June 7, 2018






As primary dust settles, local Congressional candidates plot course to November

Fresno Bee

Three central San Joaquin Valley congressional races, each with its own unique set of twists and turns, appear to have taken shape – giving voters a clear idea of their options for representation in Washington, D.C.

See also:

     Matta or Reed could go head-to-head against McCarthy in November Bakersfield Californian

     Winning Democrat faces huge climb to unseat Tom McClintock in Congress Sacramento Bee


Denham and Harder prepare for high-stakes battle as dust settles from primary

Modesto Bee

Does the path to Congress in November for incumbent Jeff Denham or challenger Josh Harder run through third-place finisher Ted Howze? If people voting for all five Democrats in Tuesday's Primary line up behind Harder in the fall, it won't be enough to unseat Denham, a Republican in the House since 2010.

See also:

     Denham's lower primary numbers could point to trouble with conservative base Sacramento Bee


EDITORIAL: Far from a blue Democrat wave, the Valley remains a sea of red Republican voters

Fresno Bee

The crashing of the blue wave of Democrat victories did not wash over the central San Joaquin Valley in Tuesday’s primary election. If anything, the results show how the region remains steadfastly in the GOP’s camp.

See also:

     EDITORIAL: Looking for a ‘blue wave’? Not in Stanislaus Modesto Bee


Terrence, Mangano thank supporters, voters for Fresno Superior Court election victories

Fresno Bee

Two career Fresno prosecutors on Wednesday thanked their supporters and voters for giving them decisive victories in Tuesday night's election for two open seats on the Fresno Superior Court bench.


#TimesUp for these Valley district attorneys? Women dominate Merced and Madera races

Fresno Bee

In Merced and Madera counties, women candidates in district attorney races are outpacing male incumbents who, within the last year, faced sexual harassment allegations. And, in both counties, the two ladies may become the first women to be the district attorney.

See also:

     Challenger ousts longtime Merced County District Attorney ABC30

     Controversial Madera County District Attorney likely to be unseated ABC30

     Madera County District Attorney David Linn concedes in bid for re-election Sierra Star


Incumbent Mathis, 2 challengers neck-and-neck for two spots in November Assembly election

Fresno Bee

Under California’s primary system, the top two vote-getters in state Senate and Assembly races advance to the November general election. That made Tuesday’s election inconsequential in two San Joaquin Valley Assembly districts.

See also:

     California 2018 primary election: Mathis, Sigala maintain the lead in state assembly race Visalia Times-Delta

     Tulare County election results at a glance: Gubler's lead gobbled by Mathis, Sigala Visalia Times-Delta


Fresno City Council candidates wait to see who will be number two on the November ballot


Three Fresno City Council candidates are waiting to see if they will move on to the November runoff. Miguel Arias leads with 865 votes or about 30% of the total. The real race now is for the second spot, Darren Miller is currently second with 420 votes, Tate Hill is in third with 411 votes, and Craig Scharton finished 4th with 406 votes.


Wheaton leads in educators race to the finish in Tulare County

Visalia Times-Delta

After 28 years, Tulare County schools will soon have a new superintendent. While a clear front-runner has emerged, slow election results mean there's no clear winner, yet.


California 2018 primary election: Tim Ward takes huge lead in DA race

Visalia Times-Delta

Ward carries a strong 67 percent lead over opponent Matt Darby, who secured 32 percent — 7,568 votes. However, election results won't be official until all ballots are counted and verified, which could be later this week.


Jones refuses to quit as Tulare mayor, won't allow it on agenda

Visalia Times-Delta

Carlton Jones remains the mayor of Tulare. That may change in a couple of weeks at the next Tulare City Council meeting — if the item for reorganization of the mayor actually makes it to the June 19 official agenda.


Elections results produce winners and runoffs

Stockton Record

Pat Withrow has defeated Steve Moore to become San Joaquin County’s sheriff-elect. Chuck Winn, Kathy Miller will be serving their second terms on Board of Supervisors. One City Council race decided, two go to November

See also:

     Withrow gets to work early as SJ County’s Sheriff-elect Stockton Record

      ELECTION 2018: Wednesday night update of California primary voting results Bakersfield Californian


Fleeman returning to Sheriff's Office after election defeat

Bakersfield Californian

Justin Fleeman is planning to return to work for an organization that may not welcome him back with open arms. Fleeman has spent months criticizing the Kern County Sheriff’s Office and its leader, Donny Youngblood, as part of his campaign for the sheriff's seat.

See also:

     Youngblood poised to retain Kern County sheriff seat Bakersfield Californian


Mendes holds slim lead on Salas; Fong, Valadao cruising

Bakersfield Californian

Tuesday night's numbers looked hopeful for local incumbents defending their seats against single opponents. But it was almost moot, since both the incumbents and their single challengers will go on to the general election in November.


Current and former district attorneys speak about the election of Zimmer as county's top prosecutor

Bakersfield Californian

Unofficial results indicate Cynthia Zimmer held on to an early lead Tuesday to become the next district attorney of Kern County, ending a tough, highly divisive race between her and Assistant District Attorney Scott Spielman. What's next for the D.A.'s office?

See also:

     Zimmer defeats Spielman to win district attorney race Bakersfield Californian


Dirkse feeling 'confident' with hefty lead in sheriff's race

Modesto Bee

Lt. Jeff Dirkse, the presumed favorite for sheriff in Stanislaus County, held the lead early Wednesday morning with 100 percent of the precincts reporting.


Kuykendall, Sanford lead for county school superintendent. Bond results are mixed

Modesto Bee

With 44 percent of precincts reporting, Kuykendall had 11,454 votes, or 44 percent. Sanford was at 8,197 votes, or 31 percent. They would need to top 50 percent to avoid a runoff.


Will supervisor race come down to achievements versus 'empty campaign promises'?

Modesto Bee

Supervisor Terry Withrow said as he campaigns for his third term on the Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors his message will highlight the difference between himself and his challenger, Modesto Councilman Tony Madrigal.


Stanislaus clerk still has about 42,000 ballots to count from Election Day

Modesto Bee

Stanislaus County still has about 42,000 ballots to count from Tuesday's election, which included a close primary for the county's seat in Congress. Clerk-Recorder Lee Lundrigan, who provided the update Wednesday evening, said 47,651 ballots counted so far were cast by mail through last week or at polling places Tuesday.




John Cox, Gavin Newsom Waste No Time Pivoting to November

Capital Public Radio

Republican businessman John Cox, who spent the lead-up to Tuesday's primary touting President Trump's endorsement and railing against California's sanctuary city law, indicated Wednesday that he'll at least tweak his message as he heads to a November gubernatorial matchup against Democratic Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom.

See also:

     A Preview of the California Governor’s Election Public Policy Institute of California

     In Fight for California Governor, Candidates Head to Ideological Corners New York Times

      How Does Trump Play Into the Governor’s Race? New York Times

      Local political party chairmen react to Governor's race ABC30


Where California would head if Gavin Newsom is governor

Sacramento Bee

Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom's victory speech promised plenty as he moved into position Tuesday to become California's next Democratic governor. As it became clear that he and Republican John Cox would face off in November, he called for a universal health care system.

See also:

      Newsom: Stockton deserves CSU Stockton Record

      Gavin Newsom’s CA opponent is John Cox, but he’s running against Trump San Francisco Chronicle

      Skelton: Newsom has found his good-luck charm in the race for California governor: President Trump  Los Angeles Times

      Walters: Newsom and Trump wanted Cox—and got their wishes CALmatters

     Newsom stakes out liberal agenda Sacramento Bee

     Gavin Newsom for president? Might be a bit early for that  San Francisco Chronicle


GOP's Cox faces tough slog in race for California governor


Republican John Cox thinks high taxes, a high cost of living and a growing housing crisis give him an opening to take on Democrat Gavin Newsom in the fight to be California's next governor.

See also:

     What John Cox’s top-two win means – and what it doesn’t Sacramento Bee

      Gavin Newsom will face Trump-backed John Cox for governor Mercury News

      John Cox: Can he chart a path from Rancho Santa Fe to the governor's mansion? San Diego Union Tribune


How Villaraigosa lost the governor's race despite tens of millions of dollars spent to boost his bid

Los Angeles Times

Some factors behind Villaraigosa’s defeat were out of his control. Republicans including President Trump rallied around a little-known GOP candidate in hopes that propelling a Republican to the top of the ticket would assist their party in its bid to hold on to Congress.


A look at California's statewide offices up for election

KCRA Sacramento

Beyond the race for governor, voters cast ballots Tuesday for other statewide offices that govern California's schools, the state's financial books and other key policy areas. Beyond the race for governor, voters cast ballots Tuesday for other statewide offices that govern California's schools, the state's financial books and other key policy areas.


Rent control, data privacy and gas taxes for roads: Get ready for the next election

Sacramento Bee

Election officials haven't even finished counting the votes from Tuesday's primary, but the campaign has already begun for the November general election. Here are some key races to​​ keep an eye on over the next five months, and why they could have a huge impact on California politics.


Fellow Democrat squeaks through primary to take on Feinstein

Fresno Bee

Democrat Kevin de Leon sharpened his attacks on U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein on Wednesday after squeaking out a second-place finish in California's primary. He called her a lawmaker who sits on the sidelines rather than defend California against President Donald Trump; Feinstein's top strategist called him "delusional."

See also:

     Why Kevin de León thinks he can beat Dianne Feinstein Sacramento Bee

     Liberal lawmaker takes second place to face Feinstein in U.S. Senate contest Sacramento Bee

      Why Kevin de León thinks he can beat Dianne Feinstein Sacramento Bee

     Liberal lawmaker takes second place to face Feinstein in U.S. Senate contest Sacramento Bee

     Kevin de León to face Dianne Feinstein in Senate race San Francisco Chronicle

      ‘Sanctuary state’ lawmaker to face formidable Dianne Feinstein in November Mercury News

     Dianne Feinstein And The Revived Future Of The Democratic Party’s Past The New Yorker


California's major political parties feared the top-two primary but emerged as powerful as before

Los Angeles Times

California’s most wide-open primary in two decades ended Tuesday with contests — including for governor and the U.S. House — that seemed focused, even fixated at times, on the race for second place.

See also:

     What California primary results mean for the state and the midterms KCRW

     Republicans held their own in the primary, but it’s uphill to November  CALmatters

     Democrat plan to flip seven California House seats shows promise and problems  San Diego Union Tribune

     5 Takeaways From Tuesday’s Primary Elections New York Times

     Uncertainty Lingers in Critical California House Races Roll Call

     Democrats poised to claim ballot slots in nearly all House districts in California Washington Post

     Democrats Did Well Last Night. The Left Didn’t. New York Times

     Winners and losers from the biggest primary night of the year Washington Post

     California Votes -- The Winners And Losers Forbes

     Mixed results on Tuesday for California’s Latino candidates and voters Washington Post

     How Democrats escaped disaster in California Politico

     Republican lawmakers point to positive signs after California election night  CNN

     EDITORIAL: Some Brighter Primary Colors Wall Street Journal

     Democrats’ Interest in Midterms Running Ahead of Republicans’ The Wall Street Journal


Party matters, and the ‘blue wave’ is still alive

Sacramento Bee

Party label still matters in California primaries, even when the top two vote-getters advance to the November general election, regardless of party. And California could still play a starring role in a “blue wave” to flip the U.S. House to Democrats. Those are two early storylines from Tuesday’s primary, in which many dramatic predictions failed to materialize.

See also:

     Democrats avoid nightmare scenario in California, boosting their hopes to seize the House Los Angeles Times

     Democrats look likely to get locked out of this Republican-held district in California Los Angeles Times

     California Results Are Consistent With a Competitive House Race New York Times

     What to expect in these crucial California congressional races Los Angeles Times


Quick Takes: A dozen things we learned from California’s primary


Trump mattered: For months, the two top Republicans in the race, John Cox, a businessman from Rancho Santa Fe, and Huntington Beach Assemblyman Travis Allen, were within sniping distance of one another in most credible public opinion polls.

See also:

     EDITORIAL: Don't be so quick to declare victory, and other takeaways from Sacramento's primary Sacramento Bee


Did California Democrats sleep through election day?

Los Angeles Times

Judging from Tuesday’s primary results, the “blue wave” in California means Democrats waving at their polling places as they drove by. Final numbers on voter participation won’t be in for a while, but turnout seems unexceptional.

See also:

     'No offense, but I never vote.' Stunning apathy in the heart of California's Trump resistance Los Angeles Times

     EDITORIAL: If Democrats want a blue wave, they need to try voting Los Angeles Times


California Atty. Gen. Xavier Becerra leading three challengers in early election returns

Los Angeles Times

Tuesday’s election featured seven statewide contests besides the governor’s race, including a barnburner for state attorney general in which incumbent Xavier Becerra took a big lead in early vote returns against three challengers to see who will face off in November for California’s top cop job.


Why challenges to district attorneys in state fell short

San Francisco Chronicle

The idea was shrewd: Chip away at an unfair criminal justice system by starting at the county level, electing district attorneys who would hold police accountable and put fewer minorities in jail.


California lawmaker recalled, stops Democratic supermajority

San Francisco Chronicle

The Orange County-area state senator who voted to raise gas taxes is out of a job after Tuesday's primary election, denying Senate Democrats a supermajority for the rest of the year.


California measure roundup: Props. 68, 69, 71, 72 pass; 70 fails

San Francisco Chronicle

California voters decided five propositions on the statewide ballot Tuesday.


Why California takes so long to count ballots

Sacramento Bee

For the past several elections, more than half of Californians have voted by mail instead of going to polling places on Election Day. That causes delays because ballots typically are mailed or brought into polling places late, stacking up in election offices while officials conduct Election Day voting.




Artificial Persons: The Long Road to ‘Citizens United’

The Nation

Few decisions in the Supreme Court’s history have been more unpopular than its 2010 ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, which declared unconstitutional any restrictions imposed on how much corporations can spend on speech related to elections


Masterpiece Cakeshop baker wins, but the Supreme Court leaves key questions unanswered


When the Supreme Court granted certiorari in the Masterpiece Cakeshop case it was expected to resolve clashes between the First Amendment’s freedom of speech and free exercise (of religion) clauses and a state’s ability, if not its obligation, to enforce rights to freedom against discrimination that minorities enjoy under various civil rights acts and the Fourteenth Amendment.

See also:

     A Constitutional Amendment for Gay Rights? National Review


Podcast: No Recess For You!

Roll Call

The Senate has scaled back its August recess, with Republican leaders citing the big workload and complaining of Democratic delay tactics. As political theater goes, this is an oldie but goodie: Lawmakers like to tell voters that they are working very, very hard.




Ex-Bee editor Jim Boren to lead new Institute for Media and Public Trust at Fresno State

Fresno Bee

Fresno State has established the Institute for Media and Public Trust to study media literacy and "fake news," and develop strategies to restore trust in all forms of media. The first executive director of the new institute will be former Fresno Bee executive editor Jim Boren.


Almost seven-in-ten Americans have news fatigue, more among Republicans

Pew Research Center

A sizable portion of Americans are feeling overwhelmed by the amount of news there is, though the sentiment is more common on the right side of the political spectrum, according to a new Pew Research Center survey.


After Scrutinizing Facebook, Congress Turns to Google Deal With Huawei

Wall Street Journal

Members of Congress have begun scrutinizing Google’s relationship with China’s Huawei Technologies Co., according to people familiar with the matter—roping another Silicon Valley giant into Washington’s escalating digital cold war with Beijing.





Sunday, June 10, at 10 a.m. on ABC 30 – Maddy Report“Saving for a Rainy Day: Preparing for the Next Recession” – Guests: Ann Hollingshead from LAO, Dan Walters from CALmatters and John Myers from Los Angeles Times. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.


Sunday, June 10, at 10 a.m. on Newstalk 580AM/105.9FM (KMJ) – Maddy Report​​ ​​ - Valley Views Edition"State Budget & Rainy Day Fund: Too Much, Too Little, or Just Right?" – Guests: Scott Graves from California Budget & Policy Center, Ann Hollingshead from LAO, Dan Walters from CALmatters, and John Myers from Los Angeles Times. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.


Sunday, June 10, at 7:30 a.m. on UniMas 61 (KTTF) – El Informe Maddy: “Workers Comp Fraud”  Guest: Margarita Fernandez, PIO State Auditor's Office. Host: Maddy Institute Program Coordinator, Maria Jeans.


Support the Maddy Daily HERE.

Thank you!





Some farmers say they won't shop in Tulare as long as Jones remains mayor


Calls for Carlton Jones to step down as Tulare's mayor continued at Tuesday night's city council meeting, as the fallout from his comments about the negative impacts of agriculture worsens.


Mexico and Canada Add to Nations Striking Fear in U.S. Farmers

Wall Street Journal

U.S. farmers, already losing sales to China, are facing new threats to sales in other big overseas markets as trade tensions spread globally.






Prison guards say toxic mold is making them sick. Warden says all is OK

Fresno Bee

A correctional officer at the Federal Correctional Institution in Mendota has filed a whistleblower complaint alleging toxic mold inside the prison is making some guards sick and putting the rest at risk.


Community Convening focuses on children traumatized by violent crimes


Children exposed to violent crimes often must deal with emotional trauma. On Wednesday, local organizations teamed up to raise awareness about the issue. Centro La Familia held a special Community Convening session in Northwest Fresno.


Sheriff Accused of Interfering in Death Investigations Loses Re-Election Bid


The San Joaquin County sheriff-coroner, who was accused last year of meddling in death investigations, fell short in his bid for re-election. Three-term incumbent Sheriff Steve Moore trailed his opponent Pat Withrow by 17 points Wednesday, with 100 percent of precinct votes reported.


EDITORIAL: Primary voters judge the judiciary

San Francisco Chronicle

In San Francisco, four Superior Court judges who faced challenges from four public defenders won their re-election bids, a victory for the concept of judicial independence from the whims of politics. But voters demanded change in Santa Clara County.

See also:

     EDITORIAL: What next in the wake of the Persky recall? Mercury News


Public Safety:


CHP opens new Fresno office


The California Highway Patrol's new Fresno office is officially open. The grand opening ceremony this morning included a visit from Valley native and CHP Commissioner Warren Stanley who came to show his support for Fresno.


Biggest personal injury verdict awarded in Fresno County history


A Fresno County jury ordered a heart doctor to pay a patient's family almost $56 million Monday for a botched surgery. Legal experts say it's the largest personal injury verdict in Fresno County history.


#MeToo is not enough. California must invest in stopping sexual assault

Sacramento Bee

Despite our national reckoning with sexual harassment and assault through the #MeToo movement, California continues to lag in its commitment to fight gender-based violence.  The state’s general fund includes a mere $45,000 for sexual assault services.


A Prison-Reform Bill Passed the House 360–59. It’ll Probably Die in the Senate.

National Review

The FIRST STEP Act is hardly radical. It doesn’t reduce inmate sentences or otherwise deal with the intensely punitive approach to justice that has given the United States the world’s largest per capita prison population. Instead, it would make a number of extremely modest humanitarian reforms to the way we treat prisoners.




Cal Fire says they have firm handle on vegetation fire burning in Madera County


Cal Fire said they hope to have a vegetation fire in Madera County completely out sometime Wednesday. It's burning near the community of O'Neals.


It’s Wildfire Season in California, and Utilities Want to Tamp Down Their Liability

Pew Charitable Trusts

California utilities might have to pay billions of dollars in damage if state investigators find their power lines sparked last year’s devastating wildfires. And they’ll face similar bills in the future, whenever a tree falls across a power line and sparks a fire that reduces homes, hotels and schools to ashes.






Covenant Coffee, Houchin Community Blood Bank honored as nonprofits of the year


Three local nonprofits were honored by state legislators as part of the third annual California Nonprofits Day Celebration.


Brennan: Journalists ‘didn’t do a very good job’ on trade


The ‘Face the Nation’ host weighs in on how reporters have fallen short in their coverage of political news.


A Strong Economy Presents Democrats With A Challenge In The Midterms

The New Yorker

As attention switches to November, Donald Trump’s low approval ratings and the history of midterm elections suggest that Democrats are likely to gain ground, particularly in the House. But Republicans are taking comfort in a favorable political map in the Senate, a closing of the gap between the two parties in generic-ballot polling, and a buoyant U.S. economy.


Yes, income inequality has stopped growing

Growth in income inequality has markedly slowed in the past decade. Yes, that’s right. Though few seem to care or have noticed, this trend has important implications for economic policy.


Striking the right balance for child support

Child support enforcement (CSE) is a unique government function with unique bipartisan appeal, as well as a unique ability to help increase economic mobility. Over the years, it has shown that it can make significant contributions to reducing child poverty, increasing​​ 
fathers’ involvement in their children’s lives, and ensuring that a parent’s obligation to provide financial support is fulfilled.


EDITORIAL: California’s economic potential undercut by regulations


In what is becoming an annual tradition, California has once again ranked dead last in Chief Executive magazine’s “Best and Worst States for Business” ranking. Acknowledging the many strengths of California, the magazine notes that California continues to have a poor reputation among business executives.




There now are more job openings in the U.S. than unemployed workers to fill them

Los Angeles Times

The labor market has hit a tipping point that should help boost wages: There are more job openings in the U.S. than unemployed workers to fill them.

See also:

       May’s Jobs Report Is Great News for Trump  National Review


The Union Effect in California #1: Wages, Benefits, and Use of Public Safety Net Programs

Berkeley Labor Center

Unions have historically played a role in improving wages and benefits by enabling workers to join together to negotiate with employers. Recent research finds a persistent positive effect of unions on members’ wages and household income.


Video: Humans reap benefits of Amazon's robot army


At Amazon, no humans were fired when the robots came. In fact, at one fulfillment center in Carteret, NJ, the two make productive bedfellows.






Salary approved for Modesto school superintendent; refugee students get good news

Modesto Bee

Modesto City Schools trustees approved a three-year contract for Sara Noguchi to serve as superintendent effective July 1.  Also, Modesto City Schools will have a more flexible policy for enrolling refugee and immigrant students at the Language Institute at Davis High School. The English learner program prepares the students for success in the United States.


Kuykendall, Sanford lead for county school superintendent. Bond results are mixed

Modesto Bee

Early returns Tuesday suggest Scott Kuykendall and Shannon Sanford are headed for a November runoff for Stanislaus County superintendent


Gavin Newsom knows what it is like to struggle with reading


If Gavin Newsom is elected governor of California in November, he would likely be the first one to have trouble reading, or at least be the first willing to admit publicly that he does.


In race for governor, Newsom and Cox offer competing views on California education


Offering an expansive view of California’s education system that extends from before birth into the workplace, Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom last night pledged to deliver on what he called a “cradle to college promise for the next generation” along with setting a goal to “end child poverty in California.”


Marshall Tuck and Tony Thurmond to square off in runoff for California schools chief


Marshall Tuck and Tony Thurmond will face each other in the November general election for state superintendent of public instruction in what could be a closely contested and very expensive race funded by wealthy individuals who back charter schools and labor unions that want to restrict their growth.


Why the recent Facebook/Cambridge Analytica data breach matters for students

Educational data are routinely used in schools for a variety of purposes, such as accountability reporting, planning, communications, and personalizing learning for students. We need to be careful–more careful than we have been–to ensure that our students’ privacy is protected and their data are used for good.


EDITORIAL: Progressive Education Today

Wall Street Journal

‘It’s like the [Education Department’s] motto is, ‘If it’s not broken, break it.’” So said state Assemblyman Jeff Dinowitz, in an apt summary of plans by New York Mayor Bill de Blasio to diminish standards at eight high-performing public high schools.


Higher Ed:


Ex-Bee editor Jim Boren to lead new Institute for Media and Public Trust at Fresno State

Fresno Bee

Fresno State has established the Institute for Media and Public Trust to study media literacy and "fake news," and develop strategies to restore trust in all forms of media. The first executive director of the new institute will be former Fresno Bee executive editor Jim Boren.


Good news for C students and English majors – tech jobs are for you, too, study says


To address the shortfall of tech and science workers in the U.S., employers and educators should broaden their definition of who can excel in those fields — extending it to liberal arts majors and students who get mediocre grades in math and science, according to a new study.


Universities Slap Rules on Professors Accused of Sexual Harassment

Wall Street Journal

Tenured faculty facing complaints can be told to keep their office doors open, meet students in public and steer clear of female colleagues.


How to Fix the Adjunct Crisis

The Chronicle of Higher Education

Tenured allies can use their voices and their influence to support the unionization of adjunct faculty, and advocate for strong representation of adjunct faculty in the faculty union.


The college dropout problem


For all the talk of college costs and whether students can even afford to go to college, we’ve tended to skip past an equally crucial question—whether students who make it to campus are graduating with a useful credential.




Men and women in job-training program give back to the community


Playland in Fresno got a little TLC on Wednesday morning from some special workers. There are nine men and women who are in the job training program. Pat Barr, who is the coordinator of the pre-apprentice construction trades class, said that group has worked very hard for several weeks to make it to this point






Prop. 68 passes to inject $4.1 billion into CA water, land conservation projects

San Francisco Chronicle

Proposition 68 was approved with 56 percent of the vote to authorize the state to borrow $4.1 billion for investments in outdoor recreation, land conservation and water projects, according to the latest results Wednesday morning.


San Joaquin River Restoration: An Update

South Valley Water Association

The Federal Bureau of Reclamation just released a "framework" document laying out the anticipated next steps to implement the San Joaquin River Restoration Settlement Agreement — given certain funding constraints.


Cost-Benefit Reform at the EPA

Wall Street Journal

Barack Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency jammed through an average of 565 new rules each year during the Obama Presidency, imposing the highest regulatory costs of any agency. The Trump Administration has already rolled back some of this overregulation, and now Administrator Scott Pruitt wants to stop the EPA’s numerical shenanigans, too.


EDITORIAL: Propping up failing coal and nuclear plants in the name of national security is a disgraceful sham

Los Angeles Times

President Trump’s fascination with coal borders on obsession and he has promised repeatedly to revive the flagging industry. Never mind that the energy market is moving away from coal in favor of cheaper and cleaner natural gas, solar and wind power.




California Energy Price Data for May 2018

California Center for Jobs & The Economy

Monthly updates for the most current May 2018 fuel price data and March 2018 electricity and natural gas price data (US Energy Information Agency).


North America’s energy future is on trial in Mexico’s presidential campaign


At the epicenter of that future is a quiet, steady effort to reform Mexico’s energy markets and roll back the monopolies of Mexico’s state-owned energy companies.


Fact Check Of The Day: Trump Falsely Claims ‘We’re Now Exporting Energy for the First Time’

New York Times

The United States has exported energy sources like coal, natural gas, petroleum and electricity for decades, so Mr. Trump is wrong that this is happening for the first time.


EDITORIAL: Propping up failing coal and nuclear plants in the name of national security is a disgraceful sham

Los Angeles Times

President Trump’s fascination with coal borders on obsession — maybe that’s what happens when coal barons donate hundreds of thousands of dollars to one’s inauguration — and he has promised repeatedly to revive the flagging industry. Never mind that the energy market is moving away from coal in favor of cheaper and cleaner natural gas, solar and wind power.






San Francisco Passes First-in-the-Nation Flavored Tobacco, Vaping Ban  


San Francisco is on its way to becoming the first city in the nation to ban all flavored tobacco products from store shelves. With all precincts now having reported their results, Measure E is passing with a whopping 68 percent of the vote. The final results won't be tallied until all vote-by-mail ballots are counted.

Yes, You Can Become Addicted to Marijuana. And the Problem is Growing.

Pew Charitable Trusts

In the public health and medical communities, marijuana addiction is a well-defined disorder that includes physical withdrawal symptoms, cravings and psychological dependence.

Trump to sign veterans health bill as White House works against plan to fund it

Washington Post

President Trump is fighting a bipartisan plan to fund the much-touted expansion of veterans health care he signed into law on Wednesday, as the White House argues against a boost in federal spending to fund the new initiative.


House to vote on opioid bills next week

The Hill

The House will vote on legislation aimed at fighting the opioid epidemic next week, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) announced Wednesday. “This epidemic is destroying America, the fiber of who we are,” McCarthy said Wednesday in announcing the votes.


Human Services:


Can blockchain save broadband for rural health care?

Some rural health care facilities and their broadband providers are complaining about inadequate broadband subsidies. At issue is the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) Rural Health Care (RHC) Program, which the 1996 Telecommunications Act directed the FCC to create.


EDITORIAL: Medicare Will Be Bankrupt in 8 years: Why Don't Republicans Care?

Weekly Standard

On June 5, Medicare’s trustees published a report warning that the health insurance program will be unable to pay scheduled benefits, not in 2029 as previous thought, but in 2026.




House plan for vote on Dreamers will be set this week, key member says

Fresno Bee

A long-awaited House vote on immigration will finally be scheduled by the end of the week, according to Rep. Jeff Denham, a key player in the ongoing drama. The House would be expected to vote, probably later this month, on a plan to provide "a permanent fix for Dreamers as well as border security," Denham told McClatchy.


With "zero-tolerance" policy in place, border arrests up nationally, down in California

San Diego Union-Tribune

Trump administration policy changes in April and early May designed to curb migration do not appear to have had an immediate effect on illegal border crossings.

See also:

       Feds plan mass prosecution of illegal border-crossing cases in San Diego, attorneys say Los Angeles Times

       Sessions defends separating immigrant parents and children: ‘We’ve got to get this message out’ Washington Post

       Border arrests exceed 50,000 in May for third consecutive month in a blow to Trump's crackdown on illegal immigration The Washington Post


House GOP Immigration Talks Raise Questions on Path to Law

Roll Call

House Republicans say the goal of immigration negotiations is to reach agreement on legislation that could become law, but the ideas floated Wednesday run contrary to that claim.

See also:

       What to Expect as the House Heads Toward an Immigration Showdown New York Times



Land Use:


City gets $50M for Centennial Corridor project

Bakersfield Californian

The City of Bakersfield has received the last chunk of money it needed to fully fund its Centennial Corridor project.




EDITORIAL: The spirit of Proposition 13 four decades after its passage


Forty years ago this week, on June 6, 1978, California voters sent a clear message that they would no longer tolerate excessive property tax increases. The passage of the People’s Initiative to Limit Property Taxation has proven to be one of the great landmark initiatives in state history.


Analysis: HUD plan would raise rents for poor by 20 percent

AP News

Housing Secretary Ben Carson says his latest proposal to raise rents would mean a path toward self-sufficiency for millions of low-income households across the United States by pushing more people to find work. For many families, it could mean homelessness.




City Council takes last step toward vote on sales tax measure

Bakersfield Californian

The city has moved one step closer to putting a sales tax measure on the November ballot. On June 20, the City Council is set to vote on whether to put a one-cent measure on the ballot.


Social Security and Medicare trustees confirm: GOP policies have hurt both programs

Los Angeles Times

The publication of the annual trustees’ reports for Social Security and Medicare has become the occasion for some of the most consistently uninformed reporting on government programs of the year.


Tax cut fuels record $200 billion stock buyback bonanza


The massive uptick followed the US corporate tax cut law, which reduced the business tax rate from 35% to 21%. The tax law also gives companies a break on taxes owed when returning foreign profits.


Social Security Expected to Dip Into Its Reserves This Year

Wall Street Journal

The Social Security program’s costs will exceed its income this year for the first time since 1982, forcing the program to dip into its nearly $3 trillion trust fund to cover benefits.

See also:

     Our Social Security system is in even worse shape than we think, according to one academic Marketplace


Will California Tax Man Let You Move States?


Fear of being chased by California's Franchise Tax Board can be real. Fortunately, there is a safe harbor for certain individuals leaving California under employment-related contracts.




California’s gas tax hike cost a lawmaker his job. Critics say repeal is next

Los Angeles Times

The decision by voters Tuesday to remove an Orange County state senator targeted for raising the state’s gas tax could be a harbinger for the fall campaign when critics of the tax hike push their repeal effort to the statewide ballot.

See also:

     EDITORIAL: The gas tax was once a smart Republican idea. Now the GOP cynically uses it to bludgeon Democrats Los Angeles Times

     Fullerton Democrat recalled over support for gas tax CBS Los Angeles




Denham: Sacramento is weaponizing regulatory process just to take our water

Modesto Bee

State and federal agencies are threatening to cripple our economy and our region’s way of life by trying to take our water through a confusing regulatory process.

See also:

     California officials rebut claims about new water conservation laws Sacramento Bee


No, Californians, you won't be fined $1,000 if you shower and do laundry the same day

Sacramento Bee

No, Californians, it's not against the law to shower and do laundry on the same day. Taking aim at two water-conservation laws signed last week by Gov. Jerry Brown, a conspiratorial far-right financial blog called Zero Hedge reported Sunday that Californians could be fined $1,000 a day if they bathe and wash their clothes on the same day.




Clovis couples lock up love

Clovis Roundup

The international romantic trend involves placing a lock, often inscribed with the couple’s initials enclosed by a heart, on the bridge, and tossing the key, if there is one, into the waters or canyon below. Now, Clovis area residents and visitors are doing the same along Dry Creek bridge along the Old Town Clovis Trail north of Herndon and just east of Villa.

Changes at Fresno Food Expo bring big breweries, chocolate and lots of avocados

Fresno Bee

Expect big changes at the Fresno Food Expo this year, as organizers open up the highly successful food trade event to vendors from the entire state. This summer you will see some well-known names in the food and beverage industry.



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Maddy Institute Updated List of San Joaquin Valley Elected Officials HERE.


The Kenneth L. Maddy Institute at California State University, Fresno was established to honor the legacy of one of California’s most principled and effective legislative leaders of the last half of the 20th Century by engaging, preparing and inspiring a new generation of governmental leaders for the 21st Century. Its mission is to inspire citizen participation, elevate government performance, provide non-partisan analysis and assist in providing solutions for public policy issues important to the region, state and nation.


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