June 7, 2019



North SJ Valley:

Grand jury: Bad behavior, infighting keep Tracy City Council from working together

Stockton Record

Multiple complaints of bad behavior and infighting between Tracy City Council members prompted a second investigation by the San Joaquin County civil grand jury aimed at bringing peace and stability to city administrators and staff.

Central SJ Valley:

Democrats line up to challenge Devin Nunes – and former candidate Janz already endorsed one

Fresno Bee

Rep. Devin Nunes’ big money rival from last year’s midterm election announced on Thursday that he’s backing a first-time political candidate who wants to unseat the Republican incumbent in 2020.

See also:

●      Democrats line up for chance to take down Devin Nunes Politico

Measure P Leader Elliott Balch Making Bid For Fresno Mayor

Valley Public Radio

Another candidate has thrown his hat into the ring to be the City of Fresno’s mayor. Elliott Balch, Chief Operations Officer of the Central Valley Community Foundation, filed to run Wednesday. Last year Balch helped lead the campaign for Measure P, a sales tax that would have funded city parks.

Lemoore City Council discusses housing plan, new schedule

Hanford Sentinel

The Lemoore City Council met Tuesday to discuss one public hearing along with the revised schedule for council meetings.

Lemoore Councilmember Holly Blair has history of conflict with city council


Holly Blair, surrounded by police officers at one of the city’s busiest intersections, ignored all commands to get out of her SUV Wednesday afternoon, after a brief chase that started with a bizarre incident at police headquarters minutes before.

See also:

●     Lemoore city council member arrested after chase Visalia Times Delta

Rob Hunt loses the ‘interim’ becomes Tulare city manager

Visalia Times Delta

Tulare has finally found a new city manager, and council members didn’t have to look very far. Rob Hunt, who was named interim city manager after the controversial March 2018 sacking of Joe Carlini, will soon take on a permanent role in Tulare’s top spot in the city.

Miss Teen California, local teachers recognized at Council meeting

Hanford Sentinel

It was a night of recognition Tuesday during the Hanford City Council meeting.

Senator Melissa Hurtado Honors Valley Public Radio At State Capitol


California State Senator Melissa Hurtado has named Valley Public Radio as Nonprofit of the Year for Senate District 14. Station executives visited the state capitol Wednesday to accept the honor as part of California Nonprofit Day.

South SJ Valley:

Kern County Sheriff Shuts Down Gang Unit: ‘This Is Probably Just The Beginning Of More Cuts’


Kern County’s sheriff announced Wednesday the department’s gang unit is shutting down, and one of the driving factors is limited funds

City budget discussed, public hearing scheduled

Porterville Recorder

There was a lengthy discussion regarding the proposed city budget for the 2019/2020 Fiscal Year on Tuesday night at the regularly scheduled City Council meeting.

Imagine Community Arts Center has new home

Porterville Recorder

Imagine Community Arts Center has been in business since 2010 when founder Rebecca Reyes opened the nonprofit art center for children to foster their creativity and art in the community.


Statewide Survey: Californians and Their Government


The PPIC Statewide Survey delivers objective, advocacy-free information on the perceptions, opinions, and public policy preferences of California residents.

California’s biggest problems: Legislature keeps some bills alive, kills others

San Francisco Chronicle

California lawmakers are moving into the closing stretch of their legislative session. Bills on major issues such as housing, police use of force and vaccine exemptions have until September to reach the governor’s desk. But some of the highest-profile measures have already died, failing to make it out of either the Senate or Assembly by a key deadline last week.

Democrats say they don’t take Big Tobacco money. But JUUL had a sponsorship at convention

Sacramento Bee

On a night when 2020 presidential candidates were scoring big applause lines, one of the biggest lines at last weekend’s convention.

Plan To Prop Up Obamacare Emerges As Key Budget Debate For California Democrats

Capital Public Radio

Will a California individual mandate for health insurance bring in enough money to subsidize more affordable care?


Even In Deep Blue California, New PPIC Poll Suggests Only Democrats Back Impeachment

Capital Public Radio

A new poll shows likely voters oppose even starting impeachment proceedings, 54 percent to 42 percent. Meanwhile, there’s a generational split among Democrats as to whether electability or policy matters more in picking a presidential nominee.

See also:

●     Impeachment watch: These are the Democrats to keep an eye on Fresno Bee

●     Pelosi to Dems: Don’t want Trump impeached, want to see him in ‘prison’ abc30

●     House Democrats don’t have a majority for impeachment, but support is growing Los Angeles Times

●      Here’s where each California Democrat stands on opening an impeachment inquiry on Trump Los Angeles Times

●      Why Adam Schiff is not there yet on trying to impeach Trump: ‘It’s not a panacea’ Los Angeles Times

Trump signs long-stalled $19.1B disaster relief bill


President Donald Trump Thursday signed a package that would deliver $19.1 billion in disaster relief to communities across the country that are still recovering from a spate of catastrophic hurricanes, wildfires and flooding.

Justice Department pushes back against Democrats’ contempt threat over census

Roll Call

The Justice Department on Thursday rejected document demands from the chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee related to the addition of a citizenship question to the 2020 census, which could lead to votes to hold Attorney General William Barr and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross in contempt of Congress.

What if Congress were in charge, not Trump?


Ultimately, Congress will need to take responsibility and legislate and to grasp that its dysfunctions are largely self-imposed — and so solutions must be, too.

Elections 2020:

Why Trump may have an unexpected weakness with rural voters in 2020

Fresno Bee

A new Democratic analysis suggests the party’s 2020 presidential nominee has an overlooked opportunity to win over voters in rural America, potentially halting a decade-long slide with a slice of the electorate that has shifted decisively toward the GOP.

Joe Biden reverses stance on Hyde Amendment


Vice President Joe Biden reversed his stance on the Hyde Amendment, which prevents using federal funding for abortion after taking heat from some of his fellow Democrats

See also:

●     Biden Reverses Position, Rejects Hyde Amendment, Cites Attacks On Abortion Access Capital Public Radio

●     Joe Biden reverses course on Hyde abortion amendment Los Angeles Times

●      Joe Biden’s Green Free Lunch WSJ

Kamala Harris Has a Brilliant Idea on Abortion

New York Times

Other candidates should expand her plan to prevent bad laws from going into effect.

Cory Booker is trying to show that ‘love’ can win

San Francisco Chronicle

New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker has an odd problem in the presidential race, which may explain why he’s down in the pack of two dozen Democratic candidates. He’s sounding too nice.

Democratic Candidates Woo Silicon Valley for Donations, Then Bash It

New York Times

Top Democrats in Washington and on the 2020 campaign trail are taking technology giants to task, calling them too big, too powerful and too careless about privacy. “The era of self-regulation is over,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi declared on Monday

California 2020 Countdown: Is getting booed a good campaign strategy? It worked for Dianne Feinstein

Mercury News

Feinstein got booed in 1990, Hickenlooper, Delaney look to follow her playbook.

Politifact CA: An honest question: Where does truthfulness rank as Democrats select a 2020 candidate?

Politifact CA

Honesty. It’s one of the many qualities Democrats will look for in a 2020 presidential candidate. But how much does it really matter? And has this value lost importance with President Trump in the White House, given his persistent and documented struggles with the truth?


Centrist Democrats are back. But these are not your father’s Blue Dogs.


Capitol Hill’s Blue Dog coalition has a host of new members, whose demographic profiles are more reflective of today’s Democratic Party. Some say as the center has shifted left, the group’s agenda has moved as well.

Hackers Won’t Let Up in Their Attack on U.S. Cities


Baltimore is still recovering a month after more than one group breached its network.

FCC allows telecom companies to block illegal robocalls


The Federal Communications Commission voted on Thursday to allow phone providers to block illegal and unwanted calls before they reach consumers.

See also:

●     Stopping scams and spam: Feds give phone companies new tools to fight hated robocalls Hanford Sentinel

●     Here’s Why You May Start Receiving Fewer Robocalls Capital Public Radio

●     FCC gives telephone companies more authority to block robocalls Los Angeles Times

Tech Giants Amass a Lobbying Army for an Epic Washington Battle

New York Times

Faced with the growing possibility of antitrust actions and legislation to curb their power, four of the biggest technology companies are amassing an army of lobbyists as they prepare for what could be an epic fight over their futures.

See also:

●      Google can tap influence army as antitrust pressure mounts Politico

●      States Add to Scrutiny on Big Tech Wall Street Journal

●      Google rewards reputable reporting, not left-wing politics Economist

Overthrow the Prince of Facebook


Big tech has become too powerful and abusive. We know enough about it to break up its dominance.

See also:

●      Facebook Revamps Defense Team as Antitrust Scrutiny Increases WSJ


Sunday, June 9, at 10 a.m. on ABC30 – Maddy Report: “Immigration: Dreaming in a Sanctuary State” – Guest: Laura Hill with the Public Policy Institute of Calif., Taryn Luna with the Sacramento Bee and Dan Walters with CALmatters. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

Sunday, June 9, at 10 a.m. on Newstalk 580AM/105.9FM (KMJ) –Maddy Report – Valley Views Edition:  “Income Inequality and Immigration: Are They Related?” – Guests: Laura Hill with the Public Policy Institute of Calif., Taryn Luna with the Sacramento Bee, Dan Walters with CALmatters, California Budget Center Policy Analyst Luke Reidenbach, National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) California State Director Tom Scott. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

Sunday, June 9, at 7:30 a.m. on UniMas 61 (KTTF) – El Informe Maddy“Immigration: Dreaming in a Sanctuary State” – Guests: Joe Hayes, Investigator PPIC and Liam Dillon with LA Times. Host: Maddy Institute Program Coordinator, Maria Jeans.


Pick your protein: Beef should rein supreme this summer

The Business Journal

With the grilling season upon us, Fresno’s infamous summers are right around the corner. Folks are gearing up for days at the lake, trips to the beach, and of course, summer grilling.



U.S. Attorney announces crackdown on Aryan Brotherhood in CA prisons

Fresno Bee

Federal law enforcement officials in Sacramento say they have struck a blow at the leadership of the Aryan Brotherhood prison gang, outlining an alleged conspiracy among inmates in California state prisons.

See also:

●      Murders, cellphones, drugs – feds strike at Aryan Brotherhood gang in California prisons Sacramento Bee

●     Feds indict Aryan Brotherhood prison gang members on murder, drug and other charges Los Angeles Times

Vice mayor to hold community meeting in wake of violence

Stockton Record

Thirteen days after a 45-year-old man was shot dead in the vicinity of north Stockton’s sprawling Polo Run Apartments, Vice Mayor Dan Wright will hold a neighborhood meeting in the community clubhouse at the complex, at 8165 Palisades Drive.

Are Drug Deals Via Text the Key to the Murder Decline?

City Lab

A new study finds that cell phones played a significant role in reducing homicides in big cities by limiting face-to-face contact.

Public Safety:

Cop urged officers not to shoot. Later he helped an elderly woman. He’s among ‘top cops’

Fresno Bee

These are just a few stories shared about this year’s Top Cop award recipients. The annual awards – given to a CHP, police and sheriff official – were presented Thursday by The Exchange Club of Fresno at Fort Washington Country Club.

The relationship between Fresno police and youth must improve

Fresno Bee

It’s hard to explain, but for most people of color, we get a feeling when we are around police. We learn it young.

‘Whoa! Easy there!’ Report alleges counselor repeatedly kicked California youth inmate

Sacramento Bee

A counselor at a California youth lockup in Stockton last week repeatedly kicked an inmate’s leg until a coworker urged him to stop, according to a report obtained by The Sacramento Bee.

SF chief Dr. Michael Hunter picked for SJ’s medical examiner

Stockton Record

County officials are preparing to hire San Francisco’s chief medical examiner, Dr. Michael Hunter, to head San Joaquin County’s new Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, according to the Board of Supervisors’ agenda for Tuesday’s meeting.

Justin Fleeman fired from KCSO as chief deputy

Bakersfield Californian

Justin Fleeman has been fired as chief deputy at the Kern County Sheriff’s Office, he confirmed on Thursday.

Kern County Sheriff Shuts Down Gang Unit: ‘This Is Probably Just The Beginning Of More Cuts’


Kern County’s sheriff announced Wednesday the department’s gang unit is shutting down, and one of the driving factors is limited funds. 

More Americans were shot to death by March 6 this year than died on D-Day

Washington Post

A 19-year-old in Delaware, a 25-year-old in Columbus, Ohio, a 33-year-old in California, and a 64-year-old in Indiana. They are among the 29 people fatally shot in the United States on March 6. Meaning that any one of them might have been the shooting death that pushed the year’s total past the number of deaths suffered by American forces during the invasion of Normandy on June 6, 1944.


Two fires spark in city, taking up half of Fresno Fire Department’s resources

Fresno Bee

Two fires broke out nearly simultaneously in the city Thursday afternoon, stretching the Fresno Fire Department’s resources.

Cal Fire Plans Prescribed Burns At Night On Highway 41

Sierra News

Cal Fire, in cooperation with Caltrans, Pacific Southwest Research Station/Fresno State University, California Highway, Patrol, San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District and private landowners, aim to fulfill Governor Newsom’s Community Wildfire Prevention and Mitigation Report (Executive Order N-05-19) issued on Jan. 9.

Attempt to plug a wasp nest sparked the biggest wildfire in California history

Los Angeles Times

The biggest fire in California history was started by a man trying to plug the entrance of a wasp nest with a hammer and stake in Mendocino County, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said Thursday.

See also:

●     California’s largest wildfire was caused by a hammer, Cal Fire says Sacramento Bee

●     Hammering on a summer day sparked California’s largest wildfire San Francisco Chronicle

Poll: Voters Give Newsom Lukewarm Reviews for Policies on Wildfires, PG&E Bankruptcy


A new poll says an overwhelming majority of Californians — 78% — are worried that they might have to bear some of the costs for recent wildfires caused by downed utility lines. At the same time, many likely voters are giving Gov. Gavin Newsom a very mixed review for his handling of the PG&E bankruptcy and its aftermath.



US trade deficit smaller in April, but gap with China grew

Fresno Bee

The U.S. trade deficit shrank in April, but the politically sensitive deficit with China moved higher. The Commerce Department said Thursday that the gap between the goods and services the U.S. buys and those it sells abroad fell 2.1% to $50.8 billion in April from March.

See also:

●      California Trade Report for April 2019 Center for Jobs and the Economy

●      On China Trade, Trump Is All Business WSJ

●      U.S. economy added 75,000 jobs in May as growth softens amid escalating trade war. Unemployment rate stayed at 3.6 percent. Washington Post

U.S.-Mexico tariff talks continue with no deal yet

Los Angeles Times

U.S. and Mexican officials labored for a second day Thursday to avert import tariffs that President Trump is threatening to impose as he tries to strong-arm Mexico into stemming the flow of Central American migrants across the U.S. southern border.

See also:

●     Republicans don’t want tariffs on Mexico, won’t fight Trump San Francisco Chronicle

U.S. stocks climb on hope of Mexico trade deal

Los Angeles Times

U.S. stocks finished higher Thursday for the third day in a row, powered by optimism that the United States and Mexico can work out a trade deal before costly tariffs kick in next week.

California has 4th best state economy, by two measurements         

OC Register

WalletHub puts Washington, Utah, Massachusetts on top. U.S. News has Colorado, Utah, Washington 1-2-3.

Chase says arbitration ‘provides better outcomes’ for consumers. Nope, say researchers

Los Angeles Times

JPMorgan Chase is notifying more than 40 million credit card holders that from now on they’ll have to arbitrate any disputes, forgoing the option of filing a lawsuit or joining class-action suits.

Ready for the Next Recession?


Those states in orange? They have yet to rebuild their rainy day funds to pre-recession levels. Some states would not be able to operate for even a week off their core fiscal reserves alone.

Rate Cuts Aren’t as Certain as Markets Think


Interest rate expectations have changed dramatically, despite few concrete signs of change in the economic outlook.


California could lose 50,000 jobs due to Mexico tariffs, senator warns

Sacramento Bee

California Sen. Kamala Harris condemned President Donald Trump’s tariff threat against Mexico, calling it another “Trump trade tax” and warning it could cost her home state tens of thousands of jobs.

See also:

●      Which States Will Be Hit Hardest by Trump’s Tariffs on Mexico New York Times

Another Great Jobs Report


The latest NFIB survey shows U.S. small firms hiring more and paying more.

See also:

●      The Job Market Isn’t as Strong as It Seemed. The Fed Needs to Pay Attention. The New York Times



Visalia students will teach peers coding, robotics thanks to mini-grant

Fresno Bee

Students in Visalia are learning about coding, robotics and augmented reality thanks to a mini grant from Ruiz Foods. Linwood Elementary School teacher Diane Medeiros was awarded the $910 mini-grant for her project “STEAM Makerspace.”

Many Valley schools celebrate grad nights with a twist – completely sober


Thousands of seniors across the country are getting ready to celebrate graduation. Many schools offer a ‘sober grad night’, which has been a longstanding and safe way for students to celebrate the end of their high school years.

Graduation elicits memories, new hopes

Hanford Sentinel

The heat couldn’t dampen the pomp and circumstance from Sierra Pacific’s 7th Annual Commencement Exercises at the Neighbor Bowl on Wednesday where 168 graduates completed their four-year journeys.

Higher Ed:

College grads earn $30,000 a year more than people with just a high school degree


With the cost of college constantly rising, it’s easy to wonder whether four years of college is worth it anymore. But new research from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York concludes: yes, a college degree still pays off.

Online degrees made USC the world’s biggest social work school. Then things went terribly wrong

Los Angeles Times

A decade ago, USC was looking for a way into online education, which promised a gush of new tuition dollars without the expense of additional dorms and classrooms.

Another hidden cost of college? How student parking fees are


Throughout college, Atticus Reyes traveled an hour each way from his upper valley home in Ojai to Cal State Channel Islands a few miles off Ventura County’s expansive coastline. Reyes arranged his first two years of classes so he would only be on campus two days a week—a strategy that allowed him to avoid hundreds of dollars for semester parking permits.

And the winner is: “Calbright” will be the name for California’s new community college


In looking for a new name for California’s fledgling Online Community College, officials wanted something that would attract potential students to the promise of a better future in the Golden State. They also wanted a more widely encompassing moniker for an institution that won’t be only online, despite its original title.


Delays On Beasore Road For Hazard Tree Removal

Sierra News

Sierra National Forest officials have announced a project to reduce hazard trees along Beasore Road beginning Monday, June 10, and running through the month of July, including the 4th of July holiday.

Why Oregon’s all-in climate push matters to California


After efforts to unite the West under a carbon-trading program stalled for nearly a decade, Oregon will decide this month whether it wants to follow in California’s footsteps.

Microplastics Have Invaded the Deep Ocean — And the Food Chain


The largest habitat for life on Earth is the deep ocean. It’s home to everything from jellyfish to giant bluefin tuna. But the deep ocean is being invaded by tiny pieces of plastic — plastic that people thought was mostly floating at the surface, and in amounts they never imagined

Democrats want to require Pentagon to study climate change risks on military bases

Roll Call

House Democrats will seek to include in the proposed National Defense Authorization Act language that would require the Pentagon to more aggressively study the risks posed to its bases by climate change, their latest effort to scrutinize and quantify the challenges a warming planet poses to the military.


Stanislaus County to leave behind three health clinics. Where have the patients gone?

Modesto Bee

Stanislaus County will continue to provide access to primary and specialty care for low-income residents — with the help of two outside safety-net providers.

Anthem to pay ‘very large fine,’ correct how it handles California patients’ complaints

Sacramento Bee

Anthem Blue Cross will pay $2.8 million to the state of California and invest $8.4 million to improve how it logs consumer calls.

Will new VA health program expand veterans’ access to care or be ‘a total disaster’?

Sacramento Bee

Many U.S. military veterans will gain a choice in their health care decisions Thursday, and depending on who’s talking, this new freedom will either give them greater access to doctors closer to their homes or sabotage the quality of care delivered by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Plan To Prop Up Obamacare Emerges As Key Budget Debate For California Democrats

Capital Public Radio

Will a California individual mandate for health insurance bring in enough money to subsidize more affordable care?

Undocumented Seniors Have Tenuous Chance At Needed Health Care As Coverage Debate Reaches A Head

Capital Public Radio

Three proposals addressing Medi-Cal expansion to undocumented immigrants are up for debate this week. The latest includes seniors, which are a small but high-need slice of the state’s undocumented population.

Trump action on fetal tissue research affects California

Capitol Weekly

President Trump has sharply cut back on federal funding for fetal tissue research in a move denounced as both politically motivated and destructive of the hopes of millions of Americans suffering from life-threatening diseases.

Soaring insurance deductibles and high drug prices hit sick Americans with a ‘double whammy’

Los Angeles Times

The steep rise in health insurance deductibles over the last decade has saddled insured, middle- and working-class Americans with medical bills they can’t afford, a Los Angeles Times examination of job-based insurance shows.

Kaiser Permanente mental health workers threaten to strike

Los Angeles Times

About 4,000 mental health workers at Kaiser Permanente will go on strike next week at facilities throughout California if they and the healthcare giant fail to reach a new contract before then, the workers’ union said Thursday.

What States Mean by a ‘Public Option’


“Public option” is a squishy term in health care, but Washington state will soon have one.

Shop Till Medical Costs Drop


Disclosing prices isn’t enough. Patients don’t care as long as ‘it’s all covered by insurance.’

EDITORIAL:  Californians strongly support mandatory vaccination. Where does Gov. Newsom stand?

Sacramento Bee

When the Black Death hit Europe in the 1340s, people searched for answers.


DHS watchdog finds ‘egregious violations’ at immigrant detention facilities


An inspector general report released Thursday shows ICE failed to meet government standards for housing detainees at multiple facilities last year.

Facing pressure from Trump, Mexico detains two migrant caravan organizers

Los Angeles Times

Mexican authorities have dramatically stepped up law enforcement pressure against Central American migrants in recent days in an effort to stave off a trade war with the United States.

Undocumented Seniors Have Tenuous Chance At Needed Health Care As Coverage Debate Reaches A Head

Capital Public Radio

In a pie chart of California’s undocumented population, seniors make up only a sliver. But this oft-overlooked group is now at the center of the Capitol debate over which, if any, undocumented immigrant adults should become eligible for public health insurance. The decision is based on the state budget, which could be finalized as soon as Friday.

Military to spend a month painting border barriers to “improve aesthetic appearance”

CBS News

Members of the military deployed near the U.S.-Mexico border have been assigned to spend a month painting a mile-long stretch of barriers to improve their “aesthetic appearance.”


Land Use:

Closed: The internet is mourning this Fresno restaurant that employed drug rehab grads

Fresno Bee

Locally owned Tree of Life Cafe has closed. The restaurant, which first opened in downtown Fresno in 2016 before moving north near Blackstone and Herndon avenues, shared news of the closure on its Twitter and Facebook pages.

Imagine Community Arts Center has new home

Porterville Recorder

Imagine Community Arts Center has been in business since 2010 when founder Rebecca Reyes opened the nonprofit art center for children to foster their creativity and art in the community.


Poll: To tackle housing crisis, most Californians would limit local control


A majority of California voters want state lawmakers to aggressively address an ever-worsening housing crisis, even if that means strong-arming uncooperative local governments, according to a new poll.

Local Housing Agencies Rail Against Fed Plan to Deny Aid to Households With Undocumented Residents


While existing law already prohibits undocumented immigrants from receiving federal housing aid, the new rule targets some 25,000 families of “mixed” status, in which at least one member of the household is undocumented. These families, who currently pay higher rents on account of this status, would lose all of their housing aid, including public housing assistance and rental vouchers.

What Californians Think About the Housing Crisis and Wildfires

New York Times

A couple of days after Los Angeles officials announced that the region’s population of people without homes had grown, newly released data reflects that housing continues to be a top source of anxiety for Californians across the state.

EDITORIAL: Crisis? What crisis? California refuses to protect renters even as homelessness surges

Los Angeles Times

California politicians have spent the last year wringing their hands over the state’s worsening homeless crisis. But when it came time to act — to take real steps to protect people from losing their homes because of an exorbitant rent increase or an unwarranted eviction — lawmakers were missing in action.


States Missed Out on at Least $283B in Tax Revenue


Despite recent fiscal and economic spikes, many states are still dealing with fallout from the tough budgetary choices they had to make during the recession.

Spending Still Lags in Many States


Many states are still spending less from their general fund budgets than they did a decade ago, after adjusting for inflation. State funding is down for higher education, infrastructure, and other key services.

Major Drop in Infrastructure Funding


Post-recession, states reduced investments in infrastructure. The result? State infrastructure funding as a share of the economy reached its lowest level in more than 50 years.

New: You Can Now Search the Full Text of 3 Million Nonprofit Tax Records for Free


Search the full text of nearly 3 million nonprofit IRS filings, including investments and grants given to other nonprofits.

More of your money is never enough for Taxifornia


It’s that time of year again.  The time of fresh spring blooms, poppies everywhere and of course, new taxes. Despite projecting a $21 billion surplus, the California Legislature has introduced several new taxes and fees.

California prison guards kept getting paid after department moved to fire them, report finds

Sacramento Bee

A California correctional officer kept getting paid for nearly three months after prison officials decided to fire him.

Putting a tax on wealth means we first must measure it


2020 presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren has proposed taxing the wealth of the richest 0.1% of Americans. Gary Burtless explains why this policy may be challenging to enact given the difficulties of measuring the types of wealth these households possess.

Stakes Are High as Nations Seek Accord on Taxing in Digital Age


Negotiators from 129 governments aim to hammer out how, where profits get taxed.

EDITORIAL: How gambling losses could figure in bringing doctors, and clean water, to the valley

Modesto Bee

Two long-vexing problems confronting our Valley — not enough doctors, and not enough clean drinking water — could be addressed by innovative legislation that we urge Sacramento legislators to embrace by Friday’s budget deadline.


Carmakers To White House: Work With California On Rules For Greenhouse Gases

Capital Public Radio

Seventeen automakers signed a letter to the Trump administration and California Gov. Gavin Newsom saying they want one set of policies to reduce greenhouse gases and make cars more fuel efficient.

See also:

●      Automakers warn Trump against emissions freeze, urge California to return to negotiating table UPI

●     Automakers urge California, US to restart mileage talks AP News

●     Automakers say Trump’s plan to weaken pollution standards would hurt their bottom line Los Angeles Times

California’s high-speed rail fail could pay off for other states


$1 billion in federal grants might be up for grabs as Golden State fights with Trump administration over fate of train project.


Rising temperatures cause swift Valley waterways

Visalia Times Delta

The thermometer has officially hit triple digits. With temperatures heating up, snowmelt continues to increase, causing local rivers to swell fast and move swiftly.


Half Dome cables are back up in Yosemite. Here’s how to get a permit to reach the summit

Fresno Bee

Half Dome cables are back up for the 2019 summer hiking season. Yosemite National Park made the announcement on social media Thursday by posting a photo of a helicopter hovering over the granite dome making some repairs.

See also:

●     Half Dome cables installed for the season abc30

Kids can keep enjoying many Fresno Unified facilities during summer


Fresno Unified students are ready to jump into summer vacation. Pools at several high schools across the district will open to the public on Monday. Some will offer swimming lessons throughout the summer.

Floating water park in Merced County opens this weekend


The “Splash and Dash Aqua Park” is made up of giant inflatable slides and bridges that float on Lake McSwain.

Smell the sunflowers at a local fruit stand


Centerville Fruit Station recently had to relocate their business to this new spot at Academy and Highway 180, because Caltrans is expanding the highway near the old location in Centerville.

Merced County Fair returns with food, fun, rides, music and more

Merced Sun-Star

Fairgoers enjoy rides, game and food during the opening night of the 2019 Merced County Fair in Merced, Calif., on Wednesday. Fair hours are from 5 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. Wednesday through Friday, and 3 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

See also:

●     Drones, augmented reality and robots. UC Merced offers fun at Merced County Fair Merced Sun-Star

Events for Graffiti Summer June, 2019, in Modesto CA

Modesto Bee

Rev yourself up, there’s a lot to do this month.

In its 20th year, Kern Community Foundation receives record donation

Bakersfield Californian

Judi and Rob McCarthy are in the business of giving — especially when it comes to Kern County, their former home.