October Quarterly District News

Monday, October 21, 2013 - 00:00

Dear Friend:

My website is always a good place to keep track of what I have been doing in Sacramento and in the district. It is also where you can find my District News.

District News is one way I can get information to you, but I hope you'll also contact my office when you have questions about legislation, state programs or available services. You can call the district office at (323) 264-4949 or fill out the form on my website where it says Contact Ed.

As always, it's my pleasure to serve the 49th District and you, the constituents.

Signature

Ed Chau
Assemblymember, 49th District

In this October issue you will find:


Legislative Update

This year, I authored a package of bills that focused on issues of importance to the residents of the 49th Assembly District and the people of California, which included privacy safeguards, consumer rights, elder abuse protections, and housing assistance, among others. I am proud to announce that the Governor signed into law my following bills:

Privacy Safeguards

AB 267 – Lawyer Referral Service Confidentiality – This bill closes the gap that exists in the chain of confidential information that flows between lawyers and their clients by providing lawyer referral services with the same privilege against discovery as attorneys. Sponsor: Conference of California Bar Associations. (Signed into law as Chapter 123, Statutes of 2013)

Consumer Rights

AB 1275 – Unclaimed Property – This bill clearly defines the term “owner” for the purpose of filing an unclaimed property claim with the Controller and specifies that only an owner may file a claim for unclaimed property. Sponsors: State Controller John Chiang. (Signed into law as Chapter 128, Statutes of 2013)

Elder Abuse Protections

AB 381 – Attorneys Costs and Fees for Elder Abuse Victims – This bill allows the Court to impose attorney fees and costs whenever a person in bad faith uses a power of attorney to commit elder or dependent adult financial abuse. Furthermore, the person who in bad faith used the power of attorney to commit elder or dependent adult abuse is liable for twice the value of the property recovered. Sponsor: Conference of California Bar Associations. (Signed into law as Chapter 99, Statutes of 2013)

Housing Assistance

AB 873 – Emergency Housing and Assistance Program (EHAP) – This bill would make a number of changes to the EHAP, which provides grants for the construction and operation of emergency shelters and transitional housing facilities, aimed at spending the program’s remaining $8 million in the most effective way and making California more competitive for federal dollars. Sponsor: Author (Signed into law as Chapter 488, Statutes of 2013)

AB 984 – California Housing Finance Agency (CalHFA)– This bill revises the board membership of the CalHFA to include members with specific financial expertise, makes statutory changes necessary for CalHFA to continue to provide down payment assistance loans through the California Homebuyer’s Downpayment Assistance Program, and authorizes CalHFA to offer Energy Efficient Mortgage Grants to first time homebuyers. Sponsor: Author. (Signed into law as Chapter 82, Statutes of 2013)

For more information about the status of these and other bills, please contact Garret Bazurto at (916) 319-2049 or Garret.Bazurto@asm.ca.gov.

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District event

49th AD's Covered California Healthcare Reform Townhall

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was signed into federal law by President Obama in 2010 to provide affordable health insurance to more Americans. The Affordable Care Act creates new state marketplaces, expands Medicare and Medicaid (Medi-Cal in California) coverage, improves consumer protections like ensuring everyone can get health insurance even if they have a pre-existing condition and it provides federal financial assistance to eligible low- and moderate-income individuals and families. It also requires that all health plans provide "essential health benefits", which include emergency services, hospitalization, preventative and wellness services, and mental health and substance use disorder services.

No one can predict when he or she will get sick or have an accident. That is why it is important to have health insurance – it can ensure your access to care and keep you and your family healthy. Effective January 2014, millions of Californians will be able to choose affordable, high-quality health insurance coverage offered through California’s marketplace, Covered California. Covered California will provide the tools for you to compare and shop for health insurance that meets your healthcare needs and financial circumstances.

Enrollment into Covered California began on October 1, 2013. Covered California will also offer assistance in many languages to help you choose and enroll in a health plan that best meets your needs. You can request enrollment assistance here.

I will be hosting an event this month to provide details on how Covered CA works and where to sign up for it. The event is free, open to the public and is as follows:

49th AD's Covered California Healthcare Reform Townhall

Saturday, October 26, 2013
1 p.m. - 4 p.m.

Garvey Community Center
9108 Garvey Avenue
Rosemead, CA 91770

For more information, please contact Violet Ruiz at 323-264-4949 or by email at Violet.Ruiz@asm.ca.gov.

If you can't attend this meeting, you may find a lot of valuable information at www.CoveredCA.com or call the toll-free number, 1-800-300-1506.

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State Resources – Highlight

You may be one of the millions of Californians owed money by the State. The State of California currently possesses more than $6.1 billion in unclaimed property that belongs to approximately 17.6 million individuals and organizations.

The most common types of unclaimed property include bank accounts and safe deposit box contents, stocks and bonds, uncashed cashier’s checks or money orders, and royalty payments and trust funds. Note that California Unclaimed Property Law does not include real estate property.

California’s Unclaimed Property Law requires holders of unclaimed property such as corporations, financial institutions, and insurance companies to report and deliver unclaimed property to the State Controller’s Office after there has been no customer contact for three years. This law additionally gives the State an opportunity to return your money and provides Californians with a single database to check for unclaimed property that may be reported by holders from around the nation. To see if you have any unclaimed property, you can check the State Controller’s Unclaimed Property Database here. 

For more information about California’s Unclaimed Property Program, please click here.

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Calendar of Events

49th AD's Covered California Healthcare Reform Townhall

Come learn about how Covered CA works and get details on where to sign up for it.

Saturday, October 26, 2013
1 p.m. - 4 p.m.

Garvey Community Center
9108 Garvey Avenue
Rosemead, CA 91770

For more information, please contact Violet Ruiz at 323-264-4949 or by email at Violet.Ruiz@asm.ca.gov.

Senior Scam Seminar

Please join the Contractors State License Board, seniors, their families, and caregivers for a free seminar where experts provide information about various types of fraud such as home repair, financial, telephone, and identity theft.

Thursday, October 31, 2013
9 a.m. - 11 a.m.

Langley Senior Center
400 W Emerson Ave
Monterey Park, CA 91754

For more information, please contact Daisy Ma at 323-264-4949 or by email at Daisy.Ma@asm.ca.gov.

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