July 26, 2019



Bullet train clears hurdle as Trump administration OKs state environmental oversight

Fresno Bee

The Trump administration has lifted a major hurdle for California’s efforts to develop its ambitious high-speed rail program, effectively delegating its federal responsibility for environmental review of route sections to the state.

See also:

●     California’s beleaguered bullet train project is getting a management shakeup Los Angeles Times

●     California High-Speed Rail Authority Receives Important Federal Approval CA HSR

North SJ Valley:

Cannella announces run for District 5 supervisor seat


Former Ceres mayor and state legislator Anthony Cannella has announced his campaign to to run for the District 5 seat on the Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors.

Modesto center for LGBTQ people will offer ‘safe spaces’ during Straight Pride event

Modesto Bee

A Modesto group announced Thursday it will provide “safe spaces” to LGBTQ people during the Aug. 24 event planned by the National Straight Pride Coalition.

See also:

●      Proud to be straight? No — proud to hate Modesto Bee

Second highest attendance ever at Stanislaus County Fair; weather, concerts credited

Modesto Bee

Some 260,000 people streamed through its gates this year, just shy of its all-time record high of 261,089 attendees in 1989. That 30-year mark came close to falling thanks to a robust concert schedule and other attractions, said fair CEO Matt Cranford.

Central SJ Valley:

Five times Fresno, California was ahead of the trends

Fresno Bee

Those following Los Angeles food trends no doubt noticed the nostalgically charged “Good Burger” pop-up that opened in West Hollywood on Wednesday. The restaurant is based on a fictionalized eatery from the ’90s Nikelodeon show “All That” as a promo for the show’s upcoming reboot.

Amanda Renteria on Central Valley Politics, Working for DiFi, and Life on the Hot Corner


Marisa and Guy Marzorati preview next week’s Democratic presidential debates, and discuss why criminal justice policy could take center stage on Wednesday night (0:36). Then, Amanda Renteria, interim president of Emerge, joins to talk about her childhood in the Central Valley, playing third base on the Stanford softball team, working for Senator Dianne Feinstein, running for congress and governor, and helping more women win office

South SJ Valley:

David Valadao planning DC campaign fundraiser. When will he make rematch vs. TJ Cox official?

Fresno Bee

Former congressman David Valadao hasn’t yet officially announced he’s running to get his old seat back, but he has announced a fundraiser for his campaign in Washington, D.C.


California skirts Trump administration, signs gas mileage and emissions deal with 4 automakers


Four major automakers have reached a deal with California to toughen standards for gas mileage and greenhouse gas emissions, bypassing the Trump administration’s push to relax mileage standards nationwide instead.

See also:

●      California’s emissions deal with automakers dodges Trump EPA plan to gut rules CALmatters

●      Trump officials dismiss California deal with automakers, vow to move forward on rule Sacramento Bee

●     EDITORIAL: Even car companies aren’t going along with Trump’s rollback of mileage and emissions standards Los Angeles Times

‘Wrong.’ California Democrats decry return of federal death penalty

Sacramento Bee

California’s top Democrats took to social media Thursday to condemn the Attorney General William Barr’s decision to lift a 20-year moratorium on the federal death penalty.

See also:

●     Justice Department resumes capital punishment after nearly two decades, orders executions of five inmates Visalia Times Delta

●      Capital Punishment / Death Penalty Politico

Lawmakers Push to Give Newsom Power to Call Fracking Moratorium, Setting Stage for Oil Industry Battle


Nearly two weeks ago, the day after Gov. Gavin Newsom fired California’s top oil and gas regulator, the governor said he does not have the legal authority to impose a moratorium on permits for hydraulic fracturing, known as fracking.

State insurance office again overturns a judge’s ruling to a political donor’s benefit

San Diego Union-Tribune

Move comes after Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara says he is recused from all cases involving Applied Underwriters.

White men hold most state supreme court seats, with California as notable exception, report says

San Francisco Chronicle

State supreme courts across the nation remain mostly composed of white men, while the population whose legal rights they oversee grows more diverse, a new study shows.


The two narratives of the Mueller testimony


Though both Democrats and Republicans tried to shape their own narratives of the special counsel’s investigation, Elaine Kamarck says Wednesday’s hearings likely didn’t change many minds. But one thing is clear, she says: This story is far from over.

See also:

●      Fact Check of Mueller hearings Washington Post

Senate report: all 50 states were targeted by Russian interference ahead of 2016 elections

PBS NewsHour

Robert Mueller warned that Russian interference is still happening “as we sit here.”

See also:

●      Senate Panel Urges More Work to Prevent Election Attacks Wall Street Journal

●      Iran, other countries prepared to follow Russia’s disinformation playbook in 2020, researchers say Washington Post

Election infrastructure bill remains stalled as Senate Intelligence panel releases first volume of Russia report

Roll Call

Sen. James Lankford still wants to work on paper trail legislation.

See also: 

·       Opinion: Mitch McConnell is right. Secure, open elections would elect more Democrats. Washington Post

Facebook transparency effort fails to stop shady political ads


Facebook promised to make it easier to track political ads on its global social network. So far, those efforts have failed. Ahead of elections in Canada, the United States and possibly the United Kingdom, highly partisan groups continue to buy advertising on Facebook with limited oversight over how their posts are funded or whom they target, according to independent researchers and lawmakers on both sides of the Atlantic.

Editorial: Washington’s love affair with Big Tech is officially over

Los Angeles Times

Unless Congress passes a law giving internet users real privacy protections, including the right to control which bits of personal information can be collected and shared, consumers will remain vulnerable to companies like Facebook that collect and exploit their data.

See also:

·       Chris Hughes Worked to Create Facebook. Now, He Is Working to Break It Up New York Times

●     Facebook’s Ex-security Chief Details His ‘observatory’ For Internet Abuse WIRED

●     Fox: Crackdown on Big Tech a Threat to California’s Economy? Fox & Hounds

Elections 2020:

California 2020 Countdown: Trump tax returns debate, Buttigieg and Inslee hit Bay Area

San Jose Mercury

Could California dems bump Trump from presidential ballot? President Trump could be forced to decide between getting on California’s presidential primary ballot and releasing his tax returns if Gov. Gavin Newsom signs a new bill that passed the California legislature this month.

“She’s Dangerous”: Gop Insiders Fear Kamala Could Be The Next Obama

Vanity Fair

Rattled by her deft vivisection of Joe Biden at the last debate, Republicans wonder how Harris might do against a real villain like Trump. “She doesn’t come across as a nutjob,” worries one GOP operative. “Kamala is a nightmare,” says another.

Democratic presidential candidates divided over returning donations from foreign government lobbyists

San Jose Mercury

From D.C. lobbyists representing Saudi Arabia and Qatar to a radio operator broadcasting a Russian state-run news channel, Americans working on behalf of foreign governments have sent the Democratic presidential candidates tens of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions. As the donations flow in, there’s a growing divide among the campaigns about whether to pocket the money or send it back.

Trump knocks Fox News after poll shows him losing to Biden by 10 points


President Donald Trump renewed his attacks on Fox News on Friday, complaining that the network’s pollsters aren’t favorable enough to him after claiming the news organization had been “Proud Warriors” for him in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.


5 facts about the state of the news media in 2018

Pew Research Center

Every year since 2004, Pew Research Center has issued an assessment of the state of the news media, tracking key audience and economic indicators for a variety of sectors within the U.S. journalism industry.

Republicans and Democrats Don’t Understand Each Other

The Atlantic

A new study shows Americans have little understanding of their political adversaries—and education doesn’t help.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg defends Kavanaugh, Gorsuch as ‘very decent and very smart’


Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg came to the defense of her more conservative colleagues on the bench, Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch.

Opinion: The Pessimistic Legacy of John Paul Stevens


Behind the bow tie and the civility, he’d developed some real worries about America—and thought it might be time for a few break-glass solutions.


Sunday, July 28, at 10 a.m. on ABC30 – Maddy Report: “Protecting Students from Active Shooters: Are Schools Making the Grade?” – Guest: California State Auditor, Elaine Howle. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

Sunday, July 28, at 10 a.m. on Newstalk 580AM/105.9FM (KMJ) –Maddy Report – Valley Views Edition: “Campus Shootings: Are Local Schools Prepared?” – Guests: Doug Collins with the Merced City School District and Steve France with the Clovis Unified School District. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

Sunday, July 28, at 7:30 a.m. on UniMas 61 (KTTF) – El Informe Maddy“Fresno Bridge Academy: A Model to Replicate Statewide” – Guests: Pete Weber, Fundador y Dir. Junta Directiva de Fresno Bridge Academy & Arasely Linares, Directora de Programas de Reading and Beyond. Host: Maddy Institute Program Coordinator, Maria Jeans.


The future of Tulare County’s largest medical marijuana dispensary is uncertain

Visalia Times Delta

A “sorry we’re closed” sign will be posted on Goshen’s CannaCanHelp Inc.’s door. Tulare County’s medical marijuana dispensary owner learned late last week that the state license had been canceled, a month before it was set to expire.

Walmart now delivers beer, booze (and groceries too) to doorsteps in Fresno and Clovis

Fresno Bee

In fact, you can get all kinds of alcohol – beer, wine and spirits – delivered to your door from four area Walmart stores. The retailer announced Tuesday it had launched the service in Fresno and Clovis.

Madera food processor takes advantage of Opportunity Zone

Business Journal

Opportunity Zone investment incentives may be just the avenue a Madera farmer and food processor needs to turn his company’s methods for treating almonds into a “game changer” for the entire food industry.

Holy Guacamole! Avocados Are Pricey And It’s The Pits


What’s a Mexican restaurant without guacamole? What’s a hipster cafe without avocado toast? Some restaurateurs may be contemplating these questions this summer as the price of avocados has spiked to almost double the price a year ago.

USDA Sets Plans for $16 Billion in New Aid to Farmers

Wall Street Journal

Fresh support for agricultural sector follows stalled U.S.-China trade talks.



Human smuggling sweep at Camp Pendleton leads to arrest of 16 Marines

Sacramento Bee

More than a dozen Marines allegedly tied to human smuggling were arrested at Camp Pendleton in an early morning sweep Thursday.

‘Wrong.’ California Democrats decry return of federal death penalty

Sacramento Bee

California’s top Democrats took to social media Thursday to condemn the Attorney General William Barr’s decision.

California AG sends thousands of marijuana criminal reviews to prosecutors, sparking questions on all sides

San Jose Mercury

California just took a key step toward fulfilling a major promise of marijuana legalization — to provide relief for people previously convicted of cannabis-related crimes.

As Youthful Arrests Spike, Their Consequences Rise, Too


The rise in arrests affects all groups of Americans ages 26–35 studied: men and women, black and white. Although arrests of black men by 26 remain more common (33 percent for black men versus 23 percent for white men), the trend toward more arrests by that age is much stronger in relative and absolute terms among white men. The arrest rate for white men by 26 has increased almost threefold in recent decades.

Public Safety:

Gun advocates sue to stop new CA ammunition law

Sacramento Bee

Gun rights advocates are suing to block California’s new ammunition purchasing law, calling it an unconstitutional scheme that violates the Second Amendment.

2nd Amendment doesn’t mean California must allow semiautomatic rifles, judge rules

San Francisco Chronicle

A federal judge has upheld California’s ban on owning, manufacturing or selling semiautomatic rifles and the “bullet buttons” that convert a conventional rifle into a rapid-fire weapon.

Armed With Knowledge


The number of gun-related deaths per year in America is now at its highest point in the last 30 years. But in California, in that same time frame, the numbers have fallen by nearly 30%—due in no small part to the relentless efforts of Dr. Garen Wintemute, a Sacramento physician who employs science and data to help implement pioneering gun violence legislation. It turns out that the best way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun research center.

Children who have died from accidental firearm use in first six months of 2019

Children’s Firearm Safety Alliance

In the first six months of 2019, there were at least 130 incidents where a child under the age of 18 gained access to a loaded, unsecured firearm and pulled the trigger. In a number of cases, more than one person was injured or killed in a single incident.  Texas leads the nation with 19 deaths.  California has had 4.

Child Drowning Rates Drop As Communities Adopt Stricter Building Codes

California Healthline

Some welcome news at the height of summer swimming season: Children are far less likely to drown in California than they were in the 1980s — and child drowning rates have continued to fall even in the past decade, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


California utilities agree to pay $10.5 billion into new wildfire fund

Los Angeles Times

California’s investor-owned utility companies have agreed to open up their wallets to pay into the state’s wildfire fund in exchange for less financial responsibility when blazes are linked to their equipment.

See also:

●      Major California utilities agree to pay into wildfire fund Associated Press

The fire-resistant home is coming to California, and here’s what it looks like

SF Gate

The Santa Rosa family home of Howard Booster survived the raging flame front that devoured nearly his entire neighborhood at about 4 a.m. on October 9, 2017, amid the Tubbs Fire, among the deadliest and most devastating infernos in California history.



Justice Department approves T-Mobile’s $26.5 billion takeover of Sprint


U.S. regulators are approving T-Mobile’s $26.5 billion takeover of rival Sprint, despite fears of higher prices and job cuts.

See also:

●      $26 billion merger between T-Mobile and Sprint approved by Department of Justice, raising concerns about wireless consolidation Washington Post

Fresno retailer says fur ban would be ‘disastrous’

Business Journal

A bill proposing to effectively end the sale of new fur in California passed out of its second Senate committee recently after approval in May from the Assembly.

Poverty in California


About 7 million Californians—including almost 2 million children—lived in poverty in 2017. Most poor families are working.

Consumerism isn’t a sellout—if capitalism works for all


Richard Reeves examines some of the critiques of consumerism in capitalist societies, the keys to making smarter and more sustainable choices about what we buy, and how regulators can do a better job of protecting consumers and ensuring fair markets.

Did Trump Achieve 3% Growth in 2018? Target Not Met, Per New Data


President Donald Trump failed to achieve his much-ballyhooed 3% target for economic growth in 2018 after all.

See also:

●      US economy slowed to 2.1% growth rate in second quarter Fresno Bee

●      U.S. economy slowed in the spring but remains healthy, expanding at a 2.1% annual rate Washington Post

●     U.S. economic growth slowed in 2018 as consumer rebound was offset by rising trade gap Politico

Real Time Economics: The Outlook is Getting ‘Worse and Worse’

Wall Street Journal

We’ll get a big-picture view of the U.S. economy this morning.

The Last All-Male Board on the S&P 500 Is No Longer

Wall Street Journal

Much of the change has come amid pressure from big investors such as State Street Global Advisors, BlackRock Inc. and a number of state pension funds that in some cases have withheld proxy votes if all-male boards didn’t bring in women. A new California mandate requiring all publicly traded companies with headquarters in the state to have at least one female director by the end of this year also appears to be spurring change.

Charging Amazon with having ‘destroyed’ American retail is a terrible reason for an antitrust investigation


American retail is alive and kicking, and US retail sales this year are expected to rise to more than $3.8 trillion.

No, Mexico didn’t take 30% of U.S. auto business as Trump claims


Amid on-again, off-again threats of tariffs and an ongoing border crisis, President Donald Trump has kept the pedal to the metal on one specific claim about the United States and Mexico.


A Fresno employee gave 2-week notice, then got a raise. Now the rules will change

Fresno Bee

Two Fresno City Council members teamed up this week to put a stop to city employees getting retroactive raises before they leave their jobs.

California unions say Trump Labor pick is “anti-union”

Sacramento Bee

California unions don’t expect President Donald Trump’s administration to get any friendlier toward labor with the president’s pick of corporate attorney Eugene Scalia for Labor secretary.

DoorDash’s about-face on tipping shows customers have more clout than workers

Los Angeles Times

Since at least February, DoorDash drivers have known the company was at times dipping into their tips to cover their base pay. But it wasn’t until Tuesday night that the on-demand meal delivery service said it would stop.



Fresno Unified releases second report, details new misconduct by trustee against coaches

Fresno Bee

Fresno Unified on Thursday released the second of two reports from investigations into misconduct by Trustee Terry Slatic, showing Slatic had continued his misbehavior despite a scolding letter from the superintendent earlier this year.

See also:

●     Fresno Unified board member threatened coach over son’s match: Report abc30

Buchanan named the State School of the Year for sports excellence

Clovis RoundUp

After securing both a state championship in boys wrestling and girls track and field, Cal-Hi Sports has named Buchanan High School.

‘Home-school charters’ let families use state dollars for Disneyland, horseback riding lessons and more

Los Angeles Times

In California, there’s a way parents can use money from the government to buy multi-day Disneyland Park Hopper passes, San Diego Zoo family memberships, tickets to Medieval Times and dolphin encounters at SeaWorld.

Science gets hands on in summer STEM programs, but funding challenges remain


Fifty years after the first moon landing, students in California this summer are getting a taste of space life. At Zero Robotics, middle school students gather in teams across San Jose for five weeks to design a code that will control a small satellite. The best code is then uploaded to the International Space Station where live astronauts judge a competition between the satellites programmed by students from around the country.

Higher Ed:

How does sexual violence affect UC students? That’s a question UC is afraid to answer

Sacramento Bee

Where are students being sexually assaulted on University of California campuses? At frat parties? In their dorms?

FBI found clues to college admissions scandal years earlier in massive Medicare fraud case

Los Angeles Times

Federal authorities were combing through the finances and phone records of a Miami businessman suspected of Medicare fraud when they came across a curious name: Rick Singer.

CSU Campuses Easing the Transition to College Life


Underserved students often arrive on campus with a unique set of challenges. The CSU’s Transition to College programs are helping them overcome barriers so they can hit the ground running.

A New Look at College Enrollment Rates


New data from the California Department of Education show notable disparities in college enrollment across racial/ethnic groups and throughout the state’s regions—including within school districts.



Solving climate change is possible, we already have the tools, says energy expert Hal Harvey

San Jose Mercury

Climate change isn’t just a problem for future generations. The impacts of a warming climate are happening now, with higher temperatures, more extreme droughts, larger forest fires, melting ice caps, more erratic weather and rising sea levels.

California’s emissions deal with automakers dodges Trump EPA plan to gut rules


Faced with a federal plan to gut emissions regulations, California makes its own deal with four automakers—and hopes more will sign on, soon.

See also:

●      Trump vows to lower fuel emission standards after CA deal  Sacramento Bee

Commentary: Earthquakes can disrupt California water supply. We must prepare


Recent earthquakes have us all thinking about emergency preparedness. Whether that’s updating the earthquake kit, putting supplies in the car trunk, or finally affixing the bookshelves to the wall, there are steps we can take personally to prepare for the worst.

See also:

●      California Earthquakes Caused $200 Million in Damage, Report Says Wall Street Journal

●        San Andreas fault is a 730-mile monster. Ridgecrest earthquake was tiny taste of possible destruction Los Angeles Times

America’s Dirtiest Beaches: Here Is The Poop


What have we dung to our beaches, America? Passed in 1972, the Clean Water Act set the goal of all waterways in the U.S. being safe for swimming. However, 46 years later, a new report entitled “Safe for Swimming? Water Quality at Our Beaches” showed just how poopy a job our country has done in striving for this goal. The report revealed that over half of the 4,523 beaches tested in 2018 “had potentially unsafe levels of fecal contamination on at least a day.”


Lawmakers Push to Give Newsom Power to Call Fracking Moratorium, Setting Stage for Oil Industry Battle


Nearly two weeks ago, the day after Gov. Gavin Newsom fired California’s top oil and gas regulator, the governor said he does not have the legal authority to impose a moratorium on permits for hydraulic fracturing, known as fracking.

Chevron appeals state order on oil leak near McKittrick

Bakersfield Californian

Taking the position it needs more specific instructions from regulators, Chevron has filed an appeal of a state order calling on the company to “take all measures” to prevent further flows of oil at California’s largest and most visible petroleum-related accident in years.

See also:

●     Kern County Oil Seep Exceeds A Million Gallons; Newsom Pays A Visit KVPR



Mosquito spraying in south county after woman contracts West Nile

Stockton Record

Ground and aerial spraying will be conducted in south San Joaquin County in response to increased adult mosquito populations and the detection of West Nile virus.

U.S. lawmakers grill e-cigarette maker Juul over efforts targeted at schoolchildren


E-cigarette maker Juul Labs Inc funded a “holistic health education” camp as part of efforts to market directly to school-aged children, members of a U.S. congressional panel said on Thursday, citing internal company documents.

See also:

●      Concord congressman calls Juul ‘the worst of the Bay Area’ San Francisco Chronicle

●      Richmond moves toward e-cigarette ban; critic likens it to Quarter-Pounder ban San Francisco Chronicle

Human Services:

Poverello House CEO resigns

Business Journal

Poverello House CEO Cruz Avila has announced his decision to resign from the role he has held since 2013.

See also:

●      After six years running Poverello House, CEO resigns to head another community group Fresno Bee

Need a ride to the doctor? El Concilio can help — for free

Stockton Record

People who are in need of rides to non-emergency medical appointments can receive free transportation services because of a recent partnership between El Concilio and the Abbott Fund.

New Turlock program offers respite for caregivers

Modesto Bee

Adults with cerebral palsy can enjoy crafts, games and even karaoke at a respite center in Turlock while their families get a break from 24-hour daily care.

Home Visiting Can Improve Outcomes for Children, But Few Receive Services

California Budget & Policy Center

The early childhood years are the foundation for lifelong well-being. Yet, despite the state’s strong economic growth, about 1 in 10 of California’s children are born without important resources strongly associated with child health and well-being, such as access to health care or economic resources.

Getting Older, Going Broke: Who’s Going to Pay for Long-Term Care?

The Pew Charitable Trusts

Long-term care insurance is, for most of us, prohibitively expensive. Employer-based health insurance doesn’t cover daily, extended care. Medicare pays for only a short stay in a nursing home or a limited amount of care at home.


Private inspectors paint a rosy picture of U.S. immigrant detention centers. Audits find otherwise

Los Angeles Times

A review reveals disturbing patterns about the company’s audits, including a general willingness to accept the accounts of the facilities that the company is paid to scrutinize, and to discount detainees’ complaints.

Ninth Circuit ruling could wipe out hundreds of family-separations convictions

San Francisco Chronicle

A federal appeals court in California substantially narrowed the government’s ability to charge people for crossing the border illegally — a case that could invalidate hundreds of prosecutions that were at the core of the Trump administration’s separations of migrant families last year.

Trump is challenging what it means to be American, and naturalized citizens are unsettled

Los Angeles Times

On the day Donald Trump was inaugurated president, Sonora Jha was walking past a group of white men at a work site in downtown Seattle when one told her, “Go home!” Jha, shaken, didn’t know whether to confront the men or let it go: This was her home. After immigrating from India, the author became a naturalized American citizen in 2016. An equal, or so she thought.

How Trump Broke the Immigration Courts


Thanks to White House orders, they’re more jammed up than ever.



LGBTQ-centric neighborhoods offer home price premiums, studies suggest

Los Angeles Times

The term “gayborhood premium” might sound like the bonus round of an HGTV foray into game shows. In truth, it’s what homeowners reap when living in LGBTQ-centric areas, according to recent Zillow research.


As homelessness crisis grows, the Trump administration has made few new efforts

Los Angeles Times

As homelessness has worsened in many American cities, including Los Angeles, the Trump administration has largely neglected the issue, proposing few new initiatives and pushing cuts to housing programs that, if adopted, would likely make the crisis worse.

Politifact CA: Fact-checking claims on California’s unsheltered homeless population

Politifact CA

During his recent push for a ‘right to shelter’ law, Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg made eye-opening claims about the share of unsheltered homeless people in California compared with New York City — and on the soaring rate of homeless deaths in two major cities in the state.


Sweeping budget deal passes House despite weak GOP support


Trump had pushed House Republicans to back the bill, but most opposed it.

See also:

●      Why Trump swallowed a budget deal that bleeds red ink Politico

●     House Approves Debt-Ceiling Bill Despite GOP Dissent Wall Street Journal

●      House passes two-year budget deal to lift spending, suspend debt ceiling Washington Post

●      House passes sweeping budget deal after late Trump push Politico

Budget Decider: Making choices that impact millions


California lawmakers have passed a $215 billion budget filled with progressive eye-catchers. But what if you had the awesome power to tax and spend, charting a new course for California?

Counter Inequality With Private Social Security Accounts

Wall Street Journal

The current program yields about 1% a year, while the market can give retirees access to true wealth.

America’s Public Pensions Are Stuck In The Clouds

Wall Street Journal

The funding strength of retirement systems across the U.S. rests on rosy assumptions.


Tired of the trash on Fresno’s freeways? There’s a new plan to fix that

Fresno Bee

Fresno Mayor Lee Brand on Thursday announced a pilot program with Caltrans and the Measure C tax board to get Fresno’s freeways cleaned up.

See also:

●     New program aims to make Fresno a cleaner city abc30

Hiltzik: In climate deal with automakers, California finds solution to Trump — ignore him

Los Angeles Times

It became clear in February that if the country’s auto emissions and mileage standards were to be maintained, California would have to go it alone.

Was the Automotive Era a Terrible Mistake?

The New Yorker

For a century, we’ve loved our cars. They haven’t loved us back.

More Americans have died in car crashes since 2000 than in both World Wars

Washington Post

Since January 2000, more Americans have died in car crashes than did in both World Wars, and the overwhelming majority of the wrecks were caused by speeding, drunk or distracted drivers, according to government data.

See also:

●      The Teens Who Play Dead to Save Lives Topic Magazine

Bullet train clears hurdle as Trump administration OKs state environmental oversight

Fresno Bee

The Trump administration has lifted a major hurdle for California’s efforts to develop its ambitious high-speed rail program, effectively delegating its federal responsibility for environmental review of route sections to the state.

See also:

●     California’s beleaguered bullet train project is getting a management shakeup Los Angeles Times

●      California High-Speed Rail Authority Receives Important Federal Approval CA HSR

California’s beleaguered bullet train project is getting a management shakeup

Los Angeles Times

The California bullet train project is going through one of its biggest personnel upheavals in years, several months after Gov. Gavin Newsom vowed he would be “getting rid of a lot of consultants.”

High-Speed Rail Authority will hold August town hall in Gilroy


The California High-Speed Rail Authority will hold a town hall meeting in Gilroy on Aug. 8 to give the public, landowners, municipalities and community leaders an opportunity to talk to staff and learn more about plans for the proposed route from San Francisco through Gilroy, and through San Benito County over Pacheco Pass to Merced.


What Did John Harris and Newsom Talk About? Water, of Course.

GV Wire

Gov. Gavin Newsom started his Valley tour Tuesday night (July 23), appearing at a fundraiser in Coalinga at the business of a noted Republican donor.

Newsom Establishes Long-Term Safe And Affordable Drinking Water Fund


Governor Gavin signed a historic water bill into law on Wednesday morning, and he chose to sign it in a rural community outside Fresno.

Kern River Can Be Deadly. Here’s How to Stay Safe

New York Times

If you haven’t been to the Kern River, you may not know that it’s a stunner.

A Study of Microplastics in San Francisco Bay Could Help Cleanup Strategies Elsewhere

Water Education Foundation

A three-year study of microplastic flecks from plastic bottles, bags and other debris that end up in San Francisco Bay could help the Bay Area and other regions better understand and manage the problem. It comes as California is doing its own assessment of microplastics pollution so it can devise a strategy to deal with it.


Legally Blonde the Musical opens

Clovis RoundUp

This summer’s production is the fun and award-winning musical, Legally Blonde, based on the popular movie of the same name.

First annual Clovis Cocktail Contest is underway

Clovis RoundUp

The Clovis Cocktail Contest is just around the corner, and local bartenders are busy crafting new and exciting recipes to share with Clovis.

What’s going on in the Modesto region? A lot, here’s a look

Modesto Bee


The 12 Best Tented Camps for Glamping Lovers

Architectural Digest

From Big Sur to Sri Lanka, these pitch-perfect tented-camp hotels prove that glamping has really grown up.