Political Landscape: Assembly committee meeting at UC Irvine will address rising student debt


As the price tag for higher education continues to increase and students accumulate more debt, members of the state Assembly Select Committee on Student Debt will hold their first informational hearing Friday at the UC Irvine School of Law.

Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris (D-Laguna Beach), who chairs the committee, will be at the free event, which begins at 10 a.m. at 401 E. Peltason Drive.

The meeting is intended to explore how rising student debts create roadblocks and to brainstorm solutions.

The event also will include three panels featuring testimony from students and experts in the field. Guests will be allowed to comment and can receive more information through a free workshop after the panels.

The meeting can be live-streamed at

Assemblywoman and Costa Mesa mayor to speak at Newport Democratic meeting

The Newport Beach Women’s Democratic Club will host state Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris and Costa Mesa Mayor Katrina Foley as guest speakers at its May 22 meeting at 6401 San Joaquin Hills Road, Newport Coast.

Petrie-Norris (D-Laguna Beach) won in her first campaign for public office when she unseated two-term incumbent Matthew Harper (R-Huntington Beach) in November. She now represents the 74th Assembly District, which includes portions of coastal and southern Orange County.

Foley, also a Democrat, became Costa Mesa’s first directly elected mayor in November, winning a two-year term. She announced in February that she is running for the state’s 37th Senate District seat in 2020.

Mary Navarro, outreach chairwoman for the Orange County Commission on Early Childhood Education, and Melahat Rafiei, a political consultant and activist, also will address the meeting.

Doors will open at 5:30 p.m. for networking and light refreshments. The meeting begins at 6 p.m.

RSVPs are required and can be made at or by calling (949) 423-6468.

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