Sacramento – Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin (D-Thousand Oaks) announced that funding for two new Ventura County programs have made it into the final California state budget bill. The bill will be voted upon before the June 15th deadline.
- One Time $3 Million Funding for law enforcement departments throughout the state to remove weapons from dangerous individuals, including Ventura County. This program will allow local peace officers, with on-the-ground knowledge of their community, to assist with removing firearms from dangerous individuals on the state’s Armed Prohibited Persons System (APPS).
Following the tragedy at Borderline, Assemblymember Irwin collaborated with local law enforcement and former LAPD homicide detective and Thousand Oaks Councilmember, Joel Price, to strengthen existing public safety laws. California law already makes it illegal for those who have previously been convicted of a felony or violent misdemeanor, as well as persons experiencing mental health crises or narcotics addiction, to possess firearms.
There is a persistent backlog of 10,000+ subjects prohibited from possessing firearms in APPS, which tracks these subjects and is administered by the California Department of Justice. “By empowering local law enforcement agencies to reduce the backlog of armed prohibited persons, this grant will provide the tools that are necessary to proactively keep our communities safe while respecting the rights and due process of responsible gun owners,” said Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin.
“This is about keeping guns out of the hands of people who should not have access to them and is an important step to providing our law enforcement officers with the laws and tools to keep our community safe,” said Ventura County Sheriff Bill Ayub.
- One Time $5 Million Funding for the infrastructure and site development of a pilot child care center at California State University Channel Islands (CSUCI). The center would serve as a teaching and learning lab for CSUCI students and faculty, a policy institute to provide opportunities for research aimed at addressing the systemic challenges to equitable access to early childhood education, and a child care facility to serve the region’s families.
In Ventura County, an estimated 12,000 preschool age children cannot access or participate in preschool due to space, costs, and program limitations. “I am proud to stand beside a diverse group of stakeholders who strongly believe in providing quality child care to our region’s most underserved children,” said Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin.
Through private and public investment, stakeholders envision that the center will serve the child care needs of student parents at the University and local farmworker families, while also supporting the training, academic research, and professional development of early childhood educators in the region.
“This investment from Governor Newsom and the State of California will transform the lives tens of thousands of children, their families, and our state for decades to come,” said Dr. Erika Beck, President of CSU Channel Islands. The center will serve as “a model for expanding equitable access to early childhood education, while simultaneously strengthening the preparation of high quality, culturally responsive preschool teachers”.