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About 30 show up for Knight town hall

High-speed rail, gun rights, other items were discussed

Posted: March 9, 2013 2:00 a.m.
Updated: March 9, 2013 2:00 a.m.

Sen. Steve Knight, R-Palmdale, answers questions at a town hall meeting held at the Santa Clarita Activities Center on Friday night. (Dan Watson/The Signal)

Chloride, high-speed rail and gun rights were all topics of discussion during a town hall meeting held Friday by Sen. Steve Knight, R-Palmdale, at the Santa Clarita Activities Center.

About 30 people turned out during a drizzly Friday night for the open house, the first Knight has held in the Santa Clarita Valley since his election to the state Senate in November.

Prior to his election to the Senate, Knight served two terms as an assemblyman representing the Antelope Valley.

“I’ve probably held 15 or 16 of these meetings over the last four years,” Knight said.

Knight said events like Friday’s give him the opportunity to hear the concerns of his constituents, particularly his new ones in the Santa Clarita Valley.

Some of those concerns included Santa Clarita’s chloride issue and the impacts of the California high-speed rail project.

For the latter, Knight said he remains opposed to the project both in theory and in practice and questioned the eventual price tag of the project, estimates of which range from $60 billion to as much as $100 billion.

Knight particularly criticized how the rail will be built, with the first two segments constructed linking the cities of Merced and Palmdale.

“I don’t know many people who are clamoring at the door to go from Merced to Palmdale,” Knight said.

As for the chloride issue, Knight said he plans on working with Assemblyman Scott Wilk, R-Santa Clarita, to find a workable solution that will help avoid potential state fines, such as those facing the Santa Clarita Valley Water District over chloride levels in local water.

During an interview with The Signal prior to the meeting, Knight said finding such workable solutions are all the more important since Democrats own a supermajority in the state Assembly and a large majority in the Senate.

“I think most Democrats and Republicans can agree that we want our schools to be safer and our businesses more successful,” Knight said. “That’s why I support bipartisan issues.”

One notable exception, Knight said, is his stance on gun rights, which include supporting legislation to make it easier to obtain a concealed weapons permit in Los Angeles County and another bill that would allow specially trained and designated employees to carry guns on school campuses.

“You won’t find many legislators as friendly to the Second Amendment as I am,” Knight said.

Knight said he plans on holding more events in the Santa Clarita Valley, perhaps as soon as next month.


On Twitter @LukeMMoney


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