Toni Atkins served eight years on the San Diego City Council and was briefly the city’s interim mayor before coming to the Assembly in 2010. Atkins says housing is a big priority for her.
“If I can add my own personal concern, reducing homelessness and providing affordable housing, including for our state’s growing population of veterans,” she says.
San Jose State University Political Science Professor Larry Gerston says Atkins will become the most powerful person in the legislature.
“The speaker appoints the Rules Committee and certainly has great influence over the members of the Rules Committee”, says Gerston. “The Rules Committee in turn appoints all the various committee chairs.”
Atkins takes over the speakership as the state deals with a continuing drought and tries to meet federal court orders to reduce prison overcrowding.
She is scheduled to take over for out-going Speaker John Pèrez this Spring.
TY all for your good wishes on today's Speaker vote. Big @JohnAPerez shoes to fill, but look forward 2 getting 2 work 2 move CA forward.— Toni Atkins (@toniatkins) March 17, 2014
Congrats to @toniatkins, California's next Speaker of the Assembly.— Jerry Brown (@JerryBrownGov) March 17, 2014
Women in California politics, protesting sexual harassment and abuse at the Capitol, distrust the response from legislative leaders.
A man drew a weapon during routine security screening at the U.S. Capitol Visitor's Center and was shot by police, Capitol Police Chief Matthew Verderosa said at a news conference. No officers were injured, he added.
Supporters celebrated when a bill allowing for physician-assisted suicide in California was signed into law. But the tactics used to pass the law will likely delay its implementation.
Governor Jerry Brown has signed off an agreement with two of California’s labor unions.
California children under the age of 2 will now be required to ride in rear-facing child seats. That was one of several bills signed into law today by Gov. Jerry Brown.