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Tony Mendoza

on Sept. 7, 2009
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CAREER
After receiving his Bachelor's Degree in Political Science: Public Administration from California State University at Long Beach and his Multiple Subject Bilingual Teaching Credential from California State University at Los Angeles, Mendoza taught elementary school for 10-years in East Los Angeles.

During his teaching years with the Los Angeles Unified School District, Mendoza served as a member of the board of directors with United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA) and as a representative with the California Teachers Association (CTA) and the National Education Association (NEA).

In 1997 Mendoza ran a grassroots campaign in his hometown of Artesia as a candidate for city council. His platform on securing Artesia neighborhoods from gangs resonated with the community and Mendoza became the youngest and first Latino member of the Artesia city council and the youngest to serve as mayor at the age of 26.

Mendoza served three successful terms on the Artesia city council before running for the State Assembly in 2006. Now in his second term, Mendoza represents the communities of Artesia, Norwalk, Santa Fe Springs, Hawaiian Gardens, Whittier, South Whittier, Los Nietos, Lakewood, Buena Park and Cerritos.

LEGISLATIVE ACCOMPLISHMENTS
Mendoza has authored several bills that have been signed and adopted into law since arriving in the Assembly. Most notably are his bills that deal with health, public safety and the environment. AB 97 made California the first in the nation to ban the use of Trans Fats in food preparation in all California restaurants, cafeterias and bakeries. AB 1291 helps parents take a lead role in the life of their child; the child who has been charged and convicted of a first-time gang related offense can jointly enroll with his or her parent or parents in anti-gang courses to prevent further involvement in gang activities. AB 1488 requires smog checks for lightweight diesel vehicles to ensure they are running clean.

CURRENT LEGISLATION
Mendoza's current legislation is a mix of education, consumer and employment bills. AB 63, just signed by the Governor, protects consumers by requiring retailers that issue a service contract or extended warranty to maintain a copy on file for the life of the contract and make it available to a consumer within 10 days of a request.

AB 943 would end the practice of using a person's credit report as a part of the hiring process with the exception of positions that deal with large sums of cash or expensive property.

AB 857 places highly trained individuals from the Employment Development Department (EDD) in local EDD centers to work face-to-face with individuals on their unemployment benefits. This bill also will hire an additional 800 people to serve in call centers. The bill uses no state money to fund the program, but instead allocates federal dollars to maintain the level of service to help those transitioning.

COMMUNITY WORK
Mendoza launched a highly successful student program in 2008 that puts high school seniors from throughout the 56th Assembly District in real-life political scenarios. The program is the Young Legislators and its goal is to teach high school seniors about the political world. Seniors who qualify take part in an eight week program that introduces them to local, regional and statewide office holders who share their perspective of various issues and explain their role in the political process. Young Legislators end their studies by participating in a mock legislative session in Sacramento where their deliver and deliberate on legislative bills they have designed and introduced.

56th ASSEMBLY DISTRICT
The district includes the cities of Artesia, Cerritos, Hawaiian Gardens, Norwalk, Buena Park, Santa Fe Springs, South Whittier and parts of Lakewood and Whittier.

PERSONAL LIFE
Assemblyman Mendoza grew up in South Central Los Angeles. He is the first in his family of nine children to graduate from college. He received a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from California State University, Long Beach. He received his teaching credential from Cal State Los Angeles

Mendoza and his wife Leticia live in Artesia and have three daughters and one son.
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