Mike: San Diego is a great place to live. I was born in San Diego and except for military service and a little bit of growing up back in Ohio, lived here all my life. I was in the Air Force, and that was in the Vietnam era. I got out and came back directly from Vietnam in 1971. Flew 278 combat missions over Vietnam. While I was in Cambodia, I was Forward Air Controller. Prior to that, I’d been an F-4 fighter pilot.
There has been a number of issues that I have contacted the office, but the issue that I think is the most memorable, is the one where I ended getting stopped in Antelope Valley on a cross country trip. Before I even got out of Southern California, I got stopped and got a ticket for… I didn’t have my current insurance paper with me.
Text: Mike forgot to pay the fine for not having his insurance and the fees started adding up.
Mike: When I started looking into it, so much time had gone by that the fees were mounting up. I needed to talk somebody about it because I couldn’t afford it. It was like $1,900. At that time, my income was social security, little bit of rental income basically. I couldn’t afford the $1,900, I didn’t have it.
Sen. Anderson: That's when Mike reached out to my office for help. After we contacted the Superior Court in Los Angeles and explained Mike’s situation, the court reduced Mike’s fines down to $50.
Mike: I think that what you’re doing here with this effort to help people, to let them know where they can go, if they run into, what you so often run into in dealing with government bureaucracy is… you’re a number. And the people here made me feel like I’m a real person, not just a number. I think it’s a very valuable service especially in a state the size of California, which is larger than most of the countries in the world, frankly.