Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors President Ken Yeager delivered the 2013 State of Santa Clara County Address on Wednesday, outlining ways we can improve locally over the next 12 months.
Yeager's main talking points were reducing gun violence, implementing healthcare reform and improving community health — strikingly similar to the themes most important to the entire nation in 2013.
On Gun Violence:
"The horrific, senseless shootings we have seen over the past year highlight a particular need to focus on gun violence,” he said. “While our allies in Washington like Congresswoman Eshoo are doing all they can on the national level, we can make a meaningful impact here at the local level.”
Yeager wants to create a gun buyback program across the whole county and will work with the sheriff and district attorney to decrease the total number of guns owned in the county.
On Healthcare Reform:
“The national Affordable Care Act will take effect one year from now,” said Yeager. “My top priority this year is to make sure Santa Clara County is prepared for healthcare reform,” Yeager said.
To do so, Yeager said new technological systems are being put in place as well as new clnics and increased access to doctors.
According to a county press release, "the challenges of National Health Care Reform will require the county to re-double its efforts to measurably improve health outcomes, improve client satisfaction, and lower the total cost of care."
On Community Health:
“Knowing one’s HIV status lessens the likelihood of infecting others as well as helping to connect residents to the treatment they need,” said Yeager. “This is why I will be working with the Public Health Department to expand HIV and STD (sexually transmitted disease) testing programs.”
According to a county release, over 3,000 people in Santa Clara County have HIV/AIDS.
With obesity also running rampant, Yeager said he supports a countywide health assessment.
What do you think are the biggest problems facing Santa Clara County? Tell us in the comments!