By Staff Reports
(Victor Valley)– San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors Chair Robert A. Lovingood participated in a White House Leadership Conference led by President Trump and top administration officials, covering issues ranging from the economy, vocational training and public safety to the opioid epidemic and water issues.
“It was an honor to be invited to this White House conference and to hear directly from the President, senior administration officials and other elected officials,” Supervisor Lovingood said. “President Trump and his cabinet secretaries were very well versed on issues in California and the Inland Empire.”
Second District Supervisor Janice Rutherford and Fifth District Supervisor Josie Gonzalez also joined for the three-hour “Alaska, California and Hawaii White House Conference,” along with five cabinet secretaries and others.
“Since I first took office, my administration has made it a priority to invite county commissioners from across the United States to the White House,” President Trump told the Oct. 23 gathering. “Very, very important people to me and to a lot of other people … The White House State Leadership Conference is a perfect venue for us to share priorities and to forge partnerships.”
The President spoke on the need to expand vocational schools and said his administration has worked with employers to provide company training for more than 4 million workers.
“Expanded vocational training is a high priority for San Bernardino County,” Supervisor Lovingood said. “So it is very encouraging to hear the President also places a priority on technical training.”
On public safety, President Trump said his administration is working closely with state and local leaders to confront the drug epidemic and the opioid epidemic in particular. “Since last year, the total number of opioid prescriptions has decreased by 17 percent. And we’re very — working very hard on the drug problem,” Trump said. He added that early estimates show that in 2017 and 2018, fentanyl seizures were more than four times higher than the previous two years.
Trump also mentioned his recent signing of a presidential memorandum to improve reliable delivery of water to California and the passage of America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018, which authorizes important investments in ports, harbors, waterways, levees and water systems.
On the economy, the President noted record low unemployment, rising consumer confidence and that the United States has reclaimed its place as the most competitive economy in the world. He also noted America is now the No. 1 energy source in the world.
“We have created more than 4.2 million new jobs and lifted over 4 million Americans off of food stamps. So that’s a great number,” Trump said. “Median household income in 2017 was the highest level ever recorded.”
Department of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, a former SEAL team commander, said he’s traveled to 63 countries and has witnessed the lack of best practices in manufacturing industries overseas. Since the United States has reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 14 percent over the past 20 years, Zinke said if there’s one place in the world where manufacturing should be expanded, it’s the United States.