Congressman Sherman Hosts Town Hall Meeting
Sherman Oaks, CA – On Sunday, Congressman Brad Sherman (D – Sherman Oaks) hosted a town hall meeting at Granada Hills Charter High School, fielding questions from some of the approximately 500 constituents who attended.
Congressman Sherman gave an update on the recently capped gas leak in Porter Ranch, including details of how his office can help families and businesses affected by the leak. Over the past several months, Sherman’s office has helped families whose phone calls to SoCalGas weren’t being returned. His office continues to help those seeking reimbursement for air filters, school transportation, and living expenses while evacuated. Sherman also made local business owners aware that they may be eligible for Economic Injury Disaster Loans from the Small Business Administration – a benefit that came at the request of Sherman’s office.
Sherman also discussed his efforts to ensure that this type of leak never happens again, including his introduction of the Gas Storage Safety Act – legislation designed to implement federal gas storage safety standards.
Much of the time was spent responding to questions about the future of gas storage safety, and energy reliability. Other topics included terrorism, the economy, foreign policy in the Middle-East, veterans affairs, transportation, recreation in the Sepulveda Basin, as well as other matters facing Congress.
“Town Halls are always an important part of my job, but that is especially true anytime there is a disaster that affects our region,” said Congressman Sherman. “My family and I live in Porter Ranch and our home is as close as any to the largest natural gas leak in U.S. history — which displaced over 7,000 families, shut down two schools, and hurt local businesses.”
“These meetings are something I have always done, and will continue to do in the future. Many people hold strong opinions about the issues currently facing Congress. Hearing from Valley residents helps me better serve them. I want to stay up to date with what Valley residents are saying, so I can continue to fight for their needs in Washington. I would like to thank everyone who came to participate.”
Sherman also took time to acknowledge Valley residents including First Class Petty Officer Milton Burdick, a veteran of World War II. On December 7th, 1942, (on the one-year anniversary of Pearl Harbor) Milton Burdick enlisted in the Navy and served the Allied forces for the better part of the next four years as a flight mechanic on the island of Espiritu Santo in the South Pacific. His father had sent a letter granting Milton permission to enlist at the age of just 17 years and 2 months. Burdick was honored with the “Philippine Liberation Medal” for his service in the Pacific theater, but never received his medal. As a result of Congressman Sherman’s constituent service staff, the medal was reissued and presented to Burdick at the Town Hall Meeting.
Congressman Sherman presents First Class Petty Officer Milton Burdick, with the “Philippine Liberation Medal.” Burdick was honored for his service in the Pacific theater of World War II but did not receive his medal until it was reissued at the request of Congressman Sherman.
Sherman also set up a constituent service booth at the meeting to help dozens of constituents resolve problems they were having with federal agencies. Sherman also directed his constituents to his Sherman Oaks office, (818) 501-9200, for further assistance in solving problems with federal agencies, including the Social Security Administration and the Department of Veterans Affairs. He encouraged constituents to visit his website (www.BradSherman.house.gov) for more helpful information.