About 50 members of the Senior Center of the Berkeley Chinese Community Church were entertained, as well as educated, by State Treasurer Fiona Ma in a lively, interactive presentation on Tues., Nov. 26. Beginning with her long service in elective office from County Supervisor to CA Assembly member and Speaker Pro Tem to State Controller and now State Treasurer, Ma regaled the group as she joked about herself — given the name Fiona when she was born in Glasgow — and simultaneously answered serious questions from an audience concerned about a variety of state fiscal problems.
Ma expertly parried right leaning (e.g., “if the rich are taxed too much, they will leave CA!” [ed. note: not according to the Legislative Analyst’s Office]), as well as left leaning views (e.g., “materialism is excessive” but not with Ma who showed off her dress from Ross, tattoo instead of a wedding ring, plastic jewelry), while addressing concerns — e.g., about the high cost of state college tuition which has been partially addressed by Governors Brown and Newsom signing legislation providing free CA Community College education. Nevertheless, she acknowledged difficulties of dealing with state employees’ ballooning pensions which might be paid off by 2050, preparing for the looming, but supposedly mild, recession predicted for California by the LAO, getting PG&E to improve its performance but not forcing it to become a public utility, and providing for wildfire protection, maintenance of roads and infrastructure, the unacceptably numerous homeless, sorely needed affordable housing and the needs of K-12 teachers and schools.
Clearly, her audience appreciated the undeniable advantages of a live presentation by a knowledgeable public servant like State Treasurer Fiona Ma. Check lwvbae.org and other websites for such informative talks in future!
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