The Morrell Monthly

Thursday, July 26, 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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Connect with me on social media

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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Accountability for Long DMV Wait Times

DMVIn January, California began rolling out its steps to comply with federal regulations concerning the issuance of new federally recognized REAL ID driver licenses and state identification cards.

What does this mean for you? Beginning October 1, 2020, the federal government will require your state license or ID to be compliant with the new law if you wish to use it to board a domestic flight or enter military bases and most federal facilities. Read more here.

Since going into effect, many Californians have found increased wait times and appointment dates weeks out, as it appears the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) was not entirely prepared for implementing the new program.

The DMV has taken steps to alleviate the problems by offering new Saturday office hours. However, there are still questions as to how and why the rollout has been such a haphazard one for the DMV, which had anticipated the program implementation since 2005.

Republicans are currently pushing for an audit of the DMV to give taxpayers a clear picture of how their money is being spent. Read the letter here. The Joint Legislative Audit Committee will meet to consider this audit request during its next hearing on August 8 in Sacramento.

If you have had challenges with the DMV this year, I would encourage you to contact the committee and its members here to share your support for the audit.

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Wildfire Preparedness

Forest fireWildfire season has already begun in earnest here in California, including in the Inland Empire.

While these disasters are unpredictable, there are steps each of us can take to prepare for a wildfire, protecting ourselves, families, property, and neighborhoods.

Thank you to CAL FIRE for providing much of the helpful information so that we can be “Ready-Set-Go.”

For statewide as well as local resources, you can click here to visit the Wildfire Information page on my website.

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Heat Precautions & Local Cooling Centers

cooling centersWith heatwaves hitting our area during these summer months, it is important to take precautions and stay indoors when possible.

There are a number of cooling centers throughout our region. You can locate one near you at this link.

Please also remember to keep an eye on pets and check on elderly family members and neighbors. Some useful heat resources are available at this link.

Stay safe!

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SB 999 — More to the story

cooling centersThroughout this year, I have kept you posted on my bill, SB 999, which sought to shine light on California’s burdensome and overbearing licensing system that requires licensing for one out of every four jobs — a figure that has grown from one in 20 since the 1950s.

Despite earning broad bipartisan support in the Senate, I was disappointed that the Assembly Business and Professions Committee ultimately voted down the bill. Since this development,

a number of stories have been written about the bill and potential next steps toward reform.

You can read a wrap-up from columnist Sal Rodriguez in the Press-Enterprise here.

Steven Greenhut, director of the western region for the R Street Institute, also explains more here.

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September 22 • First Responder Day

First Responder Day 2018 graphicLast fall, I had the opportunity to work with the Mountain Rim Fire Safe Council based out of the Lake Arrowhead area to host our region’s inaugural First Responder Day at Snow Valley Mountain Resort in Running Springs.

This year, First Responder Day will be held down the hill at the home of the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes Minor League baseball team - LoanMart Field.

The event will be an opportunity to thank the men and women who keep us safe as well as learn more about the hard work they do.

First Responder Day was officially recognized in California through the passage of Senate Resolution 75.

For more information, please contact Rebecca Ann Fontaine at (916) 651-4023 or Rebecca.Fontaine@sen.ca.gov.

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September 27 • Ark of Safety Emergency Preparedness Forum

Ark of Safety Forum logoThis September, my office will again partner with Building Resilient Communities to host the annual Ark of Safety Forum on emergency preparedness.

The free event is an opportunity for business, education, government, and faith-based leaders across the Inland Empire to join in discussions on how to best prepare for a crisis.

Planned presentations include:

  • How to identify potential security threats
  • Vital updated earthquake preparedness information
  • Available resources and training through the Department of Homeland Security

Last year’s event had a waiting list - be sure to reserve your spot soon!

WHEN:

Thursday, September 27, 2018
9:00 AM to 3:00 PM

WHERE:

Roman Catholic Diocese of San Bernardino
1201 East Highland Avenue
San Bernardino, CA 92404

TO RSVP OR FOR MORE INFORMATION: Visit the Eventbrite website here.

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Photos


Congratulations to San Bernardino’s Project Fighting Chance on being presented with the “Investing in California” Award from AT&T. Thank you for the work you do with the youth in our community! Pictured from left to right: Terry Boykins (Project Fighting Chance), Julio Figueroa (AT&T), myself, Ian Franklin (CEO & President of Project Fighting Chance), Rory Gandy (AT&T).


Congratulations to Retirement Housing Foundation on celebrating its 55th anniversary in Sun City! The non-profit provides housing and services to low-income older adults, families, and persons with disabilities. Pictured from left to right: organization president Rev. Laverne R. Joseph, D.D., field representative Heather Perry, and Sun City Gardens administrator Ted J. Holt.

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Too much license?

During my time in office, I have prioritized getting our state’s economy up and running and ensuring that hardworking and entrepreneurial Californians have every opportunity to achieve success.

Part of that focus has been on California’s burdensome occupational licensing system which, in many ways, can function as another means of government taxing individuals simply for seeking out their careers. While there may be an appropriate level of licensing in some job fields, it has become excessive in others.

The Archbridge Institute released a study earlier this spring that takes a deeper look at the barriers created by too many licensing requirements — concerns that have been echoed by presidential administrations of both parties.

Among its findings, the report found that licensing for low-income occupations in California grew 49 percent over two decades between 1993 and 2012.

To read the report entitled “Too Much License? A Closer Look at Occupational Licensing and Economic Mobility” you can click here.

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Theodore Roosevelt - “The Man in the Arena”

Menifee Mayor Neil WinterIn 1910, former President Theodore Roosevelt delivered one of his most famous speeches in Paris. From those remarks came the following quote. I have often used it when speaking with youth and young adults.

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

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