July 12, 2018

12Jul

POLICY & POLITICS

 

Valley:

 

McCarthy launches stealth campaign for speaker

Politico

The majority leader has begun lining up support for his bid to succeed Paul Ryan, but he can’t afford another misstep.

See also:

       Citing No Regrets About Retiring, Paul Ryan Bets Kevin McCarthy Will Replace Him  Roll Call

 

Congressional ethics office gets new complaints about Nunes’ wine business, financial disclosures

Fresno Bee

Two organizations sent letters to the Office of Congressional Ethics Wednesday demanding an investigation into Rep. Devin Nunes’ business investments.

 

A Fresh-Faced Political Outsider Tries to Turn Her Blue California District Red

National Review

In California’s 16th district, a young Republican woman, 32-year-old Elizabeth Heng, is rising to the challenge, opposing Democratic congressman Jim Costa, who has held the seat since 2013.

 

Watch: 'Catastrophic' backlog: CA Eastern District Federal judges say they're understaffed

KCRA 3

California's Eastern District judges sent a letter to Congress two weeks ago, saying they are understaffed -- despite a skyrocketing case load. A U.S. Attorney spoke with KCRA 3, saying the judges are right and the courts are at a breaking point.

 

California lawmaker reprimanded for sexual ‘locker room talk’ about his colleagues

Fresno Bee

An Assembly investigation has determined that Assemblyman Devon Mathis made explicit remarks at work, including about his colleagues, violating the Legislature's policy on sexual harassment. But investigators did not corroborate allegations of sexual misconduct made last fall against the Visalia Republican.

See also:

     Assembly committee scolds local lawmaker using one of Trump's favored phrases Bakersfield Californian

     California lawmaker reprimanded for sexual comments AP News

     Latest Capitol harassment case: Sexual talk by GOP Assemblyman Devon Mathis CALmatters

      California lawmaker reprimanded for ‘locker-room talk’ San Francisco Chronicle

 

Fresno County official says he's being retaliated against for doing his job

Fresno Bee

Fresno County Assessor-Recorder Paul Dictos recently fired off a stern letter to Nathan Magsig, Fresno County supervisor, complaining that County Administrative Officer Jean Rousseau is retaliating against him.

 

Fresno Chamber to mayor, parks initiative: ‘It’s time to work together’

Fresno Bee

After hearing presentations from Mayor Lee Brand on his public safety and parks tax initiative proposal and the Fresno for Parks folks about their plan, Fresno Chamber of Commerce leaders decided not to take a position on either idea, but instead on Wednesday called on the two sides to strike a compromise.

 

There's a lot facing Modesto's new city manager. Here is his plan.

Modesto Bee

After more than 15 months without a permanent city manager, Modesto finally has one. The City Council on Tuesday evening appointed Deputy City Manager Joe Lopez to the job.

State:

 

California’s three-way split: Lawsuit may take matter out of voters’ hands

San Francisco Chronicle

Opponents of the proposal to split California into three states lfiled a lawsuit Monday in the state Supreme Court, saying, if carried out, Proposition 9, drafted as a mere change in state laws, would actually “revise” the California Constitution — in fact, abolish it — something that can’t be done in a ballot initiative.

See also:

     Opinion: Cal 3 Promises to Restore the California Dream for Families Like Mine Fox & Hounds

     EDITORIAL: Is the effort to break up California even legal? We better find out before it goes to voters Los Angeles Times

     Fox: Three States Legal Challenge Faces Hurdles Fox & Hounds

 

Federal:

 

Trump’s appeals court nominee OKd with support from Dems

Mercury News

President Trump, who has referred to the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals as a “bad court” that was biased against him, now has his first judicial appointment on the court — a former Hawaii attorney general supported by every Senate Democrat and opposed by a majority of Republicans.

 

‘War Games’ Trump Said Were Too Expensive Cost Less Than a Fighter Jet
Wall Street Journal
Pentagon estimates U.S.-South Korea military exercises, canceled as too provocative and expensive, would have cost $14 million

 

Fact Check: Trump's Claims On NATO Spending

NPR

President Trump has been making plenty of claims about how much the U.S. contributes to NATO while portraying other members of the alliance as deadbeats. Here is some of what he has said and how those statements stand up to the facts.

See also:

     Trump Still Distorting NATO Spending Fact Check

     Trump’s Defense Spending Exaggerations Fact Check

 

Stymied elsewhere, Trump turns to pardons to advance personal and policy goals

Los Angeles Times

As a candidate for president, Donald Trump vowed to accomplish a great many things with the ease and simplicity of snapping his fingers. Once in office, however, he discovered that achieving those goals was far more frustrating and complicated than he supposed.

 

Controversial FBI official denies bias against Trump affected his work

Los Angeles Times

Peter Strzok, the FBI counterintelligence official who became a partisan punching bag for trading critical texts about Donald Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign, plans to tell lawmakers on Thursday that he never let political bias affect his work.

 

Poll: Obama tops list ranking best president in Americans' lifetime

The Hill

More than 40 percent of Americans say that Barack Obama was the best or second-best president in their lifetime, according to a new poll from the Pew Research Center.

See also:

     Obama Tops Public’s List of Best President in Their Lifetime, Followed by Clinton, Reagan Pew Research Center

 

The pro-business U.S. supreme court could get another pro-business justice

Marketplace

Federal appeals court judge Brett Kavanaugh, the president's nominee for the Supreme Court, is a friend of business by many standard measures. But if he's confirmed, don't expect it to make the whole court pro-business.

See also:

      California doesn’t need Supreme Court's take on morality Sacramento Bee

     Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh lauded late Chief Justice Rehnquist for dissenting in Roe vs. Wade and supporting school prayer Los Angeles Times

     What Trump's Pick for Supreme Court Could Mean for States' Rights Pew Charitable Trusts

     Health Law Is an Issue in Fight Over Supreme Court Pick Brett Kavanaugh Wall Street Journal

     Whom Do Red-State Democrats Fear Most? Wall Street Journal

     Kavanaugh Confirmation Fight Promises to Be Intense — and Expensive Roll Call

     EDITORIAL: His views on guns are key to our view of Judge Kavanaugh Modesto Bee

 

Feinstein failed to disclose husband’s Facebook stock

Mercury News

When Sen. Dianne Feinstein grilled Mark Zuckerberg in April, she had not disclosed her husband just purchasing as much as a quarter of a million dollars worth of Facebook stock.

 

Other:

 

Trump, Obama and other high-profile Twitter users expected to see ‘significant drop’ of followers as company purges fake accounts

Washington Post

The social media service said it would begin removing large numbers of Twitter profiles that had been included in people’s follower counts — even though these profiles already had been frozen by the company’s security team for suspicious behavior.

See also:

     Battling Fake Accounts, Twitter to Slash Millions of Followers New York Times

 

We’re living in an age of minority rule

Washington Post

The Republican Party represents a minority of the American electorate, yet it controls not only all three branches of the federal government but also most state governments, as well.

 

EDITORIAL: The ACLU turns its back on free speech

San Diego Union-Tribune

When politically-minded Americans think of an organization dedicated to defending freedom of speech, they’re apt to think of the American Civil Liberties Union. But now, that fundamental stand looks headed for the dust bin.

 

MADDY INSTITUTE PUBLIC POLICY PROGRAMMING  

 

Sunday, July 15, at 10 a.m. on ABC 30 – Maddy Report“Climate Change: Adapting to a Slow Moving Emergency” – Guest: Carole D'Elia, Little Hoover Commission. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

 

Sunday, July 15, at 10 a.m. on Newstalk 580AM/105.9FM (KMJ) – Maddy Report  - Valley Views Edition“Adapting to Climate Change: Implications for the Valley” – Guests: John Capitman, Executive Director of the Central Valley Health Policy Institute and Seyed Sedradin, Executive Director of the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

 

Sunday, July 15, at 7:30 a.m. on UniMas 61 (KTTF) – El Informe Maddy: “Climate Change Legislation”  Guest: Alvar Escriva-Bou, Public Policy Institute of California. Host: Maddy Institute Program Coordinator, Maria Jeans.

 

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AGRICULTURE/FOOD

 

Watch: California Almond Growers Worry Tariff War Could be Disastrous

KMJ

California almond growers worry a proposed Chinese tariff could be disastrous for this years record crop.

 

Valley Ag “Legend” Fred Machado Has Passed Away

KMJ

A man described as a major presence on agricultural boards and committees throughout Fresno County and California has passed away. According to the Fresno County Farm Bureau, Fernando “Fred” C. Machado died on Monday after a battle with cancer.

 

CRIMINAL JUSTICE / FIRE / PUBLIC SAFETY

 

Crime:

 

With hot weather comes increased violence

ABC30

Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer says with hot weather comes violence, and that's what officers are seeing with an increase in shootings over the last month.

 

Center marks 10 years of helping parolees transition

Stockton Record

On Wednesday, the Stockton Day Reporting Center celebrated 10 years of helping parolees transition back into the community and changing lives for the better.

 

EDITORIAL: California’s disturbing new trend is hate crimes

San Francisco Chronicle

In a deeply disturbing development, the number of hate crimes in California spiked by 17 percent from 2016 to 2017. According to a report from the Attorney General’s office, crimes in every significant hate category increased.

 

Public Safety:

 

State to fund Kings County public safety buildings

Hanford Sentinel

Governor Jerry Brown on June 27 signed the 2018-2019, $139-billion budget with $8.7 million going directly toward public safety in Kings County. The $8.7 million is to fund new infrastructure for public safety for Kings County Sheriff’s Office and the Corcoran Police Department.

 

City to hire 100 new police officers if sales tax passes

Bakersfield Californian

The City of Bakersfield is planning to hire about 100 additional police officers and 40 support staff for the Bakersfield Police Department if voters approve the 1 percent sales tax increase that will appear on this November’s ballot.

 

Mondavi is first female undersheriff in SJ Sheriff’s Office history

Stockton Record

It was a big deal for Annette Mondavi when she learned last week she had been selected as San Joaquin County Sheriff Steve Moore’s second-in-command. She became the first woman to serve as undersheriff for an agency that was founded in 1850 during the peak of the California Gold Rush.

 

California Gun Groups Sue Over Faulty Registration System

U.S. News

The lawsuit against state Attorney General Xavier Becerra and his Department of Justice alleges that the system for registering so-called bullet-button assault weapons was unavailable for most of the week before the July 1 deadline.

See also:

     California gun owners couldn't meet registration deadline due to state computer crashes, suit claims Los Angeles Times

 

House GOP appropriators block funding for gun violence research

Politico

House Republican appropriators Wednesday rejected a proposal to designate millions of dollars for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for gun violence research, voting 32-20 to keep the language out of a fiscal 2019 spending bill.

 

Fire:

 

Firefighters stop North Fork fire from spreading. It's still half contained

Sierra Star

A wildfire prompted evacuations and threatened structures in North Fork on Tuesday evening. Cal Fire Capt. James Jimenez said Wednesday that the forward progress of the School Fire fire had been stopped and about 53 firefighters were still mopping up hot spots to get the wildfire incident to full containment.

See also:

     Firefighters working to contain the School Fire in Madera County ABC30

 

County Fire sparked by improperly installed electric fence, Cal Fire says

Sacramento Bee

California's largest wildfire so far this year was caused by an electric livestock fence that was improperly installed, Cal Fire said Wednesday.

See also:

     California Wildfires: End in sight for Klamathon, County fires Mercury News

 

Wine Country Fire survivors, county officials blast legislation

San Francisco Chronicle

Wine Country wildfire survivors and officials from three North Bay counties condemn a measure they say is winding its way through the Legislature at the 11th hour to shift liability from utility corporations to homeowners.

 

California Fire Victims Don't Want Utilities' Fault Reduced

U.S. News

Victims of California's deadliest wildfires joined politicians on Wednesday to urge state lawmakers to stop trying to overhaul laws that hold utility companies accountable for blazes.

See also:

     Wine Country Fire survivors, county officials blast legislation San Francisco Chronicle

 

ECONOMY / JOBS

 

Economy:

 

Will A New Casino Near Fresno Change Indian Gaming In The Valley?

Valley Public Radio

Several projects are on the drawing board between Kern and Madera counties. There are expansions and new casinos. The first new gaming facility that will likely open is Table Mountain’s proposed casino, hotel and resort near Friant.

 

These retailers are struggling to stay open. Amazon might have something to do with it.

Visalia Times-Delta

Many North American retailers were wiped out in the “retail apocalypse,” which started in 2010. Amazon and Walmart’s growth, the rise of fast fashion retailers, reserved spending habits after the Great Recession, and dying malls crushed countless retailers.

 

Stockton to Become First U.S. City to Test Universal Basic Income Plan

Public CEO

Stockton, California, will soon become the first U.S. city to experiment with a universal basic income program, granting 100 residents $500 a month with no strings attached. The project is being backed by Silicon Valley titan Chris Hughes, whose Economic Security Project gave $1 million toward the effort.

 

Rising fuel costs help drive inflation to highest rate in six years

Los Angeles Times

Consumer prices rose in June at the fastest pace in more than six years, lifted by more expensive gas, car insurance and higher rent. The Labor Department said Thursday that inflation jumped 2.9% from a year earlier, the largest annual gain since February 2012.

 

‘Shocked’ by Latest U.S. Tariff Plan, Beijing Seeks Retaliatory Action

Wall Street Journal

China can’t match Washington’s new tariffs as it has in previous rounds, so it is reviewing plans to hit back in other ways.

See also:

     After Trump's new tariff threat, China may either have to blink or widen the trade war Los Angeles Times

     Trump's trade war is about to hit home — and your home is no exception Los Angeles Times

     The future of the U.S.-China trade war Brookings

 

Senate approves symbolic criticism of Trump's tariffs following failed efforts to block them

Washington Post
The Senate on Tuesday passed a nonbinding measure calling for Congress to have a role in tariffs imposed on the basis of national security, an implicit rebuke of President Trump's move to tax imported steel and aluminum.

See also:

     Senate Takes Symbolic Step to Assert Power on Trade Wall Street Journal

     Why trade deficits are not worth starting a trade war AEI

 

Global manufacturing scorecard: How the US compares to 18 other nations

Brookings

In order to move forward, it is important to see how American manufacturing compares to that of other nations. In this report, we develop a global manufacturing scorecard that looks at five dimensions of the manufacturing environment

 

Jobs:

 

How does where you live matter for your earnings?

Brookings

Educational and occupational choices matter for your earnings, but where you work matters, too. Employment opportunities and wages in some occupations vary substantially from state to state, county to county, and city to city.

 

EDUCATION

 

K-12:

 

Local teacher finds innovative ways to empower students around the world

Bakersfield Californian

Today's a big day for North High teacher librarian Katie McNamara. She is graduating from the Google Innovator Academy, a highly competitive and intense program full of educators who design creative solutions to the world's toughest challenges in education.

 

State Assembly hearing on early childhood education

ABC30

The hearing by the State Assembly's Blue Ribbon Committee on Early Childhood Education, chaired by the Speaker of the State Assembly, Anthony Rendon and co-chaired by Assembly Member Kevin McCarty of Sacramento, heard from parents and educators, including Fresno County School Superintendent Jim Yovino.

 

SJ Office of Education names new associate superintendent

Stockton Record

The San Joaquin County Office of Education has selected Troy Brown to be the new associate superintendent of student programs and services.

 

Panama-Buena Vista board to consider $90M measure for Nov. ballot

Bakersfield Californian

To help deal with significant crowding and other concerns, the Panama-Buena Vista Union School District is looking to add a $90 million bond measure to the November ballot.

 

Administrator battling cancer recognized for role in building new school

Bakersfield Californian

The Panama-Buena Vista Union School District held a special end-of-construction celebration for its new Whitley Elementary School on Tuesday. The celebration allowed the district’s director of facilities planning and construction, Jeff Foy, to attend. Foy is currently battling stage-four cancer.

 

What Does the Repeal of Net Neutrality Mean for California Schools?

Public Policy Institute of California

K‒12 schools rely increasingly on online content and management systems to deliver instruction, administer standardized tests, and manage educational data. As online learning becomes ubiquitous, access to high-speed Internet is no longer optional—it’s a necessity.

 

Battle ramps up to convince California school employees to withhold union fees

EdSource

Several conservative organizations are following up with a multi-pronged campaign to persuade large numbers of employees, including a bigger share of California’s teachers and other school and college employees, to stop paying union fees.

 

Why don’t teachers get fired for poor teaching?

AEI

Last month, new research from Miami University’s Andrew Saultz found additional evidence that teachers are not usually dismissed for poor performance, but rather for not going through the mechanics of being a good employee.

 

The terrorists’ war on education

AEI

Terrorists understand the pivotal role that education plays in winning hearts and minds. That is why terrorist groups often attack schools and are increasingly turning to education as a way to spread their message.

 

Higher Ed:

 

Want to graduate sooner? Cal State offering free class for eligible CSU students

Fresno Bee

Fresno State students have a chance to earn their diploma more quickly. California State University announced Wednesday it is offering undergraduate CSU students the opportunity to take one free fully-online course at another CSU campus every term.

See also:

     CSU Students Can Now Take More Fully-Online Courses Every Term CSU

 

Buildings evacuated after report of gas leak at Fresno City College

Fresno Bee

Several buildings at Fresno City College were evacuated Wednesday after a report of a gas leak. It's unclear how many students were affected, but several classes were in session.

 

UC admits record number of transfer students for fall

San Francisco Chronicle

The University of California offered admission this fall to more transfer students than it has at any point in its history, officials announced Wednesday.

See also:

     Number of California freshmen admitted to top UC schools drops Mercury News

     UC Davis admits fewer transfer students but more Californians overall, school says Sacramento Bee

     UC opens doors to record number of Californians, led by growth in transfer students Los Angeles Times

 

ENVIRONMENT/ ENERGY

 

Environment:

 

Columnist called for a ban of Legal fireworks in Fresno. Surprisingly, you agreed

Fresno Bee

I expressed the opinion that Fresno and the central San Joaquin Valley is no place for legal, personal fireworks. Not on the Fourth of July. Not ever. But then the strangest thing happened. The overwhelming majority of you agreed with me.

See also:

       Air pollution increases risk for type 2 diabetes, study finds Sacramento Bee

 

Fed Up, He Takes on River West Trash With His Own Hands

GV Wire

Tired of hearing that there wasn’t sufficient funding to keep 500-acre River West clean and tidy, Tom Bohigian, the longtime state director for former U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer and a two-term Fresno City Council member, decided eight months ago to assign the job to himself.

 

California Cap-and-Trade is Working — For Other States

KQED

A new report indicates California's much-heralded carbon trading program may actually be harming the neighborhoods it was designed to protect.

 

State cap-and-trade program not benefitting disadvantaged communities

San Francisco State University

California law requires 25 percent of the revenue from the state’s cap-and-trade program be invested in measures that benefit disadvantaged communities. But a newly published study found that disadvantaged communities have actually seen an increase in pollutants.

 

Days after Scott Pruitt resigned, several top aides are also calling it quits at EPA

Washington Post

Several top aides to former Environmental Protection Agency administrator Scott Pruitt are leaving the agency, less than a week after Pruitt resigned his post amid a slew of inquiries into his spending and management practices.

 

EDITORIAL: Climate change is heating up. We need a grid that can keep the power on when it's sweltering

Los Angeles Times

Climate change is expected to produce more frequent and more blistering heat waves in the coming years that will put unprecedented stress on the electrical grid and challenge utilities to keep the power on. Los Angeles, apparently, isn’t ready for the new normal.

 

Energy:

 

California slashes emissions, hits major greenhouse gas goal years early

San Francisco Chronicle

In a major win for California’s fight against global warming, the state appears to have hit its first target for cutting greenhouse gases — and it reached the goal early.

See also:

     Climate Pollutants Fall Below 1990 Levels for First Time Air Resources Board

     California hits key milestone in greenhouse gas emissions Sacramento Bee

     California Greenhouse Gas Emissions for 2000 to 2016 Air Resources Board

 

Power play: How California lawmakers are trying to navigate a changing energy landscape

CALmatters

State lawmakers, faced with a transformed energy landscape and a glut of renewable power as California charges into a greener future, are considering a handful of measures to meet the state’s energy challenges.

 

California's ranking as an oil-producing state is slipping

San Diego Union-Tribune

In many ways, the oil business in the U.S. has never been better, with domestic producers in a growing number of states churning out barrels of crude in record numbers. But California’s output is going in the opposite direction — part of a larger, steady decline that began in the mid-1980s.

 

HEALTH/HUMAN SERVICES

 

Health:

 

Fresno to be UCSF branch medical school campus

Fresno Bee

Fresno will have a branch campus of the UCSF School of Medicine under a plan to train medical students and retain them as doctors to serve residents in the medically needy San Joaquin Valley.

New obstetrician affiliates with MCH

Madera Tribune

Jennifer Ng, MD., an obstetrician-gynecologist and family practitioner, has become affiliated with Madera Community Hospital. “We are pleased to welcome a female physician with the professional credentials to care for women from puberty through geriatrics,” said Karen Paolinelli, RN, chief executive officer of Madera Community Hospital. 

 

Valley Fever Research, Awareness Winners In New State Budget

Valley Public Radio

Buried in California’s new $201 billion budget is important news for those with a disease that affects many here in Central California: $8 million in funding for valley fever research and awareness.

 

Air pollution increases risk for type 2 diabetes, study finds

Sacramento Bee

A new global study links air pollution to an increased risk for type 2 diabetes – a troubling finding particularly for California's Central Valley, with its notoriously high levels of hazardous particulates.

See also:

       Columnist called for a ban of Legal fireworks in Fresno. Surprisingly, you agreed Fresno Bee

 

If you're an adult in America, there's about a 50-50 chance you've been on a diet in the past year

Los Angeles Times

Dieting has become the new normal in the U.S. If you doubt this is true, just ask two American adults whether they’ve tried to lose weight in the past year. Odds are, one of them will say yes, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

 

Human Services:

 

California Doctors Who Treat Poor Get Reimbursement Boost

KPBS

California is boosting reimbursement payments for doctors and dentists who treat the state’s poorest residents. It’s part of an incentive to expand access under Medi-Cal, which offers free or low-cost health coverage to more than 13 million people — a third of the state's population.


Republican senators push proposed paid leave solution for new parents

ABC

A group of conservative senators is backing a proposal that calls for new parents to receive up to 12 weeks of paid leave by using some of their expected Social Security benefits.

 

Trump slashes funding that helps people sign up for Obamacare

CNN

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced Tuesday that it would provide only $10 million for the navigator program for this fall's open enrollment season. The move is the latest effort by the Trump administration to undermine the Affordable Care Act.
 

IMMIGRATION

 

Immigrant parents happy but traumatized after kids returned

Bakersfield Californian

Immigrant parents who reveled after joyful reunions with their young children spoke Wednesday of the traumatic impact of being separated from their sons and daughters for months after they were taken from them at the U.S. border.

See also:

       Trump administration reunites just over half of migrant children under 5 with parents, says others are 'ineligible'  Los Angeles Times

 

Trump administration to turn away far more asylum seekers at the border under new guidance

CNN

The Trump administration is implementing a new asylum policy at the border that will result in potentially thousands of asylum seekers being turned away before they can plead their case in court.

 

LAND USE/HOUSING

 

Land Use:

 

Clovis legend Bud Rank's death triggers feud over family's Friant Road ranch

Fresno Bee

Fresno farmer Everett "Bud" Rank Jr. was a legend. When Rank died in June 2012 at age 90, he left a sizable trust. Now, two of his three daughters are engaged in a family feud over his and his wife's assets, according to a Fresno County Superior Court lawsuit. At stake is the family's 19.6-acre ranch on Friant Road near the San Joaquin River.

 

Housing:

 

Is California’s CEQA environmental law protecting natural beauty — or blocking affordable housing?

89.3 KPCC

Signed by Gov. Ronald Reagan in 1970, the California Environmental Quality Act, or CEQA, calls for “preventing environmental damage, while providing a decent home and satisfying living environment for every Californian.”

 

Granny flats: More popular than ever, but still mired in bureaucracy

Mercury News

As sky-high rents and home prices leave people scrambling to find housing they can afford, the development of small, relatively inexpensive homes — known as granny flats or accessory dwelling units — has swelled in popularity with the promise of extra cash or separate living quarters for relatives priced out of the housing market.

 

California ordered to restore $331 million to fund for homeowners

San Francisco Chronicle

When California received $410 million in 2012 as part of a nationwide settlement with major banks accused of abusive foreclosures, Gov. Jerry Brown used $331 million to pay state agencies in housing and other programs to cover their deficits.

 

Amid crisis, voters will confront housing options

Capitol Weekly

As California rents and property values continue to rise, it should come as no surprise that three housing-related measures will face voters on the November ballot, targeting veterans’ home loans, local rent control and housing construction for the homeless. All are a direct result of California’s soaring costs.

 

‘I don’t want to die out here.’ Documentary, panel to address homelessness in Modesto.
Modesto Bee

No 60-minute film is going to solve the problem of homelessness. Modesto documentarian Richard Anderson knows this. Maybe nothing can. Impossible or not, you don't stop trying, the retired Modesto Junior College biology professor said.

Homeless service center in planning stage

Hanford Sentinel

Members of the Kings County Wellness Bridge project hosted an informational seminar Tuesday in hopes of creating a homeless service center in Hanford, and they are asking for the community’s help.

 

"Save Shaw Avenue" Group Is Trying To Prevent Blight By Tackling Homelessness

Valley Public Radio

A group of neighbors in northwest Fresno released a video urging people not to give out money to people on the street. Since releasing the video, the group has received support from city officials, but pushback from homeless advocates.

 

PUBLIC FINANCES

 

Opportunity zones provide chance to increase private investment in our community

Bakersfield Californian

A large portion of Bakersfield has been specially designated by the federal government, which allows private investors to receive reductions in capital gains taxes. We should seize this opportunity.

 

A deep dive into the California State Budget

State of California

The following table presents budget year positions and expenditures for each agency area. These totals are comprised of State funds which include General Fund, special funds, and selected bond funds.

 

Walters: Legislature may erase embarrassing boondoggle

CALmatters
California has had no shortage of boondoggles – projects or programs that cost taxpayers oodles of money but never produced their promised benefits.

 

Can Democrats shield Californians from new GOP tax law—despite IRS opposition?

CALmatters

As President Trump’s massive tax overhaul takes effect, Democratic state lawmakers are refining and advancing a plan they insist will protect California taxpayers from higher federal tax bills.

 

The conservative caricature of Keynesianism

Washington Post

You can say a lot of things about the Trump administration’s domestic economic agenda, but you know what word best describes it? Keynesian.

 

How Congress can fix its trillion dollar accounting error
AEI

Congress established the Joint Select Committee on Budget and Appropriations Process Reform in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 to address the many flaws in current tax and spending procedures.

 

Why delaying Social Security reform now could cause our children's wealth to shrink further

Marketplace

In early June 2018, the Social Security Trustees board reported that the Social Security Trust Funds would be depleted by 2034, one year sooner than previously estimated in last year's report.

 

TRANSPORTATION

 

Meadows Field may resume flights to Texas

Bakersfield Californian

Getting to Texas from Bakersfield may soon get a lot easier. As announced Wednesday by Rep. Kevin McCarthy, the federal government has awarded Kern County half a million dollars to help support a resumption of passenger flights between Bakersfield and Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, one of the nation's busiest travel hubs.

 

Driverless-car makers want Congress to free them from state safety standards

Los Angele Times

As Silicon Valley and automakers attempt to steer the nation toward a future of driverless vehicles, a group of influential lawmakers remains concerned that bipartisan legislation now moving through Congress could leave consumers at risk by preventing states from demanding tighter safety regulations.

See also:

      Uber lays off 100 backup drivers in self-driving unit  San Francisco Chronicle

 

WATER

 

Modesto councilman rallying support to contribute in effort to fight state water plan
Modesto Bee

Modesto Councilman Mani Grewal called on the city to contribute toward efforts to resist a state water grab that's become an emotionally charged issue in the region.

What do Southern Californians really get out of Gov. Jerry Brown's twin tunnels project?

Los Angeles Times

The most expensive state public works project ever would be financed primarily by Southern California water users. But it’s not exactly clear what they’d be buying.

 

Storm Brewing Over The Future Of Mono Lake And LA's Water Diversions

Valley Public Radio

For years Mono Lake has had a problem – water diversions made by the City of Los Angeles. They reduced the level of the lake, harming both the ecosystem and creating massive dust clouds.

 

Agency that delivered brown, smelly water to customers should be dissolved, board rules

Los Angeles Times

On Wednesday, residents of working-class neighborhoods in Compton and Willowbrook won a decisive victory when county authorities voted unanimously to dissolve a troubled agency. The action by L.A. County’s Local Agency Formation Commission, or LAFCO, kicks off a lengthy and rare process to get rid of a water district.

 

“Xtra”

 

Meet The Bee on opening night of the Stanislaus County Fair

Modesto Bee

Have a question for editors or reporters at The Bee? Curious about how we go about our jobs? We certainly want to learn more about you. Stop by and visit with editors Brian Clark and Patty Guerra and reporter Marijke Rowland on Friday at Modesto Bee Night at the Stanislaus County Fair.

Fresnans can now get Starbucks, diapers and pretty much anything delivered within minutes

Fresno Bee

You can get almost anything delivered in Fresno now. Until recently, the Postmates delivery service was available only in bigger cities. A recent expansion has it operating in Fresno and Clovis and more than 100 other cities.

 

Non-profits that help others, need help in the summer

ABC30

While temperatures are on the way up during the summer donations for local non-profits are down. "It happens every year that way. People go on vacation, but the needs never take a vacation," said Fresno Rescue Mission CEO Don Eskes.

 

SPCA day camp goes to the dogs

Bakersfield Californian

Of all the great pairs, kids and dogs is one of the sweetest. At one local summer day camp, there are plenty of both, but the partnership is more than just cute.

 

Meetings, club events in and around Modesto (07/12/18)

Modesto Bee

Here’s a list of meetings and club events in the Modesto Area for July 12!

 

The Best Mexican Restaurants in California’s Central Valley

Eater

I’ll say it: Only Los Angeles and Houston — maybe — have better Mexican food scenes than the Central Valley.

See also:

     This foodie site did a guide to eating in California. Obviously, they talk Fresno Fresno Bee

 

Test yourself with our new free game: PolitiTruth

Think you can tell the difference between True and False?

Do you really know what is fake news?

 

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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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