July 19, 2018






Nunes declares war on the Fresno Bee


In a campaign ad running more than two minutes — and appearing not only online, but also on radio and TV — Nunes casts the dominant newspaper in his California district as a “band of creeping correspondents,” criticizing The Fresno Bee for its routine reporting practices.


Nunes used political dollars for $15K in Celtics tickets, winery tours and Vegas trips

Fresno Bee

Rep. Devin Nunes used political donations to pay for nearly $15,000 in tickets to Boston Celtics basketball games as well as winery tours and lavish trips to Las Vegas, according to reports from the Federal Election Commission and two nonpartisan watchdog groups.

See also:

     Nunes used donations donations to buy Celtics tickets Sacramento Bee


Do Sen. Warren, labor legend Huerta endorsements hurt Janz’s chances against Nunes?

Fresno Bee

Democrat Andrew Janz announced two major endorsements this week: Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Massachusetts, and United Farm Workers of America co-founder Dolores Huerta. It’s unclear how much there is to gain in California’s conservative 22nd Congressional District from two high-profile liberal endorsements.


John Cox focused on water during Valley visit


A day after Gavin Newsom visited the Valley, his Republican opponent John Cox made a gubernatorial campaign stop here as well. John Cox focused on water during his Wednesday visit.


Oliver campaign event scheduled for Saturday

Madera Tribune

Madera City Council Member William Oliver will announce his campaign for re-election to the third-district seat on the council at 9:30 a.m. Saturday at Fastway Chicken in Madera. Oliver said he has the support of several business owners and community leaders.  (Note:  Will Oliver is a former Maddy Legislative Intern)


Wheeler to focus on safety, tourism during fourth term

Sierra Star

Madera County District 5 Supervisor Tom Wheeler says he has seen and heard the criticism surrounding his third reelection. Most recently, a pair of letters were published in the Sierra Star in response to Wheeler’s victory in June, which he won by approximately 400 votes.


Attorney enters not guilty pleas Wednesday on behalf of Supervisor Leticia Perez

Bakersfield Californian

The attorney representing county Supervisor Leticia Perez entered not guilty pleas on her behalf Wednesday in connection with charges of conflict of interest regarding cannabis issues and failure to file a required form regarding her finances.


Gov. Jerry Brown declares April 10 as Dolores Huerta Day

Bakersfield Californian

April 10 will be known as Dolores Huerta Day after Gov. Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill 2644 Wednesday, which had been introduced by Assemblymember Eloise Reyes. The day is not a state holiday, but recognizes Huerta’s lifelong work as a civil rights activist.




Remove three Californias plan from the ballot, Supreme Court says

Fresno Bee

The California Supreme Court ruled Wednesday in favor of opponents of a plan to divide California into three, saying the measure should not appear on the November ballot.

See also:

     Measure to split California pulled from November ballot ABC30

     Court blocks measure asking voters to split California in 3 Bakersfield Californian

     Remove three Californias plan from the ballot, opponents ask state Supreme Court Sacramento Bee

     Three Californias proposition kicked off the November ballot CALmatters

     Splitting up California: Court takes initiative off ballot San Francisco Chronicle

     Measure to split California into three states removed from ballot by the state Supreme Court  Los Angeles Times

     EDITORIAL: Split up California? Not this year, thankfully Los Angeles Times


California voters won't have to pay for postage on mail-in ballots much longer

Los Angeles Times

In a move to boost voter turnout, Gov. Jerry Brown on Wednesday signed a bill that requires counties to prepay postage for mail-in ballots in California elections.


Judge rejects claim that Attorney General Xavier Becerra isn’t qualified

Mercury News

Eric Early, a Republican lawyer who ran unsuccessfully against Becerra in the June primary, filed suit in May arguing the appointed incumbent doesn’t meet the statutory requirements for the post. He said Wednesday that he will appeal.


California Propels the #Metoo Movement Forward Passing Laws Protecting Victims/Employers From Defamation


In yet another nod to the #MeToo Movement, Governor Brown signed AB 2770 on July 9, 2018 to protect sexual harassment victims and employers from being sued for libel, slander, or defamation by alleged harassers.


De León discloses campaign finances at a snail’s pace


In his race against U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, state Sen. Kevin de León failed to submit his latest campaign finance statements online, limiting the ability of Californians to see those reports for days if not weeks after they arrive by mail in Washington, D.C.


Opinion: Dianne Feinstein is not who you think she is
Sacramento Bee

Dianne Feinstein never should have run for a fifth term in the U.S. Senate. An 85-year-old career politician, who would be 91 at the end of another full term, is treating the position she has held since 1992 as a lifetime appointment.

Walters: Inventor’s tax fight with California flares up again


The death of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia in 2016 famously left the court tied 4-4 on a landmark California case about the ability of public employee unions to collect dues from non-members.


EDITORIAL: When are California Republicans going to stop covering for Trump?
Los Angeles Times
There are crucial moments in history when leaders must put aside petty rivalries and partisan politics and work together to address existential threats or other looming dangers. Now is such a time.




This moderate Democrat’s model is being copied where it matters -- in Trump territory

Fresno Bee

Forget the Democratic Socialist in New York. If Democrats retake the House of Representatives on Election Day, it will be because of people like Democratic Rep. Conor Lamb.


House Republicans Increase Messaging Votes Ahead of August Recess
Roll Call

The House floor is seeing an uptick in messaging bills as Republicans prepare for a month long district work period in a midterm year when they are defending most of the seats in play.


House GOP refuses to renew election security funding as Democrats fume over Russian interference
Washington Post
House Republicans plan to vote Thursday on a spending bill that excludes new money for election security grants to states, provoking a furious reaction from Democrats amid a national controversy over Russian election interference.

See also:

     How to secure US elections from future hacking CNN


EDITORIAL: California Republicans are cowards. Their reaction to the Trump-Putin summit proves it.

Sacramento Bee

California House Republicans are cowards. That’s the inescapable conclusion from their pitiful reaction to President Donald Trump’s capitulation to Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki.


Who’s Winning the Midterm Money Race
Wall Street Journal

The Democrats have raised more, but the Republicans have more cash on hand. Moreover, Republicans have a big advantage in outside money.


Michelle Obama wades into the midterms
The new initiative will be nonpartisan, frustrating some Democrats who’d like the former first lady to hit the campaign trail for candidates


Why is Trump open to letting Russia interrogate Americans, including former U.S. ambassador McFaul?

Visalia Times-Delta

The firestorm over President Donald Trump's summit with Vladimir Putin has broadened to include the revelation that Trump is open to allowing Russian investigators to grill American citizens, including former U.S. ambassador Michael McFaul.

See also:

     White House attempts to clarify Trump’s response to whether Russia is still targeting U.S. elections Washington Post

     Russia Is No Longer Targeting the U.S., Trump Says, Contradicting His Own Intelligence Director New York Times

     Is this Trump’s most ridiculous denial yet? Washington Post

     Fact Checking Russian President Putin Fact Check

     Alleged Russian agent Maria Butina had ties to Russian intelligence agency, prosecutors say Washington Post

     Judge Orders Detention of Russian Gun Activist, Siding With Prosecutors Who See Her as a Flight Risk Wall Street Journal

     Putin chides Trump's opponents and calls summit a success Los Angeles Times

     EDITORIAL: Dark truth emerges from Trump’s Helsinki spin Fresno Bee


George Will: Trump is a sad, embarrassing wreck of a man

Washington Post

America’s child president had a play date with a KGB alumnus, who surely enjoyed providing day care. It was a useful, because illuminating, event: Now we shall see how many Republicans retain a capacity for embarrassment.

See also:

     A cancer lives among us Washington Post

     President Trump does a great job and doesn’t let America down at all Washington Post

     The Speech Trump Should Give Wall Street Journal

     Chaos from order Brookings


Veterans Affairs takes aggressive steps to purge or reassign staffers perceived to be disloyal to Trump before new secretary starts

Washington Post

Ahead of Robert Wilkie’s likely confirmation to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs, Trump loyalists at the agency are taking aggressive steps to purge or reassign staff perceived to be disloyal to President Trump and his agenda for veterans, according to multiple people familiar with the moves.


Trump Supreme Court pick: I would 'put the nail' in ruling upholding independent counsel
Wall Street Journal

Judge Brett Kavanaugh two years ago expressed his desire to overturn a three-decade-old Supreme Court ruling upholding the constitutionality of an independent counsel, a comment bound to get renewed scrutiny in his confirmation proceedings to sit on the high court.

See also:

     Pro-ACA group: Court pick Kavanaugh refused to uphold pre-existing condition ban PolitiFact


EDITORIAL: The IRS found a way to make ‘dark money’ spent on politics even darker

Los Angeles Times

Under a perverse interpretation of federal law, tax-exempt nonprofit organizations supposedly devoted to “social welfare” can spend large amounts of money to influence elections without publicly disclosing the identities of their donors.




Bomb threat reported at California newspaper office

The Hill

Employees at a California newspaper were reportedly evacuated from their building on Thursday because of a bomb threat. The Sacramento Bee reported that a suspicious package was discovered outside the entrance of its main office, according to the Sacramento Police Department.

See also:

     Bomb squad investigates suspicious package at The Sacramento Bee Sacramento Bee

     The looming threat of newsroom cyber attacks Columbia Journalism Review


Comcast dropping out of Twenty-First Century Fox bidding war


Comcast says it's dropping out of the bidding war for Twenty-First Century Fox's entertainment business, instead focusing on its bid for the U.K.'s Sky. The announcement Thursday leaves the path open for The Walt Disney Co. to buy Twenty-First Century Fox.

See also:

      Walt Disney Co. to claim 21st Century Fox entertainment assets after Comcast drops out of the bidding war Los Angeles Times

     EDITORIAL: Ajit Pai and Sinclair Wall Street Journal


Hearing exposes Facebook’s toothless 'fake news' policy


On Tuesday, Facebook was asked by Congress why it continued to allow InfoWars to use its platform. Facebook is tremendously worried about being seen as anti-right. In a Republican-controlled Congress, it could mean it faces greater controls on its business.


The Barriers That Keep Blacks and Latinos From Voting is Warping Democracy

The Atlantic

A new survey from The Atlantic and the Public Religion Research Institute shows that black and Hispanic citizens are more likely than whites to face barriers at the polls—and to fear the future erosion of their basic political rights.





Sunday, July 22, at 10 a.m. on ABC 30 – Maddy Report“Fighting Fire with Fire: Rethinking Forest Management” – Guest: Pedro Nava, Chair of California Little Hoover Commission. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.


Sunday, July 22, at 10 a.m. on Newstalk 580AM/105.9FM (KMJ) – Maddy Report​​ ​​ - Valley Views Edition“How Prepared is California for Natural Disaster, Generally and Forest Fires, in Particular?” – Guests: Christina Curry, Cal OES Deputy Director of Planning, Preparedness and Prevention and Pedro Nava, Chair of California Little Hoover Commission. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.


Sunday, July 22, at 7:30 a.m. on UniMas 61 (KTTF) – El Informe Maddy: “State Auditor's Report on Medication of Foster Kids”  Guest: Margarita Fernandez, PIO State Auditor's Office. Host: Maddy Institute Program Coordinator, Maria Jeans.


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House Set to Start Farm Bill Talks With Senate Before Recess

The Hill

House Agriculture chairman said public pressure could help move Senate negotiators on the 2018 farm bill toward accepting the House legislation.


Residents weigh in on Stockton’s developing cannabis policy at forum

Stockton Record

Tax revenue, more jobs and decriminalization were some of the benefits to commercial cannabis sales that community members identified at a workshop hosted by the city of Stockton Wednesday afternoon.


Teachers aim to bring Ag lessons from seminar to the classroom

Bakersfield Californian

The Kern County Farm Bureau held its Teachers’ Ag Seminar from Monday through Wednesday this week. The goal of the seminar is for teachers to implement what they’ve learned about agriculture in their classrooms.


California Almond Growers Struggle Amid U.S.-China Tariff Battle

Capital Public Radio

California almond growers are celebrating the upcoming harvest this fall, which is expected to be record-breaking. But in retaliation for tariff’s issued by the Trump administration, China imposed a 50 percent tariff on U.S. almonds — all of which come from California.






Planting a tree, keeping a memory alive

Stockton Record

A week ago, Joe Saucedo Jr. was violently taken away from his family and friends. Stockton police allege the 34-year-old man was at Oak Park when he was intentionally hit and pinned under a vehicle by James Brummett, 49.


Are there limits on smoking pot at home near kids? Where else is it legal to smoke?

PolitiFact California

With the start of California’s retail recreational marijuana sales in January 2018, PolitiFact California published Pot 101, a guide to what’s legal and what’s not under the state’s landmark cannabis law.


EDITORIAL: No, Prop 47 didn't de-criminalize misdemeanors

Los Angeles Times

The idea behind Proposition 47 was to reduce certain non-violent, non-serious felonies to misdemeanors in order to ensure that the resources of the criminal justice system are more wisely allocated, and that prison and jail beds are reserved for the offenders who are the greatest risks to cause harm if they are left at liberty.


Public Safety:


Family Justice Center has had 873 new clients since opening in January
Bakersfield Californian

The Kern County Family Justice Center has had 873 new clients since it opened Jan. 17 to help victims of domestic violence, stalking and sexual assault, among other crimes, according to the District Attorney's office.


City to provide 255 “anti-theft devices” to owners of commonly stolen vehicles
Bakersfield Californian

To the owners of five of the most reported stolen vehicles in the Bakersfield area — which itself has been at the top of auto theft lists for years — help is on the way.


Gun Magazine Restriction Halted By 9th Circuit


California's law restricting gun magazines to 10 bullets was to go into effect in July 2017. It was delayed first when U.S. District Judge Roger Benitez in San Diego granted a preliminary injunction until a lawsuit by gun owners made its way through the courts.




Ferguson Fire potential strikes fear into meeting attendees

Fresno Bee

Whispers and murmurs could be heard throughout a packed cafeteria during a meeting on the Ferguson Fire at Wasuma Elementary School in Ahwahnee on Tuesday night as the community processed the potential magnitude of the blaze.

See also:

     Ferguson Fire burns over 21,000 acres in Mariposa County ABC30

     Smoke has hampered aerial firefighting efforts ABC30

     Thick smoke from Ferguson Fire blocking views of Yosemite ABC30

     Ferguson Fire worst-case scenario would hit Yosemite West, incident commander says Sierra Star

     'The smoke was horrible': Hot, dry weather hampers crews battling wildfire near Yosemite Visalia Times-Delta

      Ferguson Fire wreaks havoc on Valley air Visalia Times-Delta

      Fire near Yosemite burns to 17,319 acres, two firefighters injured San Francisco Chronicle


Couple didn’t start every arson fire in Yosemite Lakes Park, appellate court rules

Fresno Bee

A Yosemite Lakes Park couple who was convicted of setting a string of arson fires that terrorized their neighbors in the Madera County foothills in the summer of 2013 apparently didn’t set all of the fires.


Five years after a massive fire near Yosemite, political 'miracle' erodes as Trump demands more logging

Los Angeles Times

The Rim fire in 2013 brought devastation to a vast swath of Sierra Nevada forests west of Yosemite National Park. But the third largest wildfire in state history also seemed to have worked a political miracle, at least for a while.


Kern County firefighters may face cuts in overtime
Bakersfield Californian

Facing a $7.5 million deficit, the County Administrative Office is looking for ways to reduce costs at the Fire Department without making operational cuts. In the crosshairs is a reduction in overtime allotment, which could save the department up to $3 million.


EDITORIAL: Who should pay the cost of California's wildfires?

Los Angeles Times

When power-related equipment causes a fire, the utility that owns it must pay for the damage to homes and property, even if there was no negligence. Under the concept of “inverse condemnation,” the government must provide fair compensation when it damages private property, regardless of fault.






What veterans of the last financial crisis have to say about the next one

Washington Post

Architects of the government’s response to the last financial crisis worry the country is ill-equipped to handle another, fearing an “amnesia” has taken hold of policymakers, regulators and the public that could lead to the next panic.


Mexico Says U.S., Mexico Aim to Reach NAFTA Deal by Late August
Wall Street Journal
Senior U.S. and Mexico officials have agreed to step up negotiations to overhaul the North American Free Trade Agreement with the aim of reaching a preliminary deal by late August, Mexico’s Economy Minister said Wednesday.


Trade’s Widening Battleground

Wall Street Journal
The Trump administration’s use of tariffs on imported goods started slowly but has broadened in recent weeks to affect hundreds of billions of dollars in goods from China and other big economies.

See also:

     History won’t be kind to politicians who stay silent on Trump’s trade war Brookings

     Kudlow: China Has No Intention of Making Trade Deal National Review


The Long-Term Eects of Cash Assistance


We investigate the long-term effects of cash assistance for beneficiaries and their children by following up with participants in the Seattle-Denver Income Maintenance Experiment.


Keep Politics Out of the Boardroom

Wall Street Journal
Government is inefficient by its very nature. Corporate governance, in contrast, historically has been conducted by people spending their own money, subject to the will of shareholders with a common ownership interest in the company.


Why Do Young People Care So Much about Income Inequality?

National Review

In our outrage over “income inequality,” my generation is manufacturing a crisis — in a capitalist economy, inequality can be a good thing.


Businesses have hijacked capitalism — and left workers behind

Washington Post

The unemployment rate has fallen from 5 percent to 4 percent in the past two years, but workers aren't getting any bigger raises than they were before. What in the name of supply and demand is going on?




Anti-labor group wants California union to hand $100 million back to state workers

Sacramento Bee

Last month’s Supreme Court decision banning unions from collecting money from workers who don’t belong to them could cost state government’s largest labor organization $100 million in fees it charged to employees who did not “opt in” to it since 2012.

See also:

     SCOTUS’s labor decisions: Bad news for working people, and a taste of what’s to come Brookings


California state workers get raises this month. How much will be in your paycheck?

Merced Sun-Star

July marks the start of California state government’s budget year, and that means it’s time for state workers to get a raise. Here’s a look at the raises state workers will see in their paychecks starting this month.


Wages Are Growing Faster for White Americans Than for Blacks


Wages are going up for black Americans too, and the demographics of pay gains are “pretty broad at this point,” Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said in congressional testimony Wednesday.

See also:

     Low pay and long hours: Staffing in the restaurant industry remains a challenge as sales grow Marketplace

     In these California places, women tend to earn more money than their husbands Sacramento Bee


Trump to Sign Executive Order on Job Training

Wall Street Journal
President Donald Trump plans to sign an executive order on Thursday aimed at spurring new investments for training current and future American workers to help them secure jobs domestically.


China Has 487 Electric-Car Makers, and Local Governments Are Clamoring for More
Wall Street Journal
President Xi Jinping’s Made in China 2025 plan is giving a boost to startups while spurring overcapacity concerns.






Teachers aim to bring Ag lessons from seminar to the classroom

Bakersfield Californian

The Kern County Farm Bureau held its Teachers’ Ag Seminar from Monday through Wednesday this week. The goal of the seminar is for teachers to implement what they’ve learned about agriculture in their classrooms.


Building a passion for STEM

Stockton Record

100 middle school girls enrolled at Stockton Unified are taking part in Verizon Innovative Learning, a summer program at San Joaquin Delta College with the goal of introducing more girls to science, technology, engineering and math skills.


Behind The Campaign To Get Teachers To Leave Their Unions

Last month, the Supreme Court in Janus v. AFCSME dealt a major blow to public sector unions. The court ruled that these unions cannot collect money, known as agency fees, from nonmembers who are covered by collective bargaining agreements.

Straight up conversation: Leading Educators departing CEO Jonas Chartock


Leading Educators is a nonprofit that helps districts and schools maximize the effectiveness of their most valuable resource: teachers. We believe all students deserve great schools and exceptional teachers.


Higher Ed:


State Center Community College District chancellor gets big pay raise

Fresno Bee

The head of community colleges in Fresno received a pay raise that will eventually bump his salary to $321,421 per year, months after supporting a tuition increase for out-of-state students.


7 Questions with New CSU Bakersfield President Lynnette Zelezny

CSU News

In spring 2018, the California State University Board of Trustees appointed Lynnette Zelezny, Ph.D., to serve as president of CSU Bakersfield. We spoke with her about her new role, her goals and the importance of being the first female president of CSU Bakersfield.


University of California tuition drops by $60 for 2018-19

Sacramento Bee

UC’s governing board will vote Thursday on a 2018-19 budget plan that proposes a tuition decrease of $60 — the first time in nearly two decades that fees would drop from one year to the next.

Gov. Jerry Brown vetoes bill requiring colleges to provide information on dating violence in new student orientations

Los Angeles Times

Under current law, colleges must address sexual violence, domestic violence and stalking in their orientations for new students. The measure, AB 2070 by Assemblywoman Eloise Gomez Reyes (D-Grand Terrace), would have expanded on those requirements to specifically include intimate partner and dating violence.






Climate change has come to your neighborhood, and the sizzle may never subside

Los Angeles Times

A colleague once observed, many years ago, that California has two seasons. Green and brown.


National parks have as much air pollution as 20 major US cities, study finds


"Since the early 2000s, air quality (as measured by ozone) is just as bad (or just as good) in national parks as it is in metropolitan areas," Rudik said.

See also:

     These Two National Parks In California Have Air Just As Smoggy As LA LAist


State attorneys general and the climate litigation game


The central broad objective of the U.S. constitution is the protection of unpopular individuals and political groups from the whims and passions of the political majority of the moment.


Trump taps pesticide company exec to be USDA's chief scientist
The Hill

President Trump this week named a former Dow Chemical Company executive who worked in the company's pesticide division to be chief scientist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the third major hire of a Dow alumnus in his administration.




Arvin council passes oil and gas restrictions; will others follow?
Bakersfield Californian

When the Arvin City Council began working on an ordinance that would place restrictions on new oil and gas operations near neighborhoods in Arvin, the local oil industry began to get a little nervous.






Doctors urge special precautions during extended heat wave


Kids find creative ways to cool off when they're out on the playground, but even in the shade, sometimes the heat can still cause problems.  Dr. Lori Weichenthal with UCSF Fresno has noticed more heat-related cases in the emergency room.


‘We can do better.’ Staff members ask county to keep low-income health services

Sacramento Bee

Stanislaus County supervisors approved a recommendation Tuesday night to explore possible outsourcing of health care services for low-income residents.


Got a cold or the flu? Think twice about antibiotics

A new study published in JAMA Internal Medicine has found urgent care centers are prescribing antibiotics to nearly half of patients with colds or the flu. Antibiotics do not work to treat viral infections, like the flu and colds.


Food for the heart in a new California health program

In a $6 million pilot project authorized last year by the Legislature, patients recently home from the hospital get some nutrition counseling and 12 weeks of homemade, heart-healthy meals with lots of fresh ingredients delivered to their doorsteps.


Last Year’s Failed Effort in the House to Cut Federal Support for Medicaid Threatened Health Coverage for Millions of Californians

California Budget & Policy Center

Overall, the House bill would have shifted nearly $6 billion in costs for Medi-Cal from the federal government to California in 2020, rising to an annual shift of $24 billion by 2027, according to state projections.


Democrats Push Senate to Take Legal Action Backing Pre-existing Condition Protections

The Hill

In a possible preview of Senate Democrats’ midterm political messaging, Democratic senators want the chamber to go to court to defend health insurance protections for people with pre-existing conditions

See also:


These Pills Could Be Next U.S. Drug Epidemic, Public Health Officials Say

Pew Charitable Trusts

The growing use of anti-anxiety pills reminds some doctors of the early days of the opioid crisis. Diazepam (Valium) and alprazolam (Xanax) are among the most sold drugs in a class of widely prescribed anti-anxiety medications known as benzodiazepines.


Human Services:


Religious-based treatment discussed at Tulare hospital board meeting

Visalia Times-Delta

It didn't take long for questions about faith-based treatment to come up as the Tulare Regional Medical Center board of directors considers an administration agreement with Adventist Health.


Health-Care Coverage Is Increasingly Determined by Where You Live

Wall Street Journal

The Trump administration has been steadily rolling back sections of the Affordable Care Act, prompting states to either buttress or countermand the changes.


Researchers find no difference between kids raised by two moms and kids raised by mom and dad
Los Angeles Times
In a recently published study, the children of lesbians had no more behavioral or emotional problems than did a representative sample of kids their age. Their relationships with family, friends, spouses or partners functioned just as well.




Pacific forum looks at three immigration programs up for debate

Stockton Record

With the topic of immigration regularly making headlines and policy changing frequently under the Trump administration, an educational forum gave an overview of three of the U.S. immigration programs up for debate.


Gavin Newsom reported young immigrants to ICE as mayor. Now he says he was wrong.

Sacramento Bee

As mayor of San Francisco, Gavin Newsom in 2008 spearheaded a citywide policy requiring law enforcement officers to report juvenile undocumented immigrants to Immigration and Customs Enforcement when charged with committing violent felony crimes.


Arrivals of refugees have hit historic lows. To stay afloat, resettlement agencies re-brand
Los Angeles Times
The number of refugees admitted to the U.S. since President Trump took office has dropped to its lowest level in decades. The office and dozens of other refugee resettlement operations across the country have been forced to close, shift their resources or re-brand.


House eyes $5 billion for Trump’s border wall, setting up showdown with Senate

Washington Post

The $5 billion would be included in a House homeland-security spending bill expected to be released Wednesday. The Senate included only $1.6 billion for the wall in its version of the bill last month, a figure that displeased Trump.




Land Use:


Visalia council holds off selling home of children's theater company


Like their sign says, it's not over for the Enchanted Playhouse Theater Company. Monday night, Visalia's city council decided to table an ordinance that would have effectively handed the Main Street Theatre keys over to a local developer.


End of the line for downtown Stockton Greyhound

Stockton Record

Demolition began this week on downtown Stockton’s 1968 Greyhound bus terminal. Plans for the site call for construction of a convenience store with gas pumps, fast food restaurants, drive-through coffee outlet and small retail spaces.




Affordable Housing Summit: The Valley’s Future

Fresno State

California’s housing crisis is just as pervasive in the San Joaquin Valley as anywhere else in the State. How will our region respond to the unique challenges and opportunities our communities face?


Low-income housing opportunities

Madera Tribune

There’s talk afoot, including last week’s presentation before the City Council and Housing Authority board, about turning part of downtown Madera into a location for new low-income housing.


Fleeing war-torn homes for crippling rents—California housing costs creating harsh reality for refugees

The state’s skyrocketing housing costs have created a harsh new reality for refugees on the ground, many of whom are going to extraordinary lengths just to afford rent.




Council shoots down sales tax initiative

Hanford Sentinel

The Hanford City Council met Tuesday and made a decision on a proposed sales tax initiative, but did not get to talk about where a historic bell tower belongs.


Can California chase down tax refugees? The Supreme Court could help decide

Sacramento Bee

The Hyatt case, in all its ramifications, is a case study in how those fleeing from California’s taxes could be treated, and is being closely watched by those who specialize in minimizing tax exposure of high-income Californians.


House GOP Push to Extend Tax Cuts Meets Resistance in Senate
Wall Street Journal

House Republicans are busily preparing what they call “Tax Reform 2.0,” an extension of tax cuts they passed last year that are scheduled to expire after 2025. So far, their Senate counterparts aren’t so interested.


Deficit Projected to Top $1 Trillion Starting Next Year
Wall Street Journal

The Trump administration expects annual budget deficits to rise nearly $100 billion more than previously forecast in each of the next three years, pushing the federal deficit above $1 trillion starting next year.


Ethics questions swirl around Wilbur Ross’ calendar and financial interests


The U.S. Office of Government Ethics sent a letter to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross last week criticizing his failure to fully divest stocks by Jan. 15, 2017 -- 18 months after Ross agreed to do so.




How bad are Fresno drivers? Among the worst in the nation, study says. Here is why

Fresno Bee

Think Fresno has the world’s worst drivers? Your family and friends might think you’re being a bit dramatic. But apparently, you’re not that far off.


Fresno FAX Bus System Trying to Increase Ridership


Fresno public transit system will focus on productivity instead of coverage, and proposed changes could cost $1 million a year.


Whatever Happened to Trump’s Infrastructure Boom?


While billions have been raised to build or fix the nation’s roads, bridges, and airports, little of the money is finding its way to public projects.




Interior Secretary Zinke to visit California as GOP steps up fight over state’s water

Merced Sun-Star

On Friday, Republican Rep. Jeff Denham of Turlock is hosting Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke in his district to “discuss the administration’s potential role in improving water infrastructure and protecting Valley water rights.”


Remaking Flood Management to Support Salmon

Public Policy Institute of California

California’s aquatic ecosystems and the species that depend on them are in trouble. Dramatic changes in water and land use over the past 150 years have transformed the state’s freshwater landscape, and the latest drought brought additional stress.


Prop 3: What an $8.9 billion water bond would buy


Proposition 3, an $8.9 billion bond on the November ballot, would set aside $750 million to repair the canal, and additional sums to avert subsidence. Gerald Meral, a former water policy advisor to Gov. Jerry Brown, wrote the initiative.


Sinking land, poisoned water: the dark side of California's mega farms


The floor of the Central Valley is slumping, and there is arsenic in the tap water. Now it seems the two problems are connected.




Tulare police release video of dancing cops. It takes off like a rocket

Fresno Bee

The Tulare Police Department has joined the police lip sync video craze. The product was a smash hit from the start. Wednesday afternoon, the department posted its video of police officers dancing to “Footloose” by Kenny Loggins. Within an hour, the post had been shared more than 2,900 times and viewed more than 36,000 times.


Taco Truck Throwdown getting ready to take over Chukchansi Park


The world’s biggest taco event is taking over Chukchansi Park this week. The Taco Truck Throwdown is back and bigger than ever. The two-day event will feature more than 30 taco trucks vying for the title of best taco.


Stanislaus County Fair finale, State Theatre poetry slam, theater, art, more on tap
Modesto Bee

The annual Stanislaus County Fair continues its run through Sunday, with agriculture exhibits, midway, entertainment and more. Entertainment this weekend includes Easton Corbin, Grand Funk Railroad and Pablo Montero.

New restaurants spice up Bakersfield dining scene

Bakersfield Californian

It appears a new restaurant called Mamma Mia is going to join Downtown Bakersfield's dining scene. A public notice of application for ownership change for the restaurant has been placed on one of the windows of where Happy Hour Bar and Tapas used to sit.


This Tulare culinary institution ready to bring its killer fries to Visalia
Visalia Times-Delta

Wimpy's Hamburger, Tulare's beloved eatery, will open a new location in downtown Visalia, bringing with it seasoned fries and tasty burgers.



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