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January 26, 2001

For More Information, Contact:
Jamille Moens at (916) 651-4011


SACRAMENTO - Assemblymember Joe Simitian (D-Palo Alto) announced today that, in addition to the previously announced assignment as Chair of the Assembly Budget Subcommittee on Education Finance, Assembly Speaker Robert M. Hertzberg has appointed Simitian to serve on the Assembly’s Transportation, Utilities and Commerce, Budget, and Appropriations Committees.

“I’m pleased,” said Simitian.  “These assignments put me in a position to do good work for the folks I represent on the Peninsula.  Education, transportation, energy – these are all on the top of the list for the people I represent.”

Simitian is the only legislator from San Mateo or Santa Clara County to be selected to serve on the Assembly Transportation Committee.  He intends to be an advocate for transportation needs on the Peninsula and in the South Bay.  “Historically,” said Simitian, “the many communities on the Peninsula have had a hard time speaking with one voice about their transportation needs.  My hope is that I can help build consensus about priorities among the 15 cities I represent, then have some real impact on congestion relief up and down the Peninsula.”

Simitian, who previously served on the Palo Alto City Council and had responsibility, along with his council colleagues, for the administration of municipal utilities, is looking forward to serving on the Utilities and Commerce Committee.  “As we work towards lasting solutions to the energy crisis we now face, I expect the next two years on Utilities and Commerce will be demanding but gratifying,” commented Simitian.  “Clearly we’re going to need to increase supply, reduce demand, and stabilize the market.  Just how that gets done will have a tremendous impact on Peninsula consumers and businesses.”  The Utilities and Commerce Committee also deals with many high-tech and telecommunications issues of importance to the areas’ economy.

Simitian was also appointed to the Assembly Appropriations Committee which reviews all legislation that entails a cost to the state.  This means that, in addition to considering bills that come before his policy committees, Simitian will have an opportunity to weigh in on over 80% of all legislation that comes through the Legislature.

“I am particularly pleased to be serving on both the Appropriations Committee and the Budget Committee,” said Simitian.  “It gives me a real opportunity to help ensure that we spend our money well and wisely, and on things that matter most to Peninsula and South Bay residents.”

Additionally, as Chair of the Budget Subcommittee on Education Finance, Simitian will have jurisdiction on budget matters for the State’s K-12 school districts, Community Colleges, State Universities, the UC system, and State financial aid for public and private universities.  Over half of the State’s $82.9 billion General Fund budget goes through the Budget Subcommittee on Education Finance.

“I look forward to addressing the needs of kids and schools in a direct and effective way.  My goal is to ensure that the State provides adequate and thoughtfully targeted funding for public education,” concluded Simitian.


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