Skip to main content

LATEST UPDATES: Election 2020: Live Results | Tracking COVID-19 | Racial Justice

California Budget Plan Aids Teachers, Those In US Illegally

Cover image for podcast episode

California Gov. Newsom wants to give $20,000 stipends to teachers at high needs schools and extend health care to older low-income immigrants who are in the country illegally. Also, California could become the first state to make its own prescription drugs. Plus, Alliant International University will honor a student killed on a Ukranian ariliner that crashed in Iran and cooler and drier weather can be expected in San Diego this week.

Speaker 1: 00:00 It's Monday, January 13th I'm Deb Welsh and you're listening to San Diego news batters from KPBS coming up, a local university plans to honor a student killed in last week's crash of a Ukrainian airliner in Iran and a number of challenges face refugees and asylum seekers allowed into this country. About half the clients that we serve come to us with high-skilled backgrounds and all of them are going to get us revel job first. That more coming up right after the break.

Speaker 2: 00:38 Thank you for joining us for San Diego news matters. I'm Deb Welsh, Alliant international university plans to honor a student killed in last week's crash of a Ukrainian airliner in Iran. University officials say Sarah Sadat, a first year doctoral student in clinical psychology at the Scripps ranch campus died along with her mother and 21 year old sister when the Ukraine international airliner went down in flames. Shortly after takeoff on Wednesday, an early forecast shows water supplies of the Colorado river basin are likely to be lower than normal this year. Luke Runyon of member station K UNC explains that's despite high snowpack in the Rocky mountains.

Speaker 3: 01:20 It all goes back to the fall States that rely on the Colorado river also rely on monsoonal rains that are supposed to arrive like clockwork in late summer, but that didn't happen in 2019 leaving soil throughout the region sapped of moisture. Cody Moser is a forecaster with the Colorado basin river forecast center

Speaker 4: 01:40 and it ended up being the ninth driest and third hottest monsoon on record dating back to 1895

Speaker 3: 01:48 dry soil soaks up snow melt before it can reach rivers and streams and that's what's leading to the forecast of a lessened runoff for the upper Colorado river this year. There are still a few months for that to change. Snowpack doesn't usually hit its peak until early April. I'm Luke Runyon.

Speaker 2: 02:06 The mountain West conference has announced a brand new TV deal with CBS and Fox KPBS has. Sarah [inaudible] says the contract is good news for San Diego state

Speaker 5: 02:17 college football and men's basketball from the mountain West conference will now be on CBS sports and Fox sports and set of ESPN. This new contract was signed for $270 million and will only last six years. Giving the conference and schools more flexibility later on if the media environment changes. Mira COPEC was San Diego state and bottom line marketing says that the bottom line is more money for SDSU. The one point $1 million each school currently receives under the old agreement is expected to more than triple.

Speaker 3: 02:47 This means that they can fund more scholarships, improved qualities of both the basketball and the football program. Same with the mountain West as a whole.

Speaker 5: 02:54 The agreement starts this fall and will continue through. 2026 Sarah Gaziantep KPBS

Speaker 2: 03:00 news. Governor Gavin Newsom announced his new state budget last week, which includes increased funding to support California's immigrant community KPBS reporter max Ryland Adler tells us this also includes an expansion of California's Medicaid program to undocumented people. Over the age of 65

Speaker 6: 03:20 the governor's budget proposes spending 80 point $5 million on expanding Medi-Cal, the state's Medicaid program to include undocumented people over the age of 65 who can not receive Medicare. Last year at the state legislature expanded coverage for people in the country legally in the medical program up to the age of 26 the expanded program is expected to reach as many as 27,000 elderly undocumented people. By June, 2021 Saraj Dar is the health policy manager at the California immigrant policy center and says this is part of a years long effort by advocates to expand coverage.

Speaker 7: 03:55 You know, every year we've come back to the legislature, we've come back to the governors to ask for undocumented residents in California who live here, who pay taxes, who work here, who contribute to the economy and yet are locked out of the safety net and get nothing back. Um, to allow them to take advantage of these safety net programs.

Speaker 6: 04:11 If pass the change to medical will take effect. In January, 2021 I'm actually with Linda Adler, K PBS news.

Speaker 2: 04:19 Governor Newsome is proposing a few ways to lower the cost of prescription drugs, including creating a generic drug label just for California Capitol public radio, Sammy K or reports

Speaker 8: 04:31 the governor wants to contract with drug companies to make more generics, which are cheaper alternatives to brand name medications. His office hasn't said what this will cost, but there's some skepticism about how it'll work. Wayne wine garden is with a free market think tank called the Pacific research Institute.

Speaker 7: 04:46 Generic drugs aren't the problem.

Speaker 8: 04:49 He says these medications are already pretty cheap, but there are other specialty drugs driving up the costs that Newsome's plan doesn't touch

Speaker 7: 04:57 California jumping in. It's way too complicated. That's not what's needed. We need policy reform related to federal level

Speaker 8: 05:06 supporters of the plan. Say more generics could increase competition in some markets. Ultimately lowering costs for patients. Newsome also wants to make California the sole drug purchaser for all health plans and cap what the state pays for drugs based on international prices. Alma Hernandez with the FCIU labor union says these are all steps in the right direction.

Speaker 7: 05:27 The realistic path to universal health care starts with containing prices in healthcare.

Speaker 8: 05:33 California would be the first state with its own prescription drug label in Sacramento. I'm Sammy Kayla.

Speaker 2: 05:40 Last week, Guatemalan officials pushed back after the department of Homeland security, announced plans to send Mexican asylum seekers to the central American country. KPBS reporter max with Lynette or tells us that DHS now wants to send Mexican asylum seekers to Honduras

Speaker 6: 05:58 acting DHS secretary Chad Wolf visited Honduras last week to finalize a deal. It would send asylum seekers from several countries who arrive in America's Southern border to Honduras to seek asylum there. Honduran official said that this would also include Mexican nationals who had previously been excluded from these third country asylum deals that the Trump administration had cut through the summer and fall last week. Guatemalan officials said they would not be accepting Mexican seeking asylum so far over 100 Hondurans and Salvadorans have been sent to Guatemala by the U S to seek asylum there instead acting DHS secretary Wolf said the deal with Honduras would go into effect in the coming weeks. Max Levulan, Adler, K PBS news.

Speaker 2: 06:42 Gavin Newson vowed to take bold action on the state's homelessness crisis during his campaign for governor Capitol public radio is PolitiFact reporter Chris Nichols sums up the governor's first year.

Speaker 9: 06:53 Newsome signed more than a dozen bills and invested $1 billion last year all to get homeless people off the streets. When he unveiled his second budget, Newsome showed he's not finished

Speaker 10: 07:05 on the issue of homelessness. We're investing over a billion dollars yet again to address the issue that defines our times.

Speaker 9: 07:14 The governor last week ordered state agencies to find government property such as old state hospitals to house homeless people, and he committed to paying rental assistance for the homeless. These moves are promising, but Republican political consultant, Mike Madrid says Californians will judge the governor by what they see on the streets.

Speaker 11: 07:33 People want this resolved now going to have to be less people sleeping in sleeping bags and cardboard mattresses on the sidewalks.

Speaker 9: 07:41 California's homeless population jumped 16% in 2018 to a staggering 150,000 people. According to a recent federal report, advocates such as Chris Martin from housing California say it's not fair to expect Newsome to solve the problem anytime soon.

Speaker 12: 07:59 It's a challenge that's decades in the making and will take decades to get out of

Speaker 9: 08:04 in Sacramento. I'm Chris Nichols.

Speaker 2: 08:07 The Trump administration has made it more difficult for asylum seekers to win protection and is cut way back on the number of refugees accepted into the country. Even so, the thousands of humanitarian migrants already here face big challenges in finding work where they can use their talents and skills in the first of a two part series for our California dream collaboration. K QEDs for [inaudible] Ramiro reports.

Speaker 12: 08:34 A small group of recently arrived refugees from Afghanistan, Nepal, Ethiopia and other countries are about to start a workshop, an office in San Jose. So today we're going to talk about what a job interview looks like in America. Staffers with the nonprofit international rescue committee or IRC go through basic do's and don'ts to ACE. A first meeting with a potential employer. They ask people to stand up and practice introducing themselves with a firm handshake. Hi, I'm sunny day. Nice to meet you. Hi, my day. While some immigrants here are starting from scratch with not much English or a resume, others come with university degrees and a lot more language and professional skills. Uh, my name is Eden ASFA. As far as 38 she worked in her native Eritrea as a secretary for the European union diplomatic office and also in community development with European NGOs here in San Jose.

Speaker 12: 09:40 She starts work at 5:30 AM as a cashier at a restaurant. I need to support myself. About half the clients that we serve come to us with high high-skilled backgrounds. Kevin Davis coordinates career development programs at the local IRC office and all of them are going to get us rebel job first. The IRC helps about 200 humanitarian migrants per year. Find those first low skilled, often minimum wage jobs and then rebuild careers and the U S through coaching and scholarships. Davis says immigrants living paycheck to paycheck face. Big barriers to get higher skilled jobs even if they've worked in those fields in their home countries. Oftentimes foreign credentials for them degrees and even sometimes foreign work experience is not viewed the same as domestic American credentials or work experience in California, nearly half a million immigrants with at least a bachelor's degree are underemployed, meaning they're overqualified for their job or can't find work.

Speaker 12: 10:38 That's according to an analysis by the migration policy Institute. That translates into a big loss in state and local taxes, almost 700 million in California per year. Shanna Bata lava is a senior policy analyst at the Institute. Unfortunately at the national level, there hasn't been really strategy developed on how to do what we call brain waste, but the lava says other countries invest more to help immigrants navigate their way into professional occupations. The U S not so much the approaches sink or swim. There is some limited federal and local financial support to help refugees and asylees adjust to life in the U S through organizations like IRC and San Jose. Kevin Davis says that first survival job is like a stepping stone and once they can pay their immediate bills, then we work with them to sort of see. All right, well what comes next for [inaudible]? It was working as a cashier, wild training to draw people's blood for lab tests.

Speaker 12: 11:40 Now she's getting ready to take her exam to become certified as a phlebotomy technician. When I come here, I knew I would be starting from scratch. I knew it's going to be a hard road ahead. Just have to take the steps I needed to take to get in there. The healthcare industry needs more workers in California and as fast as as she's excited to leave the restaurant and get a job quickly with a better paycheck. Her longterm plan is to work some and then go back to school to become a medical lab technician in San Jose. I'm fighting that job, Bella Romero. Tomorrow we'll hear about a Cuban doctor who's bit years working to regain his profession in the U S thanks for listening to San Diego news matters. Do us a favor, and if you appreciate the podcast rate or review us on Apple podcasts or wherever you listen to podcasts. Thank you.

San Diego News Matters podcast branding

San Diego News Matters

KPBS' daily news podcast covering local politics, education, health, environment, the border and more. New episodes are ready weekday mornings so you can listen on your morning commute.