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ACW SEN ROY ASHBURN.JPGSen. Roy Ashburn has been elevated to vice chair of the state Senate Appropriations Committee, Senate Republican leader Dennis Hollingsworth's office announced last night.

The Bakersfield Republican replaces late Sen. Dave Cox as the minority party's top member on the fiscal committee.

"With California facing an enormous budget deficit, it is absolutely vital to hold the line on state spending," Hollingsworth said in a statement. "Roy Ashburn is a thoughtful and critical legislator who is committed to making state government run more efficiently and be more responsive to taxpayers. I know that in this new capacity as Appropriations' Vice-Chair, he will carefully assess the impact that each bill taken up by the committee is likely to have on the state's fiscal condition."

The appointment comes as a key deadline for the committee approaches. Appropriations committees in both houses will take up a long calendar of bills, including the suspense file, in advance of Friday's deadline for moving legislation to the floor.

PHOTO CREDIT: Sen. Roy Ashburn, R-Bakersfield, speaks during a Capital Public Radio forum on "Insight." Anne Chadwick Williams/ Sacramento Bee file photo, May 6, 2009.


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