, 2010 (El Cajon ) – Seven candidates for state legislative offices fielded questions and presented their views at a candidate forum sponsored by the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce Tuesday and moderated by former TV news anchor Vic Salazar at the Elks Lodge in El Cajon. Candidates clashed on views over how to turn the economy around and bring jobs to East County, with visions that ranged from slashing taxes to specific plans for actively bringing green manufacturing jobs to our region.