With California’s primary election just around the corner on June 5, some voters need to mark their choice for California State Assembly District 37.
The position works with all levels of local governments to see how state agencies can best assist in policymaking.
The 37th District Assembly Member represents nearly half a million people in both Santa Barbara and part of Ventura counties, covering Fillmore, Ojai, Santa Paula, Oxnard, Ventura, Santa Barbara, Carpinteria, Goleta, Solvang, and Buellton.
The three candidates on the ballot are incumbent Monique Limòn, Sofia Collin and David Norrdin. All are registered as Democrats. There is no Republican candidate.
Incumbent Monique Limòn was elected in November 2016 and was born and raised in the district.
"For me, the most important issue in 2018 is natural disaster response," Limòn said. "The loss of lives, the loss of homes, and the damage in the billions of dollars for our community is something of concern to me and so many people. Some of the legislation that I’m carrying in 2018 really focuses on natural response. I’m looking at ways we can help people move forward, to clean up debris removal, ways that we can ensure that communication gets out in a timely and effective manner to all members of our community."
Limòn is a U.C. Berkeley graduate with a Master’s degree from Columbia University. She served two terms on the Santa Barbara Unified School Board and was Assistant Director for the McNair Scholars Program at the University of California, Santa Barbara prior to the Assembly.
She currently serves as the co-chair of the Natural Response and Recovery Committee for the State Assembly.
"The new legislation is part of a package of legislation that we are moving forward," Limòn told KSBY News. "Our goal is to one, be able to identify what the problems are and assure that the state agencies that have the capacity to work in those areas are able to bring in the resources for the community. Secondly, it’s also to identify what are the short term and long term recovery processes are. We don’t work by ourselves as state assembly members, we work with all other levels of local government. I think that’s very important to put everyone together to identify how we move forward. Both Ventura and Santa Barbara County are going to see great loss in their budgets in the upcoming year. My role as a State Assembly Member is to identify how the state can come in and help."
Limòn says her experiences as a legislator and time serving the public education systems will aid the community.
"We have a high number of teachers who are retiring and we have a teacher shortage, that we are able to fill those positions," Limòn said.
Candidate Sofia Collin says she chose to run for the seat to bring peace and prosperity to the area. Collin is an English tutor and an associate property manager. This will be her first election.
"I want to support police and citizen relationships. In addition, I would like to help small businesses get a good start here and prosper here and help homeless find employment," Collin said.
She believes her studies in ethics support her ideas on inclusion policies, supporting DREAMers and helping the homeless.
"I will substantiate an initiative in which police would be able to issue tickets of nominal monetary value which would be the minimum wage in the state of issue to citizens they see in the community doing good deeds," she explained.
Collin was also raised in the area and attended Santa Barbara City College, U.C. Berkeley and graduated with a Master’s degree from Claremont.
"I wouldn’t exclude any person in this community," Collin said. "I am for safe and clear pathways to citizenship to support DREAMers."
Collin’s political website states: "At heart, I am interested in balancing government’s current laws, which discourage action with punishment, by writing law that encourages positive action through independence and recognition. Thus, I have cultivated the concept of Unbounded Law an approach to law-making that seeks to empower citizens, not the government."
The third candidate, David Norrdin, has run for different elected seats in the past, including the Ventura Unified School Board. He doesn’t have a listed job but is a Ventura resident.
"I’m running on banning transgender from the girl’s locker room," Norrdin said. "Transgender are mentally deranged. I will legally do everything possible to strip the LGBT of their rights, no gay marriage, no gay adoptions, nothing. I’m going to introduce the public health safety act of 2019, banning gay marriage and dissolving all gay marriages. I believe in amnesty for the DREAMers. I believe in automatic citizenship, no requirement."
Legislators in the State Assembly receive a salary of just over $100,000 a year.