Portantino Sworn in as State Senator for District 25
Today, Sen. Anthony J. Portantino (D-La Cañada Flintridge) joined other newly elected Senators in the 40-member upper house of the State Legislature. With his daughter Sofia by his side, Portantino was sworn in as the State Senator for the 25th District.
"I'm honored to join the California State Senate and appreciate the many friends who helped me get here. I'm excited to be in a position to work on issues that are important to my district," commented Portantino, who previously represented the area as Assembly Member for the 44th District.
Portantino used the first day of the legislative session to promote three key legislative priorities.
Portantino introduced SB 25, which seeks to create a plan to fully integrate a guaranteed K–14 education. In the Assembly, Portantino was a champion for greater cooperation between community colleges and high schools. SB 25 takes these efforts further, creating a complete K–14 education model in place of separate K–12 and post-secondary education models.
"At a time when our economy demands that our students are better prepared, it is imperative that our education model changes with the times," added Portantino.
Always focused on "good government" reform and transparency, Portantino re-introduced SB 24, which updates the Political Reform Act to create better and more accurate financial disclosure requirements for elected representatives.
"Looking at Washington, it is clear that it can be hard to get elected leaders to recognize the importance of transparency. I hope that with all the recent focus on conflict of interest, now is the time for California to lead by example and embrace greater disclosure," commented Portantino.
Portantino also introduced SB 23 to extend necessary funding for California's Umbilical Cord Blood Collection Program. Portantino created the Cord Blood program while in the Assembly but its funding is set to sunset next year. SB 23 extends the funding to continue the important public health program for another decade. Because of Portantino earlier efforts, the University of California Davis Hospital has been storing cord blood stem cells and using them to cure leukemia and other blood-related diseases.
"Saving stem cells and curing cancer go hand in hand, and I'm very excited to have found a bi-partisan effort to aid that cause. It was very important to me that I begin my time in the State Senate, on issues that save lives and have significant impacts," concluded Portantino.