May 26, 2016


Political Stories

Top stories

House moves on California water bills, but toward what end? — The House of Representatives passed yet another set of controversial California water provisions Wednesday, sending a political signal and, perhaps, putting pressure on the Senate. Important differences, though, still split the state, and lawmakers have yet to show they can get out of their respective trenches and resolve them. For now, a final deal seems far off. McClatchy Newspapers articleLA Times article

Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders in dead heat for California — Democratic presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are in a virtual tie two weeks ahead of the primary election in California, with Sanders eliminating the modest advantage she held two months ago, according to a new statewide poll released late Wednesday. Sacramento Bee articleKQED reportLA Times articleSan Francisco Chronicle article

Survey: Pot legalization, tax hikes backed in California — With recreational marijuana headed for the fall ballot, a new poll finds that 60 percent of likely voters support the concept of legitimizing the drug in California. Sacramento Bee article

State budget

California carbon emissions proceeds fall short – Gov. Jerry Brown and the Legislature got some bad news Wednesday about plans to spend more than $3 billion in proceeds from the state’s “cap-and-trade” auction of carbon dioxide emission allowances. The results of last week’s quarterly auction were posted and revealed that instead of the $500-plus million expected from the sale of state-owned allowances, the state will get only about $10 million, less than 2 percent. Sacramento Bee articleLA Times article 

Assembly Democrats seek money for child care, affordable housing — When Gov. Jerry Brown released his revised budget proposal in May, he warned he’s going to be tough on new spending proposals. The Assembly Democratic Caucus says their proposal, released Wednesday, remains balanced, and puts $2 billion into the rainy day fund. KQED report

Assembly Democrats push for increased funding for child care, welfare — Democrats in the California State Assembly will push to add funding for early childhood care programs in next year’s budget, and pay for it by delaying spending proposed by Governor Jerry Brown. Capital Public Radio report

Gov. Brown  

George Skelton: Why Jerry Brown hasn’t endorsed a presidential candidate – and why he should — Brown still has not taken sides in the presidential race between fellow DemocratsHillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders, even with Californians already voting in the June 7 primary. Does it matter? To the outcome? Unlikely. To the candidates’ followers? Perhaps. To the candidates themselves? You bet. Skelton column in LA Times

Valley politics 

Jeff Jardine: AD 12: Mud flying in race campaign flyers – They all seemed so cordial when they came seeking The Bee’s endorsement a couple of weeks ago. The five candidates for the 12th District Assembly seat being vacated by terming-out Kristin Olsen were on their best behavior that afternoon. No barbs, no insults, no cheap shots. But the mudslinging, some of it already on its way in the U.S. mail, already had begun. They are punching and counterpunching as they try to survive the June 7 primary to be among to top two for the Nov. 8 general election. Jardine column in Modesto Bee

Fresno Bee: Arambula, Bigelow, Gray and Mathis for Assembly — We recommend to voters Frank Bigelow in District 5, Adam Gray in District 21, Devon Mathis in District 26 and Joaquin Arambula in District 31. Fresno Bee editorial

Modesto Bee: Best to stick with serious candidates, Denham and Eggman — With Trump certain to be on the ballot in November, we won’t need any additional “characters” to make the election interesting. The Bee recommends voters consider Jeff Denham and Michael Eggman for Congress. Modesto Bee editorial

Interview: Businessman Alex Ott on why he should be a Fresno County supervisor — Clovis businessman Alex Ott would like to be the newest member of the Fresno County Board of Supervisors. Ott serves as the Executive Director of the California Apple Commission, The California Blueberry Commission, The California Olive Committee and the California Blueberry Association. On this week’s Valley Edition Ott joins Host Joe Moore for a discussion on why thinks he should join the board. KVPR report

Statewide politics/Ballot Measures

Poll: California Democrats to advance to runoff for U.S. Senate – Democrats Kamala Harris and Loretta Sanchez, campaigning for the U.S. Senate in California, are poised to meet in a fall rematch, according to a new poll. Sacramento Bee article

Kamala Harris: A ‘top cop’ in the era of Black Lives Matter –  As she campaigns to become only the second black woman elected to the U.S. Senate, the California attorney general is trying to chart a middle course on the Democratic Party’s most contentious issue: criminal justice. New York Times article

Elections officials now checking signatures on 10 potential statewide propositions – Backers of 10 potential propositions are watching as county elections workers check hundreds of thousands of voter signatures gathered over the past few months, most of which were submitted last week. In doing so, there are two key questions: Did the campaigns — on issues ranging from gun control to the salaries of hospital executives — collect enough valid signatures? And can local officials make that determination through a random sampling of the signaures submitted? LA Times article 

Quizzing the candidates leaves a secret paper trail – The eight-page document reads like a contract, asking candidates seeking a seat in the Legislature to pledge support for workers organizing unions. It lists priority issues – including health care, immigration and retirement benefits – and asks if the candidate will be a “supporter,” “champion” or “partner” as the union pursues its agenda in Sacramento. CALmatters article 

Charter groups spending big in California legislative races — Groups that support the expansion of charter schools in California are spending big this year to support the campaigns of sympathetic Democrats vying for open seats in the state Legislature. KPCC report

CA Fwd report outlines plane to upgrade how California pays for elections — California should develop a new way to pay for elections administration that can control costs, improve voting systems and evolve the tension-filled relationship between state and county governments into a cooperative partnership, according to a new analysis by California Forward. California Forward report

Other areas

Most of California Latino Legislative Caucus endorses Clinton – Nineteen out of the 22 California Latino Legislative Caucus members have individually endorsed Hillary Clinton for president, according to a list released by the caucus Wednesday morning. Sacramento Bee article

Cathleen Decker: Ahead of California primary, Clinton focuses on Trump as Sanders seeks to prolong ‘the Bern’ –  As the primary season whirls to an end, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sandersare two planets occupying orbits that only occasionally cross. Both presidential candidates have coursed across California in recent days, pleading with voters to give them the victory each needs in the June 7 Democratic primary. Both warned of challenges ahead that are fraught with danger. But they are different challenges, as their recent California events show. Decker in LA Times

Trump candidacy spurs Latinos to seek citizenship, register to vote – Experts here and around the country say the chance of Trump becoming president has led to a swell in citizenship applications and voter registration among Latinos motivated by his inflammatory comments toward Mexicans and threats to deport immigrants in the country illegally. Fresno Bee article

Trump’s Fresno visit: Expect heavy security, traffic jams, protests — Donald Trump’s scheduled appearance Friday at downtown Fresno’s Selland Arena sparked a flurry of planning Wednesday at City Hall and by the Republican presidential candidate’s supporters and detractors. Fresno Bee article

Stockton Record: Letter to Donald Trump – Dear Donald Trump. OK, it’s your turn now. Bernie Sanders showed up in person. Hillary Clinton sent her former president husband. In doing so, both acknowledged the importance — or at least the existence — of Stockton. You should, too. Stockton Record editorial 

Stockton Record: Letter to Hillary Clinton – Dear Hillary Clinton: Assuming you do get the nomination, continue to think of Stockton moving forward. The city would like to have you in person next time around. Stockton Record editorial

Stockton Record: Letter to Bernie Sanders — Dear Bernie Sanders: You didn’t just stop by Stockton. You made it an event. Stockton Record editorial 

Trump rips Clinton over emails, pledges ‘big play for California’ – Donald Trump, addressing several thousand screaming fans at the Anaheim Convention Center, on Wednesday seized on the release of a government report critical of Hillary Clinton’s handling of emails as secretary of state and vowed to “make a big, big play for California.” Sacramento Bee article 

Several arrested after Trump supporters and opponents square off at rally in Anaheim – Supporters and critics of Donald Trump squared off Wednesday as the presidential candidate held a rally in Anaheim, with police making several arrests after some demonstrators threw objects at them. LA Times article 

Bernie Sanders to hold a rally in Bakersfield Saturday – Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders will hold a campaign rally at the Kern County Fairgrounds Saturday evening, it was announced Wednesday. The “A Future to Believe In Bakersfield Rally” will be free and open to the public but organizers encourage people to RSVP ahead of time. Bakersfield Californian article

Bernie Sanders to appear in Fresno on Sunday – Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders will speak at Woodward Park at 7 p.m. Sunday. The event will be free and open to the public, but interested attendees are encouraged to RSVP on the campaign’s website. The usual entry fees for Woodward Park will apply: $5 per vehicle or $3 if that vehicle has a person 65 or older. Fresno Bee articleVisalia Times-Delta article 

Hillary Clinton launches ‘six-figure’ TV ad buy in California – A day after rival Sen. Bernie Sanders launched a $1.5 million TV ad buy in California, Hillary Clinton’s campaign responded with what the campaign called a “six-figure” buy beginning Friday and featuring appearances by actor Morgan Freeman and farm worker rights advocate Dolores Huerta.  San Francisco Chronicle article 

Sanders cranks up TV ad campaign in California – Democratic presidential contender Bernie Sanders is mounting a $1.13 million TV ad campaign targeting Los Angeles and two other cities, and including outreach to the Latino community. The Vermont senator has purchased time on 21 television stations and three cable networks in Los Angeles, Fresno and Sacramento. Capitol Weekly article 

Miguel Nidever: Why I am leaving the Republican Party – Nidevar, who grew up in McFarland and is a Spanish interpreter, writes, “How is it possible, I ask, that the Party of Lincoln has abandoned principle and conviction, and made its primary focus winning elections and maintaining power?” Nidever op-ed in Bakersfield Californian

In this political year, will Asian-American voters step up to the polls? – Asians rank as the nation’s fastest-growing racial group, with about 5.3 million residing in California, yet their potential as voters has yet to reach full flower. Only 56 percent of those eligible to vote in 2012 were registered to do so, according to census data. KQED report

Mindy Romero: The power of the youth vote – The founder and director of the California Civic Engagement Project (CCEP) at the UC Davis Center for Regional Change presents a TEDxUC Davis talk on the power of the youth vote. Romero TEDxUCDavis video 

Marcos Breton: Angelique Ashby: Battling pols, trolls and big bankrolls — Angelique Ashby’s run for mayor has been shaped by Gov. Jerry Brown in an unexpected way. Had Brown signaled he would have appointed Darrell Steinberg to state attorney general – to replace current AG Kamala Harris, should she be elected to the U.S. Senate this year – Ashby’s political prospects might be much different. Breton column in Sacramento Bee

Poll: America split over bathrooms – Americans are evenly divided over which bathrooms transgender people should use, according to a new poll released Wednesday. McClatchy Newspapers articleSacramento Bee editorial

LGBT divide grows as 11 states sue feds over transgender bathroom rule — Texas and 10 other states are suing the Obama administration over its directive that schools must allow transgender students to use bathrooms and locker rooms corresponding to the gender with which they identify. LA Times articleNew York Times article
California Government Today:

Senate Daily File

Assembly Daily File

News Stories

Top Stories

Kings County drops high-speed rail lawsuit — Kings County officials have announced that they won’t appeal a recent high-speed rail court ruling that went against them. The announcement came early Wednesday morning. Hanford Sentinel articleThe Business Journal articleVisalia Times-Delta article

Nearly half of U.S. households would struggle with an unexpected $400 expense, Fed study finds – Shedding light on the precarious economic state of many American families, the Federal Reserve said Wednesday that nearly half of U.S. households reported they would have trouble meeting emergency expenses of just $400. LA Times article

Stanislaus State gets new president, takes helm July 1; fifth women in a row picked to lead a CSU campus – A veteran California State University administrator with a knack for helping non-traditional students succeed has been named the next president of CSU Stanislaus in Turlock. Ellen N. Junn, 58, will leave her post as provost and vice president for academic affairs at CSU Dominguez Hills to take the helm at CSU Stanislaus from retiring President Joseph Sheley, the university’s board of trustees announced Wednesday. Her first official day on the job will be July 1. Modesto Bee articleLA Times article

Jobs and the Economy

Amazon will open two new California warehouses, in Eastvale and Tracy – E-commerce giant Inc. will open two new warehouses in California, bringing to nine the number of shipping facilities the company operates in the state.

The sprawling warehouses — which Amazon calls “fulfillment centers” — will open in Eastvale in the Inland Empire and Tracy in the Bay Area. LA Times articleStockton Record article 

Grand jury report: Coordinated effort needed to combat homelessness – Homelessness is a big problem in San Joaquin County, and efforts to help those in need are seldom coordinated and often fail to accomplish much, according to the San Joaquin County civil grand jury. The grand jury wants officials to create a strategic plan to address the homelessness issue by Jan. 1. Stockton Record article

Steve Carrigan: City invites Merced County to meet about revenue sharing – Merced’s city manager writes, “Merced County is standing in the way of the city of Merced developing the ‘Bellevue Corridor,’ a $420 million series of developments that could bring construction jobs and full-time, good-paying jobs to our community.” Carrigan op-ed in Merced Sun-Star 

Dirt turns on Fancher Creek town center in southeast Fresno – Construction vehicles are grading the dirt on the town center portion of the massive Fancher Creek mixed-use regional shopping center in southeast Fresno, bringing the first signs of life to a long-anticipated project poised to rival River ParkFresno Bee article

Advocates: Stockton mayor’s homeless plan a good start – The day after Anthony Silva presented “Operation: Safety Net” as a remedy for Stockton’s homelessness issue, advocates for those who live on the streets and in shelters applauded the mayor for highlighting the problem at Tuesday night’s City Council meeting. But the same advocates also issued words of caution about Silva’s plan. Stockton Record article

Salvation Army keeping its Modesto homeless shelter open year-round – The Salvation Army’s decision comes as Stanislaus County works with the county’s cities and the rest of the community on Focus on Prevention, which aims to find long-term solutions to homelessness. And there is a huge need for more housing for the homeless. Modesto Bee article

Kings: Arena job creation has met of exceeded goals — The Sacramento Kings say they have met or exceeded their goals for local employment and job training during construction of the new downtown arena. Capital Public Radio report

Some BART workers are nearly tripling their salary with overtime pay — A recent review of the 2015 annual incomes of BART’s workers has revealed that some employees — particularly those involved with construction and repairs — are making almost triple their salary in overtime pay. San Francisco Chronicle article

Marijuana businesses line up behind Sacramento tax initiative – A campaign mailer for Sacramento’s Measure Y ballot initiative calls for a “yes” vote to establish a dedicated city children’s fund to bolster after-school enrichment, job training, youth employment and prevention services to keep kids off the streets. Sacramento Bee article

More money demanded for Merced Youth Council – Since Merced native Danica Duxbury was 14, she has been looking for a place in the city to call her own, somewhere she could have gone as a teenager where she would feel welcome, comfortable and a sense of belonging. The 27-year-old woman was among more than 50 people who marched from McNamara Park to Bob Hart Square on Tuesday evening, chanting and pleading for exactly what Duxbury has wanted. Merced Sun-Star article 

New owners step in, keep Full Circle Brewing from closing — Last weekend, Full Circle Brewery Company hosted what was slated to be its final event – one last hurrah for the brewery/performance arts space, after 16 years in Fresno’s Chinatown. It ended up being a retirement party for brewmaster Kenny Young and his partners, who are finalizing the sale of the building and business to a pair of 30-something accountants with a passion for beer and a love for downtown Fresno. Fresno Bee article

Fresno Bee moving printing operation to Sacramento – The Fresno Bee will transfer its printing and packaging operations to The Sacramento Bee beginning Aug. 1, president and publisher Tom Cullinan announced Wednesday. Fresno Bee article

Fresno aquarium project breaks ground, but full aquarium years away – Aquarius Aquarium Institute broke ground Wednesday morning to mark what it hopes is just the first small step toward building the long-promised Fresno aquarium overlooking the San Joaquin River. Fresno Bee article

Massive nightspot hopes to turn clock back to 1933 — The massive building, the size of a strip mall, is all shiny metal and glass, with a matching block-length immaculate parking area. This is 1933: Bakersfield’s newest nightlife Camelot. The venue had it’s grand opening on May 5 with a sold-out show by the country-rap duo Moonshine Bandits. Since then, it’s attracted a steady flow of business from curiosity-seekers to some enthusiastic patrons who say they’ve found their new favorite bar. Bakersfield Californian article 

Smitty’s Wings and Things, Gian’s Deli episodes of ‘Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives’ set to air — The final two local eateries visited by Food Network celebrity-chef Guy Fieri will be featured on upcoming debut episodes of “Diners, Drive Ins and Dives.” Stockton Record article

City wants businesses to set up shop in remodeled downtown Sacramento depot – Want to open a rooftop restaurant on a historic building with panoramic views of the downtown skyline? The city of Sacramento has something it’d like to show you. City marketing officials will be offering exclusive tours of the 90-year-old downtown train depot building in the next two weeks to give potential tenants a peek at 25,000 square feet of restaurant, retail and office space the city wants to rent. Sacramento Bee article

Elk Grove council asks Costco to improve architectural design – A proposed Costco store generally received a thumbs up from Elk Grove City Council members Wednesday night, but the council postponed approval of a conditional use permit for the project pending improvements to the architectural design. Sacramento Bee article

Inglewood cooked its books to lure NFL team, former accounting manager says — The lure of the NFL was just too much for Inglewood, a former city employee charges in a federal lawsuit. Barbara Ohno, Inglewood’s former budget and accounting manager, claims that the future home of the Los Angeles Rams massaged its accounting books to mask its financial problems. LA Times article 

Another investor dissents, but second proxy advisor backs Tribune board — Another major Tribune Publishing investor is crying foul over the company’s rejection of Gannett’s buyout offer — even as a second advisory firm weighed in to give the board cover against a possible shareholder lawsuit. LA Times article


Bakersfield may lower water savings target, restart spray parks – Having regained local control over water conservation, city staffers are contemplating cutting users’ mandatory monthly savings target from 31 percent to the “high single digits” and restarting spray parks, Bakersfield City Water Board members learned Wednesday. Bakersfield Californian article

Hanford, Lemoore officials: Keep conserving water – Officials in Hanford and Lemoore have one message for city residents when it comes to water conservation: Don’t stop. Hanford Sentinel article 

Johnny Amaral: Westlands foes distort drainage compromise – The deputy general manager of external affairs for Westlands Water District writes, “Settlements, by nature, require an evaluation of liability and the likelihood of prevailing at trial. Given the contentious debate between Westlands and the federal government over water supply issues, it is fair to say that both parties looked long and hard before reaching this settlement. Let’s hope that Congress will act swiftly with this legislation. But let’s also hope that a successful settlement and legislative result will provide the encouragement for cooperation on water supply legislation.” Amaral op-ed in Fresno Bee

Kids will learn cooking, nutrition at Modesto farmers market — Up to 40 junior high school students will browse the Modesto Certified Farmers Market on nine straight Thursdays this summer. They won’t take the produce home. They will cook it right there on 16th Street, learning about nutrition and food sources along the way. A $97,207 federal grant is paying for the Junior Chef at the Market program, aimed at students who might not have much access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Modesto Bee article

Criminal Justice/Prisons 

Kevin Valine: Modesto police chief’s wish list calls for 16 officers, 3 sergeants, 4 community service officers — Mayor Ted Brandvold wants to increase police staffing, and Police Chief Galen Carroll has a target: 16 officers, three sergeants and four community service officers. Valine in Modesto Bee

Stockton homicide rate continues to climb — Stockton’s soaring homicide rate climbed even higher Tuesday night after one man was shot to death and another succumbed to injuries sustained in a brutal beating last week. Stockton Record article

Series of shootings in Bakersfield the past couple months – A wave of shootings has hit the Bakersfield area over the past two months, ranging from robbery attempts to those that appear gang-related to others with no readily apparent motive. There have been at least 18 shootings in Bakersfield since April 1, according to a tally by The Californian. No arrests have been made in the majority of cases. Bakersfield Californian article

Sacramento County agrees to pay $150,000 over deputy flashlight beating — In another setback for the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department, the county has agreed to pay $150,000 to settle an excessive-force complaint that alleges a suspect was needlessly beaten by a deputy wielding a flashlight. Sacramento Bee article 

CHP report finds ‘inattention’ cause Bakersfield Police Department’s four-vehicle pileup — A four-car pileup that occurred on Highway 46 in Lost Hills earlier this month was as bizarre as any in recent memory — especially as it involved four local law enforcement officers driving separate patrol vehicles. Bakersfield Californian article

Lawsuit alleges abuse of disabled inmates at Shasta County jail — A lawsuit filed late Wednesday in Sacramento federal court alleges horrific civil rights abuses of disabled inmates in the Shasta County jail. The suit also alleges retaliation by Sheriff’s Office staff against disabled inmates who complain about the absence of facilities that can be accessed by them. Sacramento Bee article


Fresno Unified teachers, trustees demand stricter discipline in schools – The Fresno Teachers Association – and some Fresno Unified school board members – are demanding stricter discipline for students, pointing to acts of violence in the classroom. Fresno Bee article

Building California’s initial college, career readiness metric could prove challenging – A new metric to evaluate how well California high schools prepare students for college and careers could include everything from Advanced Placement scores and career technical education enrollment figures to the number of bilingual graduates.  EdSource article

Measure E comes to a close – Local property owners get a cut in their property taxes because the Measure E school bond for West Hills College Lemoore ended on May 4. The Measure E bond cost property owners $25 per $100,000 of assessed value of their property. Hanford Sentinel article

Modesto students get final Food for Thought of school year — There were lots of smiles and zero complaints as 109 students at Eisenhut Elementary carried nearly 20-pound loads Wednesday afternoon. That’s because they’d filled bags of food to take home to their families. The children earned the groceries by participating in Food 4 Thought, an after-school incentive program that includes eight hours of academic and enrichment activities each week. Modesto Bee article

Calaveras to remove nickname but keep logo – Calaveras High School will no longer feature a mascot and will be simply referred to as “Calaveras High School.” The school announced late Tuesday at a Calaveras Unified School District board meeting that community input was overwhelming to forgo a mascot change from Redskins. Instead, the school will keep the current logo, which depicts an American Indian in full headdress, a sequoia and a crest with mining tools, without “Redskins” attached. Stockton Record article

Passport to a better life? – Nonna Arutyunyan, 20, who wants to be a nurse practitioner, is graduating from Delta. She is among the first group of students to finish under Delta’s progressive Passport to College program, which promised free tuition for thousands of elementary school students almost a decade ago when college was but a distant dream. Stockton Record article

The huge price tag for missing warnings of LA teachers abusing students: $300 million and counting — The nation’s second-largest school system has been plagued in recent years by a series of cases in which officials missed indications of teacher misconduct, and in some instances, continued to employ teachers who were under a cloud, or ignored or overlooked direct complaints. The result is a trail of victimized students and massive payouts to victims and attorneys that have surpassed $300 million in just the last four years. LA Times article

Suit alleging negligence in pep rally beating heads to trial — It was supposed to be a harmless skit designed to rile up the crowd before a big football game. Mitch Carter, dressed in a chicken costume, playfully shoved another student and then was rushed by a group of junior varsity football players who formed a dog pile. Cheerleaders joined in. But the Bakersfield High School senior was harmed, says his attorney, Ralph Wegis. He sustained a traumatic brain injury, and now contends with psychological issues, anxiety and depression. Wegis says the district was negligent. Bakersfield Californian article 

State audit finds Parlier Unified engaged in potential fraud – Parlier Unified School District officials may have engaged in fraud and misappropriation of funds, a state audit has found. Fresno Bee article

The Grade: Union president calls out trustee — Outgoing Panama Buena Vista Teachers Association President Lauri Heffernan lambasted Trustee Dean Haddock during her final board meeting as union representative Tuesday, accusing him of using his post as a stepping stone to higher political office. Bakersfield Californian article 

In California, a glaring shortage of school nurses – California falls significantly short of a new recommendation by an influential group of pediatricians calling for every school in the United States to have at least one nurse on site. KQED report

California to audit Alliance charter schools – A panel of state lawmakers on Wednesday voted to audit Alliance College-Ready Public Schools, a move that raises the stakes in a year-long battle over unionizing teachers at the biggest charter organization in Los Angeles. LA Times article

Open board seat temporarily filled for Merced City school board — Michael Crass will fill the seat for Area One on the Merced City School District governing board. Merced Sun-Star article


PG&E accuses prosecutors of deceptions in San Bruno blast probe — Pacific Gas and Electric Co., charged with criminal violations of pipeline safety laws in the wake of the deadly San Bruno gas explosion, is accusing federal prosecutors of lying and concealing evidence showing that federal investigators were also part of a state probe of the blast that gave them direct access to the utility’s records. San Francisco Chronicle article 

A Region at Risk: Rising reality — Fifty years ago, Bay Area residents rallied around the call to save San Francisco Bay. Public action on an unprecedented scale reversed development tides that for more than a century had covered shallow waters with land for industrial parks and housing tracts, roadways and garbage dumps. Now the challenge is more profound: to accommodate the bay’s impending expansion as it rises because of our warming planet. And to accomplish that in a way that won’t put our human and environmental resources at risk. San Francisco Chronicle article 

Power plant proposals for Southern California spark an energy debate – A new wave of natural gas power plants planned for Southern California has stoked a high-stakes debate about how best to keep the lights on throughout the region. LA Times article 

Chevron CEO to climate activists: What would you live without? — Pressed by activist investors to do more about climate change, Chevron Corp. CEO John Watson on Wednesday rejected calls to put a price on the greenhouse gases that come from burning his company’s products and insisted the world would need oil for decades to come. San Francisco Chronicle article 

Long missing frog, turtle species returning to Yosemite – A type of frog made famous by Mark Twain will soon be hopping and swimming through California’s Yosemite National Park after a decades-long absence, officials said Wednesday. AP article 

Acidifying waters puts Dungeness crabs at risk — Scientists reported in the journal Marine Biologythat ocean acidification, which is caused when carbon dioxide pollution dissolves into oceans, can kill and stunt young crabs, potentially jeopardizing whole populations. KQED report

Health/Human Services

UC Merced scientist finds links between brain, cancer cell growth – An assistant professor at UC Merced’s School of Natural Sciences has discovered a link between cancer cell growth and the nervous system after five years of research. The findings published this month in Néstor J. Oviedo’s study was the first evidence in 30 years that shows how the brain is involved in cancer cells continuing to multiply. Merced Sun-Star article 

Could Alzheimer’s stem from infections? It makes sense, experts say – Could it be that Alzheimer’s disease stems from the toxic remnants of the brain’s attempt to fight off infection? Provocative new research by a team of investigators at Harvard leads to this startling hypothesis, which could explain the origins of plaque, the mysterious hard little balls that pockmark the brains of people with Alzheimer’s. New York Times article

Land Use/Housing

Quay Valley: Is Kings County ready for a high-tech town? — Kings County is known for farmed products like cotton and milk, as well as prisons and the Naval Air Station in Lemoore. The rural county is home to four cities and dozens of small places like Kettleman City on Interstate 5.  Now a Southern California group wants to build a brand new high tech town in this agricultural county. KVPR report

Fresno parks: At the bottom no more — A nationwide assessment of city parks ranks Fresno at 97th out of the 100 largest U.S. cities. That may seem dismal at face value, but the organization behind the study says it’s actually good news for a city that has consistently been the doormat in surveys over the last four years. Fresno Bee article


Flying somewhere? Lines won’t get any better, TSA says — The agency is adding additional screeners at airport security checkpoints, but delays are expected to continue as summer travel increases. New York Times article

Other areas

New dog park opening; supermarket sought for northeast Bakersfield – Police response times to Priority 1 calls, which frequently involve life or death situations, are down to an average of 6 minutes, 4 seconds in the northeast Hill zone, the drought is lessening, a new dog park is due and a supermarket could be coming, Bakersfield residents learned Wednesday night at a city meeting. Bakersfield Californian article 

State Supreme Court won’t hear Saucedo’s petition – The California Supreme Court has denied a petition to review the decision to remove former Tulare County Superior Court Judge Valeriano Saucedofrom the bench. Visalia Times-Delta article

Suspicious fire at Planned Parenthood Modesto Health Center – The Modesto fire and police departments are investigating a suspicious, but apparently small, fire at the Planned Parenthood Modesto Health Center on McHenry Avenue early Wednesday. Modesto Bee article 

State issues $40,250 fine against McFarland company over fatal pipeline accident – Cal-OSHA issued fines totaling $40,250 Wednesday against the McFarland ag contractor whose employee accidentally ruptured a PG&E pipeline south of Bakersfield in November, causing an explosion that killed him and badly injured two women living in a nearby home destroyed by the blast. Bakersfield Californian article

Enjoy free access to and learn more about our community – Beginning today, we’ve taken down our web paywall, making most features of free to all without restriction. We’ve come to the conclusion that giving everyone free and open access to most of our content is the best way to connect members of our digital audience with each other, and with our advertisers. Bakersfield Californian article

Joe Mathews: Hey, Chicago, stay out of California — Why do you keep meddling in our state’s challenges when you have so many of your own? Please, for our good and yours, butt out of California and get back to doing the things you do best – like screwing up our connecting flights. Mathews in Sacramento Bee