November 19, 2015


Political Stories

Top stories

California analyst predicts strong economy, more state budget surpluses — California’s economy will stay strong through the decade, allowing the state budget to ring up a series of surpluses, the Legislature’s nonpartisan fiscal analyst projected Wednesday. Sacramento Bee articleLA Times article

CD 21: Gonzales will not run for Valadao’s congressional seat — Bakersfield City School District Trustee Andrae Gonzales will not run against Congressman David Valadao, R-Hanford, in next year’s 21st Congressional District race. The Bakersfield Democrat announced his decision Wednesday on his Facebook page. Bakersfield Californian articleFresno Bee article

George Skelton: What’s behind a bid to shift dollars from the bullet train to water projects — While high-speed rail certainly will draw the headline focus, the proposal’s primary purpose apparently is to reduce water for the environment and provide more for agriculture. It would amend the state constitution to make domestic use and crop irrigation the top priorities for California water. And those would be the only listed priorities. Skelton column in LA Times

Statewide politics/Ballot Measures 

Money and clout on line for teacher union in 2016 – The California Teachers Association, one of Sacramento’s most powerful interests, is heading into an extraordinary year with decisions on the ballot, in the Capitol and in the courts holding the potential to impact its clout for many years to come. CALmatters article

Joe Mathews: The Democrats still can’t govern — They are the one party in a one-party state. And they still can’t govern. Governing means being able to control the purse strings of a state. And for many reasons – some of which are all their fault, others of which are all our fault – they don’t have control. The evidence is plain: Democratic interest groups, campaign donors and politicians are putting huge energy into ballot initiatives this year. Mathews in Fox & Hounds


Public Policy Institute of California: Immigrants and health insurance — There is more to the story of insurance coverage and California’s immigrants: we also observe large declines in the uninsured rate among all noncitizens, a group that includes an estimated 2.6 million people who are legally residing in the state (with green cards, temporary visas, work visas, etc.), as well as those who are undocumented. PPIC website

Other areas

Inside California lawmakers’ paid trips to Maui – Ditching suits and ties for shorts and polos, attendees rotate through morning panels covering subjects such as drug buyback programs and the digital divide in poor households. Hawaiian shirts are in disappointingly short supply. During open afternoons, they are free to relax and explore the island, often with spouses and children who have tagged along for the week. Sacramento Bee article

California ethics panel targets vague lobbying payments — California’s ethics watchdog is pushing a major regulatory change that for the first time would require interest groups to disclose how they spend millions of dollars on ad campaigns and other efforts to influence state policy. Sacramento Bee article

Sacramento labor council endorses Steinberg for mayor – The Sacramento Central Labor Council, one of the region’s most influential labor groups, has endorsed former state Senate leader Darrell Steinberg in his campaign for mayor, the group announced Wednesday. Sacramento Bee article

Joe Mathews: Renting politicians? There should be an app for that – California-based companies like Uber and Airbnb claim to be remaking the world according to the Silicon Valley values of sharing and leveraging networks. But in politics, these companies have been less ambitious, confining themselves to lobbying for less regulation of their companies. So I offer a modest proposal. To democratize our politics, we need an Uber that connects us to politicians in the language they understand best – money. Mathews in Sacramento Bee

Dan Morain: A Sacramento consultant, the Florida court and control of Congress – Charlie Crist, the ex-Republican, ex-governor and current Democrat from Florida, was working the crowd at the St. Petersburg Yacht Club last week and running for Congress. He didn’t know it, but Sacramento campaign consultant Steve Smith helped open his path to a comeback.  Morain in Sacramento Bee

San Francisco supervisor widens proposal on locking guns left in vehicles – Both regular citizens and law enforcement officers who carry guns in their cars would have to keep the weapons in lock boxes or in the trunk when they park their vehicles in San Francisco, under a proposal being introduced Thursday by Supervisor David CamposSan Francisco Chronicle article

Marco Rubio picks up first California congressional endorsement; plans Sacramento fundraiser — Marco Rubio, the Republican presidential candidate surging in recent polls, picked up his first California congressional endorsement Wednesday, with Rep. Doug LaMalfa, R-Richvale, throwing his support behind the Florida senator. Reps. Jeff Denham, Mimi Walters and David Valadao have all endorsed former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. Sacramento Bee article

How California’s congressional delegation lines up on Syrian refugee question — House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) has called for a House vote Thursday to “pause” State Department plans to increase the number of Syrian refugees from 1,680 to 10,000 or more. Several California lawmakers are involved in drafting plans. Legislation is expected to reach the House floor as early as Thursday. The Senate hasn’t scheduled a vote to consider the topic, although discussions about what to do are ongoing. LA Times article

News Stories

Top Stories

77 California cities on ‘economically challenged’ list — Nearly a third of Californians live in 77 “economically challenged” cities – including Los Angeles – with high levels of poverty, and low levels of income and employment, a new study declares. Sacramento Bee article

Denair tornado damage estimated at nearly half a million dollars — The damage caused by a tornado that ripped through Denair on Sunday is estimated at nearly $500,000, officials said Wednesday.  Modesto Bee article

Fresno’s rules for development get nuts-and-bolts overhaul – In December 2014, Fresno’s new general plan was adopted. Think of it as a shiny vehicle purchased by the city. Now comes the development code. Think of it as the owner’s manual. This nuts-and-bolts plan of how Fresno will grow, look and feel – a document that hasn’t seen a wholesale update in 51 years – goes before the City Council on Thursday. Fresno Bee article

Jobs and the Economy

Google delivers overnight service to Bakersfield – Just in time for the holiday shopping season, Google is bringing to the Bakersfield area a service that will deliver goods from a variety of popular retailers to doorsteps overnight. It’s available starting today. Not only will locals get fast delivery but access to merchants that are not in town, including Whole Foods. Bakersfield Californian article

Kevin Valine: Modesto pays $8.5 million for claims, lawsuits since 2010 – Modesto officials’ big focus is on being transparent, especially when it comes to the city budget. But there is one area of the budget that gets little attention: the liability insurance fund, which is part of the human resources budget. But it should. The city paid nearly $8.5 million from this account from July 1, 2010, through Nov. 9 of this year for lawsuits and claims filed against it. Valine in Modesto Bee

Stockton council orders staff to study big-box ban – Viewed by some as evil incarnate and by others as a shopper’s paradise, Walmart and its future in south Stockton’s retail-deprived Weston Ranch remains uncharted. City staff veered far away from invoking Walmart’s name late in Tuesday night’s City Council meeting during a discussion of whether Stockton should consider lifting an 8-year-old ban on new big-box superstores. Still, Walmart’s name was on the lips of just about everyone else at City Hall on Tuesday. Stockton Record article

CalPERS board votes to reduce investment risk, earnings expectations – CalPERS approved a new investment strategy Wednesday that’s designed to reduce risk in its $291.4 billion portfolio. Pension fund officials said the strategy will gradually improve CalPERS’ finances by cushioning it against heavy losses when the markets turn sour. But because safer investments generally yield lower returns, the strategy will likely mean higher annual pension contributions in the coming years from state and local governments, and public employees. Sacramento Bee articleLA Times article

California tax board mishandled money, state controller’s audit finds – The California Board of Equalization is failing to properly handle the money it collects, leading to funds being deposited in the wrong accounts and the failure to collect debts owed to the state, according to a review released Wednesday by state Controller Betty T. Yee. LA Times articleSacramento Bee article 

Joel Fox: Imaging California without oil – two different perspectives — A week ago, Zocalo Public Square published an article, Imagining California Without Oil Refineries, by one of its editors, Lisa Margonelli, suggesting that Californians are embracing new technology that will lead to an oil free future. Meanwhile, the California Resources Corporation (CRC), a publicly traded oil and natural gas exploration and production company, produced a website also asking Californians to imagine the state without oil. The two imaginings could not have been more apart. Fox in Fox & Hounds 

LA Mayor Garcetti rules out, for now, declaring homelessness an emergency – Mayor Eric Garcetti on Wednesday ruled out declaring an immediate state of emergency to address Los Angeles’ homelessness crisis, cutting off for now an avenue designed to bring swift relief to thousands of people as El Niño storms are expected to bear down on Southern California beginning in January. LA Times article

Fed policymakers edge closer to December rate hike, minutes show – Federal reserve policymakers decided at their last meeting to signal they could raise a key interest rate in December because economic risks from abroad had eased, but they opted to wait on a hike out of concerns about a slowing job market and low inflation. LA Times articleAP article 

Uber deal turns into game changer for downtown Oakland – City officials said the deal to bring an Uber Technologies headquarters to Oakland was a game-changer for the East Bay city’s downtown district, and early indications suggest that assessment might be on target. Oakland Tribune article 

How Amazon’s long game yielded a retail juggernaut – Jeff Bezos bucked the trend of seeking short-term results to create an addictive shopping experience few can match. New York Times article

Plan for2024 Olympic village in LA on shaky ground — Los Angeles’ proposed Olympic village might need a new address. Less than three months after the city was selected as the U.S. candidate for the 2024 Olympic Games, plans to build a sprawling community for 17,000 athletes near downtown appeared to be in doubt and a search is underway for possible alternatives. AP article

San Joaquin County’s annual open house gets shortened guest list – Citing increased attendance, the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors has slashed the number of invited guests to an annual holiday open house. Each year, supervisors have hosted a holiday meet-and-greet in their offices located on the sixth floor of the county administration building. Stockton Record article 

Optimistic millennials face U.S. lawmakers in economic hearing – Three millennials faced a row of Generation X-ers and baby boomers Wednesday on Capitol Hill, and though the ages in the congressional hearing room ranged wide, the understanding was mutual: Americans born in the 1980s and 1990s are now facing economic challenges dramatically different from those of their parents and grandparents. McClatchy Newspapers article 

Activists seek ballot measure for moratorium on LA ‘mega projects’ – A group of activists said Wednesday that it wants voters to place new limits on real estate “mega developments” by imposing restrictions on projects that need major changes to city planning rules to get built. LA Times article

CalPERS to Vernon pensioner: Repay $3.5 million — First CalPERS announced last year that it was cutting the eye-popping pension of a former city of Vernon official, Bruce Malkenhorst, from $551,688 a year to $115,848. Then yesterday the CalPERS board approved the recovery of a $3.5 million pension overpayment from Malkenhorst, 84, who retired in 2005 from the tiny industrial city south of downtown Los Angeles known for corruption. Calpensions article 

Lawsuit accuses LA County of denying welfare aid to mentally ill homeless people – A federal lawsuit filed by civil rights attorneys Wednesday accuses Los Angeles County of illegally denying mentally ill homeless people access to general relief, the county’s $221-a-month welfare program for the destitute. LA Times article

Braziel contract complies with CalPERS rules for working retirees — Sacramento County officials say hiring a retired Sacramento police chief for a contract position does not run afoul of laws governing public employee pensions. Sacramento Bee article


Study: California drought management lacking – The report from the Public Policy Institute of California says the state’s system for allocating water is fragmented, inconsistent and lacks transparency. It says the problems keep the state from adequately managing water in a drought. Capital Public Radio report 

Stockton Record: Lack of trust: MWC’s potential Delta purchase prompts trepidation – This probably doesn’t sound very Welcome Wagon-ish, but the general reaction from “up here” about a Southern California water behemoth potentially moving into the neighborhood can be summed up in four words: We don’t trust you. Stockton Record editorial

6 quintillion gallons of water hiding in Earth’s crush – Most of us think of the water cycle as something that occurs above ground — water falls from the sky, evaporates back into the atmosphere and then condenses into rain once again. But above-ground water is just a fraction of our planet’s water story. Visalia Times-Delta article

Water claims raise Tulare supervisors’ ire – A public discussion about water during Tuesday’s Tulare County Board of Supervisors meeting turned into an argument involving the board’s chairman. Supervisor Steve Worthley, the chairman, announced near the start of the meeting that a well for the city of Porterville’s drinking water system had been drilled and could be pumping water within weeks. Visalia Times-Delta article

Lemoore readies for El Nino worst-case scenario — Whether or not El Niño brings heavy rains this winter, Lemoore city officials are preparing for the worst-case scenario. During a study session Tuesday night, Parks and Recreation Director Joe Simonson said the city hasn’t had to deal with significant rainfall since the early 1990s. The city was not adequately prepared, he said. Hanford Sentinel article

Criminal Justice/Prisons

Five are shot outside southwest Fresno market near Edison High – Five people were shot Wednesday evening at a southwest Fresno market two blocks from Edison High School, where a boys water polo playoff match was briefly halted until police secured the shooting scene. Fresno Bee article

Stockton police chief helps lead statewide initiative – California Attorney General Kamala Harris asked Stockton Police Chief Eric Jones to lead two training sessions this week as part of the state Department of Justice’s ongoing effort to increase community trust in law enforcement. Stockton Record article

Drone pilot is grounded and must forfeit device after interfering with LAPD search – A man who flew a drone near an LAPD helicopter during a manhunt in Hollywood has to turn over the drone and promise not to fly another one for at least the next three years, the Los Angeles city attorney’s office announced Wednesday. LA Times article

State agents seize more than 500 firearms from Clovis home — California Department of Justice agents have seized more than 500 firearms from a Clovis man who is prohibited from owning guns, Attorney General Kamala D. Harris announced Wednesday.  Fresno Bee article

Charges against LAPD officers for shooting at civilians virtually nonexistent — KPCC’s review of criminal charges for on-duty use of force in recent years found that officers who used Tasers and physical force, not their firearms, are the ones who get charged. Even those cases are rare. KPCC report

Jury exonerates Elk Grove police officer in shooting – A jury on Wednesday exonerated an Elk Grove police officer who shot a suspect who was lying on the back seat of a police cruiser with his hands handcuffed behind his back. Sacramento Bee article

Santa Monica police investigating black exec’s detention that she claims was based on race — Santa Monica’s police chief Wednesday defended her officers and a 911 caller after a black executive claimed that, because of her race, she was detained as a burglary suspect at her own home. LA Times article

Jerrold Jensen: What are your odds of becoming a victim of gun violence? – The Visalia resident writes, “Once again, a mentally disturbed young man has tragically used a gun to murder defenseless citizens. Predictably, some politicians immediately reacted by waving an assault rifle while calling for more gun controls. What difference will they make?” Jensen op-ed in Visalia Times-Delta


UC regents to discuss how to add 5,000 students – The University of California is facing an unusual math problem: How do you divide up 5,000 by 9? To be more precise, how do you assign each of UC’s nine undergraduate campuses a fair and reasonable number of the extra 5,000 California undergraduates that the university system is expected to enroll next year? That question, and many related issues, are scheduled to be discussed Thursday and Friday during the UC regents meeting in San Francisco. LA Times article 

First-generation students campaign to keep Stanislaus State program – Grant funding is running out for a first-generation college student-support program at California State University, Stanislaus. But students are campaigning to keep the program and have the campus pick up the tab. Modesto Bee article 

Fresno Unified hires outside firm to assist with federal subpoena – On the eve of the deadline to respond to a federal grand jury subpoena probing Fresno Unified School District’s no-bid construction contracts, the school board voted to hire an outside company to help it with that response. Fresno Bee article

George Miller: California schools falling far short on accountability – The former California congressman writes, “We live in a progressive and forward-thinking state with a constitution that guarantees equity in our public education system. We have a lot to be proud of – successfully implementing the Common Core standards, expanding services for students in foster care and investing in early childhood education. But we also should be striving every day to more fully deliver on that constitutional promise of an equal education for every California child. Critical to that promise is a system rooted in accountability and transparency, and on that front, we are falling short. Miller op-ed in Sacramento Bee

Curriculum materials a sticking point in Common Core implementation – During the five years since California adopted the Common Core State Standards for mathematics and English language arts, the search for high-quality textbooks and curriculum materials has been a sticking point, in some cases the major one, in effectively and speedily implementing the new standards. EdSource article

State releases draft science curriculum ‘framework’ for public review – The State Board of Education on Tuesday released its new draft science framework, the first update to guidelines for teaching science in California in 11 years. The board will collect public comments on it for 60 days, through Jan. 19. EdSource article 

Vigilante action over student’s rape hearing at UC – More than 100 posters plastered across the UC Berkeley campus Wednesday could not be more clear. “Rapist,” they declared in large, bold type, featuring a close-up photo of a young man above a caption with the word “rapist” also used as a title before his name. San Francisco Chronicle article 

Clovis Unified board adopts elementary school boundary changes – Clovis Unified’s board of trustees adopted new boundaries Wednesday night for two-thirds of its 33 elementary schools because of recent growth in the district. Fresno Bee article

Hanford students tour Google campus — Last Thursday, sophomores in the Sierra Pacific High School business pathway program got to go on a one-day field trip to the Google headquarters in Mountain View, known as the Googleplex. The students got to go on a tour, participate in a panel with employees and more. Hanford Sentinel article


Absurdly hot October as earth sets 8th heat record this year — Even in a record-breaking hot year for Earth, October stood out as absurdly warm. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said that last month globally was 58.86 degrees (14.98 degrees Celsius). That’s the hottest October on record by a third of a degree over the old mark, “an incredible amount” for weather records, said NOAA climate scientist Jessica Blunden. AP article

PG&E pitches major project – Pacific Gas and Electric Co. wants to build major new transmission lines connecting infrastructure in northwest Stockton with the communities of Lodi and Lockeford. Stockton Record article 

Butte fire’s ‘watershed moment’ — Preserving a watershed requires everyone in that watershed to help, and that’s starting to happen in the wake of the destructive Butte Fire. The fire burned large portions of the Calaveras River watershed in the foothills, an hour’s drive east of Stockton. But flatlanders potentially are harmed, as well. The coming rains are expected to wash hundreds of thousands of tons of ash and debris from the charred hillsides into New Hogan Lake, one of Stockton’s primary water sources. Stockton Record article

Health/Human Services 

Medi-Cal cancer patients don’t fare much better than uninsured, UC Davis study says – In the first study of its kind, UC Davis researchers found that compared with patients with other kinds of insurance, cancer patients with Medi-Cal were generally less likely to have their cancers caught at early stages, receive recommended treatments and be alive five years after diagnosis. LA Times article

Shopping for health insurance is new seasonal stress for many – For many cost-conscious consumers, the volatility in the markets has been a source of anxiety and disruption. To have any choice at all is a welcome development, many say. But switching plans is also becoming an unwelcome ritual, akin to filing taxes, that is time-consuming and can entail searching for new doctors and hospitals each year. New York Times article 

STD cases reaching all-time highs in U.S., California and LA County – Much to the worry of public health officials, new national data show that cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis are climbing in the United States and have reached an all-time high. LA Times article

Attorney General Kamala Harris delays decision on hospital deal — California Attorney General Kamala Harris on Wednesday said her office will delay for two weeks a decision she was expected to announce Thursday on a proposed deal between the struggling Daughters of Charity Health System and a New York-based hedge fund. San Jose Mercury News article

Kerman woman, forced into fluid-only diet for over a year with misdiagnosis, cured with major surgery — While propped up on a hospital bed Wednesday in Fresno, Sarah Portilla said she was looking forward to eating German chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream. The 31-year-old Kerman woman has had a long time to consider her next meal: Over the past three years, because of a rare digestive disorder, Portilla was unable to eat solid food without becoming violently ill. Fresno Bee article 

Pigeons trained to identify breast cancer malignancies in slides, UC Davis research finds — UC Davis scientists have determined that pigeons can distinguish between cancerous and noncancerous tissue when shown magnified slides and mammograms, part of novel research that could affect how physicians make such determinations. Sacramento Bee article

Land Use/Housing 

Fresno land deal could clean up long blighted downtown spot – The Fresno City Council could approve a land deal Thursday that could clean up a long blighted plot of downtown. However, the total sale of the land is a small portion of the money the city spent acquiring it. The Business Journal article 

Investors snapping up multi-unit residential properties – Investor interest in multi-unit residential real estate is picking up considerably around the Central Valley, with three large apartment complexes changing hands in October. The Business Journal article

Sacramento Bee: Sacramento City Council sends clear message to developers — By rejecting a fuel center in Curtis Park, the Sacramento City Council made the right and wise decision, not only for the neighborhood but for smart growth citywide.  Sacramento Bee editorial

Why one affordable housing complex in Oakland has been vacant for 10 years — The Ninth Avenue property is a microcosm of the kinds of decisions and reactions that occur when people are getting priced out and market forces take hold. Its owners say it likely can’t reopen as housing for low-income families because it’s not sustainable — and many Bella Vista neighbors seem to understand. The next question is who will live in these units. KQED report


State churns more condemnation resolutions for high-speed rail – Nine pieces of property amounting to about 51 acres in Kings, Fresno, Madera and Tulare counties were identified for potential condemnation on Wednesday by the State Public Works Board for California’s controversial high-speed rail project. Fresno Bee article 

First Look: Councilmember Terry Maxwell sheds light on progress of 24th Street widening project — With two restaurants gearing up for the holidays and almost every weekend booked for the business, it’s a wonder City Councilmember Terry Maxwell has time for additional projects. But the 24th street widening is still on his agenda. Bakersfield Californian article

A private LAX lounge for rich and famous is under consideration — The Board of Airport Commissioners is set to consider building the exclusive facility, which would cater to wealthy Hollywood celebrities, sports figures, diplomats and anyone else seeking privacy while waiting for their flights. LA Times article

Other areas

Local employee invests app for United Way — Fedieson Landicho knew that Kings United Way’s 2-1-1 phone information system was stagnating. He knew what was really needed was a program to run the social services clearinghouse on a smartphone platform. Hanford Sentinel article

Coroner’s office names Earlimart resident, 44, as victim in gas line explosion near Bakersfield — The Kern County coroner’s office on Wednesday identified the man who died last week when the excavating machinery he was operating in an agricultural field south of Bakersfield struck and ignited a natural gas line, killing him instantly. Earlimart resident and father Joseph Michael “Mike” Ojeda, 44, died from “multiple traumatic blunt force injuries and thermal injuries“ at 3:33 p.m. Friday at the northwest corner of Wible and Houghton roads, the department said in a news release. It called his death an accident. Bakersfield Californian article

Merced County Fair announces new CEO – Teresa Burrola, the longtime business assistant for the Merced County Fair, has been named its new chief executive officer, the board announced Wednesday. Merced Sun-Star article

After mayor breaks tie vote, Bakersfield council awards Centennial fountain contract — A divided Bakersfield City Council on Wednesday awarded a contract to replace the pedigreed but nonworking Centennial Plaza fountain, but not before Mayor Harvey L. Hall cast a rare vote to break a tie and keep the issue alive. Bakersfield Californian article

Woman sues Merced Rescue Mission, claiming sexual abuse — A woman has filed a lawsuit claiming she was sexually assaulted repeatedly at the Merced County Rescue Mission and that administrators failed to protect her, despite knowing of the alleged abuse. Merced Sun-Star article

Valley Editorial Roundup

Sacramento Bee –By rejecting a fuel center in Curtis Park, the Sacramento City Council made the right and wise decision, not only for the neighborhood but for smart growth citywide; In times of crisis, true character reveals itself. In response to the Paris terror attacks, too many Republican governors and presidential candidates are showing themselves to be xenophobes and demagogues, scoring cheap political points by trying to close the door to Syrian refugees.

Stockton Record – This probably doesn’t sound very Welcome Wagon-ish, but the general reaction from “up here” about a Southern California water behemoth potentially moving into the neighborhood can be summed up in four words: We don’t trust you.

Maddy Events

Sunday, Nov. 22, at 5 p.m. on Fresno ABC30 – Maddy Report: California’s Right to Die Law: Facing an Age Old Question — Guests: UC Davis Professor Ben Rich, The Arc of California Executive Director Tony Anderson, and Disability Rights California Legislative Advocate Deborah Doctor. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director Mark Keppler. 

Sunday, Nov. 22, at 7 a.m. on Univision 21 (KFTV) and UniMas 61 (KTFF) – El Informe Maddy: “Environmental and Water Issues in California” – Guest: Miryam Barajas of the State Water Resources Control Board. Host: Maddy Institute Deputy Director Ana Melendez.

The Maddy Report airs throughout California on The Cal Channel.  Check to find the Cal Channel and schedule in your area.  You also can view previous Maddy Report programs in their entirety at


Next 10: UPDATED California budget challenge – For the first time in a decade, California’s budget is largely in balance.  However, the state has outstanding debts of $28 million, not counting long-term pension and retiree health care costs.  Budget choices affect us all.  Take the Challenge and decide how much should be spent on programs and where the money should come from.  Next 10 California Budget Challenge 

Next 10: Federal budget challenge — The Federal Budget Challenge is based on The Concord Coalition’s Principles and Priorities budget exercise, which has been used in numerous town hall meetings across the country by members of Congress from both parties, as well as in hundreds of high school and college classrooms.  Next 10 Federal Budget challenge at

Next 10: California Water Challenge – As our state faces some of the most severe drought conditions in its history, Next 10 wants to issue a new challenge to Californians: can you create a plan to make sure there’s enough water for everyone?  Next 10 California Water Challenge

LEGISLATORS’ VOTING RECORDS: How often has a California legislator broken party ranks, abstained or switched sides? The Sacramento Bee has a database of the voting records of every member of the state Senate and Assembly. Enter a lawmaker’s last and first names to see how he or she voted, or enter a bill number to see how every legislator voted on it. Check it out at this link.

More Information

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Maddy Institute Updates List of San Joaquin Valley Elected Officials – The Maddy Institute has updated its list of San Joaquin Valley elected officials.  The list is available here.

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