Assemblymember Ed Chau was elected in November 2012 to represent the 49th Assembly District, which includes the cities of Alhambra, Arcadia, El Monte, Monterey Park, Rosemead, San Gabriel, San Marino, Temple City and portions of Montebello, and South El Monte.
He currently serves as Chair of both the Assembly Committee on Privacy and Consumer Protection, and the Assembly Select Committee on Emerging Technologies and Innovation. He also serves as a member of the following Committees: Appropriations; Jobs, Economic Development, and the Economy; Judiciary; and Natural Resources.
During his time in the Legislature, Assemblymember Chau has championed legislation to more effectively punish those who commit elder abuse; to protect the privacy of those seeking legal counsel; and to remove language barriers by making language assistance policies in hospitals readily available to patients, and by requiring the Secretary of State to establish a Language Accessibility Advisory Committee to ensure all eligible voters have access to the voting process the law guarantees.
Other notable laws authored by Assemblymember Chau address the affordable housing crisis in our state, which include legislation to assist mentally ill individuals with securing housing and exiting homelessness; establish a process to capture more federal funding for affordable housing; and reduce the parking requirements for affordable projects that are close to transit or serve individuals who have fewer cars in order to promote more affordable housing.
To enhance privacy protections for everyone as technology continues to advance, Assemblymember Chau joint-authored the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018, a landmark law that grants rights to consumers over their personal data across the Internet, and prohibits discrimination against the services consumers receive as a result of exercising those rights. He also had legislation signed into law that makes it a constructive invasion of privacy to capture an image or sound recording in a manner that is offensive to a reasonable person through the use of any device, such as an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), commonly known as a drone. He also enacted law that holds hackers – and those who hire them to commit crimes – accountable, and to make sure businesses, state and local agencies have strong technological safeguards in place, if our private information is compromised.
He also had legislation signed into law that requires businesses and government agencies to provide notice of a breach to residents of California, if both the encrypted data and keys to the encryption are believed to have been breached, and legislation that imposes privacy requirements, with limited exceptions, directly on Web sites, online services, and mobile applications that are designed, marketed and used primarily by pupils enrolled in preschool and pre-kindergarten.
Other legislative priorities have focused on allocating more money to the San Gabriel Valley for groundwater cleanup projects to ensure that its basin continues to serve as a sustainable, clean water sources for the community.
Born in Hong Kong, Assemblymember Chau grew up in Los Angeles. He attended the University of Southern California and Southwestern University School of Law, where he obtained a B.A. in Sociology, B.S. in Computer Science and a Juris Doctor Degree, respectively.
After law school, he opened the Law Office of Edwin Chau and was a general law practitioner, and small business owner, for over 20 years. Prior to owning his business, Assemblymember Chau was an engineer for IBM and a programmer for Unisys Corporation where he helped create cutting-edge technology and focused on finding solutions to tomorrow’s problems.
Assemblymember Chau previously served as a Board Member of the Montebello Unified School District for 12 years where he acted as Board President three times, and was also a Judge Pro Tem for the Los Angeles Superior Court for a decade.