September 14, 2005
For Immediate Release
Contact: Talin Gregorian
tel: (818) 500-1918

CALIFORNIA-ARMENIA TRADE OFFICE BILL PASSES STATE ASSEMBLY AND SENATE

SACRAMENTO, CA – The International Trade and Investment Office: Yerevan bill (SB 897), introduced by California State Senator Jack Scott (D-Pasadena) in February of this year, recently passed in both the California State Assembly and Senate, announced the Armenian National Committee of America-Western Region (ANCA-WR). The bill passed the chambers of the legislature with overwhelming bi-partisan support, having gained a vote of 77-1 in the Assembly and 32-1 in the Senate. The bill was enrolled and sent to the desk of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger on September 8th for his signature.

“Once again through the leadership of Senator Scott and his tireless staff, Californians and Armenians alike can move forward towards establishing closer business and trade relations with one another which will benefit both peoples equally,” said Steve Dadaian, Chairman of the ANCA-WR. “We look forward to Governor Schwarzenegger’s approval of this commonsense measure aimed to allow the State of California to properly operate its trade office in Armenia.”

For over five years, the ANCA-WR has worked to improve trade relations between California and Armenia. SB 897 aims to extend the sunset date for the creation and operation of the California International Trade and Investment Office in Yerevan, Armenia which was established by state statue in 2002. The current sunset date for the trade office is set for January 1, 2006. However, the bill would extend this deadline to 2008. SB 897 was introduced by Sen. Scott, with principal coauthors Senators Chuck Poochigian (R-Fresno) and Jackie Speier (D-San Mateo), Assemblymembers Juan Arambula (D-Fresno) and Dario Frommer (D-Glendale), as well as coauthors Sen. Joe Simitian (D-Palo Alto), and Assemblymembers Greg Aghazarian (R-Stockton) and Carol Liu (D-Pasadena). Last month, ANCA-WR Government Relations Director Armen Carapetian delivered testimony in the Capitol to secure passage of SB 897 in key committees and met with Assemblymembers and staff to galvanize support for the measure.

The ANCA is the largest and most influential Armenian American grassroots political organization. Working in coordination with a network of offices, chapters, and supporters throughout the United States and affiliated organizations around the world, the ANCA actively advances the concerns of the Armenian-American community on a broad range of issues.

#####