July 24, 2017






Former State Senate leader and Valley representative Dave Cogdill dies


Former Maddy Institute Chairman and California Republican Senate Leader Dave Cogdill died Sunday morning after battling pancreatic cancer, according to a statement from his family. He was 66.

See also:

·       Governor, others praise Dave Cogdill Sr.’s service to state, Modesto area  The Modesto Bee

·       Dave Cogdill, former California Senate Leader & Maddy Institute Chairman dies at 66  Sacramento Bee

·       Dave Cogdill, who paid a political price for his role in ending the 2009 budget crisis, dies at 66   Los Angeles Times

·       Former California GOP Senate leader Dave Cogdill dies  San Jose Mercury News

Detwiler Fire slowing as it reaches 76,000 acres

The Modesto Bee

Growth of the massive Detwiler Fire has slowed, allowing fire officials to lift some evacuation orders and giving once-threatened areas of Mariposa County a chance to return to normal.  Containment lines have been extended around 40 percent of the 76,000-acre blaze as of Sunday. Fire officials said the blaze grew by just 500 acres overnight. But Cal Fire officials warned that it could take another two weeks before crews will have the fire completely under control.

See also:

·       The Detwiler Fire is active at night, and a scientist says that’s relatively new Fresno Bee

·       Wildfire leaves ‘complete devastation’ Hanford Sentinel

·       The Detwiler Fire is active at night, and a scientist says that’s relatively new  Fresno Bee

·       Wildfire leaves ‘complete devastation’  Hanford Sentinel



California Politics Podcast: The winners and losers in the new cap-and-trade agreement

Los Angeles Times

This week’s California Politics Podcast is devoted entirely to digging deep into the bipartisan deal, one that extends the life of the state’s key climate change program by an additional decade.


Panel affirms election of Eric Bauman as leader of the California Democratic Party amid rancor

Los Angeles Times

After spending weeks sifting through allegations of vote stuffing and corruption, a California Democratic Party panel on Saturday affirmed the election of Eric Bauman as the party leader.


Has the California GOP Become Too Liberal?

Fox and Hounds Daily

With much attention given in recent months to divisions in the California Democratic Party, it was not until the passage of the Governor’s cap-and-trade legislation that significant divisions became apparent in the California GOP.


Joe Mathews: California struggles in championing its vision

Desert Sun

California, are you an incubator for great ideas – or a bubble that shuts them out? That’s the question Californians must ask as we confront big challenges, from climate change to our housing shortage to threats from the Trump administration. The bubble-or-incubator question is also the best way to understand the fights in the Legislature this summer.




Burr: Nunes ‘created’ unmasking allegations against Rice


Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr (R-N.C.) pointed to his House counterpart Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) for the narrative that former national security adviser Susan Rice improperly “unmasked” or revealed the identities of Americans swept up in intelligence reports.  “The unmasking thing was all created by Devin Nunes, and I’ll wait to go through our full evaluation to see if there was anything improper that happened,” Burr told CNN in comments reported after his committee interviewed Rice in a closed session on Friday.


Politifact CA: Kevin McCarthy’s False Claim On Obamacare Sign-Ups 

Politifact CA

Republican House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield is no fan of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. But did he accurately characterize sign-ups under the federal health law in a recent interview on Fox Business?


Control of Congress in 2018: California House races are key

Sacramento Bee

Regina Bateson was one of 750 people who at an April town hall listened to Republican Congressman Tom McClintock voice support for efforts by leaders of his party to scrap Obamacare, question the science behind climate change and dismiss the need for an investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election. It was a pivotal moment for her. Soon after, she launched her campaign for California’s 4th Congressional District, a deep-red Republican stronghold encompassing the heart of the Sierras that McClintock has represented since 2009.


What early fundraising in California says about the race for Congress: Some incumbents are behind

Los Angeles Times

California’s congressional races are pivotal to Democratic efforts to flip the House, and there are already more than 60 candidates in more than a dozen battleground districts for the 2018 election.


Blue dog Democrats Eye 2018 come back


“The Democratic Caucus likes to talk about diversity, and we’re an important part of that diversity that too often gets overlooked,” Rep. Jim Costa (D-Calif.), a Blue Dog co-chair, said in an interview in his office.




Dems struggle with whether to woo back whites or broaden coalition

San Francisco Chronicle

While Democrats are celebrating the Republican pratfall on health care as a short-term victory, they have a long-term problem that could cripple their chances of regaining power: a public perception that they stand for little besides opposing President Trump.


Reading is fundamental to American liberty

Our knowledge economy, economic self-sufficiency, and military soundness require a highly literate population.


A primer on gerrymandering and political polarization

Brookings Institution
A brief history of gerrymandering and its impact on the polarization of American politics



Thumbs up, thumbs down

Fresno Bee

Foster child’s adoption goes national; beware fake Apple store scammers; Stephanie Booroojian and Kevin Mahan create great series on Armenia.


It’s still O.J.’s America. Nothing has changed.

Fresno Bee

For nearly a quarter-century, O.J. Simpson has served as a referendum on some American flashpoint: race, class, domestic violence, justice, California, celebrity. On Thursday, as a Nevada parole board granted him an October release after nine years in prison for a 2008 robbery and kidnapping conviction, it was striking how many of those issues still divide us. And how little Simpson – and we – have changed.


Pharma ducks Obamacare debate and fights transparency. And yet it wants our trust

Sacramento Bee

Led by their trade group, the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, drugmakers insist that they have consumers’ best interests at heart and warn that over-regulation would hamper their ability to deliver life-saving drugs.


If Sacramento must have a marijuana industry, let’s at least make it fair

Sacramento Bee

Sacramento’s chief of cannabis policy wants to create more options for small-time entrepreneurs to enter the marijuana market.


Lindsey Graham, our hero on the Dream Act

San Jose Mercury Sun

“To President Trump: You’re going to have to make a decision,” said Graham Thursday. “The campaign is over. To the Republican Party: Who are we?”


Trump names an anti-science blowhard as ‘chief scientist’. Help! Congress….

San Jose Mercury News

Sam Clovis, a talk radio host, calls climate change “junk science” and “not proven.”


Policing California’s most precious resource

San Francisco Chronicle

Water disputes are a fact of life in California, and the recent drought has only increased the stakes in their outcomes. That’s why it is concerning that a Merced Democrat wants to change the resolution process.


Self-serving labor plan would strangle services for the needy

East Bay Times

The bill presents one of the biggest threats to local government finances since state lawmakers nearly two decades ago opened the door to unaffordable pension increases that have buried cities and counties in debt.




Ag department at MJC is feeling the love, 96 years into its mission

Modesto Bee

Two groups are honoring the agriculture department at Modesto Junior College, a key part of the region’s economy for 96 years. The department will be inducted Nov. 3 into the Stanislaus County Ag Hall of Fame, at the 20th annual banquet in Turlock.


Forecast Predicts Biggest Harvest Ever For California Almond Growers

Capital Public Radio News

California almond growers are looking at the biggest crop ever according to a U.S. Department of Agriculture forecast. Even bigger harvests are in the future.


Should I Eat Almond Butter?

All five of our experts are nuts for almond butter.

U.S., China sign historic rice export agreement – Lodinews.com …

Lodi News-Sentinel

After Arkansas, California is the second-largest rice-growing state in the U.S. The majority of the rice grown in California comes from the Sacramento Valley north of Lodi.


Legal medical marijuana in Fresno? It could finally happen

Fresno Bee (blog)

When it comes to marijuana, Fresno always has taken the War on Drugs approach.

It doesn’t matter whether you are talking about medical marijuana or recreational marijuana, both of which are legal in California, our city’s leaders have exercised their legislative prerogative to say “Hell, no!”


State bill aimed at “Big Weed” marketing hits small businesses too

San Francisco Chronicle

State Sen. Ben Allen, D-Santa Monica, is the sponsor of SB162, which would prohibit licensed cannabis businesses from selling or giving away promotional hats, T-shirts or any branded merchandise that bears the name or logo of a cannabis company or product.


San Diego unveils rules for marijuana cultivation, manufacturing

San Diego Union-Tribune

san Diego’s plan to allow local cultivation, manufacturing and testing of marijuana took a key step forward with the recent unveiling of proposed regulations for those activities. Leaders of the local marijuana industry are praising San Diego for being among a small group of California cities willing to allow a local marijuana supply chain in addition to permitting storefronts selling the drug.


As Trump wages war on legal marijuana, military veterans side with pot

Los Angeles Times

Frustrated by federal laws restricting their access to a drug many already rely on to help treat post-traumatic stress disorder, chronic pain and opioid addiction, veterans have become an influential lobbying force in the marijuana debate after sitting on the sidelines for years.






Law firm says it stands up for the disabled. Now it’s accused of racketeering

Fresno Bee

Law firm that chases ADA violations accused of demanding that businesses make quick settlements to avoid lawsuits.


International ‘Dark Web’ operation with California connections dismantled

Fresno Bee
In a case that included probes in Fresno and Merced, the Justice Department announced the dismantling Thursday of an international “dark web” operation that dealt in hundreds of millions of dollars of illegal drugs and other contraband.


Confident in Trump, gun owners buy fewer rifles, shotguns

Sacramento Bee

Sales of rifles and shotguns have dropped sharply in California since the election of Donald Trump, who has expressed his intent to defend Second Amendment rights and was endorsed by the National Rifle Association.


Should California drop criminal penalties for drug possession?


For better or worse, California likes to decide drug policy at the ballot box. Voters have already approved marijuana legalization, but criminal sanctions against users of heroin, cocaine and other drugs are very much intact, though they’ve been moving in a more lenient direction. It would not be surprising to see a proposition entirely eliminating criminal penalties for drug possession in the near future.



Some GOP lawmakers hail suspension of fire prevention fee as victory, but others see a bait and switch

Los Angeles Times

A fire prevention fee levied on nearly 800,000 rural California properties was so reviled by Republican lawmakers, landowners and taxpayer groups that they tried a referendum, a lawsuit, and five pieces of legislation to repeal it during the last six years.






New restaurant for Grant Grove in Kings Canyon/Sequoia

Fresno Bee

Kings Canyon and Sequoia National Parks have opened a nice new restaurant on par with some of the restaurants in Yosemite.


Law firm says it stands up for the disabled. Now it’s accused of racketeering

Fresno Bee

Law firm that chases ADA violations accused of demanding that businesses make quick settlements to avoid lawsuits.



The yellow light is on’: California loses 1,400 jobs as economy shows signs of slowing

Los Angeles Times
California’s economic engine quieted in June as employers reduced their payrolls by 1,400, according to a report Friday by the state’s Employment Development Dept. It was the second month this year that the state lost jobs.



California workers’ compensation system plagued by high costs and fraud


The 2016 annual survey of costs by the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services kept California in the No. 1 spot with an average cost of 3.24 percent of payroll for work comp insurance, 76 percent above the national average.





Should schools still offer AP classes if most students struggle on exams?

Sacramento Bee

High school students are flocking to Advanced Placement classes in an attempt to earn credits for college, boost their grade-point average and look good on university applications. But are all students ready for the college-level coursework?


Some schools much better at closing achievement gaps between their advantaged and disadvantaged students

Brooking Institution
Schools within the same district can differ substantially in the gaps between advantaged & disadvantaged students.


The ‘word gap’ and 1 city’s plan to close it

Brookings Institution

Two decades ago, researchers Betty Hart and Todd Risley revealed a particularly stark difference in the experiences of toddlers with different income levels. As Hart and Risley described it, low-income infants hear many fewer words per day than their middle- and high-income peers, totaling to a 30-million-word difference by age three. They coined this discrepancy “the word gap.” Hart and Risley also found that students who had heard fewer words as toddlers correlated with worse performance on tests of vocabulary and language development years later.

Higher Ed:


Ag department at MJC is feeling the love, 96 years into its mission

Modesto Bee

Two groups are honoring the agriculture department at Modesto Junior College, a key part of the region’s economy for 96 years. The department will be inducted Nov. 3 into the Stanislaus County Ag Hall of Fame, at the 20th annual banquet in Turlock.


New class leads to big gains in number of girls, minorities taking AP computer science exams 


Educators were cheering over newly released results from the College Board showing significant increases in the number of females, Latino and African-American students who took either the Advanced Placement computer science exam or the new computer science principles exam this spring.






Why California’s most polluting vehicles aren’t required to get smog checks

The Mercury News

It’s California’s dirty little emissions secret. As Gov. Jerry Brown and the mayors of Los Angeles and Long Beach promise an emissions-free future, some diesel fumes aren’t going anywhere. That’s because, unlike your car, there’s no routine emissions-testing program for big rigs in California.


California bill would boost electric car rebates by $3 billion, but where will the money come from?

Los Angeles Times

Over seven years, California has spent $430 million on low-emission vehicle subsidies to help lower the cost for car buyers.  Now the state Legislature is looking to extend that by another seven years, but with a price tag of $3 billion.


All Forecasts Signal Accelerating Demand for Electric Cars

Bloomberg New Energy Finance

Exxon Mobil Corp. raised its 2040 forecast to 100 million EVs from 64.8 million the previous year. Last year BP predicted 71.4 million by 2035, and now it sees 100 million. The International Energy Agency more than doubled its base-case EV forecast for 2030.


Under-radar bill focuses on polluters in poverty areas

San Francisco Chronicle

Largely overlooked as the Legislature passed a cap-and-trade extension measure was a companion bill that sought to placate environmental justice advocates who say the state’s globally ambitious climate policy overlooks a local problem: poor communities living in the shadow of polluters.


Will Gov. Campaign for Measure that Sealed Cap-n-Trade Deal?

Fox and Hounds Daily

A major concession Governor Jerry Brown made to secure Republican votes for his cap-and-trade extension was to allow a constitutional amendment to move forward that gives Republicans a chance to influence spending of cap-and-trade money one time in 2024. But that doesn’t mean Brown will campaign to pass the amendment.


California pushes on with plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions

The Economist
Altogether, the state is making progress. State-wide emissions peaked in 2004 and have since declined by 10%


California Shows How States Can Lead on Climate Change

New York Times

California, which has long been a pioneer in fighting climate change, renewed its commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions last week by extending, to 2030, its cap-and-trade program, which effectively puts a price on emissions. It’s a bold, bipartisan commitment that invites similarly ambitious policies from other states, and it sends a strong signal to the world that millions of Americans regard with utmost seriousness a threat the Trump administration refuses to acknowledge, let alone reckon with.


Political Road Map: You’ll get to vote on a part of Sacramento’s big climate change plans

Los Angeles Times

As part of their plan to cut California’s greenhouse gas emissions, lawmakers in Sacramento are backing a boost in the size of the state’s Constitution.  Already one of the longest governing blueprints of any state, the California Constitution could be amended under a provision contained in last week’s sweeping climate change agreement. It would force a one-time vote in the Legislature before 2024, a referendum on spending future proceeds collected from the state’s cap-and-trade program.


Meet the lab-coat liberals


The lab-coat liberals are marching on Washington.

Dismayed by President Donald Trump’s perceived hostility to climate science and other areas of research, a surge of scientists is entering the public arena and running for political office for the first time.




Deal with conservationists pares giant California solar farm

Sacramento Bee

A solar project that would have erected 1.2 million shiny solar panels over four square miles of remote Central California range will be cut sharply in size, under an agreement Friday with environmental groups that are concerned about the impact to endangered wildlife.


Eclipse plea from regulators: Stay in the dark 

San Francisco Chronicle

When a solar eclipse darkens the sky next month, California energy regulators have a small request: Don’t turn on the lights. Or, if you must, please make sure they’re LEDs. The Aug. 21 eclipse that will completely block the sun across a wide arc of North America arrives at a time when California is relying more and more on solar power.




Why are birth rates higher for Latina teens than others? It’s complicated, experts say 

Fresno Bee

When Viririana Covarrubias announced she was pregnant at 15, a family meeting was held. But she was merely a bystander.


West Nile virus infects Manteca resident

Modesto Bee

Health officials on Friday reported the first case of West Nile illness this year in the Northern San Joaquin Valley. The virus spread by mosquito bites infected a 70-year-old Manteca man, said Dr. Alvaro Garza, public health officer for San Joaquin County.


California prepares to fight GOP attempts to undermine Obamacare

The Mercury News

Hell hath no fury like a president scorned. And with the embarrassing collapse of the GOP-controlled Senate’s plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, many health care experts predict that Donald Trump and his administration will do whatever it takes to “let Obamacare fail,” as the president put it last week.


California’s Obamacare exchanges in limbo

Los Angeles Daily News

California’s Obamacare exchange scrubbed its annual rate announcement this week, the latest sign of how the ongoing political drama over the Affordable Care Act is roiling insurance markets nationwide.


Can California Implement a Single-Payer Health Care System Without Going to the Ballot?

California Budget & Policy Center

Senate Bill 562 (Lara and Atkins), which would establish a single-payer health care system with universal coverage in California, was approved by the state Senate in early June, but has stalled in the Assembly. Although it appears that SB 562 will not move forward in 2017, a single-payer proposal could be revived in 2018. This post is the first in a series examining key issues related to SB 562 and, more generally, to efforts to create a universal, single-payer health care system in California. Future posts in this series will examine estimates of how much a single-payer system could cost, proposals for raising the state revenues needed to fund such a system, and other issues.


Is the U.S. Ready for a Single-Payer Health Care System?

Harvard Business Review
The American people are coming to see health care as a right.

Plans To Replace Or Fix Obamcare Still Leave Out Some In Rural America


While Obamacare is largely viewed as a success in California – the state marketplace, Covered California, is one of the most financially stable in the country – it has not worked as well for folks in this rural, northeast corner of the state.  There are two insurers selling plans in each county here, but residents say that has not created enough competition to bring down prices. Plus, many doctors these residents are used to seeing don’t take the marketplace plans.


Kevin McCarthy’s False claim on Obamacare sign-ups

PolitiFact California

Republican House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield is no fan of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.  But did he accurately characterize sign-ups under the federal health law in a recent interview on Fox Business?


Fact-checking claims by Kamala Harris and Dianne Feinstein on GOP health bill

PolitiFact California
Harris and Feinstein made several claims about the Senate plan and its potential impact on Californians in a call with reporters on June 26, 2017.


What a scientist suggests you tell your kids about legal marijuana

PBS NewsHour

With marijuana legal in some form in 26 states and the District of Columbia, the old script for talking to your children about pot is changing. behavioral scientist Elizabeth D’Amico, who has researched drug and alcohol use among teens for more than 20 years, giver her humble opinion about what kids need to know.


Should I Eat Almond Butter?

All five of our experts are nuts for almond butter.



Madera County Board of Supervisors says ACLU lawsuit is ‘misguided’

Fresno Bee

The Madera County Board of Supervisors denies the claims in a American Civil Liberties Union lawsuit that allege the board violated California open government laws when it held a closed meeting on March 7 to discuss having the county’s jail chief work with federal immigration authorities.


Navarrette: How the DREAM Act divides families

Sacramento Bee

Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois have introduced a new DREAM Act.  Oh boy. I really wish they hadn’t done that.




Land Use:


Modernizing government’s approach to transportation and land use data: Challenges and opportunities

Brookings Institution
In the fields of transportation and land use planning, the public sector has long taken the leading role in the collection, analysis, and dissemination of data. Often, public data sets drawn from traveler diaries, surveys, and supply-side transportation maps were the only way to understand how people move around in the built environment – how they get to work, how they drop kids off at school, where they choose to work out or relax, and so on.




Help coming for Modesto tenants in blighted building; landlord could face legal fight

Modesto Bee

Help may be on the way for the 80 poor people being evicted from a downtown apartment building Modesto is condemning.  Social service agencies will meet this week with the tenants, and a Bay Area attorney says he expects to sue the landlord on behalf of the tenants. Modesto has declared the two-story building of 27 studio apartments unfit and unsafe for occupancy.


Should Californians pay more to build affordable housing?

Sacramento Bee

Gov. Jerry Brown and Democratic leaders last week touted their “shared commitment” to reach a deal to address the state’s housing crisis, after securing the supermajority needed to extend California’s cap-and-trade program to 2030.


Walters: Will California politicians really address housing crisis or settle for tokenism?


Having checked gas taxes and cap-and-trade off their 2017 agenda, California political leaders will turn to the state’s housing crisis after a month-long midsummer vacation.


Santa Monica’s ‘grand bargain’ on growth and housing: A model for other cities?

Los Angeles Times

Like many cities in Southern California, Santa Monica is split between two entrenched camps when it comes to the politics of growth, housing and development. Here’s how Rick Cole, Santa Monica’s city manager — and before that a deputy mayor of Los Angeles, city manager of Ventura and Azusa and mayor of Pasadena — describes the gulf.




One of five Merced County supervisors declined an automatic raise

Merced Sun-Star

Weeks after Merced County Sheriff Vern Warnke pleaded with the board of supervisors to grant pay increases to attract and retain deputies, all but one county supervisor quietly accepted automatic pay increases.

CalPERS shunned by some private equity firms 


CalPERS needs the high yields from private equity to help hit its long-term earnings target. But some firms have rejected or limited CalPERS investments, saying the big pension system has become unpredictable and difficult to work with.  


Measure L spending surfaces; why some Stanislaus County roads won’t see repairs soon

Modesto Bee

When will they start fixing streets, like the government promised to get voters to pass a transportation tax last November?


Fitz’s Stockton: Take the low road to Stockton

Stockton Record

Have you ever been gridlocked on the Altamont? The traffic jams turn your brain to cement slurry.  You don’t have to be a slave to the highway. An irregular network of old roads wends around the Altamont and zig-zags to Stockton across the countryside.


Caltrans announces first road projects funded by new gas tax, registration fee increase

Sacramento Bee

In a press statement issued Friday morning, Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty described his department’s actions as a major mobilization.  “Caltrans is acting quickly to get to work,” he wrote. “This summer we will deploy construction teams across the state to resurface highways, improve safety for motorists and start filling more potholes than ever before.”


California’s controversial gas tax will soon repave these roads

Sacramento Bee

State highway officials announced Friday they will launch 13 highway resurfacing projects this month – including one on Highway 50 outside Placerville – with upcoming funds from Senate Bill 1, the controversial gas taxes and fee increases recently approved by the legislature.


Americans Say They Back Higher Gas Tax to Fix Crumbling Roads

Transport Topics

Congress hasn’t raised the federal gas tax since 1993 when Bill Clinton was president, but a narrow majority of Americans would support an increase to help fix crumbling roads and bridges in their own states.  55% of Americans in a Bloomberg National Poll say they would back an increase. The concept has bipartisan support, with majorities of Republicans (51%) and Democrats (67%) backing the idea.


A legislator lost his daughter in a crash. He doesn’t want others to feel that pain

Sacramento Bee

Assembly Bill 63 requires new drivers under 21 years old to take lessons and adhere to driving restrictions during their first year on the road.


To save his climate change program, Jerry Brown sacrificed his bullet train

Los Angeles Times

When he was cajoling lawmakers to extend the centerpiece of California’s ambitious climate change program, Gov. Jerry Brown talked a lot about hard choices and the compromises necessary to get politically controversial legislation passed. Turns out that to get a deal, Brown may have sacrificed one of his own pet projects — California’s bullet train.

See also:

·       Brown’s cap-and-trade deal could eventually kill high-speed rail  San Francisco Chronicle

Will San Jose to Fresno bullet train become the Silicon Valley Express?

East Bay Times
“Why not build new communities, well-designed communities, sustainable communities in the Central Valley?” asked Jim Wunderman, president and CEO of the Bay Area Council, a business-sponsored public policy group. Why not “have more folks live there and have an efficient and pleasant train commute into the Bay Area?”


Musk says government likes plan for high-speed tunnels

Fresno Bee
Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk says he has “verbal government approval” to build a tunnel for high-speed transportation from New York to Washington that could break ground by the end of this year.

Update on Fresno’s Bus Rapid Transit

FAX Q News

FAX is dedicated to improving the quality of life for our entire community. By working each day to expand transportation options in Fresno, we aim to increase community-wide access to all of the the amazing facets of this city.


Modernizing government’s approach to transportation and land use data: Challenges and opportunities

Brookings Institution
In the fields of transportation and land use planning, the public sector has long taken the leading role in the collection, analysis, and dissemination of data. Often, public data sets drawn from traveler diaries, surveys, and supply-side transportation maps were the only way to understand how people move around in the built environment – how they get to work, how they drop kids off at school, where they choose to work out or relax, and so on.




Rivers offer relief (be careful) as Modesto-area highs keep hovering around 100

Modesto Bee

Yet another 100-degree-plus day descended on the Modesto area Sunday, but a brief break is in store. The National Weather Service forecasts highs in the mid-90s from Monday to Wednesday, followed by 100 or so for the rest of the week.


Catastrophic engineering expert asks: Is Oroville Dam leaking?

Sacramento Bee

One of the country’s foremost experts on catastrophic engineering failures released a new report Thursday on the troubled Oroville Dam that asks a disturbing question: Is the country’s tallest dam leaking?


LOIS HENRY: Cowboy tactics not helping turn failed McAllister Ranch subdivision into Kern’s newest water bank


It’s been less than a month since Buena Vista Water Storage District bought the remaining 600 acres of the failed McAllister Ranch subdivision and it’s already butting heads with Bakersfield city officials.


Delta tunnel project takes another step forward

LA Times

The proposal to build a major tunnel system under the hub of California’s waterworks won another approval Friday when the state finalized its environmental review of the project.

Delta survives latest ‘test’


The engineers who scrambled to prevent Delta farms from flooding this year have long insisted that the levees surrounding those low-lying islands are not as fragile as they’re sometimes portrayed to be.


Bill to help build surface water plant passes committee

The Turlock Journal

Legislation authored by state Senator Anthony Cannella, R-Ceres, to improve local water supply has passed another important milestone. SB 373 passed the Assembly Committee on Local Government on July 12 in a unanimous, bi-partisan vote. It now goes to the Assembly Floor for a final vote on its journey to Gov. Brown for signature and becoming law.




Top 10 reasons to live in Oakhurst

Sierra Star

“Bitsy” and I just love it here. But is this the time to consider geographic transition ourselves? We’re not getting any younger. Or stronger. Or faster.


Fitzgerald: From Sirius, with love

Stockton Record

Sirius, the Dog Star, rises in the east before sunrise this time of year, signaling so-called dog days, summer’s hottest. It seems the little doggie is out of sorts this year.


Is CA an incubator — or a bubble?

Fox and Hounds Daily

California, do you want to be an incubator for great ideas—or a bubble that shuts out the world?