The Morrell Monthly

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

We’re here to help

Our office is here to serve you. If you’re having difficulties with a state agency, need a question answered about pending legislation, or want to know more about upcoming events, please give us a call at (909) 919-7731. You can also email me at Senator.Morrell@sen.ca.gov.

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Learn more about what I’m working on in Sacramento and what’s happening around the district!

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Mobile Office Hours

Members of my staff hold regular monthly office hours across the 23rd Senate District. If you have an issue or concern that you would like to share in person but can’t make it to our main office, please plan to stop by. You can view the entire schedule here.

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1,500 Training Hours and $125 to Shampoo Hair?

George Washington portrait in State SenateDid you know California requires a license to work in over 300 different jobs? Everything from tree trimming and interior design to makeup artistry and yes - even shampooing - makes the cut.

It is a distinction that has prompted the Institute for Justice to rank California as the “most broadly and onerously licensed” in the country.

My bill, SB 999, begins tackling this problem by repealing the occupational license requirement for a straightforward job - shampooing. Currently, having this occupation in a salon requires over 1,500 hours of training, several exams, and up to $125 in fees.

In addition, we are working with the nonpartisan R Street Institute on expanding the bill to include other occupations that should be removed from current licensing requirements.

Excessive government licensing of jobs stifles growth and opportunity, especially for those just entering the market and looking to climb the economic ladder, which is why we are taking on this issue.

Just how far-reaching is occupational licensing in California? Not even the government knows for sure. That is why I have also authored SB 1371, which will make the state compile a list of every job requiring a license.

Learn more about the scope of occupational licensing in California by reading this report from the Little Hoover Commission.

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High-Speed Rail Costs Keep Climbing

Image of High Speed Rail Train with costsThis month, the California High-Speed Rail Authority released its draft 2018 Business Plan.

Among its disclosures was that the official cost estimates have increased to at least $77 billion and likely higher at almost $100 billion.

That’s two to three times the cost voters approved in 2008.

The project continues to get more off track with each passing year and criticisms continue to grow.

Even the commission chair has said he would back a re-vote on the project.

It’s long past time for the governor to put the brakes on the bullet train.

Let’s direct these resources to other priorities like our deteriorating roads and infrastructure.

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Leadership Award Recipient Kim Carter

Photo of Kim Carter and Senator MorrellEach year, the James Irvine Foundation Leadership Awards recognize and support individuals who are advancing innovative and effective solutions to significant state issues.

Kim Carter of San Bernardino was honored for the work she does with the Time for Change Foundation, which combines affordable housing with services to help women rebuild their lives and strengthen their families as they become more self-sufficient.

I want to thank Kim for her dedication.

Read more about Kim and the James Irvine Foundation here.

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Woman of the Year

Photo of Shelley Burnach with Senator MorrellOn March 12, the Senate marked Women’s History Month by recognizing women from around the state for the work they do in our communities.

I had the privilege of honoring Shelley Burnach of San Bernardino.

Shelley is a dedicated volunteer who, along with her family, is committed to serving communities throughout the Inland Empire. She gives time and resources to several regional causes, including with Friends of Santa Claus, Inc. and as a founding board member of Women of Dignity Health.

Read more about her here.

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Photos

Photo with Workforce Development Board
Workforce Development Board. Representatives of the San Bernardino County Workforce Development Board visited legislative offices in Sacramento to discuss their priorities for the year. Always good to see faces from the district at the capitol!

Photo with CA Physical Therapy Association.
CA Physical Therapy Association. Met this month with members of the CA Physical Therapy Association from our area - the Inland Counties District. Pictured from left to right: Aubin Elliott, Tim Schwartz, myself, Irma Henry, Matt Hanson, and James Syms.

Photo with PAL Charter Academy.
PAL Charter Academy. Robert “Gunny” Nowosielski from American Legion Post 14 recognized the staff of PAL Charter Academy in San Bernardino with a certificate on behalf of our office. At left is principal, Lynette Forte, and at right is school CEO, Dwaine Radden. Thank you for your work in the community! Learn more here.

Photo from Agriculture Day at Capitol.
Agriculture Day at Capitol. Each year in March, the state’s farmers and ranchers showcase their industry at the Capitol, reminding all of us of the important part they play in California’s economy. Over a third of our nation’s vegetables and two-thirds of fruits are grown here. Thanks to our state’s farmers for feeding America and the world!

Photo of Poetry Out Loud 2018.
Poetry Out Loud 2018. Congratulations to Jacob Walker (center) of Big Bear High School who represented San Bernardino County at the California Poetry Out Loud State Finals in Sacramento. Of participating, he says “Art has always been the primary method of expressing my ideas and feelings, and I believe it is a fundamental tool in understanding who we are as people, and what that means.”

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New 10% tax on California employers?

Image of tax rates in the United States

The non-partisan Tax Foundation ranks California’s business tax climate as the third worst in the country.

Surveys of CEOs for over a decade have consistently ranked California the worst state in which to do business.

Despite these facts, Assembly Democrats have introduced Assembly Constitutional Amendment 22 to add a 10 percent tax on businesses here.

This proposal comes on top of the increase in the gas tax, diesel tax, car registration fee, and real estate document fees that were already signed into law last year by the governor. That last thing Sacramento should do is make it even harder for our state’s employers to create jobs in our communities.

Read more on the potential impact of ACA 22 at this link.

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Churchill on Duty

Image of Winston Churchill“When great causes are on the move in the world, stirring all men’s souls, drawing them from their firesides, casting aside comfort, wealth and the pursuit of happiness in response to impulses at once awe-striking and irresistible, we learn that we are spirits, not animals, and that something is going on in space and time, and beyond space and time, which, whether we like it or not, spells duty.”
- Winston Churchill, 1941, “The Old Lion”

Read his complete remarks here.

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