For Immediate Release
July 13, 2021
Assemblymember Ash Kalra Celebrates Passage of Budget Trailer Bills
SACRAMENTO –The State Legislature in recent weeks approved a number of budget trailer bills that included requests championed by Assemblymember Ash Kalra (D-San Jose). Highlighting a key district ask and statewide ask below in SB 129 (Skinner), signed by Governor Newsom Monday evening:
District Funding for a Quiet Zone
Trailer bill SB 129 allocates $8 million in one-time funding to partially fund rail crossing improvements in the Warm Springs and Japantown neighborhood in the City of San Jose. For the past two years, 11,000 residents in Assembly District 27 have been heavily impacted by the excess train horn noises caused by Union Pacific Railroad’s (UPPR) services. This project will mitigate excessive UPPR noise and qualify the neighborhood as a Quiet Zone. The estimated cost of the project is 12.4 million and the City of San Jose has budgeted $5 million.
Criminal Justice Reform Funding
Trailer bill SB 129 also allocates $50 million annually for 3 years to all counties for indigent defense and implementing recent criminal justice reforms, such as AB 2942 (Ting, 2018), SB 1437 (Skinner, 2018), and AB 813 (Gonzalez, 2017). With criminal justice reforms left wanting for funds for implementation, there is a significant number of incarcerated people serving sentences that are now illegal or unnecessary for public safety. Hiring public defenders and social workers to represent indigent clients most eligible for relief will also result in significant cost-savings.
“I am heartened to see the final pieces of the budget come together to fund critical needs of our state after such a challenging year. Investments in criminal justice reform, worker recovery efforts, and district-specific projects will have a strong and positive impact throughout our communities,” said Assemblymember Kalra. “I want to thank my colleagues who collaborated on many of these requests, as well as the advocates who work tirelessly to make California a better place.”
Assemblymember Ash Kalra represents the 27th District, which encompasses approximately half of San Jose and includes all of downtown. He is the Chair of the Assembly Committee on Labor and Employment and also serves as a member on the Housing and Community Development, Judiciary, Transportation, and Water, Parks, and Wildlife committees. For more information, visit https://a27.asmdc.org/.