The following article originally appeared in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune on August 7, 2013.
Rep. Chu discusses Gold Line, new office in Claremont
CLAREMONT — Rep. Judy Chu says she’s on board for the Gold Line Foothill Extension to Claremont and L.A./Ontario International Airport and will soon open an office here.
“I will not rest until we complete the Gold Line from Azusa to Claremont,” Chu, D-Pasadena, told an applauding audience at the Alexander Hughes Community Center on Tuesday. “And then, how about to the Ontario airport? This will truly not be a regional system until you get it going all the way to the Ontario airport. In fact, it will give us a greater incentive to go and park our car and use the Ontario airport as our main source of transportation within California and elsewhere. That’s why we have to put our heads together and make sure we continue this.”
Chu said at the end of her talk that she will open an office in Claremont next month. She was at the Community Center on Tuesday afternoon for a meet-and-greet with local residents.
She also expressed support for continuing funding for the Community Development Block Grant program and not cutting the program in half, which was proposed in late June in the House.
Chu said her entire district stands to lose $2.2 million next year if the program for tutoring, health services, small business assistance and more “would be decimated” if it is cut.
“In fact, this year Claremont received nearly$140,000 in CDGB funds for housing, rehabilitation, senior case management and a job creation business incentive program,” Chu said.
Chu also spoke in support of the San Gabriel Mountains as a national recreation area because if it’s part of the recreation area, funds are given to make the area functional such as signage and to make trails where needed.
“I can’t help but be impressed by this incredibly majestic site to the north of us,” Chu said. “Those mountains provide 70 percent of L.A. County’s open space and host over three million visitors a year. They are in such critical need of support and assistance. They are in a shocking state of disrepair with a lack of trails, signage and sanitary conditions.”
Chu said that after 10 years the National Park Service released a special study that recommended a national recreation area in the area but it was revised and excluded the San Gabriel Mountains. She has since had meetings with groups of people and stakeholders to take questions.
On Sept. 7, she will hold a town hall at the Community Center.
“The input is so vital before I draft legislation,” she said. “This idea is a hallmark, or can be a hallmark, of our region. We in California do not get our fair share of the tax dollar in parks. In fact, we are a donor stage. What we give out doesn’t come back to us, especially in federal parks. This is one way to get the tax dollars back to our area to help improve the recreational opportunities for our residents. Also, what this can be is a hallmark for the San Gabriel Valley.”