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Mother Lode Contingent Strokes Capitol Hill

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Washington, D.C. — Three educators and a Tuolumne County supervisor are finalizing their lobbying efforts in Washington, D.C. today for the reauthorization of the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self Determination Act.

Tuolumne County Schools Superintendent Joe Silva, Sonora High School Superintendent Rob Gaskill, Columbia School District Superintendent John Pendley and Fifth District Supervisor Dick Pland have met with California senators Barbara Boxer and Diane Feinstein respectively over the last two days to push for a one year extension of the Act. The Mother Lode quartet has also met with the authors of the bill in both the Senate and the House of Representatives.

Reached outside the Congressional Dining Room this morning, Silva says he is confident the Act will be renewed following President Bush´s positive comments Wednesday. A decision on the renewal will come no later than September 30th.

The Secure Rural Schools and Community Self Determination Act has provided $178,000 a year for Sonora High School alone. Without that funding, the school would lose three teaching positions. The Act also provides 40 percent of the funding for county roads.

Silva, Gaskill, Pendley and Pland are scheduled to arrive at Sacramento International Airport at eleven o´clock this evening.

Written by Bill Johnson