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September 23, 2005

For More Information, Contact:
Hema Sareen Mohan at (650) 688-6384


PALO ALTO – State Senator Joe Simitian (D-Palo Alto) kicked off his fifth annual “There Oughta Be a Law” contest today.  The contest invites Californians to submit ideas for new state legislation. 

“Some of the best ideas I hear for new legislation come directly from folks in the community.  If you’ve ever thought to yourself, ‘hey, there oughta be a law about that,’ now is your chance to be heard,” Simitian said.

The winner or winners will have their bill ideas introduced as legislation, and have the opportunity to testify at a hearing on their bill in the State Capitol.  They will also have lunch with Simitian, and receive a California State flag that has flown over the Capitol.  “But most importantly,” said Simitian, “winners stand a good chance of seeing their ideas become law.”

Since its inception, the contest has spawned “a wide range of proposals,” said Simitian.  Six of those ideas have already become law. 

Three winning bill ideas from last year’s contest are currently on the Governor’s desk.  Simitian and his contest winners are hoping for signatures from the Governor.  The three bills represent an eclectic mix of public concerns—consumer privacy, highway safety, and the high price of prescription drugs.

Application forms for this year’s contest may be downloaded at  The public may also call Senator Simitian’s district office at (650) 688-6384 to request a form.  The deadline for all entries is October 31, 2005.