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Los Angeles County, CA November 2, 2010 Election
Smart Voter Full Biography for Kevin de Leon

Candidate for
State Senator; District 22

This information is provided by the candidate

I was first elected to serve as a member of the California State Assembly in 2006. Shortly after completing my freshman term in the Legislature, I was appointed Chair of the Assembly Appropriations Committee where we are responsible for reviewing all bills with a fiscal impact. As a result, virtually every bill goes to the Appropriations Committee making it the single most powerful committee in the Assembly.

In addition to leadership responsibilities, I serve on several important policy committees including Health, Natural Resources, Governmental Organization and the Arts, Entertainment, Sports, Tourism and Internet Media committee. I also serve on the Joint Committee for Emergency Services and Homeland Security and several select committees including the Alcohol and Drug Abuse, Growth Management, International Trade, and the Preservation of California's Entertainment Industry select committee.

I was formerly a member of the State Allocation Board (SAB) that distributes state school construction bond funds approved by the voters. Since joining the Board in 2007 the SAB has allocated nearly $1.4 billion in voter approved bond funds for new school construction, modernization, career technical education, and joint-use school projects across the state. Those funds are vital to ensuring that our schools are safe and are wired for modern technologies.

I am committed to improving the air quality in Los Angeles. My district in particular is criss-crossed by six freeways and has some of the country's worst air quality. I authored legislation that was later inserted into an omnibus measure signed into law creating hundreds of millions of dollars available for alternative fuel research and development.

To improve access to park space to under-served communities, I authored legislation - Parks for People - signed into law in October by Governor Schwarzenegger. It establishes a needs-based grants program for the distribution of $400 million in funds for local park assistance and development. That measure will allocate the single largest investment in local park space creation in the nation's history and will insure that those funds are targeted to areas with the highest needs. I am also a member of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy Board, where we put into action a vision of creating green space in heavily-urbanized and park-starved communities.

I have also authored legislation to assist families without access to employer-based retirement plans save for retirement by putting one of the nation's most respected institutional investors, CalPERS, to work for average working Californians. That measure would authorize CalPERS to offer Californians that do not have retirement plans available at work individual retirement accounts (IRA's) to create a financial nest egg when they retire.

While walking neighborhoods during my first campaign, I stumbled across bullet casings on sidewalks - just feet from where children were playing. Ever since, I've been determined to the get handgun ammunition that fuels violence out of the hands of criminals and gang-bangers. Along with Sheriff Baca, former LAPD Chief Bratton, and current Chief Charlie Beck, I have championed legislation to require anyone selling handgun bullets to check a buyer's identification, take a thumbprint and make the records available on request to the police.

I grew up in the San Diego neighborhood of Logan Height and was the first in my family to graduate from high school. I attended UC Santa Barbara and graduated from Pitzer College at the Claremont Colleges with honors. I have one daughter, Lluvia. Prior to my work in the assembly I worked as a community organizer, English as a Second Language and U.S. Citizenship teacher, and an advocate for public schools at both the California Teachers Association and as a Senior Associate for the National Education Association (NEA) in Washington, D.C.

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Created from information supplied by the candidate: August 20, 2010 17:04
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