February 12, 2020




$56,000 Wonderful Public Service Graduate Fellowships 

Deadline Fast Approaching!  (Feb. 28)

The Maddy Institute

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. This program helps students obtain an advanced degree from a top graduate program, return home, and apply what they have learned to help make the Valley a better place. 

North SJ Valley:


California is dry with no rain in sight. Should we start worrying about drought and wildfire?

Merced Sun-Star

California’s​​ alarmingly dry winter​​ continues, with no meaningful snow or rain in sight. Although it’s far too soon to predict a drought, experts said wildfire risks could worsen this summer as a result of the shortage of precipitation.


New ‘San Joaquin Votes: Exercise Your Right!’ exhibit offers perfect time to visit SJ museum

Stockton Record

Visitors to the exhibit will learn the history of various political parties, the election process, political districts, types of ballot measures, women’s suffrage and historical political campaigns of San Joaquin County.

Central SJ Valley:

Fresno ranks as one of the worst cities in America to raise kids according to study

Fresno Bee

Fresno is considered one of the worst places in the United States to raise a child,​​ according to a new study from Brandeis University. In fact, Fresno ranked as the second worst metro area in America to raise children based on the Child Opportunity Index (COI).

Measure P Architect Talks About Where New Version Is Headed


Elliott Balch, one of the architects of 2018’s Measure P and now working on a new parks/public safety tax, says things are on track to get it to the ballot in November. “The injection of resources for our parks, arts, and trails would be transformational, as would the fire service level and the commitment to community policing made possible by the public safety funding,” Balch tells Politics 101.


Dyer, Janz Debate. They Agree on Potential City Sales Tax Hike.


Those expecting black eyes and bloody knuckles after a Monday forum between Fresno’s two leading mayoral candidates would’ve been disappointed. Former Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer and Fresno County Deputy District Attorney Andrew Janz shared their views at a luncheon hosted by the Fresno Rotary Club. Answering questions at Cornerstone Conference Center about the economy and homelessness solutions, the candidates agreed more than they debated.

Election Officials Issuing New Ballots to Some Raymond Area Voters

Sierra News

The Madera County Elections Department is issuing new ballots to a limited number of mountain area voters this week. Original ballots were mailed out Monday and election officials noticed that a small number of voters living outside of the Raymond-Knowles Union School District received a ballot with Measures “P” and “Q.”

Devin Nunes’ name gets drug through dirt, literally

Visalia Times Delta

Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Tulare) posted an Instagram post of a video of a man dragging a campaign sign behind his bike.


Lindsay City Manager on council agenda

Porterville Recorder

It looks like a new and permanent City Manager may be signing a contract after tonight’s Lindsay City Council meeting. On the agenda for discussion tonight is a contract for a new City Manager, but no information as to who has been selected to fill the position has been released.

'She is tired of waiting her turn': Costa stares down liberal challenger


Rep.​​ Jim Costa, an eight-term incumbent, is the latest moderate Democratic member of Congress to be targeted by a base-energizing opponent from the left. Fresno City Councilwoman Esmeralda Soria is mounting a spirited challenge to Costa, one of the most moderate California Democrats, powered by a groundswell of local activists and the support of organized labor. 


South SJ Valley:


Gov. Newsom appoints state Sen. Grove to Governor’s Military Council

Bakersfield Californian

California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Tuesday appointed State Sen. Shannon Grove, R-Bakersfield, to the Governor’s Military Council, an organization founded by former Gov. Jerry Brown in 2013 to support the military in the state.


4th District Supervisor debate: Incumbent David Couch, challenger Emilio Huerta face off Wednesday at 7 p.m.

The candidates for 4th District Supervisor will debate the issues live on KGET TV 17 Wednesday night. Supervisor David Couch and Emilio Huerta share their visions for the future of the 4th District which includes Delano, Arvin and parts of Bakersfield.

EDITORIAL:​​ Endorsements: Re-elect Karen Goh as Bakersfield mayor

Bakersfield Californian

When Bakersfield voters head to the polls on Super Tuesday, March 3, they will be choosing their city’s voice for the next four years. That voice should be that of incumbent Mayor Karen Goh. She has represented the city with honor and distinction since 2017.



Ordering DoorDash? Proposed California law would share your information with restaurants

Fresno Bee

Food delivery platforms like DoorDash would be required to share customer information with the restaurants they order from under a new California bill. 

Former PG&E lawyer named new regional EPA chief in California

Los Angeles Times

Days after the Environmental Protection Agency’s top official in California was​​ abruptly removed, the agency announced Tuesday that it would replace him with John W. Busterud, a former lawyer for Pacific Gas & Electric Co., the state’s largest electric power provider.

See​​ also:

Advice for the Governor: Build Up the Affection between Californians and Their Regions

Hoover Institute

Back in December, the high school football team in El Monte, a working-class immigrant suburb in the San Gabriel Valley, rode buses 13 hours and 750 miles to Crescent City, a poor town in California’s northwestern corner. Until the last minute, there had been doubt whether the team could make the trip. To get there, El Monte High School​​ had to raise $10,000 overnight.

EDITORIAL: California Democrats unveil yet another meaningless, grandstanding anti-Trump bill

Los Angeles Times

We get it: California is at the forefront of the Trump Resistance, and no one is fighting harder to counter his destructive and mean-spirited policies than the state’s lawmakers.

EDITORIAL: For the California DMV, it’s about to get real

San Francisco Chronicle

The California Department of Motor Vehicles’ belated push to furnish millions of drivers with federally valid driver’s licenses by the fall is headed in the wrong direction, having slowed more than 20% in January compared with the previous month.

Commentary: With Gov. Newsom’s new budget, California seeks to help all regions rise


When Gov. Gavin Newsom unveiled his​​ proposed budget, he reaffirmed a deeply held belief that some of California’s best work happens at the regional scale. We are, he said, “many parts but one body,” and laid out proposals for major investments in regional economic development and inland California.

Commentary: Attacking the California Travel Ban

Fox & Hounds

It was inevitable that other states would push back against California’s moralizing by legislation. California passed legislation to ban official travel to states that, in the view of legislators and the attorney general in one way or another discriminate against the LGBTQ community.


Texas asks Supreme Court to repeal a California travel ban

Porterville Recorder

The Texas attorney general has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a California law prohibiting state employees from using taxpayer-funded business trips to expos or conferences in Texas.

Better than other plans or better than nothing? Trump’s claim about ‘affordable’ options


You may recall, so long ago (last Tuesday), President Donald Trump gave his State of the Union address. In his wide-ranging speech, Trump returned to a favorite theme: the cost of health insurance. Trump cited the high cost of premiums for people who buy their coverage through the Affordable Care Act marketplaces and said his administration has provided new, less costly coverage.

EDITORIAL: The Supreme Court can’t end the electoral college, but it can stop it from getting worse

Los Angeles Times

The Supreme Court has​​ agreed to hear​​ two cases involving the electoral college, the antiquated system that twice in recent history has installed the loser of the popular vote for president in the White House and could have that perverse result again in 2020.


Elections 2020:

Sanders holds narrow lead over Buttigieg in New Hampshire

Fresno Bee

Bernie Sanders held a narrow lead over Pete Buttigieg in the New Hampshire Democratic primary Tuesday night as the two ideological opposites battled it out for front-runner status in the chaotic nomination fight to take on President Donald Trump.

See​​ also:


Joe Biden looks to South Carolina to resurrect his campaign

Fresno Bee

Joe Biden brought his wounded presidential campaign to South Carolina on Tuesday, staking his hopes for a comeback on the loyalty of black voters in the state after a dismal finish in the New Hampshire primary magnified his disappointing finish in Iowa.

See​​ also:

Bloomberg faces new backlash over 2015 remarks endorsing police targeting of black and Latino men

Fresno Bee

Michael R. Bloomberg's campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination was knocked off stride Tuesday as critics pounded the former New York City mayor for newly surfaced remarks in which he defended police stop-and-frisk tactics that targeted blacks and Latinos.


Andrew Yang, Michael Bennet end 2020 presidential campaigns 


Democrat Andrew Yang, an entrepreneur who created buzz for his presidential campaign by championing a universal basic income that would give every American adult $1,000 per month, suspended his 2020 bid on Tuesday. Less than an hour later, Sen. Michael Bennet also dropped out of the race

See​​ also:

What the candidates are saying about…

Visalia Times Delta

We asked the 2020 presidential candidates questions on four California-related topics including wildfires, housing and aging. Each candidate was given the same set of questions to answer within a specific timeframe. Candidates that are not featured did not provide a response. Answers have been edited for clarity.


PolitiFact California: There’s A Lot Of Misinformation About California’s March Primary Election. Here Are The Facts.

Capital Public Radio

As Californians decide how to vote in the March 3 primary, they’re subject to many false and misleading claims. PolitiFact California knocks down these falsehoods in our guide to election misinformation.

See​​ also:


Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren? Campaigns make their case to liberal California voters

Sacramento Bee

Ideologically similar, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are competing for support from California’s most liberal voters. 


She’s in 3rd place in New Hampshire. 5 things Californians need to know about Amy Klobuchar

Sacramento Bee

With California having an earlier primary — and the largest number of delegates — Klobuchar is hoping a practical set of policy proposals will also excite voters in the Golden State. Here are five things you need to know about her as she heads toward California.


The Billion-Dollar Disinformation Campaign to Reelect the President

The Atlantic

One day last fall, I sat down to create a new Facebook account. I picked a forgettable name, snapped a profile pic with my face obscured, and clicked “Like” on the official pages of Donald Trump and his reelection campaign. Facebook’s algorithm prodded me to follow Ann Coulter, Fox Business, and a variety of fan pages with names like “In Trump We Trust.”


76 Percent Of Democrats Say They'd Vote For A Socialist For President, New Poll Shows


Just over three-quarters of Democratic voters said that they would vote to elect a socialist president, according to poll results from Gallup released Tuesday. The poll, conducted between January 16 and 29, asked respondents whether they identified as Republican, Democrat or independent and questioned them about their willingness to vote for candidates with "diverse characteristics.


Commentary: Proportional Representation Is Showing Results in California’s Democratic Presidential Race

Fox & Hounds

Bernie Sanders campaigned in Chico and opened an office in Bakersfield. Pete Buttigieg toured the Central Valley. Mike Bloomberg hit Stockton and Fresno. Proportional representation election systems, a reform I’ve long championed, have been dismissed as unrealistic in California. But in this presidential primary season, PR is being quietly tried out, and there are signs that, unlike so many political reforms in the state, it’s actually working.


Celebrating 100 years of black women as suffragists

Fresno Bee

Food delivery platforms like DoorDash would be required to share customer information with the restaurants they order from under a new California bill. 

Research on Asian American workers shows the myth of the ‘model minority’

San Francisco Chronicle

If California’s economy is to work for everyone, we must understand all workers: who they are and the barriers they face to advancing economically.

He Combs the Web for Russian Bots. That Makes Him a Target.

New York Times

In August 2017, Ben Nimmo was declared dead by 13,000 Russian bots on Twitter. “Our beloved friend and colleague Ben Nimmo passed away this morning,” read the epitaph, which was manipulated to look as if it were from a co-worker’s Twitter account. “Ben, we will never forget you.”

California Court Concludes that Anti-Arbitration Law is Likely Preempted


On February 7, 2020, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California issued an​​ ordersupporting its injunction of Assembly Bill 51 (AB 51), an expansive anti-arbitration law enacted in October, which was scheduled to take effect on January 1, 2020.

Regulators demand info on past deals by Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google and Microsoft


The Federal Trade Commission is demanding information from Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Microsoft on their mergers over the past nine years — significantly increasing the pressure on the tech industry's biggest players amid growing antitrust scrutiny.

EDITORIAL: The Supreme Court can’t end the electoral college, but it can stop it from getting worse

Los Angeles Times

The Supreme Court has​​ agreed to hear​​ two cases involving the electoral college, the antiquated system that twice in recent history has installed the loser of the popular vote for president in the White House and could have that perverse result again in 2020. Alas, it’s beyond the power of the court to do away with the electoral vote system, but the justices can prevent it from becoming even less democratic.

Commentary: New York City and the FCC have two very different plans for expanding broadband access


There are two schools of thought when it comes to expanding broadband access across the U.S. and ensuring that people can use the internet to its fullest potential. The Federal Communications Commission has proposed a top-down, one-size-fits-all approach that​​ I have criticized​​ for a number of reasons. 



Sunday, February 16, at 10 a.m. on ABC30 –​​ Maddy Report:​​ Policing the Police​​ - Guests: Laurel Rosenhall with CALmatters, Ron Lawrence with California Police Chiefs Association, and Alice Hoffman with California Chapter, NCAAP. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.


Sunday, February 16, at 10 a.m. on Newstalk 580AM/105.9FM (KMJ) –​​ Maddy Report - Valley Views Edition: Police Use of Deadly Force: Valley Perspectives​​ - Guests: Clovis Police Chief Curt Fleming and Sandra Celedon, President & CEO of Fresno Building Healthy Communities. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.


Sunday, February 16, at 7:30 a.m. on UniMas 61 (KTTF) –​​ El Informe Maddy: Fighting Fire with Fire: Rethinking Forest Management​​ - Guests: Little Hoover Commission Representative, Julissa Delgado. Host: Maddy Institute Program Coordinator, Maria Jeans.



Why is the World Ag Expo in Tulare?

Fresno Bee

Tulare, Kings and Kern counties produce about $22 billion in gross farm product. The World Ag Expo spans 2.6 million square feet and expects more than 100,000 visitors over the three-day run.

See​​ also:


Agreement to move Fresno meat plant in jeopardy. Residents complained of smell for years

Fresno Bee

An agreement between the city of Fresno and a meat-rendering plants that has bothered southwest residents for decades is falling apart, according to more than one person involved in the negotiations. 

GOP dairyman’s family farm held responsible for California farmworker’s amputation

Fresno Bee

Former Rep. David Valadao’s family dairy is asking a California appeals court to reconsider part of a recent jury verdict that held the farm mostly responsible for a 2016 accident that severed an employee’s hand. 

Wine prices to drop due to excess of grapes


Wine prices are expected to drop because of a bountiful supply of grapes over the past two years.

Kern Supervisors pass new hemp regulations

Bakersfield Californian

The Kern County Board of Supervisors voted to tighten restrictions on local hemp research at Tuesday’s meeting. The unanimous vote comes as the county attempts to close a loophole officials say allowed certain hemp producers who held a research permit to operate unregulated.


EDITORIAL: Don’t have a cow: California’s attempts to control vegan language are a waste of time

Sacramento Bee

State officials apparently think Californians aren’t smart enough to know the difference between real dairy products and plant-based substitutes. Come on. Nobody buys almond, oat or soy milk by accident. 





These 21 Valley residents were arrested during a DA welfare fraud investigation…

Visalia Times Delta

Nearly two dozen Valley residents were busted during a county-wide welfare fraud investigation. Last week, Tulare County District Attorney criminal investigators served 21 felony arrest warrants for suspects wanted on allegation of committing welfare fraud.

Commentary: Arresting people who are homeless will make a bad problem worse


As California’s housing crisis takes center stage, a lot of the energy around solutions has, rightfully, centered on homelessness. Unfortunately, responses have been more reactive than proactive, likely because of President Donald Trump’s constant attacks on California, the noticeable increase in people experiencing homelessness, and politicians feeling pressure to act.


Public Safety:


Cops are confusing hemp for marijuana. A laser tool can tell them apart, study says

Fresno Bee

The​​ federal government legalized hemp​​ in late 2018, and the product was transported across state lines, the Associated Press reported. When police officers stop drivers, they sometimes can’t determine whether it’s hemp or marijuana because they smell and appear alike.


Deputy Araujo named Officer of the Year

Porterville Recorder

In his short tenure as a Deputy Sheriff for the Tulare County Sheriff’s Office, Deputy Luis Araujo has risen to the top. On Saturday, he was named Officer of the Year during the Knights of Columbus 37th annual Public Safety Night. 




California governor wants to grill PG&E about financing plan

Porterville Recorder

Pacific Gas & Electric's plan to emerge from bankruptcy faced another threat from California Gov. Gavin Newsom during a Tuesday court hearing that set the stage for a potentially dramatic showdown later this month.


Death toll in fire likely includes 50 more people

Porterville Recorder

Doctors and other experts say at least 50 more people, many of them elderly or ill, likely died as a result of the 2018 wildfire that devastated the town of Paradise, California, but were not counted in the official death toll,​​ an investigation by the Chico Enterprise-Record​​ found.

See also:






US stocks extend gains as investors focus on latest earnings

Porterville Recorder

Major U.S. stock indexes closed mostly higher Tuesday, led by health care companies, retailers and banks.

See​​ also:


Fed chair says it’s ‘too early’ to talk about lowering rates over coronavirus. Trump isn’t happy.

Los Angeles Times

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome H. Powell on Tuesday singled out the​​ coronavirus epidemic​​ as a threat to the American economy but said he expected China to take further actions to limit the damage and suggested that it was “way too early” to talk about lowering interest rates as a policy response.

See​​ also:


U.S. household debt exceeds $14 trillion for the first time

Los Angeles Times

Americans increased their borrowing for the 22nd straight quarter as more households took out loans to buy homes or refinance mortgages, according to a report released Tuesday from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.



Kingsburg awaits 1,000 call center jobs after judge approves T-Mobile, Sprint merger

Fresno Bee

A federal judge in New York ruled in favor of T-Mobile and Sprint, clearing the way for the two cellular companies to merge and reduce the number of major wireless carriers in the U.S. from four to three.

See​​ also:

Report shows union-backed law benefits workers, state

San Francisco Chronicle

A 2004 California law that allows workers to sue their employers in the name of the state for wage and labor violations netted the state more than $88 million from businesses last year and has increased their compliance with workplace laws, according to a report released Tuesday by advocacy groups.





Many with Selma Unified School District fighting to keep their jobs


It's an emotional plea from teachers, and many of their jobs with the Selma Unified School District could be on the line.

Teacher unions: Children terrified by active shooter drills

Hanford Sentinel

The nation's two largest teachers unions want schools to revise or eliminate active shooter drills, asserting Tuesday that they can harm students' mental health and that there are better ways to prepare for the possibility of a school shooting.


Visalia Unified hosts community presentation on dangers of vape-use among teens

Visalia Times Delta

Visalia Unified School District will offer two community presentations this month to educate parents and community members about vape-use among teenagers. The presentations, followed by questions and answers, will be held on Thursday at Goshen Elementary School, and on Wednesday, Feb. 26, at Green Acres Middle School.


Largest school bond in California history is on the ballot: $15 billion for fixing schools

San Francisco Chronicle

The largest school bond in state history, at $15 billion, is going to voters in March as supporters try to put a dent in a $100 billion backlog of failing boiler rooms, leaky roofs and new construction projects needed at K-12 schools and universities.

See​​ also:


Higher Ed:


Fresno State president rolls out surprises, reveals big donation at State of University

Fresno Bee

President Joseph Castro revealed a $1 million donation to the​​ President’s Circle of Excellence​​ from former Secretary of the Treasury Paul O’Neill, a Fresno State alumnus. “Occasions like this are special,” Castro said. “Thank you for being so supportive of us.”

See​​ also:


Forum to Spotlight New Oakhurst College Center Design Plan

Sierra News

Oakhurst Community College officials will host a public forum today (Feb 11) to provide community members with an update on the new $25 million Oakhurst Community College Center — including the latest information from the architect designing the campus.


Students can pay for college with public service. Stanislaus State, UC Merced take part

Merced Sun-Star

Some students will be able to help pay for college through public service, thanks to a pilot program the state launched Monday. Three universities in the Northern San Joaquin Valley are among the eight involved statewide.


New property aiming to provide better housing for UC Merced students


UC Merced is now bustling with more than 8,800 students. Most are required to live on campus for their first two academic years. For those who later choose to move out into the community, the rental market can be challenging due to low vacancy rates.


Trump aims to end student loan forgiveness program


President Donald Trump is looking to end a popular student loan forgiveness program for the fourth time in a row.


A renowned cancer research center at UC San Diego loses funding and may close

San Diego Union-Tribune

For nearly 30 years, a private research institute at UC San Diego has been demystifying cancer, helping doctors fight a disease that annually kills more than 600,000 people in the U.S.


Students worry as California’s online community college confronts offline woes


It’s quiet in the spare bedroom of Maria Garcia’s cheerful Antioch duplex as she sits down to study on a Friday morning. Her husband has been off working construction since 3:00 am, and Garcia, 24, will spend the day on her laptop, poring over a lesson on encrypted communication. 

College costs, teacher shortage still top concerns in poll of California voters


Reducing gun violence, making college more affordable and addressing the teacher shortage again are on the minds of California voters, who also said they would support raising teachers’ pay and spending more for schools, according to a new PACE/USC Rossier poll.




Unleaded, diesel or… Cow poop?

Visalia Times Delta

Western Milling, a company that produces and supplies agricultural products, is switching 30 of its about 100 trucks to "Cow Natural Gas" —  a move discussed Tuesday at the World Ag Expo in Tulare along with the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District, SoCalGas and Cummins Westport Inc.  


Oil from federal lands tops 1B barrels as Trump eases rules

Porterville Recorder

Oil production from U.S.- managed lands and waters topped a record 1 billion barrels last year, federal officials said Tuesday, as technological advances helped drive development in new areas and the Trump administration eases rules on the industry.

State says local bans on energy financing programs may have protected consumers

Bakersfield Californian

State officials are crediting the Bakersfield City Council and the Kern County Board of Supervisors with taking actions that may have protected local residents from an energy-upgrades financing mechanism that has since produced a wave of financial fraud allegations elsewhere in the Central Valley.




Evacuee with coronavirus mistakenly released from California hospital, officials say

Fresno Bee

A San Diego hospital says it​​ mistakenly released​​ an evacuee from China with coronavirus Sunday after an incorrect all-clear from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

See​​ also:

County Appoints Full-Time Health Officer

Sierra News

The Madera County board of supervisors has appointed a full-time health officer, Dr. Simon Paul, who was hired last month and started his new position last Tuesday (Feb. 4).


San Joaquin Valley Health Fund Ihheel Issue Briefs

The Center at Sierra Health Foundation

These issue briefs provide overviews of key challenges facing disadvantaged communities in the San Joaquin Valley. They were developed to help inform the work of the San Joaquin Valley Health Fund’s Policy Committee and other regional health equity advocates.


Human Services:

Fresno EOC offers children and families the dental education they need early on

Fresno EOC

When Angela Her heard about Fresno EOC Free Medi-Cal Dental Youth Services her family didn’t have a dental care provider and she wasn’t sure how her family would qualify for services. Now Her’s son is learning the importance of dental hygiene while making regular visits to the dentist.


New women-centric hospital planned for SJ

Stockton Record

A new hospital specializing in women’s health services including labor and delivery was announced Monday for a 35-acre site between Stockton and Lodi.

Trump budget plan could push tobacco oversight out of the FDA

The Trump administration wants to fundamentally change the way the US government regulates tobacco and e-cigarette products, and the plan to move regulatory authority out of the US Food and Drug Administration is being met with strong condemnation from the public health community.

Study: 1 In 5 Patients Gets A Surprise Medical Bill After Surgery

Two bills up for debate and revision in the House this week aim to stop surprise medical billing — when patients are billed for services their insurance won't cover. New research reveals just how common surprise billing is after an elective surgery, like a knee replacement or hysterectomy.



Talks to deport Hmongs, Laotians cause fear after removal orders issued in other areas


Currently, an official document for the deportations has not been drawn out, but lawmakers and some members of the southeast Asian communities have already started voicing their concerns to Congress.

McFarland to hold second meeting on expanding immigrant detention capabilities

Bakersfield Californian

The McFarland Planning Commission will once again be in the spotlight next week when it holds the second and final public hearing on a private prison company’s request to expand immigrant detention capabilities in the city.


Young immigrants face fee increase for DACA renewal


Betzabeth Salinas, 30, is a single mother who’s about to obtain her master’s degree in social work at Cal State Long Beach. She works 15 hours a week as a counselor in a nonprofit organization in East Los Angeles and participates in an internship 20 hours a week.

Trump is fulfilling his pledge to build fortress America — and running on it.

Washington Post

As he rallies support for his reelection in November, President Trump is closer than ever to delivering on his promise for a United States with taller walls, tighter immigration laws and fewer foreigners entering the country.

U.S. Justice Department files new lawsuits in renewed push to pressure 'sanctuary cities'


The U.S. Department of Justice ramped up its fight against states and municipalities that adopt “sanctuary” policies to protect unauthorized immigrants from deportation, with new lawsuits against the state of New Jersey and King County, Washington.




Land Use:

What’s happening at Shaw and West in Fresno? A lot. Here’s the latest in new stores, more

Fresno Bee

There's a lot happening at this busy corner, so we thought we'd spell it all out for you.  Two new grocery stores and a new restaurant are moving in.

‘A fantastic opportunity.’ As Muni golf course closes, what’s next for 54 acres of land?

Modesto Bee

When the city closes its nine-hole Modesto Municipal Golf Course later this year, it will have the rare opportunity to redevelop 54 beautiful, tree-studded acres in a prime location near downtown and Highway 99.



City of Firebaugh Bans Smoking in Multi-Unit Housing Complexes

Fresno EOC
On May 20, 2019, the City of Firebaugh became the first city in the San Joaquin Valley to pass a law that bans smoking and vaping tobacco and cannabis in multi-unit housing (MUH) complexes. This new law affects all multi-family buildings with two or more attached units including duplexes, apartments, condominiums, senior and assisted living and long-term healthcare facilities.


Low barrier homeless shelter nearing completion

Bakersfield Californian

The county shelter, located on O Street off Golden State Avenue, is scheduled to open in late February.

Legislative analyst criticizes California's homeless plan

Bakersfield Californian

California Gov. Gavin Newsom's budget proposal likely won't have a meaningful impact on the nation's largest homeless population, according to a new analysis from the state's nonpartisan Legislative Analyst's Office.

Court to decide if property owners may sign away rights in contract tiffs

San Francisco Chronicle

The state Supreme Court agreed Tuesday to review a Berkeley tobacco shop case and decide whether property owners in California can sign away their right to a jury trial in contact disputes.


Newsom offers vacant land for homeless shelters, but local officials worry: Who will pay?


It was two hours after dusk in Santa Ana, and the temperature had dropped 10 degrees since sundown. A line of men and women bundled against the chill curled past the National Guard Armory’s entrance, around the side of the building and into the parking lot, about 150 in all. 

See​​ also:


Price: Take this tour of the county's new homeless shelter

Bakersfield Californian

There's a mini-city under construction on M Street at 29th, and it looks like a promising blueprint for the care, feeding and management of a population that, increasingly, has been on our collective minds: The homeless.

Commentary: A simple solution for sheltering Californians who are homeless


Many state and city leaders believe that the unprecedented homeless population in California is largely the result of a shortage of affordable housing. The supposition is that if​​ there were more low-cost housing, a significant segment of the homeless would move in, go to rehab and straighten out their lives.  


Walters: Wakeup call: Housing construction drops


Gavin Newsom came into the governorship a year ago having made many promises to accomplish great things, or as he put it, “big hairy, audacious goals.” Perhaps the most audacious was to solve California’s ever-growing shortage of housing by building 3.5 million more units by 2025.



Nearly 3 in 4 States Have Welfare-to-Work Parent Lifetime Time Limits That Are More Generous Than California’s

California Budget & Policy Center

California allows parents less time recieving welfare-to-work cash support that 37 states and D.C. In most states, parents’ lifetime time limit is 60 months, the maximum allowed for federally-funded TANF support.


6 in 10 Americans say they are better off now than three years ago: Gallup

The Hill

A majority of Americans in a​​ new poll​​ say they are better off now than they were three years ago. Just more than 6 in 10 Americans, 61 percent, told Gallup pollsters that they are decidedly in better shape than they were shortly after​​ President Trump​​ took office in 2017, a sign of a recovering U.S. economy.



Bus operator sponsors job fair

Bakersfield Californian

An employment fair scheduled for 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday is aimed at filling positions — or in some cases, lining up candidates for possible future openings — at Bakersfield's public bus system.


San Francisco bans most cars from Market Street. Will other California cities follow?

Los Angeles Times

As California cities move to reclaim their streets from automobile domination, Market Street in San Francisco is the most ambitious effort so far.

Column: The hellish experience of getting your Real ID at the DMV: Long lines are just the beginning

Los Angeles Times

The line stretched out the door, across the front of the building and around the corner, like a snake entering one of the circles of hell. I arrived at the Glendale DMV office at 12:54 p.m. to get my Real ID, a document we’ve all gotta have because apparently we’ve been carrying Fake ID.


EDITORIAL: Kobe Bryant’s helicopter crash should have us all thinking about the safety of our airspace

Los Angeles Times

The National Transportation Safety Board has repeatedly urged the Federal Aviation Administration to require terrain awareness systems on all commercial helicopters carrying six or more people. But the FAA has never accepted that recommendation.




California is dry with no rain in sight. Should we start worrying about drought and wildfire?

Merced Sun-Star

California’s​​ alarmingly dry winter​​ continues, with no meaningful snow or rain in sight. Although it’s far too soon to predict a drought, experts said wildfire risks could worsen this summer as a result of the shortage of precipitation.

Two Valley Congressmen have a say in whether House Dems probe Valley water boost

The Sun

As House Democrats pine for an opportunity to dig into the U.S. Department of Interior on a wide array of issues, two Valley Congressmen face a tough choice between additional water for their districts or supporting their committee chair.


Clean water bill getting GOP opposition

Visalia Times Delta

A bill that could help disadvantaged Central Valley towns including ones in Tulare County provide safe and affordable drinking water is facing opposition by Republican critics, including GOP representatives from California.  


California is dry with no rain in sight. Should we start worrying about drought and wildfire?

Sacramento Bee

California’s​​ alarmingly dry winter​​ continues, with no meaningful snow or rain in sight. Although it’s far too soon to predict a drought, experts said wildfire risks could worsen this summer as a result of the shortage of precipitation.

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San Pablo Reservoir opens with great weather and trout fishing

Stockton Record

A total of 180 adults and 40 youth entered in the NorCal Trout Angler’s Challenge (NTAC) event season opener at EBMUD’s San Pablo Reservoir on Saturday, Feb. 8, the day after the lake opened to fishing this season. The weather and fishing were both superb.


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Maddy Institute Updated List of San Joaquin Valley Elected Officials​​ HERE.

The Kenneth L. Maddy Institute​​ at California State University, Fresno was established to honor the legacy of one of California’s most principled and effective legislative leaders of the last half of the 20th Century by engaging, preparing and inspiring a new generation of governmental leaders for the 21st Century. Its mission is to inspire citizen participation, elevate government performance, provide non-partisan analysis and assist in providing solutions for public policy issues important to the region, state and nation.


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