This month, we continue to watch the disturbing and dangerous events unfolding in Ukraine, and pray for the safety of the Ukrainian people. Spring is often a harbinger of hope, and we certainly need that now.
I’m hopeful because March brings with it early budget actions in Sacramento, and projections continue to show that this will be another great year for historic investments and savings thanks to California’s commonsense, voter-approved revenue system. One of the first early budget actions we’ve already taken is extending California’s COVID-19 paid sick leave program through September 30, 2022. That helps protect the health of frontline workers and allows businesses to continue to stabilize and succeed. We’ve also taken early actions to restore some tax breaks for small businesses that were deferred by the pandemic.
I’m hopeful this March because, as I write this, COVID-19 numbers are continuing down after our precautions during the Omicron surge, and the path toward normal could be coming into sight. Diligence is still the word of the day though—it would be a shame, the closer we get to having safer and healthier communities, to rush ahead of the science as we navigate the ongoing—and God willing final— twists and turns of this crisis.
I’m hopeful this women’s history month because more women are running for elected office and women like our region’s own Kallie Humphries and Elena Meyers-Taylor, and former resident Lindsay Jacobellis, are bringing home medals from the Winter Olympics – and one of the most talented and generous women in the world was nominated for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. And, by the way, if you don’t think Dolly Parton is rock and roll, well, she was not only bad enough to take on Jolene, she just announced she’s paying for all of Dollywood’s employees’ educational costs—not only rocking the world, but improving it!
Honestly, though, the most hope I see right now may come from Mia and Joey. With daylight saving time beginning this month, they seem to believe no matter how late mom gets home from work the chances of a long walk are going to get better. I have to say, with all the work ahead of us, that gives me something else to hope for, too!