Alyson Huber, D-El Dorado Hills, fresh off her victory in the California Assembly’s 10th District race, is eagerly awaiting the challenges ahead of her in her second term.
A freshman legislator no more, Huber said she will continue her work on reforming California’s system of government. The Lodi native said she was grateful for the voters who supported her and would work to represent their interests.
Her opponent, former Lodi mayor Jack Sieglock, said he was proud of the job his supporters and campaign workers did and thanked his contributors. The election was close, Sieglock said, and could’ve had a different outcome if the Republican Party had invested more in the race.
“Money is the milk of politics,” he said. “We fought hard and were simply outspent.”
In a lightly edited interview, the victorious Huber talked about her goals and plans for her upcoming two-year term.
Q: What is a high priority for your next term?
A: Getting sunset review up and running will be a high priority. The purpose of sunset review is to make sure committees, agencies and boards are doing the jobs they are supposed to do. The goal is to save the state money by making it run more efficiently. I’m following a model used in Texas, but our state is much larger and has more groups to review.
Texas has been doing this since the 1970s and it took them 12 years to go through their governmental structure. Because of California’s size, it will take longer.
Q: What’s your reaction to the Republican takeover in other parts of the country?
A: All politics are local. To me, the national phenomenon is a response to national policy. In our local races, voters didn’t punish me for things Congress has done.
Q: What do you attribute your victory to?
A: I think I have worked really hard to do things in office the people of the district would like to see done. I’ve been representing our area in dialogue that happens statewide. For a freshman legislator to get sunset review passed, I think it sends a message to voters that I’m able to do the job.
Q: Voters passed a proposition that requires a simple majority to pass a budget. What are your thoughts?
A: It’s too soon to tell, but I don’t think a single change will fix everything. I had concerns with the proposition to begin with, and it’s only one part of the equation.
It would be great getting a budget on time, but we are not getting the reforms we need.
Q: What other issues in San Joaquin County will be focused on?
A: Water is going to continue to be a major issue for our region. It’s unclear what direction new Gov. Jerry Brown will take.
He recently got a question if Northern California should conserve more water for Southern California and he said, “Yes.” I don’t agree with that stance and I look forward to having some discussions about water policy with him.
I will also continue to focus on issues that affect the district. The impending closure of the Preston Youth Facility in Amador County is something I want to meet with Gov. Jerry Brown about and discuss. Although the youth facility is in Amador County, its closure would still affect San Joaquin County. The plan is to close the complex and move all the wards to Stockton. Not only would the hundreds of jobs lost hurt Amador, the closure would put increased pressures on Stockton.
Contact reporter Jordan Guinn at firstname.lastname@example.org.