Vidak's News & Views

Monday, April 16, 2018

Clean Water In The Central Valley

Central Valley residents with the Community Water Center and the Leadership Counsel for Justice and Accountability visited Sacramento last month to meet with legislators about clean and affordable drinking water. Andy spoke at the rally on the Capitol grounds and visited with residents afterwards.

Senator Vidak pictured with Central Valley residents

Senator Vidak pictured at Capitol Grounds rally

Senator Vidak pictured with Central Valley residents

Senator Vidak pictured with Central Valley residents

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2018 Woman Of The Year

Congratulations to Robin Brassfield-Cooper on being named Woman of the Year for Senate District 14! Robin is a small business owner and philanthropist who founded the Kern County Oil Contractors Association (K-COCA), an organization that is dedicated to providing educational incentives, opportunities, and assistance to Kern County high school students who have demonstrated an interest in pursuing higher academic learning after completing high school, and for those who have an interest in, or a connection to, the oil & gas, agriculture, construction, utility and energy industries.

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Free Tax Return Preparation For Qualifying Taxpayers

The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program offers free tax help to people who generally make $54,000 or less, persons with disabilities and limited English speaking taxpayers who need assistance in preparing their own tax returns. IRS-certified volunteers provide free basic income tax return preparation with electronic filing to qualified individuals.

In addition to VITA, the Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) program offers free tax help for all taxpayers, particularly those who are 60 years of age and older, specializing in questions about pensions and retirement-related issues unique to seniors. The IRS-certified volunteers who provide tax counseling are often retired individuals associated with non-profit organizations that receive grants from the IRS.

To learn about this program or to find a VITA or TCE site near you, click here.

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Non-Profit Assistance Program

Do you work for a non-profit or know someone who does? Team Vidak is helping connect Central Valley non-profit organizations with Adventist Health’s new community-based initiative, which will provide donated items to Central Valley non-profits who will then distribute them to residents in need. Click here for more information and call our Hanford office at 559-585-7161 if your non-profit organization wants to participate.

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Emergency Preparedness Coffee Talk

Emergency Preparedness Coffee Flyer

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National Donate Life Month

National Donate Life Month Flyer

This month, we hope you will join us and those around the country celebrating Donate Life Month to consider being someone else’s rainbow by signing up to be an organ and tissue donor. This act will allow you to be a rainbow to the many individuals you could someday provide the needed gift for a lifesaving transplant. And that rainbow can become a ripple effect that impacts countless more with their family and friends thanks to your decision.

Why we need more registered donors:

  • Donors can save the lives of 8 individuals through organ donation and heal up to 75 with tissue donation.
  • Over 23,000 Californians are currently on the waiting list for lifesaving organs, and across the nations that number jumps to over 114,000.
  • While more than 34,000 transplants took place across the U.S. in 2017, over 3,800 in California alone, on average 22 individuals die each day while waiting for an organ.
  • Only 46% of Californians are registered donors, well below the national average.

But I’m not sure I can be a donor:

  • All ages and medical histories have the potential to be donors. So, don’t count yourself out.
  • All major religions support organ donation.
  • It’s free to be a donor, no additional medical costs are added for becoming a donor so there is no financial burden added on your family.

What you can do:

Have any questions? Learn more about organ and tissue donation by clicking here or contact Donate LIFE California at (866) 797-2366.

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Free Airplane Rides for Kids

Fly with the Eagles Event Flyer

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Real ID and California Drivers Licenses

REAL ID CA Compliance Act Flyer

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Mobile Office Hours

Malaga

Wednesday, April 18
9:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
Malaga Community Center
3592 S Winery Avenue
Fresno, CA 93725

Buttonwillow

Wednesday, April 25
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Buttonwillow Fire Department
100 Mirasol Avenue
Buttonwillow, CA 93206

Mobile District Office hours are an opportunity for Senate District 14 residents to meet locally with a Team Vidak representative to hear more about Andy’s work in Sacramento and the Central Valley, have their questions answered, or get help with specific state-related issues, including:

  • unemployment benefits;
  • issues with state agencies, such as the DMV and Franchise Tax Board;
  • licensing;
  • Medi-Cal;
  • small business assistance;
  • worker’s compensation;
  • state legislation; and
  • other state-related matters.

For more information, please contact Team Vidak’s Felisa Hannah at 559-264-3070 or email Felisa Hannah at Felisa.Hannah@sen.ca.gov.

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Team Vidak Out and About

Team Vidak District Representative Rogelio Caudillo presented a Senate Certificate of Recognition to the Brar family in McFarland at the groundbreaking ceremony for the new Taco Bell.

Team Vidak attended the 56th annual Woodlake Awards Dinner and presented Senate Certificates of Recognition to all of the award winners.

Team Vidak District Representative Claudia Salinas attended the Fresno Chinese New Year Parade and Festival and presented the Fresno Chinatown organization with a Senate Certificate of Recognition for hosting the 18th Annual Parade for the Year of the Dog.

Team Vidak District Representative Claudia Salinas and Tony Davidson from the Marjaree Mason Center attended the 2018 Girls World Expo at the Fresno Convention Center. We were honored to present each Girl of Merit award winner with Senate Certificates of Recognition. Each honoree was chosen based on their exceptional service to the community through their actions, activities, leadership, and positive influence on others.

Team Vidak District Representative Rogelio Caudillo presented a Senate Certificate of Recognition to Self-Help Enterprises President & CEO Tom Collishaw in honor of the rehabilitation of the Solinas Village (McFarland) and Almond Court (Wasco) apartment rental communities.

Team Vidak District Representative Claudia Salinas and Aubrey Enna Garten participated in the 31st annual Kids Day in Fresno benefitting Valley Children’s Hospital. They helped sell newspapers and raise money for the hospital and got to meet Sammy Leal, this year’s Valley Children’s Ambassador!

Andy recently met with the Tulare County Farm Bureau Youth Leaders at the Capitol. TCFB’s Youth Leaders program began in 1983 as a unique opportunity for high school students to develop their leadership skills. Since its inception, the program has trained over 500 young adults, many of whom have gone on to pursue agricultural fields of study in college and beyond.

Andy met recently in his Capitol office with members from the Kern County Farm Bureau to discuss a variety of agricultural issues facing Kern County and the Central Valley.

Team Vidak District Representative Rogelio Caudillo was a guest reader on Read Across America Day at Alta Vista Elementary School in East Porterville.

Team Vidak District Representative Rogelio Caudillo visited the OneSight Mobile Eye Clinic at Alta Vista Elementary School in East Porterville to present the staff with a Senate Certificate of Recognition. The clinic gave eye exams and provided glasses to students at Alta Vista and other schools in the area.

Team Vidak District Representative Felisa Hannah attended Electrify America’s Discover and Drive Event in Fresno and learned about new technology in the industry.

Andy recently met in his Capitol Office with outgoing California State University Bakersfield president Dr. Horace Mitchell and other leaders from CSUB to discuss funding for higher education.

Team Vidak District Representative Rogelio Caudillo attended the grand opening of the new Allstate Insurance office in Delano and presented a Senate Certificate of Recognition to owner Anabel Perez and agents Luis Pulido, Briseida Barbosa, and Claudia Ontiveros.

Andy met with the California Conservation Corps in his Capitol office to discuss professional opportunities that the organization provides for young adults.

Congratulations to Sophia Medina on being named Miss Kings County and to Abby Salyer on being named Miss Kings County’s Outstanding Teen! Team Vidak District Representative Weston Anderson presented Senate Certificates of Recognition to both Sophia and Abby.

Andy’s Capitol staff recently met with Fresno Pacific University Director of Special Education Donna Martin.

Team Vidak District Representative Claudia Salinas attended last month’s press conference in Fresno announcing that the State Center Community College District purchased the 12-story Guarantee Building in Downtown Fresno that will function as its new District Office. Left to right: Fresno City College President Dr. Carole Goldsmith; State Center Community College District Chancellor Dr. Paul Parnell; Clovis Community College President Dr. Lori Bennett; Reedley College President Dr. Sandra Caldwell; Team Vidak Representative Claudia Salinas.

Team Vidak Senior District Representative Michael Bowers attended Kern County’s“Go Red for Women”Luncheon in Bakersfield. Go Red for Women advocates for more research and swifter action for women’s heart health. Did you know that in the U.S., cardiovascular diseases kill approximately one woman every 80 seconds? The good news is that 80 percent of cardiac events may be prevented with education and lifestyle changes.

Parlier Mayor Alma Beltran (center) visited with Team Vidak’s AubreyEnna Garten and Claudia Salinas during a recent Mobile Office Hours event at the Parlier Community Center.

Team Vidak District Representative Rogelio Caudillo presented a Senate Certificate of Recognition to Giovanni’s Pizzeria & Arcade in Porterville to celebrate their 10-year Anniversary. Congratulations to owner Pat Mena and his staff!

Team Vidak presented a Senate Certificate of Recognition to Valley Animal Haven & Adoption Center in Lemoore to help celebrate their four-year anniversary.

Andy recently visited the Kelly Slater Surf Ranch in Lemoore along with Congressman David Valadao, Assemblymember Rudy Salas, Assemblymember Ian Calderon, Kings County Supervisor Doug Verboon, and Kings County Supervisor Craig Pedersen. Thanks to Kelly Slater Wave Co. Chief Operation Officer Dave Litkins for the great tour!

Andy met with a group of student leaders from California State University Bakersfield and they discussed a variety of higher education topics.

Andy recently met in his Capitol office with members of the Western Propane Gas Association to discuss a number of legislative issues.

Andy recently met with Panama-Buena Vista Union School District Trustee Keith Wolaridge and other members of the California School Boards Association as part of their Legislative Action Day.

Andy met in his Capitol office recently with Fresno County Assistant District Attorney Steve Wright to discuss a variety of criminal justice topics facing Fresno County and the Central Valley.

Team Vidak District Representative Claudia Salinas attended the inaugural complimentary Healers Workshop hosted by the Holistic Cultural and Education Wellness Center in Fresno.

Andy met last month with a group of students and parents from St. Paul’s School while they toured the Capitol.

Team Vidak District Director Paula Vinzant and District Representative Weston Anderson attended Kings County Farm Day last month. Farm Day is an educational enrichment program for all third graders in the Kings County and gives students and teachers the opportunity to learn basic facts about agriculture, become familiar with food and animal production, and have personal contact with farmers.

Team Vidak attended the ribbon cutting ceremony and grand opening at Noble Credit Union’s new location in downtown Fresno.

Andy attended the Marjaree Mason Center’s Magical Birthday celebration last month. The event raised money for the Marjaree Mason Center, which supports and empowers adults and their children affected by domestic violence, while striving to prevent and end the cycle of abuse through education and advocacy. It is Fresno County’s only dedicated provider of domestic violence shelter and support services, including education for victims and youth.

Team Vidak District Representative Claudia Salinas attended the 90th Anniversary Celebration of Reedley Boy Scout Troop 282 - the oldest Troop to be enacted continuously west of the Mississippi! We were proud to present the Troop with a Senate Resolution in honor of their dedicated service to the Reedley community.

Team Vidak District Representative Claudia Salinas held Mobile Office Hours last month at Reedley College’s Health Fair. Pictured with Claudia is Reedley College nurse practitioner Kelly Murguia.

Team Vidak attended Reedley College’s Student Career Skills Competition. The participating high school teams were from Dinuba, Reedley, Sanger, Selma, Corcoran, Kingsburg, Orange Cove, Orosi, and Parlier.

Team Vidak attended the Grand Re-Opening of the Hanford Carnegie Museum.

Team Vidak District Representative Weston Anderson presented a Senate Certification of Recognition in Avenal to World Champion fighter Jose Ramirez, who recently won the World Boxing Council Super Lightweight Championship at Madison Square Garden.

Team Vidak attended the Selma District Chamber of Commerce’s awards banquet last month at Spike and Rail Restaurant and presented all of the honorees with Senate Certificates of Recognition.

Team Vidak District Director Paula Vinzant presented a Senate Certificate of Resolution to the Woodlake Flying Tigers to celebrate their 15th Anniversary. Through their Young Eagles program, these outstanding volunteers give their time, money, and airplanes to expose children in Woodlake and Tulare County to the aviation industry.

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