Democrat Fabian Nunez – who was unanimously re-elected to a third term as Assembly Speaker was clear on his top three priorities:
“The three areas of focus for us are going to be education, healthcare and the environment.”
Nunez says he’s looking for comprehensive, fundamental healthcare reform. Governor Schwarzenegger has made coverage for California’s uninsured a goal, as well. However, Republican Mike Villines – the Assembly’s new Republican leader – says his caucus is concerned about how to pay for it…and won’t support a tax increase.
Villines says most critical for him this year is closing the structural budget deficit – quickly:
“The most important thing I think that people want in CA is the deficit gone. I don’t think it takes any more than two years – but it could be done in a year.”
Villines also hopes to focus on re-drawing the state’s legislative districts, and ensuring there’s oversight as billions in public works bond funds are doled out.