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A small but lively group showed up for coffee at the Veterans Hall Friday morning, accompanied by a chance to speak to assembly member Rudy Salas. Salas recapped several of his efforts on behalf of his 32nd District and heard questions and concerns from local residents.


Discussion ranged from the current drought to expansion of Hwy 43.


Salas also spoke to local veterans’ interests, noting that a current Sacramento bill is aimed at denying employers the opportunity to discriminate against vets.


“Vets are having a tough time finding jobs when they return from the service. The new bill will prevent employers from discriminating against vets because of their military services,” noted Salas.


City Councilman Ray Lerma asked Salas if there might be state funding to expand Highway 43 from two lanes to four lanes. Lerma noted that the highway is particularly dangerous during certain times of the years, especially when farm equipment is on the road. Salas said he has addressed the issue in Sacramento and it is dependent upon the transportation commission to make any funding recommendations.


On drought funding, Salas said funds are trickling down to address both storage projects and safe drinking water for his district constituents. He noted that competitive water grant applications gain strength when counties and municipalities group together to form joint power authorities.


Supervisor Richard Valle, also present at the meeting, said Kings County is working to implement a water delivery system program countyside, should it be needed.


“This may become necessary where wells have dried up,” he noted.


Senior housing issues were also discussed, with Lerma and Valle taking the lead to address issues of local concern.


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