November 28, 2018




DEADLINE FAST APPROACHING: Accepting Applications For The Maddy Institute Legislative Intern Scholar Program San Joaquin Valley Spring 2019 and Washington D.C./Sacramento Summer 2019

DEADLINE DEC. 7TH - Qualify For A Scholarship Of Up To $6,000

The Maddy Institute

The Maddy Scholar Intern Program’s goal is to prepare the next generation of political, governmental, business, non-profit leaders for the San Joaquin Valley through internship opportunities in local, state and federal government offices in Washington, D.C., Sacramento and throughout the region.


North SJ Valley:


Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs is one of two Valley representatives on Gov-elect Gavin Newsom’s transition team

Stockton Record

About six weeks ago, Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs received a telephone call from governor-elect Gavin Newsom’s chief of staff, inviting him to be part of a team that will help shape the future of California.


Central SJ Valley:


Democrats sue Fresno County to see whose votes got rejected


The national Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is suing Fresno County to find out which ballots the elections office rejected.


Madera County election results are in. And your winners are...

Sierra Star

The results for the Madera County general election were finalized Nov. 21, with no major lead changes in the noteworthy eastern Madera County races.


South SJ Valley:


Bomb threat forces evacuation at Tulare City Hall before all-clear given

Fresno Bee

The Tulare Police Department spent several hours investigating a bomb threat at City Hall on Tuesday but no bomb was found. All city employees were evacuated to a safe area, police said.

See Also:

     Tulare City Hall evacuated as police investigate bomb threat abc30

     Tulare City Hall reopened after bomb threat Visalia Times Delta


Cox now leading Valadao after Kern County update

Fresno Bee

Fresno Democrat TJ Cox has overtaken incumbent David Valadao in their race for California’s 21st Congressional District seat.

See Also:

     Democrat Edges Ahead In California US House Contest Capital Public Radio


Hurtado's victory tells a broader story

Bakersfield Californian

Hurtado didn't just squeeze out some narrow victory. She defeated Vidak by almost 11 percentage points, 55.4 percent to 44.6 percent, doubling her lead, in terms of percentage, in the two weeks since Election Day.




Gov. Jerry Brown asks California Supreme Court to keep pardon records sealed

Los Angeles Times

Gov. Jerry Brown has asked the California Supreme Court to keep records sealed that involve his pardon of former state Sen. Roderick Wright, arguing confidentiality is consistent with historic practice and is supported by state law.


California’s right-to-die law upheld by state appeals court

San Francisco Chronicle

A state appeals court rejected a challenge Tuesday to California’s right-to-die law for terminally ill patients, overturning a judge’s ruling in May that had briefly blocked enforcement of the law.


‘The Candidate,’ a Napa Valley chef, ‘El Toro’ among Jerry Brown’s final California honorees

Fresno Bee

Gov. Jerry Brown will induct eight Californians into the state’s Hall of Fame. Among those included in his final class are his former chief of staff, Nancy McFadden, and former San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee


Say hello to Eleni Kounalakis, Lt. Gov-Elect

Capitol Weekly

Eleni Kounalakis bristles at the suggestion that she won the election for California lieutenant governor because of her wealthy father’s support.


Blue wave crashes down on California senator who threatened lobbyist

Fresno Bee

The California state senator who drunkenly threatened to “bitch slap” a female lobbyist at a Sacramento bar this summer will soon be out of office.


It’s been decades since California Democrats had this much power at the Capitol

Fresno Bee

California Democrats are on track to make historic gains in the state Legislature. They are on pace to control three-fourths of the Assembly — 60 out of 80 seats — a feat has not been accomplished in 135 years, in 1883.


Walters: Democrats control California, but are fragmenting


No matter how the harassment allegation against him plays out, it tells us that while Democrats may control California, who controls the Democrats is very uncertain with the state poised to become a major presidential nomination battleground, thanks to its March 2020 primary.


Whiter, poorer, Trumpier: the new Republican California


And so come January, when only half of the Republican delegation will return to Washington D.C., the average income of the new, diminished GOP-represented electorate will be nearly​​ $5,000 lower. It will also be majority non-Latino white. Only 16 percent of the population will have a college degree.




Costa, other Democrats might oppose Pelosi unless demands are met

Fresno Bee

Rep. Jim Costa, D-Fresno, has joined eight of his fellow Problem Solvers Caucus members in issuing a set of demands to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi: Do your part to ease the partisanship rampant in Congress, or risk losing our votes in your bid for speaker of the House.

See Also:

     Pelosi courts rebellious Democrats ahead of preliminary House speaker vote Los Angeles Times

     4 key questions about Nancy Pelosi’s bid to be the next speaker of the House Brookings

     Tightest House leadership race isn’t Nancy Pelosi’s. It’s Barbara Lee’s San Francisco Chronicle


McConnell Vows Congressional Response To 'Abhorrent' Khashoggi Slaying

Capital Public Radio

McConnell told reporters that the CIA "basically certified" Saudi involvement at high levels in the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi — breaking with President Trump, who said it was unclear.


Ilhan Omar Accuses Trump of Emboldening Racists

National Review

Trump says a lot of obnoxious, incendiary things. But it’s fair to ask where Omar or anyone else would draw the line separating a “culture of intolerance that emboldens racist individuals to acts of violence” from acceptable and heated political rhetoric.


Trump slams Fed chair, questions climate change and threatens to cancel Putin meeting in wide-ranging interview with The Post

The Washington Post

During the interview, Trump’s sharpest criticism was reserved for his Fed chairman. Though Trump said several times in response to a question about emerging cracks in the economy that he wasn’t “blaming anybody,” he clearly assigned blame to Powell for leading the Fed through several interest rate increases this year.


OPINION: Inside the 2020 presidential race: What to expect from Trump and the Democrats

Modesto Bee

Rising interest rates, the impact of Trump’s trade tariffs, especially across the agricultural Heartland that fueled his 2016 electoral upset and a stumbling stock market, among other factors, could by 2020 instill bad economic news and fears, which Americans do vote against. Remember “It’s the economy, stupid” in 1992?




REPORT: Implications of artificial intelligence


Among its recommendations: the governor—presumably incoming Gov. Gavin Newsom—should appoint a cabinet-level adviser on AI.


EDITORIAL: Mars landing a giant leap for California

Modesto Bee

Monday’s Mars landing wasn’t just another scientific achievement for the American people. It was another technological win for the state of California.




Lettuce rejoice romaine is available once again, just pay attention to where it was grown

Fresno Bee

A week ago after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration warned consumers to stay away from romaine lettuce after an outbreak of E. coli, the leafy vegetable is on its way back to grocery stories.

See Also:

     Some Romaine Is OK To Eat, But Beware California, CDC Says VPR

     Romaine lettuce update: It's good news except for California San Diego Union-Tribune


VIDEO: Health Minute: Peanut allergy treatment

The Sentinel

New Hope Could be on the Horizon for Peanut Allergy Sufferers






EDITORIAL: A fix in the law could curb car break-ins

San Francisco Chronicle

Broken glass along street curbs from auto break-ins that have exploded in number in recent years. Changing the law could help prosecutors nail car burglars behind the festering crime.


Public Safety:


Kings County Sheriff receives recognition

Hanford Sentinel

A Kings County sergeant has become the first law enforcement officer in the state of California, and in the nation, to become a certified Special Weapons and Tactics (S.W.A.T.) operator.


EDITORIAL: Countless Americans carry guns. Police are killing too many of them
Los Angeles Times

The legal standards for professional negligence in policing, and the training that goes with them, should be toughened up.




Cal Fire lifts Mountain Area suspensions on outdoor residential burning

Sierra Star

The burn permit suspension in Madera, Mariposa and Merced counties is lifted, according to a news release. After the suspension is lifted, those with valid agricultural or residential burn permits may now burn on the permissible days. Residential burn permits are available at Cal Fire stations.

See Also:

     Open burning and hazard reduction restrictions continue in Kern County Bakersfield Californian


Fight over wildfire prevention threatens to upend federal farm aid

Fresno Bee

An increasingly fierce debate about how to prevent deadly wildfires in California is threatening to endanger crucial crop insurance for farmers in Kansas and Missouri.


Judge in San Bruno criminal case demands answers from PG&E on cause of Camp Fire

Fresno Bee

A federal judge in San Francisco, California, asked PG&E whether the Camp Fire violated probation terms from the deadly San Bruno natural gas explosion. The judge demands answers from the utility on potential role in major wildfires.

See Also:

     Judge Questions PG&E About Camp Wildfire Capital Public Radio

     PG&E offers state little explanation about why it didn't shut off power before Paradise wildfire Los Angeles Times

     Federal judge overseeing PG&E’s probation demands answers on Camp Fire San Francisco Chronicle


It’s time to rethink how we insure woodland homes

Modesto Bee

The human toll of this month’s California wildfires is staggering. The financial losses pale in significance, but they are also heavy – and it might take years to determine how they will be borne.

See Also:

     Costs from Paradise fire will likely be in the billions, Zinke says Los Angeles Times


'Like Being In A War Zone': California Fire Search And Rescue Could Take Months


More than two weeks after the nation's worst fire in a century erupted in Northern California, crews are still trying to find hundreds of people. The Camp Fire has claimed at least 85 lives and, as of Sunday, is 100 percent contained.

See Also:

     Navigating The Aftermath Of The Camp Fire In Butte County Capital Public Radio


California must fix fatal flaws in wildfire warning and evacuation plans, experts tell lawmakers
Los Angeles Times

The deadly Camp fire that destroyed the Northern California town of Paradise this month overwhelmed emergency alert and evacuation plans, leaving many residents in harm’s way without sufficient warning, state officials acknowledged Tuesday at a legislative hearing.


Some Californians are hiring private fire crews to save their homes. Regular firefighters aren't happy about it

Los Angeles Times

Private firefighting fleets dispatched by insurance companies are growing in popularity as wildfires continue to burn into densely populated regions with devastating effects.






EDITORIAL: Who’s paying too much at the Apple App Store?
Los Angeles Times

Though Apple exerts an unwelcome amount of control over the apps market, the risk for consumers and businesses alike is that the court will muddy the liability waters in a way that deters innovation online.




Valley helps ship out Best Buy orders


The sounds of forklifts and conveyor belts are like a holiday tune inside Best Buy's regional distribution center in Dinuba.


Trump Administration Threatens To Withhold Subsidies From GM

Capital Public Radio

Angered by General Motors' decision to idle plants and lay off thousands of workers, the Trump administration threatened to retaliate by withholding federal subsidies for the company's cars.

See Also:

     Trump threatens to kill GM's electric-vehicle subsidies. But even presidents can't stop market forces Los Angeles Times

     If Trump wants to keep auto plants open, he should accelerate, not brake, the transition to electric vehicles Los Angeles Times


Work, skills, and community: Restoring opportunity for the working class


In a new bipartisan report, AEI scholars offer budget-neutral recommendations to restore opportunities for working-class communities amid changing demographics and rising polarization.






Wildfire smoke shut Sacramento-area schools. How will it affect budgets, calendars?

Sacramento Bee

School closures in the Sacramento region due to unhealthy air quality from the Camp Fire likely will not add days to this year’s school calendar, or take money out of budgets.


Higher Ed:


Cal Poly student’s parents lost their son to hazing. Now, saving others is their life’s work

Fresno Bee

The parents of Cal Poly SLO student Carson Starkey, who died of alcohol poisoning in a fraternity hazing in 2008, talk about the death of their son, medical amnesty laws and nonprofit group Awake Aware Alive.


Thousands of classes canceled as MJC, Columbia instructors walk off the job

Modesto Bee

Professors refused to teach classes Tuesday at Modesto Junior College and Columbia College, launching a two-day strike to protest what they called unfair labor practices by their employer.


Education chief: Student loan debt becoming a ‘crisis’

Stockton Record

The federal government’s top education official on Tuesday warned an audience of a “crisis” of rising college student loan debt and defaults on student loans.


Career Education Is Key to Meeting California’s Workforce Needs


Ensuring we have the workforce to meet these demands—and ensuring future workers can access higher-paying jobs—requires a higher education system that is responsive to student and economic needs.

See Also:

       Education research: The perils of narrow training AEI






Early morning earthquake jolts central San Joaquin Valley. Did you feel it?

Fresno Bee

A 4.1 magnitude earthquake shook near Avenal early Tuesday morning, the U.S. Geological Survey reported. The earthquake was recorded at 5:07 a.m.. and centered about six miles northwest of Avenal in the Coast Range.

See Also:

     USGS: Preliminary 4.1 magnitude earthquake strikes near Avenal abc30


Trump doesn't 'believe' report climate change hurts economy


President Donald Trump said he doesn't "believe" climate change could possibly have devastating effects on the economy, a major finding of a new federal report.

See Also:

     New U.S. Climate Assessment Forecasts Dire Effects On Economy, Health Capital Public Radio

     Trump's reckless climate denialism can't stop the new Congress from addressing global warming Los Angeles Times


Supreme Court limits habitats protected under the Endangered Species Act

Los Angeles Times

The Supreme Court on Tuesday limited the reach of the Endangered Species Act, setting aside a lower court ruling that afforded protection to an area where threatened animals do not live but might one day with significant changes.


California regions ‘moving in the wrong direction’ to meet climate goals, agency finds

Sacramento Bee

The state recently announced it met its goal to reduce emissions to 1990 levels four years early. But communities will need to significantly reduce transportation emissions to reach​​ the state’s next goal of lowering emissions another 40 percent by 2030, according to the report.


Pollution by the numbers


“The only way we can hope to overcome the momentous environmental challenge the world faces is to use every tool we can.” Kaushik Basu discusses how a new project from the Asian Development Bank promises to close gaps in data collection around major climate change indicators such as air pollution, especially in developing countries like India and China.




Council begins to explore Community Choice Aggregation

Hanford Sentinel

The Hanford City Council met and held a public hearing on a proposed ordinance to establish a Hanford Community Choice Aggregation implementation plan and statement of intent. The concept of Community Choice Aggregation grants California Cities the right to combine the electricity load of its residents and businesses into a community-wide electricity aggregation program.


The Risks Of Energy Efficient Loans

Capital Public Radio

Homeowners across the state have complained to prosecutors and groups like the San Diego Legal Aid Society about some Property Assessment Clean Energy lenders. Thousands of PACE borrowers have said they didn’t understand the terms and are now saddled with loans they can’t afford to pay back.

See Also:

      Another senior scam: energy efficiency loans CALmatters


EDITORIAL: It’s time to consider a federal carbon tax — and to confront NIMBYism

San Diego Union-Tribune

At a time when the president of the United States doesn’t believe his own administration’s dire warnings about how catastrophic climate change is for the economy and the planet, many leaders in California — the world’s fifth-largest economy — don’t turn a blind eye to science.






This medical device has most reported problems in FDA database

Stockton Record

Insulin pumps are responsible for the highest overall number of malfunction, injury and death reports in the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s medical device database.


Human Services:


Kaweah Delta's partnership with Sierra View could drive down drug prices

Visalia Times Delta

The main hospitals in Visalia and Porterville may join forces in an effort to reduce drug prices, navigate the public health system and bring doctors to a region that struggles to recruit. At the same time, the hospitals will remain independent public agencies.


Kaiser, Adventist Health Selma get 'A' safety rating

The Business Journal

Kaiser Permanente in Fresno and Adventist Health Medical Center Selma have received an “A” score from the Leapfrog Group’s fall 2018 Safety Grade.


Valley physician's group receives award for excellence

The Business Journal

Central Valley Medical Providers-MedPro (CVMP-MedPro), an association of independent physicians located in Fresno, has earned “Elite” status on the 2018 Standards of Excellence (SOE) Survey by America’s Physicians Groups (APG) for provision of care to patients in Fresno and Madera counties.


Family Healthcare Network welcomes new provider to Hanford

Hanford Sentinel

Family HealthCare Network (FHCN) is pleased to announce the addition of Michele Chai, PA-C to its provider team. Michele Chai, PA-C is now offering Family Medicine services in the community of Hanford.




Caravan migrants explore options after Tijuana border clash


Many among the more than 5,000 Central American migrants in Tijuana were urgently exploring their options.

See Also:

     Trump backs use of ‘very safe’ tear gas on crowd of migrants Sacramento Bee

     Migrants plot next move as tensions in Tijuana heighten Los Angeles Times
     EDITORIAL: If you want to see what failed U.S. immigration policy looks like, visit Tijuana Los Angeles Times

     Money, resources running out for Tijuana migrant shelter San Diego Union-Tribune


Mexico accepts housing migrants, seeks US development aid

Sacramento Bee

Mexico accepts housing migrants, seeks U.S. contributions for development to keep people from migrating.


US waived FBI checks on staff at growing teen migrant camp

Sacramento Bee

A temporary, emergency detention camp that opened in the Texas desert in June for an overflow of migrant children shows no signs of closing.

See Also:

     The number of immigrants in the U.S. illegally is the lowest in more than a decade, a new study finds  Los Angeles Times


U.S. Seeing Lowest Level Of Unauthorized Immigrants In A Decade, Pew Study Says

Capital Public Radio

A large decline in illegal immigration from Mexico means fewer unauthorized immigrants living in the U.S., and those already here are likely to be long-term residents, according to a new study.

See Also:

     Report: Number of immigrants in US without legal status at 12-year-low  Stockton Record

     The number of immigrants in the U.S. illegally is the lowest in more than a decade, a new study finds Los Angeles Times


Trump administration gives ultimatum to SF judge on asylum order

San Francisco Chronicle

As turbulence continued at the Mexican border, the Trump administration on Tuesday challenged a San Francisco federal judge’s ruling thwarting the president’s effort to disqualify thousands of immigrants from seeking asylum in the United States.


Hillary Clinton Is Right — and Wrong — about Immigration and Populism     

National Review

Clinton’s remarks were too transparently political and self-serving. (They also appeared with Clinton’s impeccably poor timing, right as the United States was dealing with a serious refugee challenge at the southern border.)




Land Use:


Escape rooms, virtual arcade coming to Tulare

Visalia Times Delta

David McAllister had to clear one final hurdle before he could safely say his business was coming to downtown Tulare. The obstacle was the Tulare Planning Commission.




Homes in black neighborhoods are undervalued by $48,000 on average


In the average U.S. metropolitan area, homes within majority-black neighborhoods are valued at roughly half the price as homes in neighborhoods with no black residents. In a new interactive report, Andre Perry, Jonathan Rothwell, and David Harshbarger examine what’s driving the devaluation of homes in black communities and the negative impacts on the upward mobility of black children.




City's sales tax measure close to passing with about 3,000 votes remaining to be counted

Bakersfield Californian

The city of Bakersfield’s sales tax ballot initiative is in a race to the finish line as the last votes are counted by the Kern County Elections Office. With 2,919 votes left to be tallied, Measure N has pulled within 14 votes of passing.




High-speed rail gets a financial boost from California’s heaviest polluters

Fresno Bee

The California Air Resources Board will get more than $813 million from a Nov. 14 auction of pollution allowances for its cap-and-trade program. And some of that funding goes to the state’s High-Speed Rail Authority.


Tips to have merrier holiday travel


But no matter where you are headed for the holidays, "Twist Travel Magazine" editor Keryn Means says the first thing you'll need is a positive, up-beat outlook.


Can California Hit Its Emission Reduction Goals? Only If Californians Drive A Lot Less, Study Says.

Capital Public Radio

California has emerged as a leader in curbing climate change and has hit its 2020 climate target early. But a new report from the California Air Resources Board shows the state is not on track to meet its climate goals in the long-run.


Regions across California likely off the hook for 2020 caps on greenhouse-gas emissions from driving

San Diego Union-Tribune

Top air quality officials in California currently have no way to fully assess whether regions from San Diego to Sacramento are on track to meet 2020 targets for reining in greenhouse gases associated with daily driving.




Flash flood and winter storm warning issued for Mountain Area

Fresno Bee

The National Weather Service in Hanford issued a flash flood warning for foothill portions of Madera, Mariposa and Fresno counties and a winter storm warning for the Sierra from Yosemite south.

See Also:

     City of Fresno prepares for storm system approaching Central Valley abc30

     Rain returning to Bakersfield starting Wednesday Bakersfield Californian

     More rain and fog in store for Sacramento, and another snowstorm coming to the mountains Sacramento Bee

     Pacific Storm To Bring Rain, Mountain Snow To California Capital Public Radio

     Biggest storm this week will hit Wednesday night, forecasters say San Francisco Chronicle




Fresno State at #25 in latest College Football Playoff rankings


The Bulldogs are back in the College Football Playoff rankings. Fresno State checks in at #25 ahead of Saturday's Mountain West Championship game at Boise State.


Local organizations kicking off charity season with Giving Tuesday

Bakersfield Californian

Buying gifts for family is the usual focus of the Christmas shopping season but some nonprofit organizations hope the giving spirit will extend to them, as well.

See Also:

     State Center community colleges participating in Giving Tuesday abc30

     Philanthropy program gives Wonderful workers a voice in donations Bakersfield Californian

     How To Make A Good Charitable Choice On Giving Tuesday — And Beyond Capital Public Radio


How A Fresno State Physicist Got More Instagram Followers Than Neil DeGrasse Tyson


When you think of Instagram celebrities, the Kardashians and performers like Beyonce probably come to mind. But with the Instagram handle @PhysicsFun, one of Fresno’s own scientists recently reached a million followers.


Seen “The Nutcracker”? Modesto’s ballet company has a few surprises for you this year

Modesto Bee

Expect something a little different when Mother Ginger makes her traditional appearance during this year’s “Nutcracker” performances in Modesto.