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ASSEMBLYWOMAN LONI HANCOCK invites you to THE ROUTE TO SUCCESS A Community Forum on East Bay Paratransit
1:00 – 3:00 PM
North Oakland Senior Center
5714 Martin Luther King Jr. Way, Oakland, California

East Bay Paratransit provides transportation services to senior and disabled populations throughout the East Bay. Paratransit is not merely an alternative to fixed-route public transportation; it provides a direct link to basic life needs and plays an integral role in creating greater independence and equal opportunity. How is the current system working? Do you have suggestions for improving Paratransit services? Paratransit riders, family members, service providers and transportation advocates are all encouraged to attend. Come to learn more about Paratransit and share your comments, concerns and suggestions with representatives from East Bay Paratransit. TO RSVP, PLEASE CALL MELISSA MALE AT (510) 559-1406

“Mending Hearts and Souls” local conference to be held in Pleasanton

PLEASANTON – Assemblymember Mary Hayashi (D-Hayward) will present the keynote address at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s (AFSP) 9th Annual National Survivors of Suicide Day local conference being held this Saturday, November 17th from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at ValleyCare Medical Plaza, 5725 W. Las Positas Boulevard in Pleasanton, California. Entitled, “Mending Hearts and Souls,” this conference will bring together survivors of suicide loss and offer them healing, support, information and empowerment. In addition to the keynote address, attendees will have an opportunity to participate in a facilitated group discussion, receive information and resources for healing, and watch the national broadcast from AFSP.

“It is an honor to present the keynote address,” said Assemblymember Hayashi. “With over 3,000 Californians who die by suicide each year, this conference plays an important role for the tens of thousands of surviving spouses, parents, siblings, and friends whose lives are impacted by suicide and who need the healing support through understanding and knowledge.”

For many survivors, Saturday’s conference will be the first time they share their grief, reach out for support and provide support for others. AFSP will broadcast a live feed across the country to over 100 locations that will feature a panel of medical experts as well as discussions by survivors.

Registration for the conference is $15.00 per person, which includes breakfast and lunch. Space is limited. To learn more about the conference located in Pleasanton, please call 925-872-5634. For more information about AFSP’s National Survivors of Suicide Day, visit

Assemblymember Mary Hayashi authored AB 509, the catalyst for Governor Schwarzenegger agreeing to establish by executive order the Office of Suicide Prevention (OSP) under the Department of Mental Health (DMH). The OSP will be charged with implementing a comprehensive and integrated approach to reducing the loss and suffering from suicide and suicidal behaviors on a statewide basis.

Hayashi serves the 18th Assembly District, which includes San Leandro, Hayward, Dublin, most of Castro Valley and Pleasanton, and a portion of Oakland, as well as the unincorporated areas of Ashland, Cherryland and San Lorenzo.


New California Laws That Commenced on July 1st
Special Update from Assemblymember Hayashi

False Story: Fines for Carpool Lane Violation Increase – Simply an Email “Urban Legend”  Assemblymember Hayashi alerts you to a false story spreading throughout the internet regarding a new fine increase for HOV lane violations. Rumors found in a widely distributed unsolicited email stating that California drivers would be fined $1068.50 for illegally driving in the carpool lane as of July 1, 2007 are untrue. Recipients of the email should disregard the information. The fine for driving in the carpool lane varies from county to county but is generally set somewhere at about one third of the claimed $1068.50. Contact your local traffic court for more information about carpool lane violations.

Recycling Reaps Bigger Reward$
Assembly Bill 3056 (Hancock) increases the incentive to recycle consumer bottles and cans. The law provides that the California Refund Value (CRV) maintains a 5 cent deposit paid to consumers for bottles under 24 ounces but increases the deposit to 10 cents for beverage containers above 24 ounces. According to the Department of Conservation, the intent of this change is to create a bigger incentive for consumers to recycle bottles and cans. Additionally, AB 3056 makes grant monies available to the general public by providing three separate grant funding programs: Market Development & Expansion Grant Program, Competitive Grants to Community Conservation Corps, and Local government or Non-Profit Agencies.
Recycling Plastic Bags Starts at your Nearest Supermarket
Assembly Bill 2449 (Levine) requires supermarkets, pharmacies and other large scale stores (with over 10,000 square feet of retail space) to provide bins for the recycling of plastic shopping bags. California has become the first state to mandate such a requirement in an effort to cut down on the environmental harm caused by the littering of plastic shopping bags. In addition, stores are also required to make reusable bags available for purchase by their customers.

New Advisory Committee Established to Improve Health Care Facilities
Senate Bill 739 (Speier) requires California to address problems with infections associated with hospitals and other like health care facilities. Starting July 1, 2007, the Department of Health Services (DHS) has appointed members to sit on a Healthcare Associated Infection (HAI) Advisory Committee to make recommendations regarding reporting cases of HAI in hospitals. General acute care hospitals now must annually report to DHS its implementation of infection surveillance and infection prevention process measures. SB 739 also requires DHS to make this information public no later than six months after receiving the data. In addition, hospitals must take steps to prepare for an influenza outbreak under the new law.

Enhanced Public Safety Features Required for Railroad Operations
Assembly Bill 3023 (Núńez) establishes that railroad operators must file annual risk assessments to local law enforcement, emergency responders, and transportation personnel. Rail operators are also required to provide immediate notification to the Office of Emergency Services of possible malicious acts. It is also required that railroads properly install and maintain their signs, mile markers, and flagging systems. The purpose of AB 3023 is to enhance public safety and the safety of rail workers by codifying the industry’s operating rules and by requiring enhanced safety measures when hazardous materials are being transported.

Sugary Sodas Phased Out of Schools
SB 965 (Escutia) bans the sale of soft drinks in elementary, middle and high schools. Beginning July 1, 2007, students are allowed only to purchase water, milk, and some fruit and sport drinks that have limited sweeteners. This law is enacted to counter the growing epidemic of childhood obesity.

Healthier Snacks to be Sold in School Vending Machines
SB 12 (Escutia) requires that foods sold in school vending machines must meet high nutritional standards and regulate the number of calories that can come from fat and sugar. Much like SB 965, this law hopes to teach children at a young age about proper nutrition and sets an example on how to eat healthier.

Stricter Food Handling Guidelines at Restaurants
Senate Bill 144 (Runner) repeals current public health rules for restaurants and tightens restrictions on workers infected with diseases such as hepatitis A or the flu. In addition to a number of other provisions, the law also requires that workers maintain practices of good hygiene such as keeping fingernails clean. Any employee of a food facility who refuses to comply with these guidelines or to participate in a medical evaluation will be subject to immediate exclusion of employment. The goal of the legislation is to ensure the cleanliness of restaurant kitchen environments and to reduce the likelihood of food borne disease transmission by prohibiting sick employees from handling food thus, restoring consumer confidence when dining out.

also:    Assemblymember Mary Hayashi and Colleagues Announce Dental Health Legislation at Capitol

The Alameda County Central Labor Council, representing over 150 unions and over 100,000 union households in Alameda County is honoring  Josie Camacho and Victor Uno, IBEW 595 Business Manager as their first Wife and Husband Trade Unionist(s) of the Year Award on Friday, March 30, starting at 5:30 PM, with dinner at 7 PM at Oakland's Marriott Hotel, 1001 Broadway, downtown Oakland. Information can be obtained thru the Labor Council, (510) 632-4242.   

Josie is being recognized for her outstanding organizing work. Over the last 15 years, Josie headed up organizing drives that took her up and down California, across the country to New York, Ohio, and Nevada. Her efforts brought thousands of workers into the Union, as she organized nurses, home care, county and public sector workers into the SEIUShe has an incredible devotion and energy to fight for working people, and is an inspiration to all who know of her work.  Josie was recently asked by Oakland's Mayor Ron Dellums to serve as his Director of Constituent Services. She is the only person from Labor to join his administration, and she is already helping to make important changes for Oakland. 

The photo from our IBEW Local 595 picket, 6 AM on a recent Saturday, to protest a non-union electrical contractor on a downtown Oakland project. (if you cannot see the photo, it is very unusual that someone from the Mayor's office will join a Labor picket!) They have often marched and picketed together over the 30+ years that they have been married, and  often make their sons join the efforts. 

Why supporting the troops means opposing the president 

By Rep. Jerry McNerney CD 11

Last week, I joined with my colleagues, both Republicans and Democrats, in casting a vote against President Bush's proposal to escalate the war in Iraq. I did so because it is my duty to do everything I can to bring about a responsible end to the violence and make sure our troops have the support they need.

In considering my vote in favor of the resolution, my thoughts turned to the members of our armed forces -- especially those who joined the military after Sept. 11, 2001, out of a sense of duty and love for country, like my son Michael.  More

A Message from Emily Levy Election Reform Advocate
opposing the new Holt Bill HR 811

February 14 2007 Santa Cruz ...I've been working hard for the last few years on election integrity issues. I have developed some expertise on my own as well as relationships with many experts in the field. All of the people I work with in organizations across the country are recommending the new Holt Bill (HR811, it was HR550 last year) be opposed in its current form. Contrary to its inclusion of some language that sounds good on the surface, the Holt bill will not curb the massive problems with our election system. We probably have one chance to get decent legislation through that could have good effect, and if this bill is passed, we will lose that opportunity. More

Fred Klaske Announces Candidacy for AD 15 Seat

February 12th, 2007  San Ramon I have decided to run for the California State Assembly in the 15th District. Let me be blunt and to the point: I want you to join my group of grassroots campaign supporters, and help me make hope happen for the good of this district, the region, and the state of California.

This is an open seat in the California Assembly in 2008 � the seat currently held by Guy Houston, R- San Ramon who must leave due to term limits and represents the people of the 15th District, which covers parts of Alameda, Contra Costa, Sacramento, and San Joaquin counties, including the communities of Livermore, San Ramon, Danville, Walnut Creek, Brentwood, Oakley, Mountain House, Galt and Elk Grove. More