Minutes from October 17, 2017 Open Board Meeting-Congressman Pete Aguilar

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

 Open Board of Directors Meeting

  3200 Inland Empire Blvd.
First Floor Media Room
Ontario, CA 92408



Present:  Deborah Barmack, Peter Barmack, Carole Beswick, Mike Burrows, Ken Coate, Sandra Espadas, Lowell King, Bill Lemann, P. T. McEwen, Tomas Morales, Tom Nightingale, Brian Reider, Michael Rivera, Elizabeth Romero, Kristine Scott, Paul Shimoff, Phil Waller and Ray Wolfe.
Guests: Greg Bradbard, Mark Cloud, Adam Eventov, Karen Feld, Nick Grooters, Jeffrey Hackbarth, Peggy Hazlett, Mike Kreeger, Matt Liebman, Boris Medzhibovsky, Roman Nava, John Novack, Kevin Pulliam, Arnold San Miguel, Jennifer Shaw and David VanVoorhis

Announcements: 1) Senator Connie Leyva will participate at the SBCCD “Take a Coffee Break” event on November 1st.  2) UCR’s Economic Forecast will be held on Wed. Oct. 23. 3) The SBIA AirFest is this coming weekend.

Chair Scott called the meeting to order at 7:30 a.m. Introductions were made around the table.

M/S/P: Minutes from October 10, 2017.

Elizabeth Romero introduced Congressman Aguilar. He is a member of the prestigious Appropriations Committee and serves as a Minority Whip.

The Congressman held a town hall meeting at ESRI the previous evening, which was well attended and included two hours of interchange.

Inland Empire economic recovery has lagged behind our coastal regions. There is a need to focus on this disparity and do what can be done to improve our status.

Three major events were held by the Congressman this summer. A Veteran’s Fair, a Senior’s Fair and a Job’s Fair. The last event was truly rewarding as it actively leads to getting people into the workplace.

Inland Action works hard advocating for our region and its economic needs, and it has paid off. Over $2M was directed to our region last year, and so far this year $2.270M has come our way. The cybersecurity program at CSUSB has two students on full ride scholarships, and they will be guaranteed employment with government jobs upon graduation. In general, we need to be sure our region is competitive.

An effort is underway to name a post office in memory Jack Brown, former CEO of Stater Brothers.

DACA, the Dream Act, needs to be renewed. It is Congress’s job to fix this, and bipartisan work is underway to resolve the challenges. The bill under consideration would require either 2 years of school, 2 years in the military, or 3 years of employment. These criteria would create a path to citizenship. This is not amnesty, but a true way to permanent residency. This is a genuine bipartisan effort with over 40 members of the House offering support for the bill that is moving through the House. There is an identical bill in the Senate.

Question and answer discussion covered tax reform; opioid issues including abuse of prescriptions; NAFTA; North Korea; continuing government budgetary funding; health care and the implications of reduced funding and its effect on our state/region; and work force development with an emphasis on local projects and funding.   There is room for growth in this area, and he is focused on ways to improve opportunities for jobs in our region.

The Congressman was complimented on his grasp of the issues, his articulate presentation, his relationship building and ability to work across the aisle. He spoke of how his learning is based on his time in IA and experience in local government. He is engaged in Congressional sports, and it builds good relationships.

Meeting adjourned at 8:30 am.