May 10, 2019



North SJ Valley:

Bomb threat forces evacuations at Merced County courthouse

Merced Sun-Star

About 200 people were forced from the Merced County Superior Courthouse on Thursday morning after a bomb threat was reported. Sheriff’s Deputy Daryl Allen said the threat came in at about 10 a.m.

Central SJ Valley:

Is Fresno run by ‘mediocre white guys’? Some think so. Here’s what numbers show

Fresno Bee

Women employees in the city of Fresno are outnumbered three to one by their male counterparts. Are city leaders concerned about that? Data obtained by The Bee through a public records request shows out of 3,370 employees who work for the city, 75 percent are men.

Did Arambula ‘slap’ his child? Cops’ testimony ends prosecution phase of Assemblyman’s trial

Fresno Bee

Prosecutors in the trial of Fresno Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula concluded testimony from witnesses in their case Thursday morning, with defense testimony set to begin Friday.

Citizens sound off on search for Fresno’s next police chief. Is Mayor Brand listening?

Fresno Bee

What are the people of Fresno looking for in the city’s next police chief? Someone completely different from the current one. That was the message, delivered by two dozen speakers Tuesday night at the Fresno High School cafeteria, during the fourth of five community meetings soliciting public input into the city of Fresno’s ongoing search for Jerry Dyer’s successor.

11 Important Things to Know About Janz vs. Brand

GV Wire

The Fresno mayoral election is starting out hot and before the March primary will make all those before it seem like dinner debates in an arctic basement. The entry of Andrew Janz has injected sizzle into the election and stoked a fire in the belly of incumbent Lee Brand.

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South SJ Valley:

Second California City official placed on paid administrative leave

Bakersfield Californian

California City Public Works Director Craig Platt has been placed on paid administrative leave pending an investigation by the Kern County District Attorney’s Office.

Victims Group Decries Flood Of Support For Bakersfield Priest Accused Of Sexual Abuse

Two people have accused a Bakersfield priest of sexual abuse, according to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Fresno. The community’s response to the allegations is split between loyalty and fury.


Gavin Newsom’s California budget spends big and saves more in ‘extraordinary moment’

Fresno Bee

America’s long economic expansion is still filing California tax coffers, enabling Gov. Gavin Newsom to spend more money on homeless aid and emergency preparation while setting aside billions of dollars in reserves for the day the boom finally ends.

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California CISO Peter Liebert Leaving State Government

Government Technology

Liebert, who has been California state government’s cybersecurity chief for almost three years, has left a large footprint in the state’s IT security governance as it has significantly ramped up its efforts.

Inside the Capitol: California News and Analysis


Where to find news about how the California Capitol works—the players, the policies that affect how state government affects you.


Republicans attack Burr over decision to subpoena Trump Jr. ‘Sort of malicious’

Fresno Bee

Just days after the Senate’s top Republican declared “case closed” on the Trump campaign’s involvement with Russian meddling in the 2016 election, a GOP-led Senate committee investigating the issue subpoenaed the president’s son, setting off howls from Republicans aimed at Sen. Richard Burr.

Pelosi calls standoff with Trump a ‘constitutional crisis,’ but resists impeachment


House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said a budding constructional crisis has not changed her approach to launching impeachment proceedings.

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Rosenstein to depart Justice Department amid scrutiny about role in Mueller probe


Justice Department officials honored departing deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein Thursday amid unanswered questions about his role in the Mueller probe.

Congress does not have the option to shrug and look away

Stockton Record

The escalating war in Washington is not between the White House and “Democrats,” despite what President Trump may claim.

Adding a citizenship question to the U.S. Census could affect future elections. So?

Sacramento Bee

Citizenship matters. Or, at least it used to. The question of who is a citizen and who is not is at the foundation of what makes a nation. As a practical matter, however, knowing who is a citizen and who isn’t shapes the way policies get made and resources get allocated.

Trump To Nominate Patrick Shanahan As Defense Secretary

Capital Public Radio

Shanahan has served as acting defense secretary since former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis resigned last December over President Trump’s decision to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria.

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Bipartisan swipes from McCarthy at House Judiciary and Senate Intelligence chairmen

Roll Call

As House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy on Thursday continued his calls for Congress to “move on” from the special counsel investigation, he swiped at House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler and Senate Intelligence Chairman Richard Burr.

Want to take money out of politics? Keep politics out of money.

Washington Post

The progressive catechism teaches that there is “too much money” in politics. A codicil to this tenet, written in fine print, is that the term “money” does not apply to money from George Soros, government employees unions, private-sector unions, trial lawyers,

What you need to know about executive privilege


Inaugurating yet another phase in the battle over Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s final report, the Trump White House on May 8 officially asserted executive privilege over the report’s unreleased and underlying materials.

Elections 2020:

Buttigieg sells out fundraiser at iconic Hollywood gay bar

Merced Sun-Star

Pete Buttigieg (BOO’-tuh-juhj) drew a sold-out crowd to a fundraiser at an iconic West Hollywood gay bar, providing an intimate moment with the first Democratic White House contender who is a member of the LGBT community.

Jay Inslee wants to be Democrats’ climate change candidate. He paints animal portraits, too

Sacramento Bee

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee is running for president to defeat climate change. He’s frequently visited California, and he recently came to Sacramento for a “March for Science” rally.

Amy Klobuchar: How to protect U.S. elections from foreign interference

Los Angeles Times

We now know for certain that Russia invaded our democracy. They didn’t use bombs, jets or tanks. Instead, they planned a mission to undermine the foundation of our electoral system.

Democrats preparing to take the long, slow road to confront Trump

Los Angeles Times

House Democratic leaders are settling in for what they say could be a long, hot summer of legal battles to obtain the full unredacted Mueller report and President Trump’s tax returns.

Congresswoman Elise Stefanik Has a Plan to Get More Republican Women Elected


Representative Elise Stefanik can pinpoint the moment that crystallized the issue for her: It was the week after the midterm elections, and the newly elected members of the House of Representatives lined up for a photo. Representing the Democratic side of the aisle were more than 30 women. On the GOP side were two–Carol Miller of West Virginia and Young Kim of California.

Newsom touts Harris, but says Buttigieg is ‘many people’s second choice’


California Gov. Gavin Newsom said home-state senator Kamala Harris is outperforming her 2020 rivals across the board — but told POLITICO that Pete Buttigieg “tends to be many people’s second choice — if he’s not already a first.”



Farmers say they are desperate for federal disaster aid, tired of DC ‘bickering’


As President Trump holds a rally, Florida farmers say they are desperate for federal disaster aid are frustrated at Washington bickering.

Tulare County growers question pesticide ban

Visalia Times-Delta

A move by California to ban a pesticide used by nearly all Tulare County citrus growers may threaten the billion-dollar industry, local agriculture interests argue. Citrus growers questioned the state’s decision, calling the underlying science used to justify the ban “significantly flawed.”

Hanford in final steps to allow cannabis dispensaries

Hanford Sentinel

Hanford is on the final steps of allowing cannabis dispensaries to locate within the city. The ordinance amends the municipal code to allow both medical and adult use.

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All Fruits and Vegetables Harvested by Foreign Hands

California Ag Today

Recently, Western Growers President and CEO Tom Nassif detailed the critical labor shortages facing American agriculture and laid out the case for agricultural immigration reform before the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration and Citizenship.

Building a Relationship Between Consumers and Ag Industry

California Ag Today

Bridging the gap between consumers and their food has been an ongoing battle that research shows can only be won by trust. Charlie Arnot with the Center for Food Integrity has looked further into what it really takes to gain trust among consumers.

After Nearly 25 Years, It’s time to Advocate for Consumption

California Ag Today

Barriers to consumption still exist. One of those barriers is safety fears generated by certain groups who inaccurately disparage the more affordable and accessible forms of produce.



Task force aims to rid Merced Co. of illegal marijuana grows


Along with removing thousands of plants, sheriff’s investigators say they’ve recovered dozens of stolen weapons and drugs from last week’s illegal marijuana grow.

A routine police stop landed him on California’s gang database. Is it racial profiling?

Los Angeles Times

This month, the California Department of Justice is expected to release newly proposed standards for how law enforcement can use CalGang, the result of legislation passed in 2017 after a state audit determined the database was filled with errors and lacked accountability.

Bill aims to fix sex-offender list’s inequity toward gay men

San Francisco Chronicle

Disparate treatment lingers, leaving LGBT young people vulnerable to unfair punishment in more conservative parts of the state where local prosecutors might be more inclined to pursue such cases.

A Capitol Crime: How a 16-year-old murder reached California’s highest offices


On Christmas Day 2003, Matthew Sievert, the only child of a single mother and California state worker named Stepheny Milo, was removed from life support. He’d gone out to a Sacramento park the night before to meet an ex-girlfriend, and had been gunned down. He was 19.

Public Safety:

Battle of the Badges under way

Madera Tribune

A bloodthirsty, 18-year rivalry continues this month with a North Valley Battle of the Badges series of blood drives in Madera and elsewhere.

Honoring the fallen

Porterville Recorder

The day was bright and the wind softly blew as a crowd of over 100 people began to gather in front of the Tulare County Peace Officer Memorial in Visalia on Wednesday morning to honor and remember Tulare County’s fallen officers.

California is one of the most police friendly states, survey says. Here’s why.

Sacramento Bee

All told, California is a pretty good place to be a police officer. Financial services website WalletHub, known for producing publishing studies with eye-catching names, examined all 50 states for police friendliness using three metrics.


Gov. Newsom wants to prevent CA wildfires. But he won’t commit funding for ‘hardening’ homes

Sacramento Bee

Gov. Gavin Newsom has said he wants to see Californians “harden” their homes to protect them from deadly wildfires, but he declined Thursday to endorse a proposed $1 billion fund to help homeowners pay for retrofits and did not include funding for home hardening in his latest budget proposal.

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‘I expect a zombie to walk out.’ Life in Paradise, six months after the Camp Fire

Sacramento Bee

Returnees must cope with inconveniences large and small. The simplest errands turn into lengthy chores, as dump trucks and demolition crews snarl traffic. Everyone in Paradise uses bottled water; they can’t drink out of the tap because the town’s plumbing system has turned into a “toxic cocktail”.



Escalation in Trump tariffs looms over US-China trade talks

Fresno Bee

U.S. and Chinese negotiators met Thursday just hours before the United States was set to raise tariffs on Chinese imports in a dramatic escalation of tensions between the world’s two biggest economies.

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Visalia could be home to Valley’s first cashierless convenience store


At first sight, a vacant piece of land on Bridge Street in Visalia doesn’t show much promise.But a Northern California computer engineer plans to build a store in Visalia the likes of which have never been seen before in the Central Valley.

How much credit does Trump deserve for the booming economy?

The Week

The Trump economy is not startlingly different from the Obama economy, although there has been acceleration in some key areas. Job growth has been a bit slower, while growth in wages, GDP, and productivity a bit faster.

Uber’s Arbitration Addiction Could Be Death by 60,000 Cuts


For Uber Technologies Inc., using legal arbitration to deal with driver compensation complaints — over anything from pay to overtime to mileage reimbursement — seemed like the smart play: it would preclude costly class-action litigation, it was private, and few drivers would go to the trouble.

They Got Rich Off Uber and Lyft. Then They Moved to Low-Tax States.

New York Times

In fleeing California, these millennial millionaires are following a well-worn tradition. Over the years, many who made a fortune off Silicon Valley skedaddled to lower-tax locations where they could better protect their wealth.


Uber, Lyft driver strike latest move to organize gig workers


A strike by Uber and Lyft drivers in cities across the United States this week caused barely a ripple to passengers looking to catch a ride, highlighting the challenges in launching a labor movement from scratch in an industry that is by nature decentralized.

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March 2019 Jobs Report

California Business Roundtable

EDD reported total employment (seasonally adjusted; March preliminary) was down 16,900 from February, while the number of unemployed rose 14,400. Unemployment rate rose to 4.3%. The unadjusted rate was up 0.2 point from the year earlier to 4.6%.

Minimum-Wage Push Slows on Debate Over Regional Differences

Wall Street Journal

A debate about whether the country should have a patchwork of minimum wages is complicating a push to raise the federal pay floor—and hindering House Democrats’ effort to unite on the issue.

OPINION: Unemployment Isn’t What It Used to Be

Wall Street Journal

The U.S. economy, fresh off another strong report, has created an average of 205,000 new jobs a month in 2019, far more than the roughly 100,000 needed to keep up with population growth. The official unemployment rate has fallen to 3.6%, the lowest in 50 years.



Here’s what we know about VUSD superintendent’s ‘resignation’

Visalia Times-Delta

The board members have stressed the decision to accept outgoing Superintendent Todd Oto’s resignation was mutual. It wasn’t. The board wanted to go another direction. Oto resigned because he had to.

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Terra Bella Elementary uses student garden as a living classroom

Porterville Recorder

Two years ago Steve McCracken, Special Services teacher at Terra Bella Elementary school, planted a vegetable and rose garden that he uses to teach students from kindergarten to multi-age classes (grades 3,4 and 5 in the same classroom) throughout the school year.

McLane Students Tell Human Trafficking Stories With Pop-Up Art And Monologues

On May 2, hours before the M Street Art Complex opened for ArtHop, Marina Santos gave her students stage directions. Santos is an English teacher at McLane High School. She’s been working with her senior class all year to understand one issue.

Porn or vital life lessons? California approves controversial new sex education approach

Sacramento Bee

The California Department of Education approved controversial changes to the state’s health and sex education framework on Wednesday, but removed five resources and books that some organizations called “sexually explicit,” including a book that explains sex to students as young as kindergarten.

California teachers must pay for cost of their substitute if sick leave runs out

Los Angeles Times

Under California’s education code, teachers who exhaust their sick leave and remain out due to illness or accident would see their salary docked to cover payment for the substitute teacher.

Charter schools and the promise of dual enrollment


While high schools across the US are boosting student access to college by letting students acquire college credits, AEI’s Frederick M. Hess explains how one charter school offers an innovative model to dual enrollment.

Higher Ed:

Largest commencement in BC’s history set for Friday

Bakersfield Californian

With 2,746 graduates, this year marks the largest commencement in the history of the college, according to Marlene Heise from Heise Media Group. A total of 3,335 degrees will be awarded.

Food Assistance Linked to Student Success in College


Student hunger on college campuses is a serious concern, potentially affecting students’ health and academic achievement. At the University of California (UC), as many as 42% of students faced some degree of food insecurity in 2016, with one in five reporting reduced food intake due to limited resources.

California colleges help students dress for success — for free


The amply stocked West Wardrobe store on the community college campus is part of a statewide and national trend that seeks to meet students’ basic needs beyond financial aid for tuition.

US college scandal: How much difference does going to a top university make?

The US admissions scandal has seen dozens of people charged following claims wealthy parents paid bribes to get their children places at elite colleges. But how much does which university you attend really matter?




Californians love their mountain lions. Why do we keep poisoning them?

Fresno Bee

For a state that loves its top land predators, though, we’re doing a remarkably good job of poisoning them, along with bobcats, fishers and owls and other wildlife.

Trump plan to allow new fracking on California coast, Central Valley moves forward

Sacramento Bee

The Bureau of Land Management Central Coast Office released new documents on its proposal for oil and gas leasing and development on the public land it administers. The field office’s boundaries stretch across 11 California counties: Alameda, Contra Costa, Fresno, Merced, Monterey, San Benito, San Joaquin, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz and Stanislaus.

Millions for Climate, Environmental Priorities in Newsom’s May Budget


The new funding includes about $250 million for climate-related programs, thanks to the state’s cap-and-trade program, and $75 million to fund an assessment of wildfire protection plans.

Commentary: How Better Wastewater Management Can Help California Adapt to Climate Change

Climate change is worsening water scarcity and flood risks. Advancements in engineering and technology can help prepare wastewater agencies for a changing climate. But significant shifts in policy and planning are needed to address these challenges.

Are laxer environmental policies being trumped?


While growing, the share of renewables in U.S. electricity generation is still low by international standards (about 13 percent in 2015, compared to 29 percent in Germany, 74 percent in Brazil, and 100 percent in Iceland) and could easily grow more.


Trump plan to allow new fracking on California coast, Central Valley moves forward

Merced Sun-Star

The Trump administration moved forward Thursday with its plan to open up federal land in California’s Central Valley and Central Coast to more oil and gas drilling, including fracking.

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Judge: San Francisco can pursue fight with PG&E over charges

Bakersfield Californian

A judge on Thursday allowed San Francisco to renew its stalled legal fight with Pacific Gas & Electric Corp. over power delivery costs.

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Health officials: Tulare County currently at no risk for measles

Porterville Recorder

As confirmed measles cases have been on the rise, and with at least one confirmed case only 75 miles away, the question now is how at-risk is Tulare County, and what can the community do to protect themselves?

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Link between poverty and mental health explored at PC Mental Health Conference

Porterville Recorder

The relationship between poverty and mental health was one of the key talking points at this year’s Porterville College Mental Health Conference Wednesday, May 1.

Trump calls for end to surprise out-of-network medical bills

Roll Call

President Donald Trump on Thursday called on Congress to pass legislation intended to curb surprise medical bills, an issue with bipartisan interest on Capitol Hill but one that has stalled under intense industry lobbying.

The Health 202: Senators want surprise medical bills to be negotiated like baseball salaries

Washington Post

President Trump struck a conciliatory tone yesterday as he advocated protecting consumers from surprise medical bills. But differences between the White House and members of Congress over precisely how to do that are already emerging.

Human Services:

President Trump outlines plan to tackle ‘surprise medical bills’


President Donald Trump announced that his administration plans to treat the extra pain some patients experience when they’re faced with so-called “surprise medical bills” and the unexpected high cost that comes with treatment by out-of-network physicians.

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Newsom wants $2.5M from county health services diverted to cover immigrants

Modesto Bee

Local officials are concerned that Stanislaus County’s public health services could lose $2.5 million in funding due to a state proposal for extending health coverage to young adults who are not legal residents.

Death Café movement comes to Visalia

Visalia Times-Delta

Death. It’s not a subject most of us want to talk about. But thanks to a nonprofit movement now used in 60 countries, Death Cafés are making it more comfortable to talk about death.

Newsom’s Latest Health Care Proposal Includes More Help For Covered California Consumers, Less Money For The Undocumented

Capital Public Radio

California Gov. Gavin Newsom continued his rallying cry for universal health care Thursday with a revised budget that includes more subsidies for Covered California enrollees but doesn’t expand Medi-Cal to all undocumented adults, as some lawmakers are advocating.

Prices Paid to Hospitals by Private Health Plans Are High Relative to Medicare and Vary Widely


Large price discrepancies exist between what private health plans pay for hospital services and what Medicare pays. RAND Corporation researchers used data from three sources — self-insured employers, state-based all-payer claims databases, and health plans — to assess $13 billion in hospital spending in terms of hospital price levels, variation, and trends from 2015 through 2017 in 25 states.

Race, Family Structure, and the Child Welfare System

Family Studies

Just because a higher percentage of black families are investigated does not mean that child protective services is systemically racist. Family structure is strongly associated with the risk of child abuse, and kids who live in homes with a mother and her boyfriend are about 9 times more likely to be the subject of maltreatment than kids who live with their married biological parents.

EDITORIAL: Drug ads on TV will disclose prices, and it’s about time

San Francisco Chronicle

Drugmakers have a sly approach to selling their products. Flossy TV ads with happy people in the bloom of health are used to push viewers to ask their doctors to prescribe medications for a raft of ailments.


Trump administration eyes mandatory employment checks for immigration plan

Fresno Bee

Three months after the Trump Organization began using a federal program to check whether new employees were legally allowed to work at its golf clubs and resorts, the White House is strongly considering a proposal to implement the program nationwide.

Trump team regroups after supporter shouts ‘shoot’ migrants at border


The Trump campaign worked Wednesday night trying to clean up the president’s reaction to a supporter who shouted immigrants crossing into the U.S. should be shot.

Arizona tribe refuses Trump’s wall, but agrees to let Border Patrol build virtual barrier

Los Angeles Times

The integrated fixed towers, or IFTs, as the Border Patrol calls them, were approved in March by a unanimous vote of the tribe’s legislative council, many of them older tribal members.

Border Patrol will screen asylum requests in new push to restrict claims, memos show

Los Angeles Times

Homeland Security officials are making it tougher for people seeking asylum to get over the first hurdle in the lengthy process of gaining U.S. protection, giving new power to Border Patrol agents and taking some discretion away from trained asylum officers, according to internal memos obtained by The Times.

Common Sense Solutions to the Border Crisis


After years of declines, apprehensions of undocumented immigrants at the U.S.–Mexico border are set for their largest year-on-year increase in history (PDF).


Land Use:

Chukchansi Gold To Embark On $8m Hotel Renovation

The Business Journal

Chukchansi Gold Resort & Casino will begin a more-than $8-million renovation project next month to refurbish and renew the Chukchansi and Picayune Towers in Coarsegold.

Flexibility’s The Word On New Fig Garden Loop Office Construction

The Business Journal

In less than two months, he expects to see how that roll of the dice pays off, as that’s when construction is expected to be finished on The Grove at Fig Garden, a three-building, single story office complex at 4065 W. Figarden Dr., next to the Falls Event Center.

Clovis Expands Its Tiny Homes Program

The Business Journal

The City of Clovis’ Cottage Home program is expanding out of the Old Town area and is now available to residents throughout the city whose properties qualify for participation in the program.

Modesto officials intrigued with downtown hotel plan, but lots of questions remain

Modesto Bee

Modesto’s elected officials are interested in learning more about a proposal for a high-end, 200-room downtown hotel that is envisioned as a key piece in drawing more conventions and visitors here.


County keeps eyes on short rentals

Madera Tribune

Madera County will enter a 3-year agreement with Host Compliance, which will research short-term vacation rental listings to identify homeowners dodging local requirements.

New budget proposal tackles homelessness in California

Bakersfield Californian

Calling it “a stain on the state of California,” Gov. Gavin Newsom on Thursday vowed to use part of a historic budget surplus to tackle homelessness in the nation’s most prosperous state.

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EDITORIAL: Diaper and tampon sales tax breaks aren’t the right way to help poor families

Los Angeles Times

Many of his proposals would have a meaningful impact on the lives of working families. Too bad Newsom sullied the package with two gimmicky sales tax exemptions — for diapers and menstrual products — that his predecessor wisely vetoed.


Good news! Gas prices may go down soon


After weeks of soaring gas prices, there may finally be some relief. Drivers could see lower gas prices in the next coming weeks. It’s encouraging news for drivers who are currently paying more than $4 a gallon at the pump.

Caltrans Closes Highway 140 Due To Storm

Sierra News

Caltrans in closing Highway 140 in Mariposa County from Midpines to the Yosemite National Park boundary due to adverse weather conditions.

State assemblymembers take issue with new high speed rail plan

Bakersfield Now

The California High Speed Rail Authority released an updated project plan earlier this month and defended it in Sacramento today.

Blood and syringes: Caltrans fined after union complaint over homeless camp cleanups

Sacramento Bee

Union complaints over homeless camp cleanup led California’s workplace safety enforcer to fine the state’s transportation department, the department’s union announced Wednesday.

Japan tests world’s fastest bullet train


Japan has started testing its fastest-ever bullet train — capable of reaching 400 kilometers per hour (249 mph) — as it continues to develop the revolutionary mode of travel.


Flash Flood Warning For Mariposa County, Heavy Rain In Central California

Sierra News

he National Weather Service in Hanford has issued a Flash Flood Warning for central Mariposa County. Some locations that will experience flooding include El Portal, Jerseydale and Crane Flat.

EDITORIAL: Don’t panic, but California has yet another water problem

Los Angeles Times

First, don’t panic. It’s true that a report published late last month in the journal Environmental Health found a link between California tap water and cancer. The study noted high levels of arsenic, plus numerous other contaminants that may be more toxic in combination than they are separately.


Where to hike in Yosemite? These are the best easy and moderate trails

Fresno Bee

The number of hikes in massive Yosemite National Park, encompassing nearly 1,200 square miles, can seem endless. So what to see on your next Yosemite vacation? Here’s a list of some of the park’s classic trails to help you decide.

There’s a new restaurant in the Tower District — and a familiar cook is drawing big lines

Fresno Bee

When Noodle Express opened last week the Tower District was ready for it. The new little restaurant attracted a big line – and it’s all because of the diminutive cook in the kitchen, Kham Chounramany.

Fresno’s New Poet Laureate Wrote Her First Poem At Age 7: It’s What She Wants For Other Kids Too

On Thursday, Fresno State alumna Marisol Baca was named Fresno’s fourth poet laureate. She is the first woman to hold the title. Baca is an English instructor at Fresno City College, and the co-founder of the Women Writers of Color-Central Valley collective.

In Bishop, find murals, mules and more on a California weekend escape

Los Angeles Times

We found good eats, funky shopping, friendly folks, evocative murals and, just north of town, historical gems. The tab: $149 a night, excluding taxes and fees, for a spacious balcony room overlooking the stream at Creekside Inn; $100 for food; and $20 for museum donations.

California’s Best Coastal Campgrounds

Visit California

“From the sunny Southern California beaches to the Central Coast’s Mediterranean-like weather to the rugged, breathtaking scenery of the north, California mimics nearly every coastal climate and geography in the world,” says Debbie Sipe, CEO and executive director of California Association of RV Parks & Campgrounds.