Fire station meet-and-greet

Congressman LaMalfa talks water, vets, Planned Parenthood

California 1st District Rep. Doug LaMalfa invited constituents to join him for coffee Tuesday (Aug. 23) at Chico’s Fire Station 5. The get-together was billed as a nonpolitical meet-and-greet with the Republican Congressman, who took the podium to discuss issues he’s tackling, from forest management to the proposed Sites Reservoir.

During his speech, LaMalfa, who is up for re-election this year, pointed to several pieces of legislation currently in the Senate and urged the couple dozen people in attendance to call their senators and ask for “ayes.” The most significant was House Resolution 2898, which he said would change priorities for storing and transferring water. He said the state’s reservoirs should be full; water should not be released based on “poor science” for environmental protections. This bill also would set the stage for the Sites Reservoir. If it fails in the Senate, LaMalfa said, he’ll push his own HR 1060, which would do the same.

LaMalfa also dissed the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs—“one of the most frustrating organizations to work with”—and offered to help veterans “on an individual basis.” To the father of a young combat vet who’s witnessed the bureaucracy at the Chico Vet Center, LaMalfa said he has a “team of whistleblowers” inside California veterans organizations and is poised to take action.

A young woman asked LaMalfa about his support for HR 3762, which attempted to end federal funding for Planned Parenthood. “I don’t think Planned Parenthood reflects the values of America by making body parts available [on the black market],” he said. When the questioner said that that wasn’t true, LaMalfa simply said that the organization does “nefarious things,” drawing cheers from the audience.