Monique Limón cites COVID-19 as immediate priority
Editor’s note: These are more articles in this week’s News-Press series on local candidates in the Nov. 3 election. On Thursday, the series will feature stories on the races for the Santa Barbara County Board of Education and the Carpinteria Unified School District board.
Elected to the State Assembly in 2016, 37th District Assemblywoman Monique Limón believes the past four years have prepared her well for serving in the California Legislature’s upper house.
She is running as a Democrat for state Senate District 19 against Republican Gary Michaels.
Given the health and economic impacts that have come from the COVID-19 pandemic, Ms. Limón told the News-Press that responding to the effects of the pandemic will be among her first orders of business if elected in November.
“We need to ensure Californians are safe from the virus and they have access to necessary care,” she said. “Our economy has suffered with millions of Californians facing unemployment due to businesses and workplaces closing. My office has assisted hundreds of constituents with their unemployment benefits since the beginning of the pandemic.”
Also among her priorities will be wildfire and disaster prevention, which is something she has worked on during her tenure in the Assembly. Following the Thomas Fire, in 2018, Assemblywoman Limón authored Assembly Bill 417 to expedite the process of reopening Vista Del Mar Hospital, an important mental health care provider that was damaged in the fire.
The 2018-2019 budget she passed in collaboration with her colleagues included $12 million in funding to backfill property tax revenue losses that Ventura and Santa Barbara counties would incur due to the Thomas Fire.
Additionally, she supported allocating additional funding to pre-position fire equipment in wildfire risk areas to reduce the magnitude of fires.
Born and raised in Santa Barbara, Assemblywoman Limón attended K-12 schools in the area and received a bachelor’s from UC Berkeley and a master’s from Columbia University.
Before she was an assemblywoman, she spent much of her career in education, serving two terms on the Santa Barbara Unified School District board and as the assistant director of the McNair Scholars Program at UCSB, which prepares students for doctoral programs.
Prior to that, she was student program advisor for the California Student Opportunity and Access Program at Santa Barbara City College.
The assemblywoman cited her ability to “build broad coalitions and support from Santa Barbara and Ventura counties” as an important skill that she will bring to the position of state senator. She said her ability to marshal bipartisan support is not just evident in legislation that she has authored, but also in her position with the California Legislative Women’s Caucus.
“My colleagues elected me to serve as the Vice Chair of the California Legislative Women’s Caucus, where I work in a bipartisan and bicameral way to advance issues impacting women and families in our State,” she wrote in a statement.
During her term in the Assembly, Assemblywoman Limón has chaired the California Assembly banking and Finance Committee, as well as the Select Committee on the Nonprofit Sector.
Assemblywoman Limón remarked that she has a “strong trajectory of community involvement” with local nonprofit organizations.
Currently she serves as a board member of the McCune Foundation and in the past has been appointed as nonprofit director for Leading From Within, New Beginnings Counseling Center, the Community Engagement Committee for the Granada Theatre and as a Katherine Harvey Fellow for the Santa Barbara Foundation.