This is an archive of a past election.
See for current information.
LWV League of Women Voters of California Education Fund

Smart Voter
Monterey, San Benito, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz Counties, CA November 2, 2004 Election
Candidates Answer Questions on the Issues
Member of the State Assembly; District 28

The questions were prepared by the League of Women Voters of California and asked of all candidates for this office.

See below for questions on Budget Crisis, Education, Water, Health Insurance

Click on a name for other candidate information.   See also more information about this contest.

1. What does California need to do to address the current budget crisis?

Answer from Bob Perkins:

California must reduce unnecessary government spending, make the cuts necessary to reverse the unprecedented expansion of state government in recent years that produced the current crisis, and reduce regulation and taxes to retain and attract business and investment. Under Governor Schwarzenegger's leadership, the state must restore confidence, boost enthusiasm and instill optimism about California opportunity. This change of attitude will create the foundation for a strong economy, leading to more jobs, more income and more revenue to fund critical programs.

Answer from Simon Salinas:

We need to continue to consider cuts and appropriate revenue to bring our budget back into balance. But we also need to develop long-term strategies to make sure our state does not repeat this cycle. I have worked to reduce costs while protecting those programs that are most vital to our community and have the greatest long-term benefit. I will continue working with the Governor and Legislature to build a California that is fiscally strong and has the right budget priorities.

2. What should the state's priorities be for K-12 education? For the Community College System?

Answer from Bob Perkins:

Education is key to a strong and competitive economy. California must provide effective education for all students, reward performance for both teachers and schools. Education decisions should be restored to the local level wherever possible, along with the funding to implement those decisions. Better management and stronger community controls are the keys to better schools. K-12 needs clear and objective standards for student performance and uniform, simplified and effective testing. Both K-12 and the Community College System should prepare students to have a choice, to enter a suitable career or to continue higher education. Education should be scaled to needs of students at different performance levels and should encourage the highest performing students who will be the economic and civic leaders of the future. Community colleges have a dual purpose, to provide vocational training for students who want to go directly into career opportunities and also to offer cost-effective preparation for students who want to go onto higher education.

Answer from Simon Salinas:

As a former elementary school teacher and Community College instructor, I have direct experience in our schools. We need to focus on providing a solid educational foundation for each and every student, so we are better able to meet our goals and prepare our students to meet the needs of the new century. I fought cuts to our Community Colleges because I know first-hand how crucial they are to providing direct vocation training that is vital for a productive workforce. I also believe we need to involve the private sector in our schools. To that end, I have established a scholarship fund at CSUMB that I will use as an example for others who want to directly contribute to the education of our young people.

3. What measures would you support to address California's water needs?

Answer from Simon Salinas:

We have two major water issues that must be addressed--water supply and water contamination. In the Salinas Valley, we are constantly challenged to provide adequate water for our residents. We must do more through conservation and creative water solutions like desalination plants. Water contamination is also a vital issue. Water supplies in Gilroy and surrounding communities face perchlorate contamination and other threats. I have worked with state agencies to ensure we are cleaning up contaminated water and that we continue to provide safe drinking water to our residents.

Answer from Bob Perkins:

California needs a comprehensive approach to statewide water needs that includes new surface and groundwater storage, improved conveyances, and practical solutions to conservation that respect water rights and balance all needs. We have plenty of water for all uses, but we must manage it effectively and equitably.

4. What should the Legislature be doing to address the needs of Californians without health insurance?

Answer from Bob Perkins:

The Legislature needs to create conditions to rebuild California's economy, to provide more jobs and more opportunity for employers who can offer health insurance. The Legislature must rein in the cost drivers in health care, such as fraud and unnecessary legal challenges, by making fraud laws clearer, tighter and tougher and by enacting tort reforms. Such reforms, combined with reduced regulation, red tape and other business obstacles, will attract more insurers and health care providers. Government-supplied health care or government-mandated health care is the wrong solution and must be avoided.

Answer from Simon Salinas:

Lack of adequate health care has reached a crisis point for many Californians. We must first move to ensure all children have access to adequate health care services. We must do more to reduce the cost of prescription drugs. And we must not abandon prevention programs that offer the best opportunity for health care savings. As Assemblymember, I successfully fought attempts to reduce health care coverage. I will continue fighting to ensure every Californian has access to basic health care services.

Responses to questions asked of each candidate are reproduced as submitted to the League. 

The order of the candidates is random and changes daily.

This Contest || Home (Ballot Lookup) || About Smart Voter || Feedback
Created: December 15, 2004 13:39 PST
Smart Voter <>
Copyright © League of Women Voters of California Education Fund.
The League of Women Voters neither supports nor opposes candidates for public office or political parties.