May 29, 2019



North SJ Valley:

EDITORIAL: Quick look at good, not-so-good

Modesto Bee

Some quick takes as we near the month of June.

Central SJ Valley:

Chief Dyer to announce candidacy for Fresno Mayor Wednesday


Action News has learned Fresno police chief Jerry Dyer will announce he is running for mayor at a press conference Wednesday morning.

Fresno Grizzlies organization apologizes to Ocasio-Cortez for video

Business Journal / AP

A minor league baseball team in California apologized to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez for a Memorial Day tribute video that lumped her image with those of Kim Jong Un and Fidel Castro.

See also:

Fresno City Hall News

GV Wire

With six candidates in the Aug. 13 special election for the vacant northwest Fresno city council seat, the campaign season is on.

South SJ Valley:


When does California vote for president?

Fresno Bee

In 2020, Californians will get their say in who should face off in the presidential election, and they’ll have that say much earlier this time around.

See also:

Party or policy retreat? California event blurs line

Sacramento Bee

A late-night argument between Southern California city councilors ended with one unconscious on the floor of a resort during an annual gathering of local government officials that some past attendees say is more fraternity party than public policy retreat.

Missing: A small-town California city manager. Police are scrambling to figure it out

Sacramento Bee

A small-town California city manager has vanished, and police are scrambling to solve the mystery.

Should ‘Dreamers’ with DUIs get the same break as a member of Congress?

Sacramento Bee

Democrats say immigrants who entered the country illegally as children, commonly called “Dreamers,” and were caught driving drunk long ago should be shown the same consideration as members of Congress with a similar record.

California Assembly’s new rules have led to legislative censorship


Legislators from both parties introduce bills that reflect their priorities. These bills may respond to issues that have occurred in a district, be constituent ideas, bill proposals from advocacy groups, or author-sponsored legislation.

‘Alexa, erase my conversations.’ California lawmakers push smart speaker privacy rules

Los Angeles Times

California lawmakers embraced new privacy rules on Tuesday for consumers who purchase smart speakers like Amazon’s Alexa and the Google Home device, legislation designed to ensure that the devices don’t record private conversations without permission.

California GOP picks favorites for re-flipping seats Democrats won in midterms

San Francisco Chronicle

After last year’s midterm drubbing, which cost Republicans seven California congressional seats, GOP leaders are going all out to try to show that those Democratic wins were one-off aberrations that won’t be repeated in 2020.

Facing possible loss of House seat, California awaits census

Capitol Weekly

As California’s population growth flattens out, the state could lose a congressional seat for the first time in its history.

Walters: Secrecy abounds on state budget, major bills


Fair warning: By reading this you will be plunging into the Legislature’s almost impenetrably arcane thicket of internal procedures.

See also:

Gavin Newsom’s Future of Work, and Ours


Since his days as a San Francisco Supervisor in the late 1990s, Gavin Newsom has spoken and written about the interplay between technology, government, and employment: how technology  is changing the types and structure of jobs, how it can improve government services, how it can generate greater citizen participation.


Supreme Court To Rule On Census Question, Gerrymandering And More


It’s decision season at the U.S. Supreme Court, and there are a host of consequential cases the justices are deciding, from a controversial Trump administration proposal to adding a citizenship question to the census to gerrymandering and a question of separation of church and state.

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Political Junkie Ken Rudin On Trump Vs. Pelosi

Capital Public Radio

Political Junkie Ken Rudin recaps a week of verbal sparring between President Donald Trump and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi over the threat of impeachment.

Trump’s Homeland Security purge claims another victim, head of citizenship agency

Los Angeles Times

The latest head to roll in President Trump’s continued purge of top Homeland Security officials is that of Lee Francis Cissna, the director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

Supreme Court issues a go-slow signal in its first abortion decision of the year

Los Angeles Times

The Supreme Court handed down its first abortion decision of the year on Tuesday, with a mixed result that clearly signaled the conservative majority is not ready to reconsider the right to abortion set in Roe vs. Wade.

Trump’s tweets are losing their potency


President Trump’s tweets don’t pack the punch they did at the outset of his presidency. His Twitter interaction rate — a measure of the impact given how much he tweets and how many people follow him — has tumbled precipitously, according to data from CrowdTangle.

Bipartisan thumbs-down to facial recognition technology

Roll Call

Surveillance sparks comparisons to Orwellian dystopia.

EDITORIAL: With William Barr newly empowered to investigate the investigators, it must be the season of the witch hunt

San Francisco Chronicle

The authority to declassify intelligence gives the attorney general another means of distorting and distracting from Robert Mueller’s findings.

Elections 2020:

2020 preview? Feud between Trump and Biden flares up

Fresno Bee

Democrats won’t pick their nominee for another year, but President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden are acting like the 2020 presidential contest is already a two-man race.

2020 candidate Kamala Harris targets state abortion bans

Bakersfield Californian

Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris said Tuesday that if she won the White House, she would require states seeking to restrict abortion laws to first obtain federal approval.

See also:

Joe Biden proposes big expansion of federal money for K-12 schools

Los Angeles Times

Joe Biden stopped talking entirely in generalities and plowed into the policy debate of the 2020 Democratic primary on Tuesday with an ambitious plan to triple the amount of federal spending on low-income schools.

What makes Pete Buttigieg so effective

The Washington Post

During an interview in Washington on Thursday, The Post’s Robert Costa tried his best to get Democratic presidential candidate and South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg to say something negative about fellow candidate Joe Biden. Part of the old guard? Defended credit card companies? Responsible for mass incarceration as a result of the 1994 crime bill?

Commentary: It’s time to hold voters accountable for their choices

Washington Post

We demand accountability from politicians. We should demand it from voters, too.

Celebrate the National Voter Registration Act by building a more inclusive democracy


Twenty-five years ago today, our democracy took a major step forward with the enactment of the bipartisan National Voter Registration Act(NVRA), which opened up the voter registration process to Americans left out of the electorate.

Five issue positions that could blow up a Democratic campaign


So far this election cycle five issues have arisen that could blow up a Democratic candidate for president, a Democratic candidate for dog-catcher and everyone in between.


EDITORIAL: The children are watching us

Sierra Star

The veterans honored on Memorial Day gave us the freedom to live in a great country. Don’t dishonor their sacrifice by teaching the next generation the wrong lessons. Freedom comes with civic responsibilities. They’re watching us.

After Doctored Pelosi Video, Expert Warns Of Unchecked ‘Misinformation Campaigns’

Capital Public Radio

Digital forensics expert and UC Berkeley professor Hany Farid answers lingering questions about the video of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi that was doctored to sound like she was slurring her speech.

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Facebook’s False Standards for Not Removing a Fake Nancy Pelosi Video

The New Yorker

Last week, when a doctored video of the Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, began circulating on Facebook, it seemed like it would only be a matter of time before it was removed. After all, just one day before, Facebook proudly announced that it had recently removed 2.2 billion fake accounts between January and March as part of its expanded efforts to curb the platform’s circulation of misinformation.

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All the Ways Google Tracks You—And How to Stop It


You’re probably aware that google keeps tabs on what you’re up to on its devices, apps, and services—but you might not realize just how far its tracking reach extends, into the places you go, the purchases you make, and much more. it’s an extensive set of data, but you can take more control over what google collects about you and how long the company keeps it. here’s how.

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The Reopening of the Liberal Mind


Bard College President Leon Botstein explains how his school remains free of the student outbursts that afflict similar institutions.


Sunday, June 2, at 9 a.m. on ABC30 – Maddy Report: California Politics with Dan Walters: Brown’s Legacy and Newsom’s Agenda” – Guest: Dan Walters with CALmatters. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

Sunday, June 2, at 10 a.m. on Newstalk 580AM/105.9FM (KMJ) – Maddy Report – Valley Views Edition:  End of an Era: What’s next? – Guest: Former California’s Legislative Analyst, Mac Taylor. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

Sunday, June 2, at 7:30 a.m. on UniMas 61 (KTTF) – El Informe Maddy: “Agua en el Valle de San Joaquin: Un reporte de PPIC” – Guest: MAlvar Escriva-Bou, investigador del PPIC. Host: Maddy Institute Program Coordinator, Maria Jeans.


California growers discriminated against legal immigrants, Justice Department says

Fresno Bee

A California agricultural company will have to pay $4,000 in fines for engaging in what the Justice Department characterized as discriminatory practices against employees who were legal permanent residents.

It’s not cannabis, but it just might be Stanislaus County’s newest big cash crop?

Modesto Bee

The leafy plants look like marijuana. But actually they’re grown for making consumer products. Stanislaus County is taking a step toward allowing regulated industrial hemp production on farm land with a one-year pilot project.

CA dairies use methane digesters for global warming law

Sacramento Bee

Joey Airoso last year hooked his dairy into a huge California renewable energy project, a network of farms that turns the gas leaking off manure from 35,000 cows into a biofuel.

Rich farmers, not mom-and-pop farms, will collect most of Trump’s tariff bailout

Los Angeles Times

Trump wants you to think most farms are small family holdings, but multimillion-dollar enterprises will collect most of his tariff bailout money.

Why California’s Efforts To Limit Soda Keep Fizzling

Capital Public Radio

After the beverage industry blocked local soda taxes, health advocates in California tried a statewide measure. Here’s why Big Soda is winning anyway.

From potatoes to coffee, plant breeders are changing crops to adapt to an uncertain climate future

New Food Economy

How familiar foods we take for granted are being modified to survive droughts, pests, and other mainstays of a brave new climate-changed world.

State’s New Pot-Banking Initiative Might Pressure Feds to Act

East Bay Express

Incremental reform is designed to give the industry greater access to basic financial services, but it’s not the real solution.

Paso Robles named top destination by Wine Spectator

Fresno Bee

The North County city was recently profiled as a must-visit destination for wine lovers and one of the most exciting places for wine in California by Wine Spectator magazine.

Pest-Control Companies Pull Out of Carpinteria Cannabis Deal

The Santa Barbara Independent

Avocado Growers Say They Are Left with No Good Options This Spring.

Neighbors Suing Over Pig Fumes Spur ‘Right-to-Farm’ Push

The Pew Charitable Trusts

Agriculture interests this year have successfully lobbied for a host of new state laws to protect farms from litigation over foul smells, loud noises and declining water quality.

Court rules NY farm workers have right to organize

Times Union

Farm workers in New York have the right to organize and collectively bargain, according to a state appeals court’s Thursday ruling that said an exclusion for farm workers in state labor law is unconstitutional.

Japan ends longstanding trade restrictions on American beef: USDA


Japan has agreed to lift longstanding restrictions on American beef exports, clearing the way for U.S. products to enter the market regardless of age, the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced Friday.

Farmers shouldn’t matter more than the rest of us

The Washington Post

President Trump announced Thursday that he would extend $16 billion in aid to farmers harmed by his trade conflict with China. The politics of that move are clear, but it sends yet another message that farmers count while the rest of us don’t. That special status isn’t going to hold if the trade war with China persists.

Opinion: In California’s ‘cannabis deserts,’ delivery is the solution. Don’t ban it

Los Angeles Times

A modern war of prohibition is being waged over access to legal cannabis in California, and it’s causing “cannabis retail deserts” to proliferate across the state.



Traffic collision deaths fell over Memorial Day weekend, but DUI arrests were up

Fresno Bee

Traffic collision deaths fell 8 percent over the Memorial Day weekend but DUI-related arrests reached their highest number since 2015, according to data from the California Highway Patrol.

They were wrongfully convicted, freed from prison. California treats them as guilty anyway

Los Angeles Times

Caldwell is navigating what legal justice advocates say is an unfair and burdensome process for financial restitution for exonerees — those who have had their convictions set aside by the courts, usually after new evidence is found.

Public Safety:

Assembly bill takes aim at reducing deadly police shootings in California

Associated Press

Currently, officers involved in fatal shootings and other force must show their response was “reasonable” to protect their lives or the lives of others. The amended proposal says the force must be “necessary,” but doesn’t define what “necessary” is. Also missing from the original version of the bill is a requirement that officers first use deescalation methods, such as negotiation and less-than-lethal force.

See also:

Second lawsuit filed against Ford in deaths of Stanislaus deputy, CSO

Modesto Bee

Three women who had children with a Stanislaus County sheriff’s deputy who died in a crash while on duty have filed a second lawsuit against Ford Motor Co., two days after the deputy’s widow filed suit.

Disaster aid stalls again in House after second Republican objects

Washington Post

Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) objected to a $19.1 billion disaster aid package on Tuesday, derailing House leaders’ bid to send federal support to victims of natural disasters.

Scientists: More Guns Led To More Violent Crime


Right-to-carry gun laws have increased violent crime across the US, a major new study found.

Evaluation of North Carolina’s Pathways from Prison to Postsecondary Education Program


Before 2013, incarcerated individuals in North Carolina could enroll in college correspondence courses, but there was no coordinated effort to provide a path toward a postsecondary degree or credential. Furthermore, there was no coordination around reentry.


The Oakdale area might have a temporary solution for providing fire service

Modesto Bee

The city of Modesto would run the Oakdale area’s fire service for at least three years under an agreement to be considered Wednesday afternoon.

Fire museum will be Fox’s long-awaited neighbor, thanks to Peggy Darling

Bakersfield Californian

Coming soon: the Bakersfield Fire Department Museum. The plan is to house and display historical Bakersfield Fire Department artifacts and equipment, including a 1905 horse-drawn ladder, to be displayed in a setting that recreates a firehouse of that era.

Rethinking Disaster Recovery After A California Town Is Leveled By Wildfire

Capital Public Radio

As disasters like wildfires, floods and hurricanes are increasing in size, severity and frequency, experts who study our response to them are warning that events like the Camp Fire should be a wake-up call.

Disaster aid bill again blocked in House by GOP conservative

Los Angeles Times

A second conservative Republican in as many House sessions stepped in on Tuesday to block a long-overdue $19-billion disaster aid bill that’s a top priority for some of President Trump’s most loyal allies on Capitol Hill.

Disaster tourists descend on Paradise after Camp Fire

San Francisco Chronicle

In the wake of California’s deadliest wildfire, a wave of visitors has descended on Paradise. But there’s no playbook for dealing with tourists in a community still racked by trauma.

The West has many wildfires, but too few prescribed burns, study finds

Los Angeles Times

President Trump has laid the blame for out-of-control California wildfires on the state’s “gross mismanagement” of its forests. Former Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke pointed the finger at “environmental terrorist groups.”

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California tourists spent $500 million at Yosemite in 2018, and even more at another park

Sacramento Bee

Visitors’ spending in the communities around California’s national parks soared by $800 million in 2018, according to a new report from the Department of Interior.

Stocks and bond yields slide on jitters over trade war

Los Angeles Times

U.S. stocks fell broadly Tuesday as anxious investors shifted money into bonds, sending yields to their lowest level in nearly two years.

Hiltzik: Trump’s $16-billion farm bailout means you’re paying for his tariff war twice

Los Angeles Times

We’ll say this for President Trump: When he misunderstands something, he misunderstands it more than anyone else in creation.

Gov. Gavin Newsom launches small business, entrepreneur task force

Silicon Valley Business Journal

Two leaders of Gov. Gavin Newsom’s new task force said the state is being challenged by other areas across the country and the world in ways that won’t always benefit California businesses or residents.

U.S. Is Learning That China Likes Its Own Model


As country’s economy and global reach expand, it doesn’t feel the need to adapt for Western acceptance.

See also:

The Economic Effects of the 2017 Tax Revision: Preliminary Observations

CRS Reports

The 2017 tax revision, P.L. 115-97, often referred to as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, and referred

to subsequently as the Act, substantially revised the U.S. tax system.

Why Corporate America’s debt problem matters


The next recession, whenever it arrives, could be deepened by Corporate America’s debt-riddled balance sheet.


‘It’s Inexcusable’: Dozens of California Government Agencies Failed To Provide Sexual Harassment Training To Nearly 1,800 Supervisors

Capital Public Radio

When correctional officer Sophia Curry reported an inmate at California State Prison in Folsom for sexual harassment, supervisors ignored her request to address the situation.

Equality Act & 2019 — Legislation Is a Time Bomb

National Review

The Equality Act (H.R. 5) passed the House on Friday. The sweeping legislation would amend the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to include sexual orientation and gender identity as protected characteristics.

Trump to pull out of rural Job Corps program

The Washington Post

The Trump administration announced Friday that it will kill a Forest Service program that trains disadvantaged young people for wildland fire fighting and other jobs in rural communities, laying off 1,100 employees — believed to be the largest number of federal job cuts in a decade.

Debating the Unpaid Internship


Students discuss what the work offers, whom it excludes and how to improve the system.

Unions, States Confront Trump Home Care Worker Rule

The Pew Charitable Trusts

Public-sector unions, struck last year by a U.S. Supreme Court decision that ended their ability to charge non-members fees, suffered another blow this month when the Trump administration blocked hundreds of thousands of Medicaid-funded home health aides from deducting union dues from their paychecks.

The Evolving And Expanding Landscape Of California’s Design-Build Project Delivery Method In The Public Works Arena


Proponents of design-build typically applaud the implementation and use of this project delivery method because it allows close and continuous collaboration, communication, and coordination between the architect,  the design engineers and the general contractor — from the very inception of a project through its completion. The project owner, on the other hand, is not administratively burdened with multiple contracts and enjoys the benefits derived from contracting with a single entity (i.e., the design-build team), which assumes full responsibility for the design, coordination, construction, and commissioning of the project.



Fowler Unified unveils district’s first electric school bus

Fresno Bee

Local dignitaries, the Valley Air District and the community joined Fowler Unified administrators to unveil the district’s first zero-emission electric school bus, which will serve students attending Malaga Elementary School & other Fowler schools.

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Kings County Board of Education Special Meeting

Hanford Sentinel

The Kings County Board of Education will be holding a special meeting in the Office of Todd Barlow on Wednesday, May 29 at 4:00 p.m. The office is located at 1144 W . Lacey Blvd in Hanford.

Slew of high school graduations kick off Wednesday

Bakersfield Californian

A slew of high school commencements will be transforming students into graduates beginning Wednesday.

Greenfield Union School District offering free meals over the summer

Bakersfield Californian

Greenfield Union School District’s Nutrition Services Department will be providing free meals to all children ages 3 to 18 during summer school.

What Do Kids Think About Social Media, Stress And Homework? ‘Welcome To Middle School’ – The Podcast


In our studio today, a group of students from Wilson Middle School in Chowchilla. Together, they’ve created a podcast that delivers the goods when it comes to discussions about everything from stress to homework, from social media to school fights.

What Is A Charter School, Exactly? A Field Guide


A package of major changes to California’s charter school laws is advancing through the state legislature — changes that are making pro-charter advocates very, very nervous. “They certainly represent an existential threat to charter schools,” said Myrna Castrejón, executive director of the California Charter Schools Association.

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Obstacles deter many California child care providers from building, expanding facilities


After years of searching, a nonprofit hoping to open a new child care center for low-income infants and toddlers found a rent-free building inside a housing development for migrant workers. In some ways, it seemed like a perfect fit.

Almost a third of teenagers sleep with their phones, survey finds


Teddy bears have met their match: cell phones. Sixty-eight percent of teenagers reported that they keep their mobile devices within reach at night, a telephone and online survey released Tuesday by the nonprofit Common Sense Media found. Nearly a third (29 percent) of teens sleep with smartphones, cell phones or tablets in their beds.

Higher Ed:

Stickers from anonymous group bring up issues of free speech, vandalism at BC

Bakersfield Californian

Stickers spotted on Bakersfield College’s campus have brought concerns among various faculty members, many believing the stickers question issues regarding free speech and vandalism.

College Students (And Their Parents) Face A Campus Mental Health ‘Epidemic’

Capital Public Radio

Anthony Rostain and B. Janet Hibbs say college students today face an “inordinate amount of anxiety” — but parents can help their kids cope. Their book is The Stressed Years of Their Lives.

Westside private school gave diplomas to nonstudents for a fee. Then came the college admissions scandal

Los Angeles Times

A lawyer for West Hollywood Prep’s principal is defending the decision to issue hundreds of diplomas to people who never attended the school. Administrators had been assured by an intermediary that the procedure was proper, she said.

Debating the Unpaid Internship


Students discuss what the work offers, whom it excludes and how to improve the system.

Forgiving Student Loan Debt Leads to Better Jobs, Stronger Consumers

Harvard Business School

Without the burden of student loan debt, people seek higher-paying careers, stabilize their finances, and contribute to the economy.

With Second-Worst Pass Rate In More Than 30 Years, Almost Everyone Fails California Bar Exam

Above the Law

The results are in from the February 2019 administration of the California bar exam, and to say they aren’t pretty would be an understatement because the State Bar is once again celebrating the second-lowest pass rate California has seen in more than 30 years years of administering the bar exam. This isn’t half bad considering the February 2018 results were a record low.




California National Parks Experience Some Of The Worst Air Pollution In The United States

Capital Public Radio

Four of the national parks most impacted by air pollution are in California. Sequoia, Kings Canyon, Joshua Tree and Yosemite lead the pack, but 96 percent of the country’s national parks experience significant air pollution.

High radiation levels found in giant clams near U.S. nuclear dump in Marshall Islands

Los Angeles Times

Researchers have found high levels of radiation in giant clams near the Central Pacific site where the United States entombed waste from nuclear testing almost four decades ago, raising concerns the contamination is spreading from the dump site’s tainted groundwater.

Latest Cap-and-Trade Auction Shows Strong Results

Streetsblog California

The California Air Resources Board just released the results from the latest – the 15th – joint California-Quebec cap-and-trade auction, and the program seems to be performing as hoped. That is, the price of emission allowances is rising steadily, and is well above the government-set floor price. Also, the market for allowances is quite stable.

Climate Changes as Firms Heed Investors on Social Issues


Once-reluctant companies bend to shareholder demands on the environment and other hot-button topics.

New Model Suggests Slower Decline of Glaciers


It takes into account, at a higher resolution, the way land springs up after ice is removed—like a mattress popping up when someone gets out of bed.


Firm plans to track carbon emissions from power plants worldwide

San Francisco Chronicle

Hoping to advance another front in the fight against climate change, a Bay Area energy nonprofit plans to harness the powers of space technology and machine learning to make a trove of planet-warming emissions data publicly available.

Refiners Poised for Boost From Clean-Fuel Rules


Worries about higher fuel prices for consumers have been supplanted by optimism about rising investment into the industry.

See also:

Opinion: Senate Bill 772 would force ratepayers to buy costly pump storage power


California’s electric utilities, including its publicly-owned utilities, are shouldering a significant role in helping meet these goals.  



E-cigarette flavors may increase your risk of cardiovascular disease, study finds

Visalia Times Delta

E-cigarette flavors can damage the cells that line the interior of blood vessels and may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, a new study says.

See also:

WHO Redefines Burnout As A ‘Syndrome’ Linked To Chronic Stress At Work

Capital Public Radio

The World Health Organization has updated its handbook of diseases to include an expanded definition of burnout. It closely links it to workplace stress and says it can lead to reduced productivity.

Bill Of The Month: $4,836 Charge For Laughing Gas During Childbirth Is No Joke

Capital Public Radio

Nitrous oxide is making a comeback for pain relief during childbirth. But charges for the option vary from free at some hospitals to thousands of dollars at others.

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Fewer Americans are diagnosed with diabetes, even though obesity keeps rising

Los Angeles Times

The number of new diabetes cases among U.S. adults keeps falling even as obesity rates climb, and health officials aren’t sure why.

Can a business owner require staffers to get vaccinated?

Sacramento Bee

Small business owners worried about the spread of measles may want to be sure their staffers have been vaccinated, but before issuing any orders, they should speak with a labor law attorney or human resources consultant.

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Human Services:

Nurses demand the right ‘to have breaks’ in protests at Tenet hospitals across California

Fresno Bee

Nurses picketed outside Tenet-affiliated hospitals across California on Tuesday afternoon in a union-organized event meant to urge management to invest in nursing staff.

California Priorities Health Care Event (Modesto)

Modesto Bee

A special invitation for The Modesto Bee subscribers: California Priorities Health Care Event.

UCSF drops affiliation with Catholic hospitals, a victory for reproductive rights

Los Angeles Times

UC San Francisco announced Tuesday that it is dropping plans for an expanded affiliation with Dignity Health, a Catholic hospital chain that places flagrantly discriminatory restrictions on abortions, transgender care and other services.

The Hidden Formula That Determines How Much You Pay for Drugs


Drug pricing is complicated and secretive. WSJ explains how the flow of money, drugs and rebates behind the scenes may drive up the price of prescription medicine for consumers.

Rapid Opioid Cutoff Is Risky Too, Feds Warn

The Pew Charitable Trusts

To stem the opioid epidemic, U.S. doctors cut prescriptions of medications such as OxyContin, Vicodin and Percocet by at least a quarter over the last five years. But the reduction in prescriptions came at a cost to some pain patients.

How the anti-vaccine movement crept into the GOP mainstream


‘Appeals to freedom are like the gateway drug to pseudoscience.’


ICE seeks to expand detention capacities around Bakersfield and elsewhere in state

Bakersfield Californian

The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency is looking to expand its immigrant detention operations throughout California, including in Bakersfield.

Extending ‘Zero Tolerance’ To People Who Help Migrants Along The Border

Capital Public Radio

Scott Warren of the humanitarian group ‘No More Deaths’ faces three felony counts for harboring migrants. The number of U.S. citizens arrested for harboring is on the rise.


Land Use:

Old Downtown Fresno buildings slowly being brought back to life


Renovation of the Rowell Building at Tulare and Van Ness is expected to be completed in 6 weeks, and construction on the Hotel Fresno is expected in three weeks.

Bitwise 41 in Downtown Fresno taking shape


Bitwise 41 in Downtown Fresno is taking shape. Offices are getting closer and closer to completion in the building formerly known as the Old Spaghetti Factory.

Big Lots, Hobby Lobby coming to Fresno-area Toys R Us sites

Fresno Bee

When Toys R Us and Babies R Us closed, they left some big empty buildings behind in the Fresno area.

Nearly half of state-owned office buildings outside Sacramento would be up for sale under new plan

Sacramento Bee

The department in charge of California’s state-owned buildings wants to sell or get rid of nearly half its office buildings outside Sacramento, according to a newly published plan.

DGS recommends selling nine state-owned office buildings

Sacramento Bee

The department in charge of California’s state-owned buildings wants to sell or get rid of nearly half its office buildings outside Sacramento, according to a newly published plan.

California National Parks Experience Some Of The Worst Air Pollution In The United States

Capital Public Radio

Four of the national parks most impacted by air pollution are in California. Sequoia, Kings Canyon, Joshua Tree and Yosemite lead the pack, but 96 percent of the country’s national parks experience significant air pollution, according to a new “Polluted Parks” study by the National Parks Conservation Association.

See also:


Rent spikes, gig jobs among bills facing legislative action

The Business Journal

The California Legislature faces key decisions this week, including trying to reign in police use of force, prevent rent spikes, and alter labor laws affecting workers in the gig economy. Friday is the deadline for the Assembly and Senate to pass or reject bills that originated in each chamber.

Number of homeless residents in Stockton, SJ soars

Stockton Record

Results from a census of unsheltered homeless residents taken every other year show what anyone who spends time in Stockton can see with their own two eyes: The unsheltered population in Stockton has exploded from when the 2017 census was taken.

Airbnb is an awesome service — until the guest from hell shows up

Los Angeles Times

Homeowners around the world have found Airbnb and other short-term rental services a great way to make extra money. Until the guest from hell arrives.

Big state housing bill is dead for now. Here’s what’s left

San Francisco Chronicle

With SB50 shelved for the year, advocates of ramping up housing production in California have lost their primary legislative vehicle this session.

Losing sight of the American dream: Southern California home prices rising 4 times faster than wages

OC Register

The number of renters is growing three times faster than homeowners as would-be homebuyers increasingly are priced out of the market.

Housing Authorities Reel as HUD Singles Out Undocumented Immigrants

The Pew Charitable Trusts

Public housing authorities say they were blindsided by a proposed federal rule banning many immigrants from receiving housing assistance — and, they said, they will fight to keep it from being implemented, even if that means ending up in court.

Interactive: Will Housing Costs Drive Californians Away?

Public Policy Institute of California

Home values and rental markets in California are among the most expensive in the nation, and supply shortages continue to put upward pressure on housing prices. Over the last decade, the state averaged fewer than 80,000 new homes annually—far below the estimated need of 180,000 additional units each year, according to a recent report from the California Department of Housing and Community Development.

Healthy Housing

ULI Americas

ULI’s Healthy Housing Project explores how health-promoting features in affordable, workforce, and mixed-income developments can support improved resident health outcomes.

Op-ed on the president’s memorandum on housing reform


The most serious problem is that, at the end of President Trump’s first term, the opportunity to substantially privatize one-sixth of the US economy will have been squandered, and policies will remain in place that will lead ultimately to another housing market bust.


California moves to divest from Turkey over Armenian Genocide despite pension fund objections

Sacramento Bee

California’s two major public pension funds could be prohibited from investing in Turkey.

California retirees are facing another hot election over who manages their pensions

Sacramento Bee

In the last two years, a former CalPERS board member known for his sharp criticism of the nation’s largest public pension fund worked to unseat two of its leaders in tense elections. Now, J.J. Jelincic is running his own campaign to return to the board that manages the $360 billion fund.

A 2020 Ballot Initiative Aims To Change The Rules When It Comes To Property Taxes


We want to tell you about a property tax measure that’s coming up on the November 2020 ballot. It has its share of big backers but opponents say it will burden businesses and county assessors.

Two tax hikes for schools could end up on California’s 2020 ballot

Los Angeles Times

Though it’s never a sure bet that California voters will sign off on a tax increase, the odds improve when the money is promised to schools. Less clear, though, is what happens if two school tax measures are on the same ballot — now a distinct possibility for next year’s statewide election.

Health tax splits California amid need for Trump’s approval


California lawmakers are headed toward a confrontation with Gov. Gavin Newsom over whether to keep a tax that can generate nearly $2 billion for low-income health benefits but means approval from the Trump administration amid a feud between state and federal officials.


It’s time to break the gridlock on California roadways

Sacramento Bee

If we listen closely, we can almost hear the collective cries of 39 million Californians, “Give me a break.” A break, that is, from brake lights.

Road Report: Fine Gold Creek Bridge, Oakhurst ‘Connector’ Projects

Sierra News

County officials provided updates this week on two pending, major road construction projects — replacement of the Fine Gold Bridge near North Fork and construction of the new Oakhurst ‘connector’ road between Yosemite High School and Highway 41.

State bill could dismantle SF regulations of bikeshare, e-scooters

The San Francisco Examiner

Legislation backed by Uber, Bird would override local rules for ‘micro-mobility’ services.

By 2040, more than half of new cars will be electric


Electric cars make up only a tiny fraction of the automobiles sold worldwide, but that will change quickly, according to an analysis by Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

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California Regulator Threatens Trump With `Extreme’ Auto Rules


A top California environmental regulator is threatening to enact tough, new pollution rules — including an unprecedented ban on cars burning petroleum-based fuels — in response to a Trump administration plan to relax vehicle emission standards.

Why San Francisco Is Putting Pedestrians First on Its Main Thoroughfare


San Francisco plans to shut out cars on one of its major streets.


Federal bill includes $14 million to boost water storage for Central Valley, Nor Cal

Modesto Bee

A congressional bill includes almost $14 million in funding for water projects in the Central Valley and Northern California. Rep. Josh Harder, D-Turlock, said he was successful in working the funding into an Energy and Water Development appropriations bill that includes spending for infrastructure across the nation.

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Wacky weather pushes Valley to average rainfall totals

Visalia Times Delta

While sunscreen was applied on Saturday, umbrellas were used on Sunday and a light jacket was needed on Memorial Day. This weather pattern is unusual — very unusual, according to meteorologists.

Are big dams renewable energy? California Democrats split

Mercury News

Bill in Sacramento would broaden the definition of renewable to include more hydropower, but critics say it would stall progress on solar and wind.

Rare L.A. mega-storm could overwhelm dam and flood dozens of cities, experts say

Los Angeles Times

Scientists call it California’s “other big one,” and they say it could cause three times as much damage as a major earthquake ripping along the San Andreas Fault.

California’s Growing Demand for Recycled Water Has Ripple Effects


Wastewater agencies produce highly treated water that is increasingly being reused as a water supply. While it’s still only a small portion of overall water use, the use of recycled water has nearly tripled since the 1980s―and is continuing to rise as water agencies seek to meet the demands of a growing population and improve the resilience of their water supplies.


Paso Robles is ‘one of the most exciting places’ for California wine, magazine says

Fresno Bee

The accolades keep rolling in for Paso Robles. The North County city was recently profiled as a must-visit destination for wine lovers and one of the most exciting places for wine in California by Wine Spectator magazine.

Woodlake students play major role in donation drive for military members


Tuesday, donations were loaded into cars of Central Valley Blue Star Mothers, who will soon ship them to service members around the world.

Adventure Park water slides set to splash soon

Visalia Times Delta

Tulare County families hoping to try out Adventure Park’s newest addition over the holiday weekend were a little disappointed, but their wait will soon be over. The final product will be worth the wait, said Roger Hurick, Adventure Park managing partner.

Disneyland’s new Star Wars land opens this week. Here’s everything you need to know

Merced Sun-Star

Before the new Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge land opens at Disneyland in Anaheim, California this weekend on May 31, here’s what you should know about the park’s rides, food, drinks, shopping, merchandise and more.