by Rigo Hernández
Because the state is doing major cuts in the education budget, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom plans to use Rainy Day Reserve founds in the current fiscal year to help the San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD).
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s proposed cuts could potentially add up to a $40 million budget shortfall, which is approximately 10 percent of the SFUSD’s total budget. These cuts are part of the Governor’s plan to balance the state’s $14.5 billion budget deficit.
The Board of Supervisors and the Mayor can appropriate the funds at their discretion in order to maintain education in the coming budget year, given that the Controllers Office triggers a provision and asserts that there is a reduction in per-pupil revenues after inflation adjustments or if significant number of layoff notices have been given to the SFUSD.
“We will not let our public schools suffer because of poor fiscal planning at the state level,” Mayor Newsom said in a statement. “The City has a responsibility to support our students, teachers, and schools in their efforts to provide the highest quality education to our children.”
Superintendent of SFUSD Carlos García praised the Mayor’s plan.
“Thank you to the Mayor and the Supervisors for believing in our children and our community,” said García. “We will continue to demand that Sacramento show the same leadership as our local leaders and protect what little education funding we have through Prop. 98. The Rainy Day Fund is a short-term solution, but one that our children may desperately need.”
Congress to help switch to digital TV
Starting on Feb. 17, 2009 the country will switch from analog over-the-air television to digital. The switch is part of a law that mandates television broadcasters to make switch exclusively to digital format, making analog television obsolete.
The 21 million people affected are those without a new digital-ready television, non-cable subscribers or satellite subscribers. To receive a digital signal those affected will need a converter box.
Congress is offering 33.5 million in $40 dollar coupons to help pay for the converter boxes, which cost between $40-$70 dollars. There will be no eligibility test to receive the coupons and will be offered on a first-come first-serve basis. There is a limit of two coupons per household and expire 90 days after they are mailed.
Digital television will allow for movie-quality picture, clearer sound, and easier reception than analog television.
To apply for a coupon call: 1-888-DTV-2009 or go to https://www.dtv2009.gov/. For more information call Mistique Cano at (202) 263-2882.
Two Latinas appointed to Health Commitee
Cynthia Gómez, 49, of Redwood City, and Dolores Apocada, 60, of Northridge have been appointed to the Public Health Advisory Committee.
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger established the Department of Public Health in California in 2006. The department was created to decreases illness, Injury, and death in the case of an act of bio-terrorism or other greater public health emergencies.
Prior services by Gomez include; director of Health Equity Initiative at San Francisco State University, a director of Children’s Mental Health Services for the Southern Jamaica Plain health center and the Brigham and Women’s hospital.
Apodaca’s prior services include; Nursing coordinator for the Los Angeles Unified School District since 2000 and Nursing Coordinator for the Calexico Unified School District from 1977 to 1984.
The position does not require Senate confirmation and there is no salary. Both of the appointees are Democrats.