June 12, 2017




What Awaits California’s Next Governor

Fox and Hounds Daily

California’s governors always look good when the economy looks good but, to quote Warren Buffett, you only find out who has been swimming naked when the tide goes out.

John Chiang kicks off campaign with swipe at Newsom

San Francisco Chronicle

Chiang isn’t exactly a household name, despite having been elected to statewide office three times – twice as state controller and once as treasurer. And if a recent Berkeley IGS Poll is any indication, Chiang has a very steep climb ahead of him …

Kevin de León has five fundraisers this month for an office he’s not likely to seek

Sacramento Bee

… climate change conferences to his vocal leadership in California’s resistance to the Trump administration, Kevin de León has been steadily building his political profile during more than two-and-a-half years as president pro tem of the state Senate.

Just a handful of California cities still have a majority of Republican voters

Sacramento Bee

California has become increasingly liberal over the last two decades, with a plurality consistently favoring Democratic presidential candidates.

Being Sikh in Trump’s America: ‘You have to go out of your way to prove you’re not a threat’

Los Angeles Times

Balmeet Singh stepped outside a burger shop in a strip mall to wish his 13-year-old cousin a happy birthday when the stranger squared up against him.  “So, you’re going to blow up this country?” the man said. “You’re trying to blow up this country?”  He threw a drink in Singh’s face, his long beard and burgundy turban the intended target. Then the man threatened to kill him.

Youth Program Lets Teens Take the Reins of State Government


In a legislative session in the California Assembly chambers, speakers weigh the pros and cons of amending California’s Paid Family Leave Act. They propose extending disability compensation for new parents or people caring for a sick relative to 12 …

Diary: What It’s Like to Lobby Sacramento as a 14-year old


14-year old Jeremiah Castillo recently visited the state capitol for his first time to lobby his elected representatives, as part of a youth advocacy summit.

Denham’s Choice is to side with Wall Street

Modesto Bee (blog)

When our nation was rocked by the Great Recession, California’s San Joaquin Valley was at the center of the damage. … Republican Congressmen Jeff Denham of Turlock and David Valadao of Hanford should have opposed this extreme legislation.

Feinstein wants ‘all-hands-on-deck’ Trump probe

PBS NewsHour

U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) asks questions during former FBI Director James Comey’s appearance before a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on Russia’s alleged interference in the 2016 U.S.

California Senators Feinstein and Harris on Comey testimony

Orange County Breeze
[On Thursday, June 8,] in a Senate Select Committee on Intelligence hearing, U.S. Senator Kamala D. Harris questioned former FBI Director James Comey about Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ continued involvement in the Russia probe despite having …

Interpreting the Meaning of “Hope” at the Comey Hearing—Harris has her Say

Fox and Hounds Daily

A crucial question unresolved in yesterday’s dramatic testimony by former FBI Director James Comey before the Senate Intelligence Committee is this: Did President Trump direct Comey to drop the investigation of former National Security Advisor Michael …

This tech investor returned home from Silicon Valley to run for Congress in rural California


Last year, Silicon Valley was united in its opposition to President Donald Trump. Then it fell into a collective depression when the New York businessman got elected to the White House.


LA Pride parade morphs into #ResistMarch, as tens of thousands hit the streets

Los Angeles Times

Sadler said hopes the big turnout Sunday will convince President Trump to pay more attention to the LGBTQ community. “If Trump is a Christian, he should treat us all equally,” he said.


Thumbs up, thumbs down

Fresno Bee

Fresno gets its first woman conductor. Take the kids to PlayZeum at Storyland in Roeding Park. Sikhs introduce themselves to neighbors.

Spare us the reality-show theatrics. Answer the question, Mr. Trump

Fresno Bee

President Donald Trump is an expert in many aspects of business: real estate, construction, golf-course management, licensing and reality shows.  He has yet to show us he has the slightest clue about leading the greatest country in the world.  Read more here: http://www.fresnobee.com/opinion/editorials/article155405039.html#storylink=cpy

Editorial: State Assembly doesn’t get idea of doing will of people

East Bay Times

Editorial: State Assembly doesn’t get idea of doing will of people … Members of the state Assembly listen to an address by Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, D-Paramount, at the in Sacramento, Calif., Monday, Dec. 5, 2016. Both houses of the …


Technology continues shift toward a more mechanical future of farming

The Bakersfield Californian

Besides the uncertainty that awaits our industry regarding water security, California farmers have to contend with the highest minimum wage of any state in the country.

US wheat production outlook rising despite snow: USDA


USDA left its outlook for corn stocks and production unchanged despite concerns about adverse weather hindering development of the recently seeded crop.

The most neglected threat to public health in China is toxic soil

The Economist

Egrets and damselflies chomp lazily on fish and insects in the humid valley below the paddy fields. But just beyond this rural scene lurks something discordant. Mr Tang points to a chimney around 2km away that belches forth white smoke. It belongs to the smelting plant which he blames for bringing pollution into the valley. Cadmium is released during the smelting of ores of iron, lead and copper. It is a heavy metal. If ingested, the liver and kidneys cannot get rid of it from the body, so it accumulates, causing joint and bone disease and, sometimes, cancer.

This California county took in $3.7 million in pot fees. Now it might ban cultivation

Sacramento Bee

Addressing supervisors, Joan Wilson, a cannabis farmer who grows 3,000 square feet of plants on a 20-acre parcel, recounted a litany of local economic downturns: the decline of mining starting with closure of Calaveras’ legendary Sheep Ranch gold mine …

Cannabis in California urged to get serious — by doing the boring things other businesses do every day

The San Diego Union-Tribune

A representative from the California Agricultural Labor Relations Board was at Thursday’s meeting and said if cultivators and growers of marijuana with 20 or more employees want to receive a license from the state they must sign what’s called a “labor …



California emptied prisons, but now jails are packed. Here’s what will help.

Sacramento Bee (blog)

That’s because even as California has reduced the state prison population in recent years, its jail incarceration rate more than doubled between 1983 and 2013, when it was 203 per 100,000 people.

New tough-on-crime federal legislation would be devastating for California


After a couple of years of apparent progress in convincing federal lawmakers to reduce America’s incarceration rates and reform mandatory minimum prison sentences, Republicans in Congress are drafting a new border security bill that goes in the …

California police will not release security camera footage of border agent who shot two teenagers

The Mercury News

ARCADIA – Investigators say they have reviewed video footage taken from a Gold Line train and businesses near the scene of the shooting Friday night of two teenagers in Arcadia by an off-duty border agent that left one dead and another wounded.


National Spelling Bee champ Ananya Vinay finally gets homecoming celebration at Fugman

Fresno Bee

Jerry Brown on June 26. They also plan to meet Fresno Mayor Lee Brand on June 15. Ananya is not done with TV audiences just yet.

Fresno schools, teachers can’t agree on a contract so no summer love

Fresno Bee

Fresno Unified School District and the Fresno Teachers Association could not agree on a new contract by Friday, so the matter will go to mediation this summer, the president of the teachers union said.

California law spurs reforms after heartbreaking student suicide cluster

LA Daily News

About 24 hours after a Clovis High School boy killed himself in early March, his cell phone buzzed. The incoming text was the latest in a conversation thread …

School district’s move to district elections draws objections

Modesto Bee

Advocates for Justice – a Modesto group that mentors black and at-risk youth – says the map the school board approved in April favors sitting trustees and does not do enough to elect representatives from south and west Modesto, home to many minority …

Data Show Boys Consistently Score Lower on Reading Tests, But There’s No Clear Explanation


Three of four African-American boys in California classrooms failed to meet reading and writing standards on the most recent round of testing, according to data obtained from the state Department of Education and analyzed by CALmatters. More than half …

3 ways to ensure your child is ready for kindergarten


Learn to follow directions: Can your pre-K child sit quietly while listening to adults talk? Kids who can’t may find difficulty listening to teachers who are imparting directions.

Trump’s education cuts aren’t ‘devastating,’ they’re smart

Los Angeles Times

Such hyperbole is reminiscent of the early 1980s, when President Reagan’s opponents battled his administration’s education cuts, and it’s about as inaccurate today as it was back then. Trump wants to reduce the U.S. Department of Education’s …

The Five Biggest Threats to K-12 Network Security for the 2017-18 School Year

COX Blue

With the current school year winding down, now is a great time for district administrators to start thinking about the improvements that need to be made to the schools in their communities over the summer. If you haven’t yet decided where to begin, consider this: in mid-May, schools across the world were victimized by WannaCry, a devastating form of ransomware. Experts believe that this may only be the beginning of a dangerous new trend.

Opinion: Can’t get caught in hype about California’s AP course pass rates

East Bay Times

The slight decline is fairly insignificant in California but some states – such as neighboring Nevada – routinely have less than half of exams receiving passing scores.

Middle-school students embrace endless summer … of linear equations 


A free math camp called Elevate, funded by the Silicon Valley Education Foundation, aims to give an academic boost to kids who are performing just below average – but not failing – in middle-school math.

Are governors ignoring law when appointing UC regents?

San Francisco Chronicle

“In the selection of the regents,” says the California Constitution, “the governorshall consult an advisory committee” of 12 people: six members of the public, two elected officials (the Assembly speaker and state Senate president), a UC student, a …

The University of California Doesn’t Need Fixing

Fox and Hounds Daily

The latest salvo from Sacramento has been triggered by a report by the State Auditor regarding the budgetary practices of the UC Office of the President.


Opinion: Want a college degree? Here’s how to meet math requirements painlessly

The Mercury News

Statistics pathways are offered at only a third of the state’s community colleges and only two CSU campuses. At the rest, the only option is the traditional trek through Intermediate Algebra, with most students taking a year or more of courses that …


Trump administration delays smog cleanup plan

LA Daily News

Southern California air quality officials say the local impact will be minimal because they are already working on various strategies to reduce ozone to meet less stringent health standards set by the Clinton and Bush administrations in 1997 and 2008 …

Sucking Up to China Is Unseemly, Even on Climate Change

Fox and Hounds Daily

I understand the impulse of Gov. Brown and leading Democrats to stick it to President Trump. Our so-called president has lied so often about California that he deserves to be on the business end of a never-ending counterattack.

Germany, California to tackle climate change together


“California and Germany unite the world leaders in the fight against climate change, the existential threat of our time,” Brown said in a statement released by the German ministry.

State regulators want a study of clean alternatives to an Oxnard natural gas plant

Los Angeles Times  – ‎Jun 9, 2017‎

Members of the California Energy Commission reviewing the planned Puente natural gas plant deliberated for much of the week before issuing a seven-page statement in support of the study.


New California transparency rule allows 3-day budget review

The Bakersfield Californian

Voters last year overwhelmingly approved Proposition 54, which amended the state constitution to impose new transparency requirements on the Legislature, including the 72-hour waiting period and a requirement to livestream legislative proceedings online.

California Politics Podcast: There were big bumps on the road to a state budget deal

Los Angeles Times

But it’s the spending being skipped that could spark the biggest reaction. On this week’s episode of the California Politics Podcast, we examine the budget agreement outlined Thursday by lawmakers – one that was conspicuous for its silence on how to …

California budget panel approves spending plan as talks with Brown continue

Sacramento Bee

The Legislature’s budget-writing committee approved a spending plan late Thursday that expands a tax credit for the poor and imposes direct budget control of the University of California’s office of the president, as talks continue on how to spend more …

California poised to expand tax credits for low-wage workers

The Mercury News

SACRAMENTO – In a move cheered by advocates for the working poor and their families, California’s budget committee is recommending an expansion of the state’s new tax credit program to include the self-employed and those earning the minimum wage …

People are going broke working in California’s gig economy. This will help.

Sacramento Bee

Currently, the California tax credit is only available to people who work for an employer, and make less than $6,717 if they have no children, less than $10,087 with one child, or less than $14,161 with two or more children.

Replacing those aging state office buildings will have to go on California’s credit card

Sacramento Bee

State revenue through June is running about $1.3 billion below what lawmakers and Brown’s office expected last June when they approved the current budget.

California Inc.: Mayor to make case for investing in Los Angeles

Los Angeles Times

Spending plan: Thursday is the deadline for the Legislature to approve a 2017-18 state budget and send it to Gov. Jerry Brown.

State government’s largest union is raising fees on those who want out

Sacramento Bee

Ken Hamidi, a Franchise Tax Board employee who has challenged SEIU for a decade, is among the plaintiffs named in the dues lawsuit.

The GOP’s tax attack on blue states

Los Angeles Times

Among their proposed tax reforms is an end to the federal deduction for state and local income and property taxes. If enacted, this radical change would not only punish California and other productive and high-tax states, but also endanger their vital, …


 Single-payer healthcare bill moves closer to becoming law

The Turlock Journal

The bill that could potentially bring a single-payer, government-run healthcare system to California passed through the State Senate last week, despite a recently released study that found the plan could cost hundreds of billions of dollars …

Uncertainty over federal money could spur Covered California rate hikes

Sacramento Bee

If the federal government does not clarify by mid-August whether it will continue an important health insurance subsidy for consumers next year, California’s state-run exchange will instruct its insurers to sell plans with significantly higher premiums …

Democrats seek more health care for California’s undocumented

LA Daily News

California’s Democratic legislators want to extend health benefits to undocumented young adults, the continuation of an effort that ushered children without legal …

While you watched Comey, Senate GOP moved to cripple healthcare (and California moved to expand it)

Los Angeles Times

On Wednesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., invoked Senate Rule 14, which allows a bill to bypass committee consideration and be brought to the floor for a vote.

Villaraigosa gets it wrong on California poverty figures | PolitiFact …


When asked to list his top three priorities for California at a recent forum, Democratic candidate for governor Antonio Villaraigosa responded: “I think we’ve got to …

Reflection On State’s Historic End Of Life Law

Capital Public Radio News

Assembly Member Susan Eggman, from Stockton, authored AB-15, which ultimately became California’s new End of Life law last year; the new law was co-authored by Senators Lois Wolk and Bill Monning. On June 9, 2017, the law marks its first anniversary


ICE arrests 29 in weeklong Valley raid

Fresno Bee

The federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency arrested 54 people in seven central California counties targeting what it calls “at-large criminal aliens, illegal re-entrants, and immigration fugitives.

ICE agents arrest more than 50 immigrants in Central California

The Mercury News

An immigrant is arrested this week by Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents in Central California. Federal agents arrested 54 immigrants in the second major roundup in the area since January.

3 accused in scheme to defraud immigrants of $6 million

Los Angeles Times

Federal authorities have arrested two California men and a Mexican national in connection with a $6-million scheme to defraud victims seeking immigration status in the United States. Two of the defendants, Hardev Panesar, of El Cajon, and Rafael Hastie …

New TV ads slamming sanctuary cities evoke California deaths …

Los Angeles Times

An television advertising campaign denouncing California’s so-called sanctuary cities launched this week in the San Diego area.


Mayor Brand Says Amazon Just The Beginning

Valley Public Radio

Fresno Mayor Lee Brand says he has a vision to create 10,000 new jobs in Fresno and drop the unemployment rate to 5%. That would be a significant accomplishment for a city where the unemployment number is routinely above the state average.

Easy access data and research ideal for businesses

The Bakersfield Californian

Some of my favorite data sources include the U.S. Census (American Community Survey), U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, California Department of Finance, California Department of Labor and the National Federation of Independent Business. For local …

California poised to expand tax credits for low-wage workers

The Mercury News

SACRAMENTO – In a move cheered by advocates for the working poor and their families, California’s budget committee is recommending an expansion of the state’s new tax credit program to include the self-employed and those earning the minimum wage …

Man says he warned Goodwill of lax safety before co-worker was crushed

Sacramento Bee

Dave Goudie, a former Goodwill employee who witnessed the death of Abraham Garza, said the young father’s death could have been prevented with proper training. Cal-OSHA has hit Sacramento Goodwill with more than $100,000 in fines for safety violations.

The Board Room for June 12

Fresno Bee

Assemblymember Dr. Joaquin Arambula, D-Fresno, recognized Casa de Tamales and Liz Sanchez, president and owner, as Small Business of the Year.

Family Eye Care is like ‘home’

Hanford Sentinel

For these reasons – and many more – it’s no wonder why owner Dr. Jeffrey Garcia’s Family Eye Care was named California Small Business of the Year for Assembly District 32 by Assemblyman Rudy Salas. “Family Eye Care is an example of a family-oriented …

Fitzgerald: An iconic cafe character dies

Stockton Record

Dave Gumbaro, the resident curmudgeon of the Blackwater Café, whose prickly personality, some say, concealed a softer side, died Wednesday. He was 80.


There’s no major boost to housing funding in next year’s California …

Los Angeles Times

A proposal to spend $400 million to finance low-income housing development is officially dead.Gov. Jerry Brown and lawmakers killed a p…

Amid housing crisis, Garcetti’s ‘linkage fee’ proposal remains in limbo

Los Angeles Times

Following the lead of other California cities, Mayor Eric Garcetti two years ago proposed charging a fee on construction and using those funds to build affordable housing in Los Angeles.

Comey speaks, the tragic cost of housing, Dems eat Dems

Sacramento Bee

Good Sunday morning, and welcome to Take Two, our weekly sampler of California opinion, drawn from The Sacramento Bee editorial board’s daily opinion-politics newsletter, The Take.

Letters: Housing crisis is a three-alarm fire

Sacramento Bee

Housing crisis. Re “Housing crisis? What California has is a housing catastrophe” (Erika D. Smith, June 4) Erika D. Smith has written an important column on a critical topic.

New real estate developments abound up and down the coast, but challenges persist

Los Angeles Times

The California Coastal Commission has purview over oceanside development, and developers said the agency tends to favor projects that are open to the public — such as hotels and retail outlets — over private residential buildouts.

Google village would be a boon for San Jose, but not everyone is impressed

The Mercury News

Tito Hernandez, owner of World of Sports, is photographed in his store in San Jose, California, on Thursday, June 8, 2017. Hernandez’ business is located in the area near the Diridon Station and the SAP Center where Google is planning to move into a …

A little-known California ‘micro-hood’ is suddenly the hottest housing market in America


Bushrod, Oakland, a small enclave across the Bay from San Francisco, was named the hottest neighborhood of 2017 by real estate site Redfin.

A shortage of commercial real estate – Why?


So, with this shortage of supply, why haven’t we seen more building? The reasons are simple. Southern California has a lack of undeveloped land. Virtually all of the new construction we’ve seen in recent years has started with a site containing …

Supervisors Roberts and Jacob to unveil $25 million plan for affordable housing

The San Diego Union-Tribune

A study released in March by the California Housing Partnership Corp., a San Francisco-based nonprofit, said San Diego County has lost nearly 3,600 state- and federal-subsidized housing units between 1995 and 2016, leaving 32,000 affordable homes …



Political Road Map: Here’s how that gas tax increase could give …

Los Angeles Times

For a party on the ropes, there’s a potential weapon out there for California Republicans if they want it: A proposed ballot measure to repeal the new $52 billion …

History shows need to closely track California’s gas tax funds

The San Diego Union-Tribune

The invaluable California Legislative Analyst’s Office issued a report this week that called on the Legislature to enact safeguards guaranteeing that the $5.2 billion expected to be generated annually from increases to the gasoline tax and to vehicle …

Petition is bait-and-switch that won’t repeal gas tax


There is not, and will not be, any measure on the ballot to repeal the gas tax, and the out-of-town money pouring into Orange County is really aimed at subverting the will of the voters and grossly misusing California’s recall process to build …

Gas Tax Poll Sends a Tremor Through the Political Landscape

Fox and Hounds Daily

A tremor ran through the 2018 California elections with the release of the UC Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies poll that shows widespread disdain for the recently passed gas tax and vehicle fees–even before collection of the tax begins in …

Californians give big thumbs down to new gas tax, poll finds

The Mercury News

SACRAMENTO – Californians may hate swerving to avoid potholes, but a new law that will charge drivers an extra $10 a month to pave over the state’s problem roads is provoking its own kind of road rage.

A California lawmaker wants to make it easier for taxis to compete with Uber. But is it too little, too late?

Los Angeles Times

Uber and Lyft continue to expand their dominance in California, and taxi companies are looking to the state Legislature for some relief.

Is the CHP commissioner leaving? He’s a finalist to become UC Davis’ police chief.

Sacramento Bee

The California Highway Patrol’s top officer is on the short list to become the next UC Davis police chief. Commissioner Joseph Farrow has led the CHP since 2008 and has not announced plans to retire.

Poll: Road Repair Law Could Be Political Liability for California Democrats


California’s new transportation infrastructure fix, paid for by an increase in the state’s gas tax, is opposed by a strong majority of voters in the state.


TID endorses plan to avoid State Water Board proposal

The Turlock Journal

On Tuesday, the Turlock Irrigation District Board of Trustees voted unanimously to endorse San Francisco’s plan. “San Francisco has been a great partner to us, and they share our vision of a restored Tuolumne River that our … has experienced recently …

Council votes in favor of SB 623

Porterville Recorder

The Porterville City Council voted Tuesday in support of Senate Bill 623, which would establish the Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund to ensure all Californians have access to safe and affordable drinking water.

Isabella Lake brimming with water, highlighting dam risks

The Bakersfield Californian

John Ryan, water resources superintendent for the City of Bakersfield, said the city had to bolster the riverbanks under the Westside Parkway bridge with slabs of broken concrete called rip-rap.

Oroville Dam: New spillway design said to pass muster

The Mercury News

Work continues June 5 on the damaged main Oroville Dam spillway. At bottom, crews are pumping concrete into smaller voids on the rock that has been exposed by the removal of the lower chute.

Measuring the snowpack goes high-tech with airborne lasers and radar

Los Angeles Times

“It’s going to be a number of years … but that is the dream,” said Dave Rizzardo, water supply forecasting chief for the California Department of Water Resources. California Department of Water Resources workers conduct a Sierra snowpack survey in El …

Essential California: Measuring California’s snowpack goes high-tech

Los Angeles Times

Ad campaign: New TV ads are slamming California’s “sanctuary cities,” using criminal cases to make a point. Los Angeles Times.


LOIS HENRY: Can Kern County charge for river rescues? Should Bakersfield dedicate fireworks fine money for shows …

The Bakersfield Californian

Kudos to the Bakersfield City Council and staff members for being proactive in making sure the wonderful fireworks show at The Park at River Walk will go on this year.

California could become first state to ban stores that sell commercially bred dogs, cats and rabbits

The San Diego Union-Tribune

Fewer than 2,000 breeding facilities are licensed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. If the current bill in Sacramento becomes law, these operations would no longer be allowed to sell to pet stores in California. Instead, storefronts would need to …

Opinion: Bill would turn California utility poles into cell towers

East Bay Times

And the telecom industry hosts the Pro Tem Cup in San Diego and Speakers Cup in Pebble Beach – lavish, hush-hush lobbying and fundraising events for the California Senate and Assembly members. How many members of the public can afford to buy a …