March 12, 2019



Deadline THIS FRIDAY  

Wonderful Public Service Graduate Fellowship

Applications for two $56,000 Fellowships 

Due Friday, March 15th, 2019

North SJ Valley:

Stockton Fire Chief Erik Newman a candidate to lead San Francisco Fire Department

Stockton Record

Stockton Fire Chief Erik Newman is one of three candidates being considered to replace the fire chief in the City by the Bay, according to The San Francisco Chronicle.

Closing time at Modesto’s Beard Brook Park — remainder of homeless moves out

Modesto Bee

The effort began Monday to temporarily close Beard Brook Park, where Modesto had allowed the homeless to camp since mid-September.

See also:

●     Proposal for 180-bed Modesto homeless shelter reaches milestoneModesto Bee

●     Kaiser invests $3 million to end homelessness in Sacramento, 14 other communitiesSacramento Bee

●     EDITORIAL: Salvation Army, Modesto, Stanislaus County came together and got it rightModesto Bee

Central SJ Valley:

Maddy Associates Luncheon: “2020: California Elections & Census Participation” with Secretary of State, Alex Padilla

The Maddy Institute

Today,The Maddy Institute will be hosting Secretary of State Alex Padilla at a Maddy Associates Speakers Series luncheon. Business and community leaders have been invited to attend this private event in Fresno, CA.

How a Steve Brandau election win could potentially change city budget votes

Fresno Bee

With Steve Brandau leading the racefor District 2 Fresno County Supervisor, he likely will leave his Fresno City Council seat vacant for the most critical council votes: budget hearings.

Socialism and straws: Nunes tweet a joke to some, precise political messaging to others

Fresno Bee

Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Tulare, ignited social media over the weekend with a series of viral tweets likening California’s stricter rules on plastic straw use in restaurants to socialism, drawing widespread online criticism and responses from several prominent fellow Congress members. 

See also:

●     Devin Nunes reaches last straw. Twitter reactsVisalia Times Delta

●     After Midterm ‘Blue Wave,’ Democrats Turn Attention to Unseating Nunes, Hunter in 2020KQED

South SJ Valley:

Two marijuana investors say they paid Leticia Perez’s husband $25,000 for access to supervisors and county officials

Bakersfield Californian

Two executives at a California industrial property company claim that they paid Supervisor Leticia Perez’s husband $25,000 to arrange for meetings with county officials so their company could expand marijuana activities into the county.


Latino voting power is rising in the age of Trump. Will the surge continue in California?

Fresno Bee

Long considered a sleeping giant of the electorate by many, Latino voters in California are increasingly flexing political muscle at the ballot box — a development possibly sparked by President Donald Trump’s rhetoric against undocumented immigrants. 

California’s Voter Registration Rate Is Now Higher Than Any Time In The Past 25 Years

Capital Public Radio

A record number of Californians are now registered to vote — and the state’s registration rate is the highest since Bill Clinton’s reelection — according to a new report from the Secretary of State’s office.

New evidence of the odd political symbiosis between Trump and Newsom

Los Angeles Times

They are two chief executives with a motivated political base, a seemingly unending supply of criticisms and a love of social media. Other political stories may be more important, but few are as entertaining as the rivalry — or perhaps it’s more an odd political symbiosis — between President Trump and Gov. Gavin Newsom.

See also:

●     ‘No National Emergency’: California Governor Rebukes Trump While Visiting Busiest Land Border Crossing in HemisphereNewsweek

●     Californians Deeply Divided on Leaders—But Show Signs of OptimismPublic Policy Institute of California

EDITORIAL: Time’s running out on daylight saving shift

Los Angeles Times

If the twice-a-year clock-resetting leaves you grumpy, you’re not alone; there’s a growing global movement to end this pointless and, frankly, weird 20th century tradition that has persisted despite having no real practical benefit.


For a president who doesn’t sweat details, a new $4.7-trillion budget gets short shrift

Los Angeles Times

The new budget request that President Trump sent to Congress on Monday confirmed his intention to keep up his multibillion-dollar fight for a southern border wall.

See also:

●     Pompeo defends Trump budget; says 23 percent cut won’t hurt State Department’s ‘swagger’Fresno Bee

●     Trump’s emergency declaration hangs over his new budget proposal like a dark cloudLos Angeles Times

●     Trump proposes big cuts to health programs for poor, elderly and disabledWashington Post

●     White House Proposes $4.7 Trillion Budget for Fiscal 2020Wall Street Journal

●     2020 Trump budget reflects 2020 Trump re-election themesRoll Call

●     Trump calls for cutting National Science Foundation funding by $1 billionThe Hill

●     Read Trump’s budget proposalThe Hill

●     EDITORIAL: The good news about Trump’s budgetSan Francisco Chronicle

This is where House Democrats are searching for evidence of voter suppression

Merced Sun-Star

Kansas and North Carolina could be next on the list of states with voting rights controversies that could be examined by the Democratic-run House Oversight and Reform Committee.

Trump administration asks Supreme Court to expand census citizenship case

Sacramento Bee

The Trump administration asked the Supreme Court to expand its scheduled April showdown over the 2020 census to decide whether the Constitution lets the government ask whether people are American citizens.

Pelosi waves off impeachment, says it would divide country

Sacramento Bee

The idea of impeaching President Donald Trump has another opponent: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

See also:

●     Nancy Pelosi: Impeaching Trump ‘just not worth it’ Stockton Record

●     ‘I’m not for impeachment,’ Pelosi says, potentially roiling fellow DemocratsLos Angeles Times

●     Pelosi dismisses impeachment talk: ‘He’s just not worth it’San Francisco Chronicle

●     Nancy Pelosi on Impeaching Trump: ‘He’s Just Not Worth It’Washington Post

●     Impeachment and Your InvestmentsWall Street Journal

Elections 2020:

Pro-Jeb Bush super PAC fined for accepting foreign donations

Fresno Bee

The Federal Election Commission is fining a super PAC that supported former Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush for accepting over $1.3 million in illegal donations from Chinese nationals.

Beto O’Rourke plans first Iowa visit amid 2020 speculation

Fresno Bee

Former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke is making his first trip to Iowa of the 2020 campaign, visiting the state that kicks off presidential voting amid intense speculation that he’ll enter the race for the White House.

Milwaukee chosen as 2020 Democratic National Convention site


The 2020 Democratic National Convention will take place in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, a city with both symbolic and strategic importance to the party.

See also:

●     Milwaukee’s The One For DemocratsCapital Public Radio

●     Democrats select Milwaukee for 2020 national conventionLos Angeles Times

Facebook removes, then restores, Warren ads calling for breakup of company

Sacramento Bee

Facebook Inc.’s social media site took down some advertisements from U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s presidential campaign that call for the company to be broken up, then restored the ads after a Politico report about the decision.

In a shifting party, Biden maintains strength with SC’s black Democrats

Sacramento Bee

He is a Caucasian septuagenarian with decades of Washington experience in a party that prizes youth and diversity and is clamoring for progressive change. But when it comes to the contest for African-American support here in this crucial presidential primary state, Joe Biden shouldn’t be underestimated.

See also:

●     Why Joe Biden would probably win the Democratic primaryLos Angeles Times

Woolsey fire devastation gives 2020 contender Jay Inslee a climate-centered backdrop

Los Angeles Times

Democratic presidential contender Jay Inslee on Monday toured the scorched remnants of homes destroyed in November’s Woolsey fire, portraying the devastation as emblematic of the risks posed by climate change.

Democrats try to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory

Roll Call

The Jeremy Corbyn wing of the Democratic Party has already succeeded in taking the heat off Trump and making the party appear so far left that moderates may not be able to support its nominee for president.

See also:

●     For a growing number of Americans, socialism is OKOC Register

●     Democrats get their very own tea party after all Roll Call

●     Do Democrats Hear Echoes of 1972 Today?Wall Street Journal


‘Love Your Enemies’ Review: Let’s Agree to Disagree

Wall Street Journal

Anger isn’t ruining our politics. Contempt—that dismissive attitude we hold against those who don’t share our views—is the bigger danger.


Sunday, March 17, at 5 p.m. on ABC 30 – Maddy Report:“The Valley’s New State Senators:  Return of the Valleycrats”– Guests: State Sen. Anna Caballero (D-Salinas), State Sen. Melissa Hurtado (D-Sanger), and State Sen. Andreas Borgeas (R- Fresno). Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

Sunday, March 17, at 10 a.m. on Newstalk 580AM/105.9FM (KMJ) –Maddy Report – Valley Views Edition: “Voters and Legislators: The Midterm’s New Faces”– Guests: State Sen. Anna Caballero (D-Salinas); State Sen. Melissa Hurtado (D-Sanger); State Sen. Andreas Borgeas (R- Fresno); Mindy Romero, USC Price School of Public Policy; John Myers, LA Times; and Secretary of State, Alex Padilla. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

Sunday, March 17, at 7:30 a.m. on UniMas 61 (KTTF) – El Informe Maddy“PPIC Water”– Guest: Alvar Escriva-Bou, investigador del PPIC. Host: Maddy Institute Program Coordinator, Maria Jeans.


Almond board selects five local residents for year-long industry immersion

Bakersfield Californian

The Almond Board of California has chosen five Bakersfield-area residents to participate in a year-long program designed to improve their leadership and communication skills for the benefit of their industry, careers and communities.

California’s marijuana industry needs an intervention to avoid an ‘extinction event’

Sacramento Bee

Once, the cannabis industry was poised to become a multibillion-dollar industry in California. Now, it could be heading for what it’s advocates call an “extinction event.” 

See also:

●     Opening the doors to hemp: Fresno conference draws National InterestBusiness Journal

●     California marijuana business licenses expiring at a rapid clipMarijuana Business Daily

●     There’s a serious lack of research on medical marijuana. So why is it so widely used? Tell us your story.Politico

Sudden surge in an unusual crime in Fresno County: Goat theft

Los Angeles Times

An unusual crime wave is sweeping through Fresno County: More than 60 goats — valued at roughly $27,000 — have gone missing in the last two months.

Why Millions Of Californians Eligible For Food Stamps Don’t Get Them

National Public Radio

Millions of low-income Californians eligible for food stamps are not receiving the benefit, earning the state one of the lowest rankings in the nation for its participation in the program.

Trump to Farmers: `LOVE YOU!’ But Still Cutting Your Subsidies


President Donald Trump’s “I LOVE YOU!” tweet to farmers is facing another challenge: Budget cuts that will slash subsidies for crop insurance and small growers.

See also:

●     Farmers Take a Hit in President’s Draft BudgetWall Street Journal

●     Trump budget proposes steep subsidy cuts to farmers as they grapple with crisisReuters

California Agriculture – A State of Abundance

Northern California Water Association

California’s farmers and ranchers produce an amazing economic bounty. California agriculture contributed $47.1 billion – yes, billion with a “b” (down from a high of $53.5 billion in 2014) to the state’s economy in 2015.



Solitary Confinement Helps Control Prison Gangs

Wall Street Journal

It’s torture, according to the United Nations, and in 2015 President Obama called on the Justice Department to review federal solitary-confinement practices and offer guidance to reduce its use. Many reformers would like to abolish it altogether.

Public Safety:

Who will replace Jerry Dyer? Advocates challenge Fresno mayor on search for a new police chief

Fresno Bee

A faith-based advocacy group is calling on Fresno Mayor Lee Brand to fulfill a campaign promise and engage the community in the search for Fresno’s new police chief.

Stop calling 911 for non-emergencies. Fresno has a new phone number for that

Fresno Bee

If you need to report a non-emergency issue to the city of Fresno, there’s a new number to call: 311. And, you can chat with city staff through a new instant messaging tool on the bottom right corner of the city’s website to notify the city about pot holes, traffic signal outages, graffiti, illegal dumping and more.

See also:

●     Fresno residents can dial 3-1-1 for non-emergency issues abc30

Rap Sheets Haunt Former Inmates. California May Change That.

New York Times

After spending more than seven years in prison for robbery and auto theft, Jay Jordan tried to get work selling insurance, real estate and used cars, but was repeatedly turned away, he said.

Fourth annual Guns vs. Hoses

Hanford Sentinel

The Hanford Police Department is seeking vengeance against the Hanford Fire Department — all in the name of charity, of course.

When Sheriffs Say No: Disputes Erupt Over Enforcing New Gun Laws

New York Times

New Mexico’s governor is feuding with county sheriffs, accusing them of going “rogue” by refusing to enforce new gun control legislation.


Stockton Fire Chief Erik Newman a candidate to lead San Francisco Fire Department

Stockton Record

Stockton Fire Chief Erik Newman is one of three candidates being considered to replace the fire chief in the City by the Bay, according to The San Francisco Chronicle.

Overtime pay soared at Cal Fire amid record wildfires

Sacramento Bee

Wildfire overtime increased Cal Fire’s payroll by $91 million last year, a sharp increase from what was already an expensive year before it, underscoring the budget challenge the state may face if major fires are now the norm.

Bill would help California’s inmate firefighters pursue career after release

San Francisco Chronicle

California lawmakers and activists are resurrecting a legislative effort to help inmate firefighters begin a career in the field after they’re freed, hoping to ease the restrictions that have traditionally locked ex-offenders out of the profession.



California cities could open their own banks under bill backed by Democratic lawmakers

Merced Sun-Star

Two California lawmakers have introduced a public banking bill as a rebuke to Wall Street. Their inspiration comes from the Bank of North Dakota, the only state-owned bank in America.

Valley insurance brokers merge

Business Journal

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held Monday morning at the former office of Dority Insurance & Financial Services, Inc. in Clovis.

Group pushing NAFTA 2.0 launches first TV ads in effort to win Dem support

Sacramento Bee

A business coalition is going on air promoting the renegotiated trade deal as a win for American labor, an effort aimed at bringing on board Democrats who now control the House.

See also:

●     The world is knocking at California’s door, and we welcome itCALmatters

Small business owners build communities of personal relationships 

Stockton Record

Whoever says a mom and pop company can’t compete with the larger, corporate stores has never popped into three Stockton businesses that have been doing amazingly well for many years.

California has become a battleground for the protection of consumer privacy rules

Los Angeles Times

A landmark California law signed last year to enact the strongest privacy rules in the country and regulate the online marketplace of personal data is caught in a tug of war between industry lobbyists who want to weaken it and consumer groups that say it doesn’t go far enough.

More refunds are being made with prepaid debit cards. Is that a good thing for consumers?

Los Angeles Times

A growing number of companies in numerous industries now routinely provide rebates and refunds in the form of prepaid debit cards. It’s hard not to suspect that the system is more for the benefit of the businesses involved rather than their customers.

The gigantism of big tech forces a fresh look at antitrust

Roll Call

Increased public concern over the reach of large technology companies, bipartisan support for thinking anew about how to regulate big business, and ambitious policy proposals ahead of the 2020 presidential election are driving a new conversation over antitrust enforcement in the United States.


City plans to hire 126 employees with Measure N funds, including 43 police officers in first year

Bakersfield Californian

The city of Bakersfield has released a spending package it hopes will meet the expectations of thousands of Bakersfield residents that voted to increase the city’s sales tax last November.

White House Proposes to Cut Labor Department Funding by Nearly 10%

Wall Street Journal

The White House proposed a $1.2 billion, or 9.7%, decrease in funding for the Labor Department in the 2020 fiscal year. To cut costs, the Trump administration on Monday suggested eliminating workforce programs “that are ineffective, unproven or duplicative.”

Is There a Future for Good Manufacturing Jobs in the U.S.?

New York Times

Strikes have made a resurgence in the past year, with more workers striking in 2018 than at any time in over 30 years. But most of these workers were teachers and health care professionals.



Young scientists ready to show off their work

Fresno Bee

Over 360 students in grades 6-12 are in competition this week at the 66th annual Fresno County Science Fairin the Commerce Building at the Fresno Fairgrounds.

See also:

●     Hundreds of students participate in 66th Annual Fresno County Science Fairabc30

Student campaign aims to reduce alcohol ads near Fresno schools


Student leaders are creating a buzz on campus with a new campaign aimed at reducing the number of billboards that advertise beer and liquor near schools. A recent survey conducted by Roosevelt High revealed more than half of its students see at least one ad for alcohol every day. 

Leading by reading

Porterville Recorder

Over 150 people attended the Family Reading Night at Strathmore Elementary auditorium on Thursday, March 7. Children were having a ball at the 12 book related activities with teachers reading books to them, while parents either played with them or read books kids during the activities. 

From Bakersfield to Harvard, Bakersfield natives share how their educational experiences prepared them for the Ivy League

Bakersfield Californian

Three local students who received their early education from Bakersfield now find themselves as graduate students at Harvard University.

Split roll: A financial boon or a splitting headache?

Business Journal

Across the state in 2018, Proposition 13’s 40th anniversary coincided with funding disputes at Los Angeles, Oakland, Fresno and Central unified school districts.

Five Teachers Sue California Union Over Forced Dues Collection

Capital Public Radio

Five California educators on Monday filed a lawsuit seeking to stop the state’s top teachers union from collecting dues through mandatory paycheck deductions, the latest in a series of similar legal challenges filed across the country.

California governor’s new task force on charter schools convenes


A new task force that will examine the financial impact of charter schools and report back to Gov. Gavin Newsom by July 1 met for the first time privately on March 7. 

Increasing subsidized child care and pay for providers crucial for California, report says


California families with average or low incomes should pay no more than 7 percent of their income on care and education for children under the age of 6. That’s a long-term goal set by the California Assembly Blue Ribbon Commission on Early Childhood Education.

Full-time school nurses in short supply


A 2018 study in the Journal of School Nursing found that fewer than 40 percent of schools employ full-time school nurses.

DeVos Illegally Delayed Special Education Rule, Judge Says

New York Times

A federal judge has ruled that Education Secretary Betsy DeVos illegally delayed an Obama-era rule that required states to address racial disparities in special education programs.

Education Budget Proposal Highlights Vouchers, Vocational Training

Wall Street Journal

The Trump administration’s budget proposes cutting the Education Department’s current funding by about 10%, in line with the conservative aim of reducing the federal government’s footprint on education policy.

See also:

●     Education reform’s deep blue hue: Are school reformers right-wingers or centrists — or neither? AEI

EDITORIAL: Predatory teachers are moving from one school to another. Californians should be outraged

Modesto Bee

California teachers who have a history of sexual misconduct with kids must not be allowed to move to new schools. The state needs a law outlawing secret settlements that cover up predatory behavior.

Higher Ed:

Deadline THIS FRIDAY:  Wonderful Public Service Graduate Fellowship

The Maddy Institute

Applications for two $56,000 Fellowships Due Friday, March 15th, 2019. Through the generosity of The Wonderful Company, San Joaquin Valley students will have the opportunity to become the next generation of Valley leaders through The Wonderful Public Service Graduate Fellowship. The Maddy Institute will award two $56,000 Fellowships to Valley students who are accepted into a nationally ranked, qualified graduate programin the fall of 2019.

New $25M Oakhurst Community College ‘On Schedule,’ Could Open In 2022

Sierra Star

The new $25M Oakhurst Community College Center is quickly taking shape. Late Friday, college officials released an updated project timeline that could have students in classrooms as early as fall of 2022.

Lt. Governor pays CSU Stockton-related visit

Stockton Record

Lieutenant Governor Eleni Kounalakis said now is the time for leaders in Sacramento to take a serious look at investing more and expanding higher education opportunities in Stockton.

FBI accuses wealthy parents, including celebrities, in college-entrance bribery scheme

Washington Post

The Justice Department on Tuesday charged more than 30 wealthy people — including two television stars — with being part of a long-running scheme to bribe and cheat to get their kids into big-name colleges and universities.




There was an earthquake in Yosemite National Park. Did you feel it?

Fresno Bee

Yosemite National Park endured a 2.1-magnitude earthquake Monday afternoon, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. The earthquake was occurred about two miles northwest of Yosemite Village, just north of El Capitan, at around 3:20 p.m. with a depth of 27.8 kilometers.

More than one-third of US volcanoes are under-monitored. Congress is noticing

Sacramento Bee

More than one-third of the United States’ volcanoes are under-monitored. Last month, Congress passed legislation to improve volcano early warning and monitoring systems.

Study Finds Racial Gap Between Who Causes Air Pollution And Who Breathes It

Capital Public Radio

Blacks and Hispanics are exposed to higher levels of air pollution than whites, yet whites consume more of the goods and services that cause it, according to new research.

How Humans Could Halt Climate Change By 2050: Goats and Soda

National Public Radio

We’re unleashing our imagination and exploring a dream, a possible future in which we’re bringing global warming to a halt. It’s a world in which greenhouse emissions have ended.

EPA Budget Would Be Slashed by 31%

Wall Street Journal

The Trump administration is proposing slashing the Environmental Protection Agency’s budget by 31%, to $6.1 billion, in keeping with its previous requests to shrink the agency.


California wants to reform PG&E, but just how is uncertain

San Francisco Chronicle

California leaders clearly want something about Pacific Gas and Electric Co. to change after many of the wildfires scorching the state in recent years were linked to the utility’s power lines.

EDITORIAL: Green power runs up against desert conservation in California

Los Angeles Times

California lawmakers’ grand ambitions to fight climate change are running into a familiar obstacle: the parochial concerns of local governments and property owners.



Flu season is on the rise, and a more severe strain dominates: What you need to know


Since the start of 2019, influenzahas been steadily on the rise in the U.S., with the number of new cases currently above the national baseline.

Hitting the snooze button isn’t helping you get more sleep


According to a sleep expert at Cleveland Clinic, all that snoozing isn’t helping your body get the restorative sleep it needs.

Smoking while pregnant doubles risk of baby’s sudden death, study finds


Smoking during pregnancy can double the chance of sudden death for the child, according to a new study in the journal Pediatrics.

Men Are More At Risk For Suicide, And Doctors Are Trying To Get Them To Talk About It

Capital Public Radio

Middle-aged men are at the highest risk for suicide, but they’re also the least likely to talk to their doctors about it. UC Davis doctors are designing a video program to encourage male patients to bring the issue up.

See also:

●     VA Struggles To Unlock The Reasons Behind High Suicide Rates Among Older VeteransCapital Public Radio

●     Insurers still don’t treat mental illness like other medical conditionsLos Angeles Times

Why Measles Is a Quintessential Political Issue of Our Time

New Yorker

Between January 1st and February 21st, a hundred and fifty-nine cases of measles were diagnosed in ten states—more cases than there were in all of 2017. Measles is highly contagious and potentially deadly. It’s also entirely preventable through vaccination.

See also:

●     Medieval Diseases Are Infecting California’s HomelessThe Atlantic

Human Services:

Doctor says Legislature’s prescription sends message: ‘We’ll fix you for complaining’

Sacramento Bee

Gov. Gavin Newsom signed into law on Monday a bill meant to give doctors, pharmacists and the California Department of Justice more time to implement new security measures for prescriptions of controlled substances such as opioid pain medications.

Trump proposes big cuts to health programs for poor, elderly and disabled

San Diego Union-Tribune

The Trump administration is proposing a sharp slowdown in Medicaid spending as part of a broad reduction in the government’s investment in health care, calling for the public insurance for the poor to morph from an entitlement program to state block grants even after a Republican Congress rejected the idea.

California’s Universal Health Care Goals Are On Paper. Here Are 21 Bills To Keep An Eye On

Capital Public Radio

Patient advocates and a handful of lawmakers rallied on the steps of the Capitol last week to push a universal health care agenda they hope will bring the state closer to getting everyone insured. Democratic Sen. Richard Pan says it all comes down to cost.

New reality: More retirees find themselves caring for their very elderly parents


At a time in life when 60- or 70-something seniors anticipate retirement, and maybe some downtime, some are becoming caregivers and guardians of their parents. No stats exist on how widespread this is, but the trend is expected to intensify. “People are living longer,” said University of Southern California gerontology professor Donna Benton. 

Trump’s rule gagging doctors is a threat to women’s lives


Even in California, where we have a third of the nation’s abortion providers, I frequently see women who have experienced weeks of delay in accessing a desired abortion because they could not get an appropriate referral. Sometimes relatively minor medical issues can severely limit where a person can access an abortion.

U.S. Hospitals And Insurers Might Be Forced To Reveal The True Prices They Negotiate

Capital Public Radio

A little-noticed Trump administration proposal would require hospitals, doctors and insurers to post the true, negotiated price for a medical procedure or service, as opposed to the “list” price.

See also:

●     Assessing the effects of a rebate rollback on drug prices and spendingAEI


20 metro areas are home to six-in-ten unauthorized immigrants in U.S.

Pew Research Center

Most of the United States’ 10.7 million unauthorized immigrants live in just 20 major metropolitan areas, with the largest populations in New York, Los Angeles, Houston and Dallas-Fort Worth, according to new Pew Research Center estimates based on government data.


Land Use:

Warszawski: Plan to rezone city of Fresno park into housing no surprise

Fresno Bee

Want to know why Fresno suffers from a dearth of park space? Or why California’s fifth-largest city has little to no public access to the San Joaquin River? The answer is simple: It’s because city leaders don’t value parks or river access. 

Is Fresno unfriendly to parks? Here’s one example of how city bureaucrats work

Fresno Bee

Want to know why Fresno suffers from a dearth of park space? Or why California’s fifth-largest city has little to no public access to the San Joaquin River? The answer is simple: It’s because city leaders don’t value parks or river access. It’s not a priority for them.

There’s a new city sign to welcome visitors to Hanford


The city of Hanford has a new sign, and officials say it represents the strong agricultural heritage of the city. The sign, located at the corner of Lacey Boulevard and Garner Avenue, was installed last Thursday. 


Could you live next to a horse park? Housing proposed next to former Ram Tap

Fresno Bee

Fresno County Horse Park owner John Marshall concerned about proposed housing development at former Ram Tap horse park near Herndon and Highway 99.

Newsom Details Housing Plan, But Faces Bipartisan Pushback


The governor’s idea to link the road maintenance dollars that cities get from the state to the progress they are making on housing development received bipartisan pushback from state lawmakers. And in order for Newsom to even be around for the plan’s implementation, he’ll have to win a second term. 

Some residents still not allowed in home following Strathmore flooding


Water poured into yards and homes Friday night. At first, many believe it came from under the Friant Kern Canal, which is just a hundred yards or so from the homes.  But the water apparently didn’t come from the canal. 

Closing time at Modesto’s Beard Brook Park — remainder of homeless moves out

Modesto Bee

The effort began Monday to temporarily close Beard Brook Park, where Modesto had allowed the homeless to camp since mid-September.

See also:

●     Proposal for 180-bed Modesto homeless shelter reaches milestoneModesto Bee

●     Kaiser invests $3 million to end homelessness in Sacramento, 14 other communitiesSacramento Bee

●     EDITORIAL: Salvation Army, Modesto, Stanislaus County came together and got it rightModesto Bee

Can Micro-Real-Estate Developers Help Solve the Homelessness Crisis?

New Yorker

Recognizing California’s housing shortage and its role in driving poverty, Governor Gavin Newsom has offered a “Marshall Plan” for housing: his first state budget proposed more than two billion dollars for the construction of low- and middle-income housing and for homeless services. 


Cities will lose gas tax money if they don’t meet housing goals under Gavin Newsom’s plan

Fresno Bee

Cities that don’t meet housing goals could lose gas tax money for roads starting in 2023 under CA Governor Gavin Newsom’s plan. Fellow Democrats are already criticizing the idea of linking SB1 funds to housing.

See also:

●     Newsom delays threat to block transportation funds to cities that flunk housing goalsLos Angeles Times

●     Gov. Newsom’s proposal tying housing to gas tax penalty wouldn’t kick in until 2023San Francisco Chronicle

California businesses pay their fair share

Visalia Times Delta

With news of California companies moving to states where taxes and other operating costs are lower, it’s difficult to believe that some groups want to hit in-state employers with another tax increase.

Skelton: High taxes be damned, the rich keep moving to California

Los Angeles Times

Are rich people fleeing California to escape astronomical state income taxes? That’s the word. But it’s fake news. In fact, more wealthy people are moving to California than leaving, research indicates. It’s the poor and middle class who are departing.

See also:

●     California has a giant surplus—of ideas for new taxesCALmatters

Expanding the CalEITC: A Smart Investment to Broaden Economic Security in California

California Budget & Policy Center

The California Earned Income Tax Credit (CalEITC) is a refundable state tax credit that helps people who earn little from their jobs to pay for basic necessities. 

The tax cuts will make fighting future recessions complicated


The Federal Reserve may be unable to cut interest rates very much in a future downturn because even today rates are within striking range of the zero lower bound.

See also:

●     Tax Reform Unleashed the U.S. EconomyAEI

Fintech industry pursues clarity on ‘token’ regulation

Roll Call

Financial technology advocates are seeking an answer from regulators on when things like digital tokens should be deemed to be securities, and they’re gaining a sympathetic ear in Congress.


Despite multiple crashes, guardrail on Highway 180 not warranted


Another crash on Highway 180 in eastern Fresno County has prompted questions about the lack of a guardrail along the strip that’s been the scene of a handful of serious crashes over the past few months. 

Is your vehicle most likely to make it to 200,000 miles? If it’s one of these, yes.

Sacramento Bee

A new study came up with the vehicles most likely to last 200,000 miles in the Sacramento to Modesto demographic.

Flying out of Sacramento? How to check if you’re on a Boeing 737 Max 8, involved in 2 crashes

Sacramento Bee

Southwest Airlines, Sacramento, California, airport’s largest air carrier, and American Airlines will still fly Boeing 737 Max 8 jets, involved in 2 crashes. Here’s how to find out if you’re booked on a Max 8 plane.

See also:

●     U.S. airlines express confidence in Boeing’s 737 Max, despite calls for groundingLos Angeles Times

Re-evaluating High-Speed Rail in California

Senator John M. W. Moorlach

With a new governor calling the project into question in his January 12, 2019 State of the State address and new members of the California Legislature, early 2019 is a great time to reassess the California High-Speed Rail project.


Hillview Water Completes Major Upgrades, Customers Balk At Rate Increase

Sierra Star

Hillview Water has just completed major upgrades to its water system — but some of the company’s customers are having a hard time swallowing a new 10.2 percent rate hike just floated by the Oakhurst-based utility.

With the drought over, will cities loosen their strings on watering?

Visalia Times Delta

Months of record rain and snowfall has officially lifted the Central Valley — and much of the state — out of official drought conditions.

California water agencies fight over multi state drought plan

Associated Press

A major Southern California water agency is trying to push the state through a final hurdle in joining a larger plan to preserve a key river in the U.S. West that serves 40 million people.

See the change in SLO County reservoirs after winter rains hit — from space

The Tribune

Heavy rains have graced San Luis Obispo County this winter — and there’s more wet weather on the way. As the landscape gets greener, local reservoir levels have risen.

A fix is proposed to address sinking land beneath the Friant-Kern Canal

Bakersfield Californian

When it opened in 1951, the Friant-Kern Canal carried at least 4,000 cubic feet of water per second along its route from Millerton Lake, north of Fresno, to Bakersfield. Then something unfortunate happened.

Trump Administration Shortcuts Science To Give California Farmers More Water

Valley Public Radio

President Trump is following through on his promise by speeding up a key decision about the state’s water supply. Critics say that acceleration threatens the integrity of the science behind the decision, and cuts the public out of the process. 


He is one of the ‘greatest songwriters of all time.’ He’s coming to the Warnors Theatre

Fresno Bee

Singer songwriter Jackson Browne announced a series of West Coast concert dates this summer, including a stop Aug. 18, 2019 at Warnors Theatre in Fresno, CA. Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. March 15.

IHOP Free Pancake Day returns Tuesday


IHOP Free Pancake Day is back! On Tuesday, you can chow down on a free short stack of pancakes on Tuesday and donate to charities helping children with critical illnesses.

See also:

●     How to get free pancakes at IHOP on TuesdayVisalia Times Delta

Tom Bopp Talks Roosevelt And Muir In Yosemite

Sierra Star

If you’re looking for a mix of entertainment and education this weekend, stop by the Mariposa Museum and History Center for a Fireside Chat with musician and historian Tom Bopp.

Shannen Doherty to headline Bakersfield Women’s Business Conference next month

Bakersfield Californian

Former “Beverly Hills, 90210” star and breast cancer survivor Shannen Doherty will be the keynote speaker at the Bakersfield Women’s Business Conference in April.  

PHOTOS: Rain brings 2nd California super bloom in 2 years

AP News

Here’s a collection of photos by the Associated Press from Borrego Springs — and another series by the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin captured near Lake Elsinore — where California poppies have blanketed the hills in a blaze of golden-orange.

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Maddy Institute Updated List of San Joaquin Valley Elected OfficialsHERE.

The Kenneth L. Maddy Instituteat 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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