Local government officials from Ventura County, especially those from Simi Valley, should be pleased to learn that Assemblyman Cameron Smyth, whose district includes the northern half of Simi, has been named chairman of the Assembly Local Government Committee.
The appointment is particularly noteworthy because Smyth is a Republican, and no Republican has chaired an Assembly committee since 2002. New Speaker John Perez yesterday named Smyth and Paul Cook as GOP committee chairs, a move he hopes will demonstrate a renewed commitment to bipartisan cooperation. Cook will head the Veterans Affairs Committee.
In other appointments, Assemblyman Pedro Nava, D-Santa Barbara, who represents Ventura and much of Oxnard, moves from chairing Banking and Fianance to chairing Envornmental Safety and Toxic Materials. Assemblywoman Julia Brownley, D-Santa Monica, who represents Port Hueneme and much of Oxnard, retained her position as chair of the Education Committee. And Assemblywoman Audra Strickland, R-Thousand Oaks, retained her post as vice-chairwoman of Accountability and Administrative Review.