Vidak to visit Woodlake


California Senator Andy Vidak (R-Hanford) will make his first visit to Woodlake next week.

Woodlake Mayor Rudy Mendoza said he invited Vidak to come to give city leaders a legislative update on issues important to Valley communities as well as meet some of his constituents and city leaders for the first time. The “meet and greet” will be held from 5:30-7 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 6 at Woodlake City Hall, 350 N. Valencia Blvd. in Woodlake.

“This is not a fund-raiser or anything like that,” Mendoza said. “This is an opportunity for Woodlake to get to know our Senator and for him to hear from his constituents.”

Vidak, a Hanford cherry farmer, was elected in a July 23 runoff against Democrat Leticia Perez of Bakersfield for the District 16, which encompasses Woodlake, Lindsay and Strathmore.

Vidak ran on his first-hand experience of the economic and water issues facing the Valley and promised in his campaigned to oppose new taxes, reduce the size of government and bring back jobs to the Valley.

Since being sworn into office on Aug. 12, Vidak has urged the California Congressional Delegation to expedite the enactment of commonsense and compassionate immigration reform:

“The current immigration system is clearly broken and not working for anybody,” Vidak said in an August statement. “Thank God U.S. government officials are finally talking about immigration reform, but it is important for the economic vitality of this state that you take action before you adjourn for the year. California is home to many immigrants and they make important contributions to our economy, particularly in agricultural areas like the Central Valley.

“The people in my district who are working hard and paying taxes are a positive contribution to our economy here in the Central Valley and deserve an opportunity to gain legal status.”

In September, Vidak held two press conferences in Fresno and Kern counties regarding the Asian citrus psyllid (ACP) and the threat it poses to the Central Valley’s citrus industry and our local agriculture economy. ACP is the most serious threat facing the San Joaquin Valley’s $1.5 billion citrus industry. It has the potential to spread a deadly and incurable citrus disease called Huanglongbing. Not only are commercial citrus trees at risk, but also the backyard trees many valley residents enjoy at their homes.

“The Valley is the state’s #1 citrus producer,” Vidak said during the press conference. “Folks in the Valley need to be on the lookout for the pest, especially if you have citrus trees in your yard. The tiny bugs are coming in from out of the area, so it’s important to only buy plants and trees from certified local nurseries.

ACP is a serious threat to the Valley and everyone should learn about how it can be stopped.”

Earlier this month, Vidak issued the following statement regarding Governor Brown’s veto of Assembly Bill 571, which would have provided critical funds to fight the Asian Citrus Psyllid and the deadly diseases it spreads:

“I’m shocked Governor Brown has once again turned his back on farmers, farm workers and the agriculture community in California.  Clearly Mr. Brown has not learned from his past mistakes. The governor’s veto of AB 571 could literally be a death sentence for the California citrus industry and the thousands of jobs it brings to our Central Valley.”

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