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May 22nd
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Town Hall With Assemblymember Mark Stone

Mark Stone newAs you settle into your first term as a California assemblymember, what bills or plans do you have in the pipeline? And what plans do you have as the newly appointed Chair of the Human Services Committee?

Our state is slowly recovering from the recession, and for the first time in many years, the California legislature will not have to make drastic cuts to programs that help foster youth, the elderly, and the disabled. While this is good news, these Californians continue to suffer as billions of dollars in budget cuts have decimated essential services they need. As the newly elected assemblymember for the Monterey Bay region, including Santa Cruz, I will focus on building relationships, reaching across the aisle, and crafting effective policy to help improve the lives of the most vulnerable in our communities.

I’m pleased to report that during my first term in office, I will serve as the Chair of the Assembly Human Services Committee. This committee considers legislation that affects child and elderly welfare, foster care, welfare-to-work programs, residential facility programs, developmental disability services, and similar programs. 

During this legislative session, I will focus on several priorities while considering legislation in the Human Services Committee. I am especially concerned with preserving programs that help Californians get back to work and improve the state’s economy. In my role as Chair, I will work to preserve key safety net benefits, including CalWORKS programs, which help individuals learn job skills and find employment, and the CalFresh program, which helps families keep nutritious food on the table. I will also pay special attention to proposed changes to state-subsidized childcare, which allows parents to return to work and support their families instead of staying at home to care for their young children.

Additionally, I will work to make sure that state-subsidized facilities and community care services are safe for the individuals who use them. This year I will work to ensure that childcare and residential care facilities are adequately licensed and are fully compliant with state standards. I will also be reviewing current group home reforms in the foster care system. In the same vein, it will be important to maintain appropriate and sustainable community-based services for California’s aged and disabled populations.

In addition to the policy committee I chair, I serve as a member of the Assembly Budget Committee, where I am participating in a review of Gov. Jerry Brown’s budget. Over the next few months, the committee will vet the budget proposal thoroughly to make sure that it advances the goal to improve the state’s economic recovery while protecting California’s most vulnerable residents. I’ll be sure to keep you updated on this process.

I am honored to have the opportunity to serve as your new representative in the California State Assembly. I look forward to advocating on behalf of every constituent in the 29th District, and I will work hard to ensure that everyone’s voice is heard. I hope that your readers will take the time to call my office or send me an email if they would like to share their thoughts about issues that I will consider in Sacramento.     

To weigh in on legislative or state budget issues, or for help resolving a problem with state government, your readers can contact me at my Santa Cruz office at 425-1503 or at my Monterey office at 649-2832.
I can also be reached at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . I look forward to hearing from my constituents.  

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Gemini Sun, Pentecost, Shavuot—Enlightenment and Gladness

As the sun enters Gemini on Sunday, sign of speaking, communication, thinking, inter-relations, writing and understanding languages, the feast days of Pentecost & Shavuot (Catholic and Jewish festivals) occur. During Pentecost’s 50 days after Easter, tongues of fire appear above the heads of the disciples, providing them with the ability to understand all languages and all feelings hidden in the minds and hearts of humanity. It’s recorded that Pentecost began with a loud noise, which happened in an upper room (signifying the mind). The Christ (World Teacher) told his disciples (after his ascension) when encountering a man at a well carrying a water pot (signs for Age of Aquarius) to follow him to an upper room. There, the Holy Spirit (Ray 3 of Divine Intelligence) would overshadow them, expand their minds, give them courage and enable them to teach throughout the world, speaking all languages and thus able to minister to the true needs of a “seeking” humanity. Pentecost (50 days, pentagram, Ray 5, Venus, concrete and scientific knowledge, the Ray of Aquarius) sounds dramatic, impressive and scary: The loud noise, a thunderous rush of wind and then “tongues of fire” above the heads of each disciple (men and women). Fire has purpose. It purifies, disintegrates, purges, transforms and liberates (frees) us from the past. This was the Holy Spirit (Ray 3, love and wisdom) being received by the disciples, so they would teach in the world and inform humanity of the Messiah (Christ), who initiated the new age (Pisces) and gave humanity the new law (adding to the 10 Commandments of the Aries Age) to Love (Ray 2) one another. Note: Gemini is also Ray 2. Shavuot is the Jewish Festival of Gladness, the First Fruits Festival celebrating the giving of the 10 Commandments to Moses as the Aries Age was initiated. Thus, we have two developmental stages here, Jewish festival of the Old Testament. Pentecost of the New Testament. We have gladness, integrating both.

 

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