October 17, 2016


Political Stories

Top stories

 While Trump warns of ‘rigged’ process, Padilla keeps faith in county officials — With Donald Trump’s deepening warnings about a “rigged” presidential campaign, and renewing doubts about the legitimacy of the democratic process, California’s election chief said Sunday that he has great faith in the state’s county election officials and its thousands of volunteer poll workers. Sacramento Bee article

 George Skelton: Proposition 60 raises the question: Should Californians be deputized as condom cops? – Proposition 60 on the California ballot would seem to offer a treasure of material for late-night comics. It’s about requiring condoms to be worn in porno flicks. But there’s nothing funny about spreading syphilis, gonorrhea, herpes, hepatitis, HIVand other sexually transmitted diseases. So skip the one-liners. Skelton column in LA Times

Valley politics

Bakersfield Californian: Congress: Reelect Valadao in 21st District, McCarthy in 23rd — Two Republican incumbent congressmen in adjacent districts are fighting off politically inexperienced challengers who have little in the way of public service records. One incumbent is a certainty to be reelected. The other faces a real challenge. However, both 21st District Rep. David Valadao of Hanford and 23rd District Rep. Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield should be returned to the House of Representatives. They have solid records of understanding and representing the southern San Joaquin Valley. Bakersfield Californian editorial

Bakersfield Californian: Assembly: Vote Salas in AD 32, Fong in AD 34 – Voters should elect Democratic incumbent Rudy Salas in Assembly District 32 and Republican Vince Fong in Assembly District 34. Bakersfield Californian editorial

Stockton mayoral race in home stretch – With Stockton mired in bankruptcy and besieged by violent crime in 2012, Anthony Silva rode the ty’s misery to an easy upset victory over Ann Johnston, knocking the incumbent mayor out of City Hall. Four years later, with the city struggling to find post-bankruptcy stability and still battling serious crime, Silva is nearing the end of a dizzying first term and asking voters to re-elect him and reject his challenger, City Councilman Michael Tubbs. Stockton Record article

Fresno Bee: Chavez and Bredefeld for Fresno City Council — We recommend Luis Chavez and Garry Bredefeld to voters as City Council candidates who will continue our city’s upward trajectory. They are great fits for what has become a productive and largely collaborative council. Fresno Bee editorial

Tax advocate: McFarland bond ‘most expensive in California’ — What’s believed to be the most expensive per-household school bond in California this year is being proposed in one of Kern County’s most impoverished communities — McFarland. But district officials there say they have no choice but to ask for the money because of a dysfunctional state school financing system. Bakersfield Californian article

Q&A: School board candidates for Merced City School District – Candidates for the Merced City School District school board answer questions from the Merced Sun-Star.  Merced Sun-Star article

 Nine vie for four Yosemite Community College District seats — The Yosemite Community College District board has four of its seven seats up for election, a potential sea change for the panel, which has weathered internal strife and community dissent this year. Modesto Bee article

 Bakersfield Californian: Don’t waste your vote; elect Organ-Bowles judge — Kern County voters have been given a rare opportunity to elect a Superior Court judge. They can’t let Woodward’s backroom dealing deprive them of that choice. Vote for Tiffany Organ-Bowles. Don’t waste your vote on Woodward and allow the governor the opportunity to select his own judge. Bakersfield Californian editorial

Other areas

 Hometown supports Kaepernick’s right to protest – San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick heard plenty of boos Sunday in Orchard Park, N.Y., as he started his first game of the season, but some 2,600 miles away, fans in his hometown of Turlock backed his right to protest racial injustice and police brutality. Modesto Bee article

 California Legislative Wrap-up: Moving transparency and accountability forward — As a bipartisan governance improvement organization, California Forward was a proud partner in several successful efforts to advance a more responsive and representative government that’s accountable for results. One example is the modernization of the Cal-Access database system that tracks campaign spending, lobbyist reporting and independent expenditure campaigns. Currently outdated and dysfunctional, Senate Bill 1349 by Senator Bob Hertzberg will appropriate 1.8 million to update and overhaul the system. California Forward article

Presidential Politics

 President Obama returns to California to raise money for Clinton, Democrats — President Obama is headed to Beverly Hills for a high-dollar fundraiser on Oct. 24. He’ll appear at the home of Marilyn and Jeff Katzenberg for a “discussion” to raise money for the Hillary Victory Fund. That means some of the money raised will go to the Democratic National Committee and state Democratic parties. LA Times article

 Specter of Trump loosens tongues, if not purse strings, in Silicon Valley — After years of scorning the political process, Silicon Valley has leapt into the fray. The prospect of a PresidentDonald J. Trump is pushing the tech community to move beyond its traditional role as donors and to embrace a new existence as agitators and activists. New York Times article

News Stories

Top Stories

California’s under-21 smoking ban could be a national test case — California this year became the second state after Hawaii to raise its minimum smoking age to 21. When the law took effect in June, state public health officials declared it would “literally be a life-saving measure.” But experts say it’s too soon to know whether the law will live up to such claims, and there are few studies from elsewhere pointing the way. LA Times article

 Dan Walters: California education officials politicians battle feds over schools — Under the federal Every Student Succeeds Act, states must rate schools – not as explicitly as before, but still identifying low-performing schools based on academic tests. That’s exactly what the education establishment doesn’t want. State schools chief Tom Torlakson and other officials have complained loudly about the requirement, saying they lack the time and money to track year-to-year changes in achievement. Walters column in Sacramento Bee

 Jobs and the Economy

Jose Gaspar: Marijuana land rush underway in Cal City — In a dramatic break from its fellow municipalities in Kern County, California City has embraced the medical marijuana industry in hopes of cashing in on the lucrative market. “Why not us?” said California City City Manager Tom Weil. “Why can’t we look at new industry coming into our community?” Gaspar column in Bakersfield Californian

 Kings County grand jury is a costly watchdog – A review of county budget documents show the Kings County grand jury, which serves as a watchdog for public agencies and elected officials, may have a spending problem. The organization’s budget has grown by about 58 percent since 2007. A local policy requiring jurors to meet three days per week in order to be paid for their time may be to blame. Hanford Sentinel article

 Video: California’s housing crisis puts squeeze on employers and their workforce – As California’s housing crisis is increasingly vexing more Californians across the income spectrum, more organizations are calling it a threat to the state’s economic competitiveness and vitality.  As this video shows, leaders from business groups representing employers in the Bay Area and Silicon Valley talk about the impact of rising housing costs. California Economic Summit report

 Newport Beach grapples with soaring pension liabilities — With Newport Beach’s unfunded employee pension liability expected to soar to $315 million in 2017, city leaders are walking a tightrope in their efforts to pay down the debt while maintaining a high quality of life for residents. LA Times article

 Fitz’s Stockton: After 70 years, a refinisher nears the finish — Carmel “Carl” Harden, 86, has decided to close Carl’s Furniture Refinishing after working only 70 years. Recent surgery gave him a hitch in his giddy up. Fitz’s Stockton in Stockton Record

 Elite cultivator banks of marijuana legalization across the west — L.A. native David Holmes is one of the most sought-after cultivators in the cannabis business, and his clients want to grow their business beyond medical sales. KQED report


 UC Merced, city may update water agreement — The Merced City Council will look at an amendment to services provided to UC Merced, as well as a number of other housecleaning items, during its regular meeting Monday. Merced Sun-Star article

Criminal Justice/Prisons

 Activists, the police may be watching your Facebook page — It felt like a confirmation. A report by the American Civil Liberties Union showing that police from Oakland to Baltimore had used a surveillance program to track activists and communities of color by accessing their Facebook, Twitter and Instagram data en masse confirmed for many Bay Area activists what they already suspected. San Francisco Chronicle article

 Suspect in San Francisco police shooting dies, officer critically wounded — A man who allegedly shot a police officer in the head Friday night in San Francisco’s Lakeshore neighborhood has died, according to the San Francisco Police Department. KQED report


 Delta College not selling farm in Manteca – yet — San Joaquin Delta College has not decided to sell its Manteca farm — at least, not yet. President Kathy Hart this week denied a campus rumor, and a report in the Manteca Bulletin, that the college intends to sell the 160-acre property. Stockton Record article

 Sacramento teachers begin collaborating on classroom strategies — Clapper shared her creative technique during a new teacher collaboration hour that’s taking place each week at Sacramento City Unified School District campuses, an approach that districts around the region have embraced in recent years. To carve out that hour, the district’s 43,000 students spend extra time in class four days a week in exchange for leaving early on Thursdays. Sacramento Bee article

 National coalition offers framework for K-12 computer science curriculum — The next step in California’s efforts to introduce computer science standards into the school curriculum over the next few years came Monday as a national coalition of educators, academics, industry professionals and nonprofits unveiled a framework for states to adopt. EdSource article

Health/Human Services

 Covered California insurance hikes are starting to pinch – Covered California, the state’s health insurance marketplace created by the federal health law, warned in July that 2017 premiums would go up an average of 13.2 percent, or more than triple the average 4 percent rate increases that consumers have seen since the exchange started offering coverage in 2014. San Francisco Chronicle article

 Breast cancer death rates are down, but racial disparities persist – Women are less likely to die of breast cancer than they were a decade ago, but not all women are benefiting from that trend. White women saw more of a drop in death rates than black women — 1.9 percent a year from 2010 to 2014, compared to a 1.5 percent decrease for black women, according to a report published Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. NPR report

 Tulare County gets funding, adds nurse for blood poisoning case management – Tulare County administrators will get nearly $100,000 in state funding to handle an expected increase in local lead poisoning cases. Visalia Times-Delta article

 Dr. Amr El-Sergany: In support of Dr. Mahmoud – The board certified general surgeon writes, “Dr. Mahmoud’s presence at San Joaquin General Hospital cannot be understated. He has personally trained countless surgeons from how to hold the scalpel to making those middle-of-the-night, gut-wrenching decisions wherein the only separation between a surgeon and the fate of the patient is the quality of training that has been ever so carefully crafted by our teacher and confidant.” El-Sergany op-ed in Sacramento Bee

Land Use/Housing

 Some homes exempt from lawn-parking law — Every incorporated city in Stanislaus County has some kind of ordinance against parking on the lawn, landscaping or earth in the yard. Some laws prohibit it because it is unsightly and can affect property values, but in Modesto it’s a matter of environmental impact. Modesto Bee article


 Sacramento’s new plan to make room for street sweepers — The city is launching a test in midtown by restricting parking for one morning a month instead of once a week. That would free up more parking, and could cut down on parking tickets. The test will take place on a dozen square blocks in midtown, from N to Q and 19th to 23rd streets, for six months. The city wants feedback. Sacramento Bee article

Other areas

 Golden Gate Bridge beefing up patrols along span to prevent suicides — Five new officers will be hired to patrol the Golden Gate Bridge, specifically to search for people looking to jump to their death. LA Times article

Valley Editorial Roundup

 Bakersfield Californian  Both 21st District Rep. David Valadao of Hanford and 23rd District Rep. Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield should be returned to the House of Representatives. They have solid records of understanding and representing the southern San Joaquin Valley; Voters should elect Democratic incumbent Rudy Salas in Assembly District 32 and Republican Vince Fong in Assembly District 34; Kern County voters have been given a rare opportunity to elect a Superior Court judge. They can’t let Woodward’s backroom dealing deprive them of that choice. Vote for Tiffany Organ-Bowles. Don’t waste your vote on Woodward and allow the governor the opportunity to select his own judge.

Fresno Bee – We recommend Luis Chavez and Garry Bredefeld to voters as City Council candidates who will continue our city’s upward trajectory. They are great fits for what has become a productive and largely collaborative council.

Modesto Bee – We make no apologies for endorsing Hillary Clinton for president. Of the two major candidates and all the minor-leaguers, she is by far the most qualified, most prepared, most thoughtful, most experienced and most deserving of our votes. That doesn’t mean we don’t have concerns.

Maddy Events

 Sunday, Oct. 23, at 10 a.m. on ABC 30 – Maddy Report: “California Propositions: Revenue Issues”  Guests: Experts from California’s Legislative Analyst Office: Helen Kerstein, Ryan Miller, Carolyn Chu, Ben Johnson, Amber Didier, Dan Kaplan, Ryan Anderson, Ann Hollingshead, Nick Schroeder. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director Mark Keppler.

Sunday, Oct. 23, at 10 a.m. on Newstalk 580 (KMJ) – Maddy Report-Valley Views Edition: “Elections: Tax & Spending Measures – Guests: Christine Bedell of the Bakersfield Californian; Mike Dunbar of the Modesto Bee, and Paul Hurley, formerly of the Visalia Times Delta. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director Mark Keppler.

 Sunday, Oct. 23, at 11 a.m. on Fresno Univision 21 (KFTV) and UniMas 61 (KTTF) – El Informe Maddy Report: “Propositions: Revenue Issues” – Guest: Sacramento Bee reporter Alexei Koseff. Host: Maria Jeans.