In a conference call May 28 with Asian Pacific Islander media, Gavin Newsom, five months into his term as governor of California, outlined aggressive strategies in current budget proposals to combat three of the state’s biggest headaches: healthcare, housing and homelessness.
And in one of several overt challenges to current White House policies, he highlighted his recent pardoning of two Cambodian immigrants, Kang Hen and Hay Hov, thereby gutting the federal case for their immediate deportation.
He also warned warned that the Trump administration’s deportation focus was expanding beyond the Latino community that’s at the heart of the border wall controversy.
“Healthcare is front and center in the national discourse,” he said, “ever since the vandalism of the Affordable Care Act,” also known as Obamacare. And homelessness, growing by double-digit percentages up and down the state, according to the most recent accounting, released just last week, is “an out-of-control abomination, simply getting worse,” the governor said.
Worse as in 43% increases in Alameda and Orange counties, and 64% in Bakersfield’s Kern County, the governor noted.
“I don’t want to overpromise that we can turn this around overnight,” he warned, but his proposals represent “the most robust homeless investment the state has ever made.”
Similarly, he said, the housing situation is “deeply complex. It’s taken us decades to get to this point.” The governor lambasted the state ranking 49th out of 50 when it comes to building new housing units (behind only Utah) last year and said, “We have got to get serious.”
So he’s pressuring the most laggard communities, such as Huntington Beach, where no new housing was constructed, and generally using the “carrot and stick” approach on 49 other municipalities that haven’t done enough.
The 77,000 new housing units built in the state last year, he said, is “not even close to where we need to go.”
The governor said he’s allocating $1.75 billion into various “housing buckets” -- plans to incentivize new construction, for instance, via tax credits, loan subsidies and infrastructure grants to help investment, creating “opportunity zones” and seeking lower voting threshold rules to streamline permitting, encouraging workforce housing along with low-income housing construction.
And to slow that abominable growth in homelessness, Newsom had more than a billion dollars’ worth of proposals, including: $275 million to 13 counties and $275 million more to 13 cities with the most challenging homelessness circumstances. These would go to such things as rapid rehousing programs, hotel conversions, navigation centers, workforce training and mental health programs.
“If you believe in universal health care, then you believe in covering everybody, regardless of immigration status,” he said. His plan would extend coverage to 2.5 million undocumented Californians, including 463,000 members of the Asian Pacific Islander community, he said,
In detailing his intentions, the governor argued that, in the long run, beyond the humanitarian or moral justifications for dedicating hundreds of millions to foster housing construction and homelessness prevention and re-establishing the health care individual mandate, the state will save money, too.
For instance, by enrolling everyone in Medicare, he said, including undocumented immigrants, the state would realize savings on the most expensive health care it provides: emergency room care to those who have no insurance.
“We’re already spending the money,” he said. “We pay a fortune in the emergency room for the undocumented.”
But he envisions other cost-savings too.
“One of the most significant things we are doing in the budget,” he said, is being able to save $400 million annually from the $13.5 billion spent on pharmaceutical drugs by leveraging the state’s purchasing power and implementing bulk purchases.
For another example of anticipated cost savings by expanding Medicare, Newsom pointed out how, subsequent to the elimination of the individual mandate, there was a 9% jump in insurance premiums. But not in Massachusetts, where the individual mandate is still in effect and worth about a 5% difference in premium costs, he said, citing Peter Lee, of Covered California.
The Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate requirement was removed as part of the GOP tax bill that passed in December 2017.
Other benefits to California health care he’s envisioning are significant boosts in Medi-Cal payments to physicians. Medi-Cal is California’s Medicaid program for low-income residents.
In response to a question from the media, Newsom confirmed that veterans would come in for considerable benefit through the housing and supportive services he’s proposing.
In response to another question, he praised state Attorney General Xavier Becerra and San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera for their support of “sanctuary” status in their jurisdictions, reiterated his own long-standing support for such policies and expressed skepticism that those policies will ever cost the state federal dollars.
Citing a recent court victory against Trump proposals to redirect state resources to what Newsom called the “fake emergency” border wall, Newsom also stated his intention to fight for immigration reform, hopefully in conjunction with other border-state governors.
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뉴섬 가주 주지사 3가지 난제 해결에 발벗고 나선다 : 의료헤택, 주택난, 노숙자
주지사는 아시아 태평양계 미디어 대상 브리핑에서 트럼프 정부의 반이민자에 대한 압박이 증폭되고 있다고 경고했다.
지난 5월 28일, 아시아 태평양계 언론 대상 전화 브리핑에서 개빈 뉴섬 주지사는, 후임 이후 지난 5 개월간 가장 큰 사안인 의료혜택, 주택부족, 노숙자 문제의 해결책 방안을 위한 예산을 늘리기 위해 노력하고 있다고 말했다.
현 백악관 정책 중 하나로 최근 캄보디아 출신 이민자인 핸 강(Kang Hen)과 헤이 호브(Hay Hov)를 사면하는 동시 즉각적인 추방을 명령한 연방 법원의 판결을 비판했다.
그는 또한 트럼프 정부는 국경 장벽 확대로 논쟁의 중심에있는 라틴계 커뮤니티를 넘어서 추방 정책을 확대하고 있다고 경고했다.
법무부가 건강보험개혁법안( Affordable Care Act) 일명, 오바마케어를 폐지하려고 추진 중인 요즘 “헬스케어는 가장 중요한 국가적 담론" 이라며 주지사는 지난 주 발표 된 통계에 의하면 가주 노숙자 수가 몇십배로 증가했으며, 노숙자 문제는 점점 “통제 불가능하며 심각한 수준”이라고 지적했다.
통계에 따르면, 알라미다 카운티와 오렌지 카운티의 노숙자 수는 43% 증가했으며, 베이커스필드와 컨카운티는 64% 증가한 것으로 나타났다.
또한 주지사는 "하루밤에 이 문제를 해결할 수 있다고 장담할 수는 없지만, 그동안 가주에서 발의한 사안 중 가장 큰 투자를 시도하는”거라고 말했다.
마찬가지로 그는 주택 문제도 “상당히 심각하고 수십 년에 걸쳐 이 시점에 까지 이르렀다”며, 새로운 주택 단지를 건설하는데 있어서 가주가 50주 중, 유타주 다음으로 가장 뒤떨어진 49번째 순위라고 지적하며, 이 문제에 “우리 모두 심각해질 필요가 있다”고 강조했다.
새로운 주택이 하나도 건설되지 않은 헌팅톤비치 (Huntington Beach)와 같은 가장 낙후된 지역에 압력을 가하며, 일반적으로 충분한 조치를 취하지 않은 49 개 자치시에 "당근과 채찍” 방식을 가할 것이라 말했다.
작년 가주에 건립된 77,000 개의 새로운 주택 단지는 "우리가 필요로 하는 주택 수에 비해 터무니없게 적은 수"라고 말했다.
주지사는 또한 다양한 주거 관활을 버킷별로 놔눠서 17 억 5 천만 달러를 할당한다고 발표했다. 예를 들어 세제 혜택, 대출 보조금 및 인프라 기금을 통해 주택 건설 투자를 돕고, "기회 구역(opportunity zone)"을 선정하여주택 허가등이 수월하게 통과될 방안을 마련하며, 저소득층 주택 및 인력양상을 위한 주택을 장려한다고 말했다.
노숙자 급증 완화를 위해 뉴섬은 가장 시급한 노숙자 문제를 대면하고 있는 13 개 도시에 2억 7천 5백만 달러, 더불어 13 개 카운티에 2억 7천 5백만 달러를 추가하는 등 수십억 달러 상당의 예산을 책정했다.