December 17, 2018



Remnants Of Dust Bowl Migration Linger In Central Valley Politics, Says Researcher Adam Ramey

Valley Public Radio

While some valley congressional districts flipped from red to blue, much of the state’s remaining republican strongholds are still in the San Joaquin Valley — particularly Kern, Madera and Tulare Counties.

North SJ Valley:

Modesto Council to vote on eight marijuana dispensaries, city’s first legal pot shops

Modesto Bee

The Modesto City Council will vote Wednesday whether to allow eight new marijuana dispensaries to open within city limits. The city is recommending the retail cannabis businesses as finalists out of its pool of 20 total applicants following a nearly year-long vetting process.

Central SJ Valley:

Arambula abuse allegations bring spanking debate into focus

Fresno Bee

Spanking children is a “hot-button topic” and most experts say parents should avoid that form of punishment. Others say it can be used as a last resort for extreme circumstances.

See Also:

●     Fresno police chief adds details on Arambula arrest in wake of assemblyman’s explanation Fresno Bee

Terry Cox Named President of Central Unified School Board

GV Wire

The Central Unified School Board unanimously voted in Area 5 veteran incumbent Terry Cox as board president at its meeting Tuesday at Central East High School.

South SJ Valley:

Kern County at 105 homicides for the year, coroner’s office says

Bakersfield Californian

Kern County hit a milestone earlier this week: The county’s homicide count for the year reached 105, up from 100 last year and marking the second year in a row the county has seen 100 or more homicides, according to coroner’s office records.

New Council members to be sworn in

Hanford Record


efore members continue with their civic duties on the dais, both the Hanford City Council and Lemoore City Council will swear in their recently-elected new members Tuesday night during their respective meetings.


California’s November Election Turnout Was Highest In A Midterm In 36 Years

Capital Public Radio

The Secretary of State’s office has certified the results of California’s November election. The 64.5 percent turnout rate was higher than the last eight different midterm elections.

See also:

●     California’s midterm results show that if a third party can be viable anywhere, it’s here Los Angeles Times

●     California’s November election broke a turnout record dating back to 1982  Los Angeles Times

DMV delay may have kept hundreds of Californians from voting

Fresno Bee

Several hundred Californians may have been wrongfully kept off the voter rolls in the last election because of transmittal errors, according to the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles.

See also:

●     California’s DMV failed to finish registering 329 new voters before November election Los Angeles Times

●     Hundreds of CA voters wrongly kept off voter rolls Sacramento Bee

California’s campaign watchdog agency could soon lower fines for many political violations

Los Angeles Times

Fewer politicians and campaigns would face significant financial penalties for breaking California campaign and ethics laws under a proposal that could soon be adopted by the state’s political watchdog agency.

Chief Justice Of The California Supreme Court Leaves The Republican Party, Citing Kavanaugh

Capital Public Radio

California Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye has given up her Republican registration and re-registered as a no-party preference voter, citing the Kavanaugh nomination and saying she had become increasingly uncomfortable with the party’s direction.

For the Republicans left in California’s Legislature, fewer lawmakers will have to do more work

Los Angeles Times

From January to late summer every year, the California Legislature is a perpetual motion machine. And in the new year, the people most likely to struggle in keeping up will be Republicans, vastly outnumbered but still responsible for representing millions of the state’s residents.

See also:

●     Local government was a last bastion for struggling California Republicans. Not anymore Los Angeles Times

●     All Is Not Lost for Republicans in the Suburbs Roll Call

Will the next president come from California? Don’t count on it

Los Angeles Times

Everyone should take a deep breath and accept reality: No Californian has much chance of being elected president.

Election Takeaways: Golden State of Mind


With the release of California’s official Statement of the Vote, the state’s final tally is in for the November 2018 election. This midterm election will mostly be remembered for California’s role in changing party control of Congress.


Americans Have Mixed Feelings About Economy, Trump Presidency, WSJ/NBC News Poll Finds

Wall Street Journal

A majority of Americans said 2018 was a good or at least average year for the U.S., yet a majority also said the country is on the wrong track.

Federal judge rules Affordable Care Act unconstitutional, but appeal will leave coverage intact for now

Visalia Times Delta

A federal judge in Texas ruled late Friday that core aspects of the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare, are unconstitutional, a win for Republicans and the Trump administration that could leave those insured under the system in uncertain territory.

See Also:

●     Federal judge in Texas strikes down Affordable Care Act Hanford Record

●     Judge’s ruling on ‘Obamacare’ poses new problems for GOP Merced Sun-Star

●     California insurance enrollment will continue despite Texas Obamacare ruling Merced Sun-Star

●     After court ruling, crusade against Obamacare becomes unshakable liability for GOP Sacramento Bee

●     What You Need To Know About The Affordable Care Act After Texas Ruling

●     Obamacare crusade grows more fraught for GOP after court ruling Los Angeles Times

●     Hiltzik: That Texas judge’s ‘insane’ ruling that Obamacare is unconstitutional could leave the law fatally wounded — or even stronger Los Angeles Times

●     That Texas judge’s ‘insane’ ruling that Obamacare is unconstitutional could leave the law fatally wounded — or even stronger Los Angeles Times

●     Federal judge in Texas rules entire Obama health-care law is unconstitutional Washington Post

●     What the Obamacare Court Ruling Means for Open Enrollment New York Times

●     Texas ObamaCare Blunder Wall Street Journal

●     Chuck Schumer Seeks Senate Vote on Defending Obamacare Roll Call

●     Ruling on Health Care Law Leaves Consumers Confused Roll Call

●     EDITORIAL: Obamacare has never been more popular. Republicans may have just found a way to kill it anyway Los Angeles Times

●     California vows to fight Obamacare ruling, fears impacts at home Politico

●     Federal judge rules Affordable Care Act unconstitutional PBS

●     Politicians Grapple With Response to Health Law Ruling Wall Street Journal.

White House digs in on border wall demand, risking shutdown

Sacramento Bee

The White House is digging in on its demand for $5 billion to build a border wall as congressional Democrats stand firm against it, pushing the federal government closer to the brink of a partial shutdown later this week.

See Also:

●     White House moves toward government shutdown, vowing ‘whatever is necessary’ to secure money for a border wall Los Angeles Times

●     White House prepares for shutdown as GOP lawmakers struggle for an alternative Washington Post

●     Republicans, Democrats at an Impasse on Border Wall as Shutdown Nears  Wall Street Jorunal

●     EDITORIAL: When it comes to border security, reforms are better than razor wire or a giant wall Fresno Bee

Who is Mick Mulvaney, Trump’s new acting White House chief of staff?

Fresno Bee

President Donald Trump names Mick Mulvaney, director of the Office of Management and Budget, as acting White House Chief of Staff. He would replace John Kelly, who’s leaving the position at the end of 2018.

See Also:

●     Trump picks Office of Management and Budget head as new acting chief of staff  abc30

●     Trump names budget director Mick Mulvaney as chief of staff Hanford Record

●     Loyalty among attributes Mulvaney brings to White House job Sacramento Bee

Trump announces Ryan Zinke to leave administration in surprise announcement


Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke will leave his administration post at the end of the year, President Donald Trump announced early Saturday. Zinke submitted his resignation to the White House Saturday, an administration source told ABC News.

See Also:

●     Facing multiple ethics investigations, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to leave by end of year Hanford Record

●     Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, under a cloud of scandal, is forced out Los Angeles Times

●     Ryan Zinke was a nightmare for the environment. His replacement might be worse Los Angeles Times

●     Ryan Zinke, Face of Trump Environmental Rollbacks, Is Leaving Interior Department New York Times

●     Interior Secretary to Leave His Post Wall Street Journal

Trump’s Inauguration Paid Trump’s Company — With Ivanka in the Middle

WNYC Studios

When it came out this year that President Donald Trump’s inaugural committee raised and spent unprecedented amounts, people wondered where all that money went. It turns out one beneficiary was Trump himself.

Scope of investigations into Trump has shaped his presidency

Sacramento Bee

President Donald Trump is under scrutiny in a multitude of investigations bound to distract him, and they will grow when Democrats take the House.

See Also:

●     Trump lawyer Giuliani rules out Mueller interview with Trump Sacramento Bee

●     After nearly two years in the White House, Trump’s lies start catching up with him Los Angeles Times

●     New report on Russian disinformation shows the operation’s scale and sweep Los Angeles Times

●     Russia used every major social media platform to help elect and support Trump, says sweeping report prepared for the Senate Washington Post

‘Tis the season for 2020 presidential fantasy politics

Los Angeles Times

For a certain type of sports fan (coughs loudly to self) there is no sweeter part of the season than the day after the World Series or Super Bowl. Why? Because that’s when you can construct fantasy rosters divorced from all real-world constraints.

Congress on Cusp of Criminal Justice Changes In Year-End Surprise

Roll Call

We take a deep dive into the criminal sentencing and prison programming overhaul Congress is expected to pass this year, which is shaping up to be a major bipartisan achievement.

Anti-Trump conservatives want to reverse the GOP’s destruction. But they helped light the fuse.

Washington Post

The authors of four books courageously stand up to their party without owning their own role in making it.

Republicans Aren’t Including Minorities or Women, Say Two Republican Minority Women

Roll Call

Two House GOP women, Mia Love and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, are sounding the alarm on their own party for excluding minorities and women from their messaging.

House, Senate Democrats Identify Slate of Committee Leaders for New Congress

Roll Call

Congressional Democrats have identified their incoming committee leadership for the 116th Congress, although the full caucus must still weigh in and a few key chairs will have to wait until the House speakership contest is settled. In the Senate meanwhile, the roster is finished, with some notable movement in the smaller Democratic minority. The House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee made its recommendations for most committee chairmanships in the new Congress on Tuesday evening, with a few others designated Monday. The full caucus must still approve the choices.

See also:

●     In Oversight Role, House Democrats Aim for Both Check and Balance Roll Call


Top of mind: ‘Justice’ is Merriam-Webster’s word of the year


Racial justice. Obstruction of justice. Social justice. The Justice Department. Merriam-Webster has chosen “justice” as its 2018 word of the year, driven by the churning news cycle over months and months.

The Murder of the Weekly Standard


The Weekly Standard will be no more. There is no real reason we are witnessing the magazine’s demise other than deep pettiness and a personal desire for bureaucratic revenge on the part of a penny-ante Machiavellian who works for its parent company.


Sunday, December 23, at 10 a.m. on ABC 30 –Maddy Report:“HSR’s New Business Plan:  Right Path or a Derailment?” – Guests: Tom Richards, Vice Chair of the High Speed Rail Board of Directors; Tom VanHeeke from the LAO; and Jon Coupal with the Howard Jarvis Tax Payers Association. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

Sunday, December 23, at 10 a.m. on Newstalk 580AM/105.9FM (KMJ) – Maddy Report – Valley Views Edition“State Spending: High Speed Rail and Other Big Ticket Items  – Guests: Tom Richards, Vice Chair of the High Speed Rail Board of Directors; Tom VanHeeke from the LAO; Jon Coupal with the Howard Jarvis Tax Payers Association; and California’s Legislative Analyst, Mac Taylor. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

Sunday, December 23, at 7:30 a.m. on UniMas 61 (KTTF) – El Informe Maddy“Como Entender las Reservas del Presupuesto Estatal” – Guests: Jacqueline Barocio & Lourdes Morales, investigadores de LAO y Alexei Koseff, Reportero de Sacramento Bee. Host: Maddy Institute Program Coordinator, Maria Jeans.

Support the Maddy Daily


Thank you!


Winery amid latest growth spurt

Madera Tribune

On April 14, 1984, Quady Winery officially broke ground on phase one of its new facility designed by San Francisco architect Stanley Saitowitz and vintner Andrew Quady.  Now the winery is more than halfway through a new series of expansions that may be complete as early as 2021.

Animal rights activists meet strong police presence at ranch

Modesto Bee

About 120 members of an animal rights group, Direct Action Everywhere, protested Sunday afternoon at a ranch north of Oakdale where three of its members were arrested in Octoberwhile trying to removed an apparently dying calf from the property.

FDA says it’s OK to eat romaine lettuce again – just not from these California counties

Visalia Times Delta

It looks like it’s OK to indulge in romaine lettuce again – from most everywhere. But if you don’t know where the leaves are from, you might want to pass.

Kids showing farm animals at fairs have new requirements in 2019

Bakersfield Californian

Starting in 2019, who show farm animals at fairs and livestock shows in California must receive certification in food safety, animal care and ethics — or they won’t be able to participate.

Modesto Council to vote on eight marijuana dispensaries, city’s first legal pot shops

Modesto Bee

The Modesto City Council will vote Wednesday whether to allow eight new marijuana dispensaries to open within city limits. The city is recommending the retail cannabis businesses as finalists out of its pool of 20 total applicants following a nearly year-long vetting process.

See also:

·       Higher percentage of California pot passing safety tests  abc30

·       Pot 101: Facts you should know about California’s legal marijuana PolitiFact California

Farm Bill could mean big bucks, legalization for hemp industry

Fresno Bee

With the expected approval from President Donald Trump, the 2018 Farm Bill could open the doors to making industrial hemp a multibillion dollar crop.



Visalia man faces prison for providing IRS with ‘unqualified’ armed guards

Visalia Times Delta

For three years, Fresno’s IRS building was being guarded by people who were “unqualified” by federal standards. The three men who hired the guards are now facing prison time.

Kern County at 105 homicides for the year, coroner’s office says

Bakersfield Californian

Kern County hit a milestone earlier this week: The county’s homicide count for the year reached 105, up from 100 last year and marking the second year in a row the county has seen 100 or more homicides, according to coroner’s office records.

Capital punishment is a national disgrace. The practice is fading, but not fast enough

Los Angeles Times

Since the U.S. Supreme Court resurrected the death penalty in 1976, some 1,490 people have died at the hands of state executioners, an average of 42 a year since the practice resumed in earnest in 1984.

Recalling Jerry Brown’s first Supreme Court choice as his final pick faces confirmation


Jerry Brown was 38 years old and two years into his initial term as California’s governor when, in March 1977, he appointed his first two California Supreme Court justices.

EDITORIAL: Criminal Justice Advances

Wall Street Journal

The Senate will take up a bill that learns from GOP state experience.

EDITORIAL: California shouldn’t keep DNA from hundreds of thousands of innocent people

San Francisco Chronicle

California is being sued over its DNA collection practices, and the only thing that’s surprising is how long it took. In 2004, state voters passed Proposition 69, which requires authorities to collect DNA from anyone arrested for a felony.

Public Safety:

Bogus Netflix email is an online scam to steal your ID, payment info, police say

Fresno Bee

An official-looking email warning people to update payment details to restore their Netflix account is an online scam aimed at harvesting personal information, police say.

See Also:

●     Beware of this Netflix scam email abc30

How many passwords can you remember? Get ready to remember more

Stockton Record

Got too many passwords to remember? Just wait. It’s going to get a lot worse. Average consumers five years from now may face double the demands for passwords, said Emmanuel Schalit, chief executive of Dashlane, a consumer password security company.

America’s Growing Cop Shortage


The New Haven Police Department simply doesn’t have enough cops. It’s a nationwide problem, as agencies that slowed or froze hiring during the recession are now struggling to build their ranks up again in the middle of a hot job market. Officers are retiring faster than they can be replaced.

6 years after Sandy Hook, House Democrats can build on grassroots gun reform


After the sixth anniversary of the 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, John Hudak discusses how the tragic event did and did not change the course of American gun politics, as well as what to expect on the issue in the new Congress and the 2020 presidential race.

See also:

●     Nancy Pelosi’s Gun Control Promise for Congress National Review


Can California Improve Forest Management And Prevent Wildfires Without Going Broke?

Capital Public Radio

Experts have ideas for to clean up the state’s dense forests and make them safer. But what does it cost to do this? We visit the Tahoe National Forest to find out.

See also:

·       Paradise will ‘rise from the ashes’ after Camp Fire. Is that a good idea? Sacramento Bee

·       Workers fired for ‘abhorrent’ photos shot clowning around in California wildfire ruins Fresno Bee

PG&E considers shutting off more lines during times of risk

San Francisco Chronicle

PG&E may expand its policies around cutting power to prevent wildfires to include the kind of high-voltage transmission line that malfunctioned right before the Camp Fire started.

See Also:

●     PG&E Proposes New $1.1 Billion Customer Rate Hike Capital Public Radio

●     EDITORIAL: PG&E’s shameless request for a rate increase San Francisco Chronicle



Modesto’s Prime Shine Car Wash sold to Arizona company which will rebrand sites

Modesto Bee

Valley residents used to taking their car to Prime Shine for a wash will soon be taking it to a Mister Car Wash instead. Modesto-based Prime Shine Car Wash, which started with a single site in 1991 and grew to be the state’s largest independently owned car wash operator, has been sold.

How Kern Venture Group wants to raise up Bakersfield’s startup community

Bakersfield Californian

Funding individual startups isn’t enough for the county’s first angel investor group. It’s looking to shepherd an entire generation of Kern’s most promising young entrepreneurs.

Corporate America gives out a record $1 trillion in stock buybacks


Corporate America celebrated the first full year under the new tax law by rolling out a record-setting $1 trillion of stock buybacks.

State and Local Investment Gets Lift From Rising Revenues

Wall Street Journal

Now that coffers are brimming again, infrastructure spending is back on the agenda.

Residents Increasingly Fleeing New York, LA & Chicago


Even migration is bigger in Texas. Dallas leads all U.S. cities as the largest net gainer with 246 people arriving daily, according to a Bloomberg analysis of 2017 Census data on migration to the 100 largest U.S. metropolitan areas. In 2014, the crown belonged to Houston with 269 migrants per day.

EDITORIAL: There’s no quick fix to our trade standoff with China

Los Angeles Times

After months of matching the Trump administration’s trade-war maneuvering in tit-for-tat fashion, the Chinese government has started making what appear to be peace offerings.


It’s a great time to be a blue-collar worker

Stockton Record

Worker shortage turns US labor market on its head as lower-paying jobs become plentiful and put pressure on employers to pay higher wages.

A new survey on paid leave suggests the AEI-Brookings proposal would garner strong public support


new survey from the Cato Institute on Americans’ desire and willingness to pay for a federal paid leave program reveals interesting, though not necessarily surprising, findings.



See how many portables are at your campus. Fresno Unified may add more

Fresno Bee

Fresno Unified is looking to purchase more portables despite bond measures X and Q aimed at replacing modular classrooms.

One-third of Fresno Unified students live in poverty. Here’s where it’s even worse

Fresno Bee

More than one-third of all students living within Fresno Unified’s boundaries come from poverty.

Racism is the ‘normal’ on Visalia campuses, students tell ACLU

Visalia Times Delta

Visalia students say Jim Crow-era discipline and discrimination lurk on campuses district-wide.  Now, civil rights activists are fighting to shed light on growing fears that nothing is being done to combat years of racism that’s been building across schools.

Can California afford Newsom’s K-12 education plan?


Early childhood education. A top-tier national ranking for K-12 per-pupil spending. A data system that would track kids from nursery school through state universities.

EDITORIAL: California’s new school rating tool is better, but still flawed

Los Angeles Times

After years of work and some ludicrous missteps, California’s annual report card on schools is finally up and measuring educational performance. It’s improved from its early iterations, and there’s a fair amount to like about it. But the new system is still lacking in many areas.

Higher Ed:

Application Window Open Wonderful Public Service Graduate Fellowship

The Maddy Institute

Applications for two $56,000 Fellowships Due Friday, February 22nd, 2019. Through the generosity of The Wonderful Company, San Joaquin Valley students will have the opportunity to become the next generation of Valley leaders through The Wonderful Public Service Graduate Fellowship. The Maddy Institute will award two $56,000 Fellowships to Valley students who are accepted into a nationally ranked, qualified graduate program in the fall of 2019.

Valley educational achievement rates lag behind state. What’s being done?

Fresno Bee

People who have a higher education typically have greater income potential. But t a new report details the lack of opportunities for college degrees for some students in California’s schools.

See Also:

●     If California’s economy favors the educated, why do the poor earn fewer degrees? Fresno Bee

●     California students, first in their families to attend college, mentor each other to succeed  EdSource

●     If California’s economy favors the educated, why do the poor earn fewer degrees?  Sacramento Bee

●     Please Stop Asking Whether College Is Worth It  Forbes

UC Merced working to open new management school


UC Merced is growing and changing and one of the biggest changes will be a new standalone business and management school. The university is working to create a new interdiscplinary school, one that university officials are calling the “management school of the future”.

Fresno State’s top 18 stories of 2018

Fresno State Campus News

Sharing Fresno State’s stories is a way to connect with alumni, friends, students and prospective students and other community members. On a campus of about 25,000 students and thousands more faculty and staff, narrowing it down to the top 18 stories of 2018 is no easy task. But here’s a glimpse, in no particular order, at some of the best news, most touching stories and most well-done storytelling from the University over the past year.



Teen’s data shows air quality is worse in south Fresno. He’s taking his work to schools

Fresno Bee

Kieshaun White is doing something not even the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District does.

Hall: Valley air board wrongly denies climate change

Fresno Bee

Climate change denial is alive and well in the San Joaquin Valley. Most worryingly, it is the dominant opinion among politicians serving on our regional air quality board. The eight-county agency handles hundreds of millions of dollars annually in state funds dedicated to reducing greenhouse gases, and the money couldn’t be in worse hands.

Big Polluters Get help From the State, Renewing Doubts About California’s Climate Goals


The cap-and-trade system for cutting greenhouse gases is in danger of not delivering the state’s required emissions reductions.

American climate leadership without American government


Today, the 24th conference of parties gathering – or COP 24 – of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change has begun to conclude.  As the biggest climate change meeting since the signing of the Paris Agreement, this is a significant moment in history, and one worth reflecting on, particularly as United States leadership continues to recede on this critical global issue.

See also:

●     ‘1,000 little steps’: Global climate talks end in progress but fail to address the galloping pace of climate change Washington Post

●     Talks adopt ‘rulebook’ to put Paris climate deal into action Sacramento Bee


California Alleges PG&E Falsified Pipeline Safety Records

Capital Public Radio

Regulators on Friday accused one of California’s largest utilities of falsifying safety documents for natural gas pipelines for years following its criminal conviction and multimillion-dollar fine for the San Bruno pipeline explosion.

See Also:

●     Regulators say PG&E falsified gas safety records San Francisco Chronicle

●     PG&E falsified gas pipeline records for years after deadly explosion, regulators say  Los Angeles Times



Flu shots urged before season peaks


Fresno County health workers provided free flu shots to folks at the Cherry Auction south of town. It’s the last free mobile clinic of the year, and Brian Nowell of Fresno was glad to get a shot.

More than 1.3 million high school students started vaping nicotine in the past year, study says

Los Angeles Times

The proportion of U.S. high school seniors who are vaping tobacco products nearly doubled in the past year, with more than 1 in 5 now saying they have vaped to get a hit of nicotine in the past 30 days, according to a new study.

Human Services:

Sleepless No More In Seattle — Later School Start Time Pays Off For Teens


Many American teenagers try to put in a full day of school, homework, after-school activities, sports and college prep on too little sleep. As evidence grows that chronic sleep deprivation puts teens at risk for physical and mental health problems, there is increasing pressure on school districts around the country to consider a later start time.

Disability insurance: A crisis ends, but problems persist


Just three years ago in 2015, the Social Security Disability Insurance (DI) program was in a financial nose-dive.  Current revenues covered only about 80 percent of outlays.  Scheduled benefits could be paid only by drawing down reserves that the Social Security Administration (SSA) had accumulated earlier when revenues exceeded outlays. 

Assisted Living’s Breakneck Growth Leaves Patient Safety Behind

Kaiser Health News

Assisted living facilities were originally designed for people who were largely independent but required help bathing, eating or with other daily tasks. Unlike nursing homes, the facilities generally do not provide skilled medical care or therapy, and stays are not paid for by Medicare or Medicaid.


Trump faces backlash from California Republicans over move to deport Vietnamese refugees

Fresno Bee

President Donald Trump is getting backlash from his own party over his administration’s decision to try to deport some immigrants who entered the United States during and after the Vietnam War.

See also:

●     Vietnamese Americans rally in Little Saigon against Trump administration’s push to deport thousands of war refugees Los Angeles Times

●     Trump push to deport Vietnam War refugees scalds California GOP Politico

●     Deportations under Trump are on the rise but still lower than Obama’s, ICE report shows Washington Post

Remnants Of Dust Bowl Migration Linger In Central Valley Politics, Says Researcher Adam Ramey

Valley Public Radio

While some valley congressional districts flipped from red to blue, much of the state’s remaining republican strongholds are still in the San Joaquin Valley — particularly Kern, Madera and Tulare Counties.

Family of girl, 7, who died in border custody calls for ‘thorough’ investigation


The family of the 7-year-old girl who died while in border patrol custody is calling for a “transparent and neutral investigation” into the circumstances that led to her death, attorneys representing her heartbroken family said in a statement Saturday.

See Also:

●     Child’s death highlights communication barriers on border Sacramento Bee

●     White House defends Border Patrol after 7-year-old Guatemalan girl dies in custody Los Angeles Times

Brown puts limit on rights for illegals

Madera Tribune

For a long time, it appeared an unlimited granting of rights previously reserved for U.S. citizens would be among the major legacies of outgoing Gov. Jerry Brown, who has served more time in the office than any other person. But even for Brown there turned out to be a limit.


Land Use:

Here are three ways to pay for new investments in infrastructure and end partisan gridlock


Optimism that America will finally address its massive infrastructure problem is on the rise – and understandably so.


Residents of Merced mobile home park given eviction notice two weeks before Christmas


You can imagine the shock and fear for these residents. Nearly 20 of them receiving eviction notices telling them they owe thousands of dollars. Now, police are investigating the missing funds and how a former employee could be responsible.

Prices softening? Check if your neighborhood saw home-price declines in October

Sacramento Bee

The overall median sales price in Sacramento County in October rose 2.9 percent year-over-year according to new data from real estate analyst CoreLogic. This is the fifth straight month that county price increases have been lower than the same month in 2017.

Walters: Housing shortage will bite California’s economy


The most obvious and most important victims of California’s chronic and still-growing housing shortage are the countless thousands of families that struggle to put affordable roofs over their heads.

Wiener: State will never reach Newsom’s housing goals without taking power from cities


Gov.-elect Gavin Newsom may have set an astronomical goal for allowing construction of 3.5 million new housing units in California by 2025, but a key Democratic state senator says it will never happen unless the state pries away some local control over housing decisions.

The Goldilocks problem of housing supply: Too little, too much, or just right?


In a new analysis, Jenny Schuetz explains why America’s housing markets are prone to supply-demand imbalances and looks at how well supply has matched demand in several U.S. metropolitan areas over the past 70 years.


California ‘Text Tax’ vote cancelled after FCC ruling


The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) announced on Twitter that they’ve cancelled the January vote on the “text tax” that would have added a surcharge to text messages.

House Democrats will push California tax deduction fight

Sacramento Bee

One of the most contentious fights of Republicans’ 2017 tax overhaul is about to go another round.

Some L.A. pensions are so huge they exceed IRS limits, costing taxpayers millions extra

Los Angeles Times

Dozens of retired Los Angeles employees are collecting such generous retirement pay that they exceed pension fund limits set by the Internal Revenue Service, saddling taxpayers with additional costs, a Times data analysis has found.

Deep-in-debt CalSTRS also has $9.8 billion surplus


The main CalSTRS pension fund is seriously underfunded, and school district pension costs are more than doubling, biting deep into classroom budgets. But a CalSTRS inflation-protection fund has a growing $9.8 billion surplus and an eye-popping positive cash flow.

What you need to know about the US federal budget


As Congress races to pass a new spending package before the looming December 21 deadline, a newly updated explainer from the Hutchins Center at Brookings outlines how the federal government allocated its $4.1 trillion budget in 2018 and where that money came from.  


DMV wait times reportedly dropping in California


The latest report crunching DMV data shows that wait times are finally dropping. Following a frenzy of complaints over the summer, the agency launched a plan to slash the long lines.

As red-light camera citations tripled in the last 10 years, city maintains program saves lives

Bakersfield Californian

Citations issued from the city of Bakersfield’s red-light cameras have almost tripled in the past 10 years.

See Also:

●     Red-light cameras explained: Some protest charges, but police come with evidence Bakersfield Californian

The micromobility movement: Our city is full of early adopters

Bakersfield Californian

Throughout the day, there were posts of residents zipping past on the newest transportation mode to hit our streets. Riders were mysteriously blurry against backdrops of familiar sites downtown. As the day wore on, the postings increased.

California Mandates 100-Percent Zero-Emission Bus Fleet

Capital Public Radio

California moved Friday to eliminate fossil fuels from its fleet of 12,000 transit buses, enacting a first-in-the-nation mandate that will vastly increase the number of electric buses on the road.

See Also:

●     EDITORIAL: It’s time for zero-emission buses in California Los Angeles Times

●     California bus agencies ordered to make fleets emission-free San Francisco Chronicle

●     California bus agencies ordered to make fleets emission-free San Francisco Chronicle

●     California just decided to move to 100% electric city buses Fast Company

Why Trump Can’t Kill the Electric Car


The electric vehicle revolution, after years of hype that outpaced reality, finally seems to be taking off in the United States. The best five months for plug-in sales in American history have been the past five months. Tesla’s Model 3 has been one of America’s top five selling passenger cars this fall, surging ahead of fossil-fueled mainstays like the Ford Fusion and Nissan Sentra. The U.S. put its 1 millionth electric vehicle on the road in September, not a large chunk of the nation’s 260 million vehicles, but not too shabby considering production started only in 2010.

Driverless Industry Surges Forward While Hill Hiccups on Regulation

Roll Call

Sen. John Thune was test-driving a car of the future when he ran into a very 20th-century problem: traffic.


California cedes water to feds in Delta deal with Trump

Merced Sun-Star

California Gov. Jerry Brown’s administration and the State Water Project made concessions to President Donald Trump and the Central Valley Project on water supplies in a deal governing the Delta.

See Also:

●     California water: State makes concessions to Trump The Sacramento Bee

●     EDITORIAL: Water board’s wrongheaded vote shows why state of California can’t be trusted Modesto Bee

Sierra Nevada snowpack on track to shrink up to 79% by the end of the century, new study finds

Los Angeles Times

The snow season, which started this month, is off to a good start. A series of December storms covered the Sierra Nevada with heavy snow, leaving the snowpack at 106% of average, according to the state’s snow survey.

Bay Area House Dems take on Feinstein over water bill

San Francisco Chronicle

It’s not smooth sailing for California’s lawmakers in Washington, as a push to extend a controversial water bill is dividing the caucus along unusual lines.


Best team in Bulldogs history? This bunch makes its case with Las Vegas Bowl triumph

Fresno Bee

Wipe your eyes and blink, Bulldogs fans. This is no fairy tale. It really happened. You all bore witness, and the 37,146 gathered at Sam Boyd Stadium on Saturday were on hand for the final curtain call.

Deaf, hard-of-hearing kids receive Christmas joy at ‘Silent Sleigh’ parade

Fresno Bee

Local children from deaf and hard of hearing schools were excited by a special visit by Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus during the Silent Sleigh parade on Wednesday at the Air National Guard.

How to see the ‘Christmas comet’ in the sky this weekend


Santa’s sleigh isn’t the only thing you’ll want to try and catch a glimpse of in the sky this month: Comet 46P/Wirtanen, dubbed the “Christmas comet” by some, is also set to blaze across the December sky.

Dig into 2018 Dining Guide in Saturday’s Californian

Bakersfield Californian

Oh, Bakersfield dining scene, how do we love thee? Let us count the ways. We start with Californian restaurant critic Pete Tittl sharing his must-order items, top picks for casual and fine dining and more. We also tapped the newspaper staff for their favorite local bites with great results, including sports editor Teddy Feinberg’s tribute to the breakfast burritos at Estrella Bakery.

Veterans honored at ‘Wreaths Across America’ ceremony at Tracy Public Cemetery

Stockton Record

More than 1,800 veterans honored Saturday morning as part of the nationwide Wreaths Across America event held by the American Gold Star Mothers, Inc. This year was the fifth year the Tracy Gold Star Moms have organized the local ceremony.