Governor Newsom signs Assemblymember Aguiar-Curry’s bill to name State Route 128 as a scenic highway

FILE: A mural on the side of the Lorenzo's Town and Country Market in Winters is captured in an undated photograph. Photo by Matthew Keys/Winters Express
FILE: A mural on the side of the Lorenzo’s Town and Country Market in Winters is captured in an undated photograph. Photo by Matthew Keys/Winters Express

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Over the weekend, Governor Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 998 by Assemblymember Cecilia Aguiar-Curry (D-Winters) into law. This bill makes State Route 128 eligible to be designated as an official “Scenic Highway,” which is intended to increase local economic activity in the North Bay region and bring newfound appreciation to the beauty of the route.

“I am ecstatic that the Governor recognizes the importance of this bill and what it means for the communities along Highway 128. This region has been impacted by natural disasters and wildfires, and they are working hard to rebuild and recover,” said Aguiar-Curry. “An official scenic highway designation will promote tourism to these areas and boost community pride.”

State Route 128 is roughly 140 miles long and runs through Yolo, Napa, Sonoma, and Mendocino Counties. The corridor is known for its picturesque beauty; passing through state and national parks, rich farmland, lush vineyards, and stately orchards, as well as notable sites like the Old Ornbaun Hot Springs, Putah Creek, and the Vaca Mountains. The “Visit 128” coalition has established a website dedicated to showcasing sites and activities along Highway 128.

“Highway 128 is a state treasure, and it deserves to be recognized as such,” said Aguiar-Curry. “AB 998 is the significant first step to the scenic highway designation. Now, local stakeholders can officially start the process of applying to establish Highway 128 as a state scenic highway.”

Alison de Grassi with Visit Mendocino stated, “All of us at Visit Mendocino County are thrilled that Governor Newsom has signed AB 998 into law. As a Destination Marketing Organization, the designation of Highway 128 as a Scenic Highway can only help us in our work promoting Mendocino County to visitors.”

AB 998 is coauthored by Senators Dodd (D-Napa) and McGuire (D-Healdsburg) and Assemblymember Wood (D- Santa Rosa) and will take effect on Wednesday, January 1, 2020.

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