Santa Cruz Good Times

Tuesday
Apr 21st
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Congressman Sam Farr

SamFarrNewWith millions of people unemployed, why did it take so long for Congress to approve an extension OF unemployment benefits?

On July 22, President Barack Obama signed into law a bill that extends unemployment insurance for millions of Americans who have lost their jobs.
Congress, of course, is made up of the Senate and the House. Until both chambers agree, we can’t accomplish anything. That’s why it was so maddening  that Senate Republicans held up the extension of benefits for seven weeks.

In the House, Democrats are all too aware of the suffering that American families are going through, and how important benefits are to those families who have lost their jobs. Let me be clear: extending unemployment benefits is not a long-term solution to our economic woes. Putting America back to work is how we measure success.

But with so many Americans out of work, it should have been a no-brainer to provide those suffering families with the help they need. Unfortunately, not everyone agreed.

Not only do unemployment benefits help millions of families get back on their feet and find work, they’re a powerful economic stimulus. Economist Mark Zandi, former adviser to Sen. John McCain, reports that for every $1 in unemployment benefits, the economy sees more than $1.60 in economic activity.
By passing this bill, we were investing not only in families, but in our national economy as well.

As I write this, I’m preparing to return to Washington for an emergency session of the House. The Senate, in a bit of a surprise, approved a bill that would provide $16.1 billion to help meet Medicaid payments and $10 billion to prevent teacher layoffs. Those funds, which are fully paid for by closing corporate tax loopholes, are expected to save 140,000 teaching jobs (13,500 in California) and save or create another 150,000 jobs for police officers, firefighters and nurses.

In the face of obstruction, congressional Democrats continue to fight for Americans, and I’m proud of the work we’re doing. In the past, GT has spoken with you about the  need for more child and school nutrition legislation. Any new updates?

On July 15, the House Committee on Education and Labor voted 32 to 13 to send the Improving Nutrition for America's Children Act to the House for consideration.
As I’ve said before, reauthorizing the Child Nutrition Act needs to be a top priority for Congress. This bill will improve the nutritional quality of meals in schools and childcare and expand access to healthy food to millions of children.

Today, more than one in five children lack access to healthy food, and one in three children are overweight or obese. More than 32 million children rely on federal child nutrition programs, so it’s no exaggeration to say we hold the future of an entire generation in our hands.

Language I wrote to promote the use of salad bars in schools will be included in the bill debated on the House floor, and I’m confident of the bill’s final approval. This is an issue we delay acting on at our own peril.

What are your plans for the summer recess?
I expect another exciting summer, though maybe not quite as boisterous as last year. With health insurance reform now the law of the land, I think I’ll be hearing a lot more about the economy, and rightfully so. While Congress and President Obama have done a lot to keep the economy from getting worse, we’re still not seeing the level of improvement we were hoping for.

The unemployment rate is improving, but too slowly for my taste. And while the country is creating tens of thousands of jobs each month (compared to the loss of more than 750,000 jobs a month under President George W. Bush), we still have a lot of room to improve.

As I have for the last 17 years, I’ll once again be hosting town halls throughout the Central Coast this summer. I value these listening sessions and hope as many people as possible will join me.


This year I’ll be hosting my Santa Cruz town hall at 6 p.m., Sept. 2. It will be held at the First Congregational Church at 900 High St. Again, I encourage you to join me and offer your thoughts.
Comments (1)Add Comment
Thank You
written by Joe Hall, August 10, 2010
I think we have been fortunate for these 17 years to have had a Congressman who works so hard for our district, flies back to the Central Coast many weekends and takes time to have had town hall meetings for many years before they were the fashion. Thank you Sam Farr for your service.

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Forty Years of Good Times

When I came on board as the publisher of Good Times a year ago, the lease was up at the office where the paper had resided for nearly 20 years, and a move to new offices was imminent.

 

Pluto Retrograde, Aries New Moon, Lyrid Meteor Showers

As the Lyrid meteors, radiating from the star Vega in the Harp constellation, begin showering heaven and earth with light, Pluto, planet of transformation (or die) turns stationary retrograde (Thursday, April 16), 15 degrees Capricorn. Retrogrades have purpose, allowing humanity time to review, reassess, research and reinvent while returning to previous situations. Retrogrades are times of inner activity, seeds sown in bio-dynamically prepared soil. Pluto retrograde is the most serious and resolute of retrogrades—a pure tincture, or, as in homeopathy, a “constitutional” touching the essences of all that matters. Pluto offers deep insight into confusion or puzzlement and areas where transformation is still incomplete. It’s valuable to have one’s astrology chart to follow what area of life the major planets— especially Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto—are influencing. These outer planets have long-term and lasting effects on our psyche, inner/outer life events, how people see us and how we see and process our world. Pluto, retrograde for five months (until Sept. 24) offers deep earthquakes of change, awakens humanity to the task of building (Capricorn) the new culture and civilization, flailing our inner world about, deepening us until we transform and do things differently. Pluto is an unrelenting teacher. New moon (29 Aries) is Saturday, April 18. With the personality-building keynote, “Let form again be sought.” Mars anchors the new creative fires of Aries into our world. The New Group of World Servers participates together in the new moon festival, while also preparing for the Taurus Wesak, Buddha Full Moon Festival (May 3). Join us everyone.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of April 17

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

What would you like to see a TED talk about?

Hydrogen-gas cars that are coming this summer. Scott Oliver, Santa Cruz, Professor

 

37th Parallel Wines

I visited the Capitola Mall recently to check out the newly launched Third Fridays Walking Art Tour, and was surprised to find an impressive assortment of artwork from local artists.

 

Mighty Leaf

Radicchio from Dirty Girl Produce, wine etiquette fail, and a treat from Gayle’s

 

What’s your favorite happy hour downtown?

The 515. I like their french fries, and they've got great cocktails. Spring Carver, Santa Cruz, Cashier