October 4, 2018






Janz campaign against Nunes raises $4.3 million in three months

Fresno Bee

The campaign for Fresno Democrat Andrew Janz announced Wednesday it had raised $4.3 million between July 1 and Sept. 30 in its bid to unseat Tulare Republican Devin Nunes, bringing Janz’s overall fundraising total to about $7.1 million for this election cycle.

See also:

      Nunes fundraiser to feature Fox News contributor, former congressman Jason Chaffetz Fresno Bee

      Devin Nunes escalates war against Fresno Bee with 'unprecedented' 38-page mailer Visalia Times-Delta

      Republicans face big risks in contested California races as Democrats fight for control of the House Los Angeles Times

     This heated Valley race isn’t exactly lighting up partisan voter registration The Fresno Bee


Denham is desperate to stop a California water plan. Nothing has worked – yet

Fresno Bee

Rep. Jeff Denham, one of the nation’s most vulnerable Republicans, is trying desperately to shut down a state water plan that’s widely disliked in his district. But nothing has worked so far.


Cox, Valadao agree to first televised debate

Fresno Bee

Hanford Republican David Valadao and Fresno Democrat TJ Cox have agreed to terms on a live, televised debate on Oct. 25.

See also:

     TJ Cox signed document claiming Maryland as residence; campaign calls it ‘honest mistake’ The Fresno Bee

     EDITORIAL: Did TJ Cox make a mistake on tax forms, or was he being deceptive? Voters will decide Fresno Bee


OUR VIEW: We recommend: Vidak, Grove for state senate

The Bakersfield Californian

Hanford cherry farmer Andy Vidak is another one of those registration-deficit anomalies: Democrats significantly outnumber Republicans in his Latino-heavy 14th State Senate District, but you wouldn't know it by his three past electoral results.


Drum, horns, hecklers steal the show at candidate forum. Was it ‘unprofessional’?

Fresno Bee

A bass drum, air horn, chanting and people in T-shirts depicting Paula Yang’s face filled up the Mosqueda Community Center in southeast Fresno on Tuesday night for a city council candidate forum, but incumbent Luis Chavez chalked up the spectacle to “politics” and said he was not intimidated by the noisy support for his challenger.


Two left for DA

Madera Tribune

Sally Orme Moreno and Paul Hornick, both residents of the Madera Ranchos, are competing to fill the seat that will be left open in January due to the defeat in June of current DA David Linn.


Merced candidate apologizes for incorrect statement about campaign donation

Merced Sun-Star

Candidate John Bliss, a Buhach Colony High teacher, told the Merced County Board of Realtors during a debate on Tuesday that developer Greg Hostetler contributed his largest donation. He didn’t.


More Tulare drama: Carlton Jones accuses Jose Sigala of campaigning on city time

Visalia Times-Delta

Carlton Jones accused fellow Tulare council members Jose Sigala of campaigning for the California Assembly 26th District seat while attending the League of Cities Conference in September.


Howze, eying 2020 race, gets big bucks from Denham after opposing him in June primary

Modesto Bee

Rep. Jeff Denham and the local GOP organization in recent weeks have given a combined $35,000 to Ted Howze, Denham’s only Republican rival in the hard-fought June primary.


Downtown business owners, city officials meet

Hanford Sentinel

Around a dozen eastside downtown business owners gathered with Hanford city officials Tuesday morning to discuss one issue they all deal with: Hanford’s homeless population.


Silva, associate hit with new felony embezzlement, money-laundering charges

Stockton Record

Former Mayor Anthony Silva and longtime associate Sharon Simas are facing felony embezzlement, money-laundering and conflict-of-interest charges, according to a document filed at San Joaquin County Superior Court by the San Joaquin County District Attorney’s Office.


Water leak damages DA’s Office building

Stockton Record

A water leak Wednesday morning caused significant damage to the San Joaquin County District Attorney’s Office building.


Former Stockton mayor faces new embezzlement charges


A former Northern California Mayor and a longtime associate have been charged with embezzlement, money-laundering and conflict-of-interest.


Two local businessmen say they funded an attack ad targeting David Couch by mistake

The Bakersfield Californian

Two local businessmen are complaining that contributions they made to a local political action committee funded an attack ad against Kern County District 4 Supervisor David Couch without their knowledge.




California lawmakers wrote 1,016 new laws this year. Here's some of what did and didn't make it

Los Angeles Times

California’s Legislature revved into high gear when it came to writing laws in 2018, sending the most bills to the governor’s desk in more than a decade.

See also:

       Pets, pot and privacy: 10 new CA laws that could affect you  Fresno Bee


Walters: Changing election rules to change election results


Clay Matthews, the Green Bay Packers’ much-feared linebacker, was penalized after a hard tackle on Washington Redskins quarterback Alex Smith on Sept. 23, running afoul of new league rules aimed at protecting Smith and other QBs from injury.


Proposition Breakdowns


Eleven statewide measures are on the Nov. 6 ballot, including one that would repeal the 2017 fuel tax and vehicle fee increases and make future gas tax increases subject to voter approval.


State Treasurer Seeks Probe of CalPERS CEO


A rowdy, muckraking financial blog that has repeatedly raised later-corroborated concerns about how the California Public Employees’ Retirement System operates has gotten traction with one of its new allegations.


EDITORIAL: ‘Down ballot’ doesn’t mean unimportant

Merced Sun-Star

It’s called “down ballot,” but the offices beyond Governor are important to keep our state functioning and moving in the right direction. The best choices for these offices were clear before the top-two primary in June.


EDITORIAL: Here are The Sacramento Bee’s endorsements for California’s election

Sacramento Bee

Here are the Sacramento Bee Editorial Board’s recommendations so far for the Nov. 6 election.


Democrats turn up campaign to unseat GOP Leader Bates


Democrats released an ad Wednesday challenging Senate Republican leader Pat Bates over her stand on health care, as they sought to show their candidate, Marggie Castellano, is serious in challenging what long has been seen as a safe Republican seat.


The Republican Attack on California

The New York Times

A challenge to the state’s net neutrality laws shows that the G.O.P. no longer believes in federalism (if it ever did).

See also:

     CA’s version of net neutrality is tied up in multiple courts CALmatters

     Suit to block CA's net neutrality law could be overshadowed by broader challenge in D.C. Circuit  Los Angeles Times


The GOP isn't the only party that's flagging in California

Los Angeles Times

The latest state voter registration numbers are out, and though the numbers bode well for democracy, they aren’t looking good for California’s Republican Party.


Dianne Feinstein’s campaign debate dodge may be about to end

San Francisco Chronicle

The last time Sen. Dianne Feinstein debated an opponent in a Senate election was in 2000. That means no voter under age 35 has had the privilege of deciding whom to send to Washington after seeing California’s senior senator match wits with a campaign foe.


Republicans face big risks in contested California races as Democrats fight for control of the House

Los Angeles Times

Republicans are at risk of a wipeout in California’s six most hotly contested congressional races, a new poll shows — a result that could radically reshape the state’s political map, with major consequences nationally.

See also:

       After money surge, GOP frets Democrats can ‘buy rage in bulk’ Fresno Bee

       24 House Ratings Change in Favor of Democrats, One Month Out  Roll Call




McConnell sets Friday test vote on Kavanaugh nomination

Sacramento Bee

The Senate braced for a crucial initial vote Friday on Brett Kavanaugh's tottering Supreme Court nomination after Majority Leader Mitch McConnell set his polarized chamber on a schedule to decide an election-season battle that has consumed the nation. A showdown roll call over confirmation seemed likely over the weekend.

See also:

     How TV cameras made that awful Kavanaugh Senate hearing even worse The Modesto Bee

     Trump 'stating the facts,' not mocking Kavanaugh accuser, White House says ABC30

     Senate sets preliminary vote Friday on Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh after reviewing FBI report Los Angeles Times

     An FBI investigation that doesn't interview Kavanaugh and Ford? What are Republicans thinking?  Los Angeles Times

     FBI investigation of Kavanaugh leads to fresh acrimony as McConnell pushes for vote San Diego Union-Tribune

     How Dianne Feinstein handled Christine Blasey Ford’s letter CALmatters

     With Brett Kavanaugh, it's not a question of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. It's a question of credibility Los Angeles Times

      Which US communities are most affected by Chinese, EU, and NAFTA retaliatory tariffs? Brookings

     High Noon for Judge Kavanaugh WSJ

     White House Finds No Support in FBI Report for Claims Against Kavanaugh WSJ

      ‘Unfathomable’: More than 1,200 law professors sign letter opposing Kavanaugh’s confirmation Washington Post

      Is Kavanaugh Helping Republicans’ Midterm Chances? Fivethirthyeight

     Key Republicans signal satisfaction with FBI report, increasing confirmation odds for Kavanaugh The Washington Post

     Democrats, Republicans Clash Over FBI Report on Kavanaugh WSJ

     NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist Poll National Survey Results & Analysis Marist Poll


The Never Conservatives


Donald Trump didn’t help Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation with his crude mockery of Christine Blasey Ford on Tuesday night in Tennessee, but then this Supreme Court moshpit isn’t about this President. The left’s all-out assault on the judge is clarifying because it shows that the “resistance” is really about anything and everything conservative in America. Mr. Trump is its foil to regain power.


New Nafta Shows Limits of ‘America First’


To free traders, the new Nafta is a bitter pill to swallow. It introduces managed trade to autos, waters down the foreign rights of corporations and normalizes national security as a pretext for tariffs. Many of its improvements, such as on intellectual property and labor rights, were already in the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership, from which President Donald Trump has withdrawn.

See also:

     What’s in the New Nafta WSJ

     Tracking Trump’s Trade Talks WSJ

     A Trade War America Can’t Afford to Lose WSJ

     FactChecking Trump on Trade FactChecking.org


House GOP Moving Right, Democratic Direction Less Clear

Roll Call

We don’t know exactly how many House seats Democrats will gain in November, though Democratic control of the chamber next year looks almost inevitable. But even now it is clear that the midterm results will move Republicans further to the right. Where the Democrats will stand is less clear.


A Few Steps Toward a Steadier U.S. Politics


“Chris, this is tearing our country apart.” With these words addressed to his Democratic friend Sen. Chris Coons, Republican Sen. Jeff Flake began a process that pulled American politics back from the brink. The agreement to authorize a limited FBI investigation of the allegations against Judge Brett Kavanaugh was a modest victory for decency and common sense.




Trust in politicians highest in decade: Gallup


The American public's trust of politicians is at a 10-year high, according to a new poll.


Fox:  n the Age of the Janus Ruling, Unions Must Prove Their Worth While Government Must be a Fair Umpire

Fox & Hounds

On the California Democratic Party website under the category Economic Justice is highlighted the following: Dems Lead: California Governor Jerry Brown signed the Agricultural Labor Relations Act in 1975, the nation’s only law that protects farm workers’ right to unionize.





Valley raisin growers prepared for rain


It's the most valuable raisin crop in history, and it doesn't look like the rain is going to do too much damage.


Free pistachio harvest calculator gives area growers new forecast tool

Hanford Sentinel

California State University, Fresno researchers created an online pistachio harvest predictor to assist San Joaquin Valley growers in predicting yields for one of the area’s most popular crops.


From the vine: Scratching the surface of Lodi’s ‘obscure’ wine varieties

Stockton Record

Lodi has many surprising wines made from varieties with difficult-to-pronounce names that few know about. That’s one reason why Lodi is special. Lodi’s daring. Lodi’s innovative. Lodi’s different.


“Papá, I don’t think you should go to work today.”

The California Sunday Magazine

The sky was tinted orange from fires burning in the Sierras. A man saddled an Andalusian mare at the beginning of the Joaquín Murrieta ride. The three-day procession celebrates the legendary Gold Rush–era Mexican Robin Hood, who stole from the rich to give to the poor.






Jerry Brown Paddles Left, Paddles Right On #MeToo Laws

Capital Public Radio

A bill Gov. Jerry Brown signed over the weekend rejects that interpretation, clarifying that a single incident of harassment can be enough to meet the legal standard. In other words, starting January 1, California law essentially says: “Actually, no free gropes.”


Bribes, kickbacks, falsifying reports: BPD officer claims corruption

Bakersfield Now

A Bakersfield police officer is accusing captains in the department of crime and corruption.


Public Safety:


Police Nationwide and locally celebrate National Coffee with a Cop Day


On National Coffee with a Cop Day law enforcement nationwide reached out to meet the people they serve in their neighborhoods.


Nationwide phone alert startled, angered some Americans


On Wednesday at 2:18 p.m. EDT almost all the cell phones in the country buzzed in the first nationwide test of a wireless emergency alert system.

See also:

     Cellphones to squawk with an emergency alert Wednesday. Don't panic; it's just a test Visalia Times-Delta


New laws, new light on police misconduct

Stockton Record

For years, Stockton has been caught in a law enforcement contradiction: a progressive police chief working to build trust, a district attorney committed to improving transparency and state law that hides police misconduct.




California’s Worsening Wildfire Conditions Putting Firefighters At Risk

Valley Public Radio

Firefighting has gotten a lot more complicated; there’s drought to contend with, and housing development in fire-prone areas. Six California firefighters have been killed on the job so far this year. And it’s a number that isn’t falling, unlike in other parts of the country.






White House Economist Turns to Alternative Data to Boost Trump


The Labor Department’s data showed U.S. wages barely budged more than a year into Donald Trump’s presidency, but Kevin Hassett had a ready response.


Midterms Are a Boon for Stocks—No Matter Who Wins


As U.S. stocks trade near all-time highs, some investors are betting the nine-year bull market will get its next jolt from an unexpected catalyst: the midterm elections.


Three Ways to Elevate the Economic Portrait of Rural California

Public CEO

When California became the fifth largest economy in the world earlier this year, experts attributed the state’s economic success to the financial services, real estate and technology industries based largely in urban and coastal regions. Left out of the economic success story were many of the state’s vast rural regions.


New California law mandates more women on corporate boards. What does it mean for San Diego companies?

The San Diego Union Tribune

Just over a quarter of San Diego’s largest publicly traded companies have all-male boards of directors. But that may change soon under a new law signed Sunday by California Gov. Jerry Brown.




Amazon's $15 minimum wage gives a lift to California's vast warehouse region

Los Angeles Times

In Southern California’s Inland Empire, where some 20,000 people toil in Amazon’s vast network of warehouses, the company’s announcement of an increase in their entry-level wage to $15 an hour was seen as a boost for the local economy.






In a year since Fresno teachers voted to strike, here’s what’s changed at the district

Fresno Bee

The Fresno Teachers Association marked the one-year anniversary of the union’s historic vote to strike at a meeting Wednesday with Fresno Unified School District officials that focused on reducing class sizes.


Quality schools save lives and reduce crime. Support Measure A in Visalia

Fresno Bee

We have served as your district attorneys for the last 26 years. In addition to our years as chief law enforcement officers in the county, between us we have more than four decades of experience as trial lawyers prosecuting cases in our local courts.


To create united front, Modesto City Schools puts muzzles on its school board members

Modesto Bee

Board members for Modesto City Schools agreed to a self-imposed gag rule on talking with the press and also approved guidelines for speaking with residents.


California's Test Scores Are So Stagnant, It Could Take A Generation To Close The Achievement Gap

Capital Public Radio

California public school test scores are improving, but so slowly that it could take a generation to put a dent in the achievement gap.


Also on the November ballot? Lots and lots of school bonds


Californians in November will weigh billions of dollars’ worth of ballot measures for low-income housing, children’s hospitals and more. But one of the biggest asks will be mostly invisible to most voters—100 or more local proposals to sell bonds for school construction projects that, if passed, could total more than $12 billion in local borrowing in coming years.


Higher Ed:


As more universities drop SAT and ACT requirements, Cal State chancellor asks for a closer look

Los Angeles Times

California State University Chancellor Timothy P. White said Wednesday that he has asked academic leaders to study whether the SAT and ACT are valid predictors of student success, raising hopes that the nation’s largest public university system will ultimately drop standardized test scores as admission requirements.


CSUB reports four rape cases in 2017

The Bakersfield Californian

Four rapes were reported at California State University, Bakersfield last year, according to a new security report.

See also:

       Schools need to educate our sons and daughters that no means no  Brookings






Hanford Crow Control program redirects birds from downtown


Hanford's new Crow Control program is already having a major impact on the downtown area, despite just starting this week.


Where do all those old mattresses go?


A major dispute and lack of state oversight are undermining a high-minded program intended to recycle old mattresses, divert then from dumps and persuade people from abandoning them on sidewalks.


After Paris, the devil is in the details


Todd Stern, chief climate negotiator under President Obama, outlines what countries must accomplish when they meet at the annual U.N. climate talks in December to develop guidelines and rules for implementing the Paris Agreement.




Big oil and gas companies are winners in Trump's new trade deal

Los Angeles Times

Only a few months into office, President Trump had delivered on a number of promises to the oil and natural gas industry while trying to rewrite a number of environmental regulations. The entire time, Big Oil cheered the administration on.






Investigation into local clinics cutting dosages of shots


The FBI and the California Department of Justice are investigating health clinics in Fresno and Clovis because they're accused of giving people partial doses of shots like a vaccine, but they're billing the state and other insurers for full doses.


Human Services:


Changes coming to behavioral health services

Hanford Sentinel

Kings County’s mental health services have been contracted solely to Kings View Counseling Services for over 50 years. After a year of review, Kings County Behavioral Health has decided to make some changes in how they will provide care to those with severe mental health issues and those with less severe.


High-deductible health plans fall from grace in employer-provided coverage

Los Angeles Times

With workers harder to find and Obamacare’s tax on generous coverage postponed, employers are hitting pause on a feature of job-based medical insurance much hated by employees: the high-deductible health plan.


Employer-Provided Health Insurance Approaches $20,000 a Year


The average cost of employer health coverage offered to workers rose to nearly $20,000 for a family plan this year, according to a new survey, capping years of increases that experts said are chiefly tied to rising prices paid for health services.


Some Democrats Want Medicare for All. Others Aren’t So Sure.


Shortly after her primary victory in New York, Democratic Socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez declared her goal of giving Medicare to all Americans. Some fellow Democrats like Ken Harbaugh aren’t convinced.




Most people can’t pass a US citizenship test, poll finds. What did they answer wrong?

Fresno Bee

It seems to be common sense that an American citizen would have no trouble passing the country’s citizenship test, right?


Tulare County officials review ICE access in 2017 at public meeting


The group called ICE Out of Tulare County has made their message clear. They want local law enforcement to be upfront about their interactions with ICE, and abide by state immigration laws, such as The Truth Act, which requires that they provide inmates with certain paperwork if ICE wants to talk to them.


ICE deported 107 Tulare County inmates last year

Visalia Times-Delta

Tulare County law enforcement authorities turned over more than 100 inmates to Immigration and Customs Enforcement, fulfilling less than half of the 244 requests made from the federal agents in 2017.


Federal judge blocks Trump from deporting hundreds of thousands of immigrants under TPS

Visalia Times-Delta

A federal judge on Wednesday ordered the Trump administration to temporarily halt its plan to end a special federal immigration program that has allowed hundreds of thousands of immigrants to legally live and work in the U.S. for decades.

See also:

     Judge blocks US from ending protections for some immigrants Sacramento Bee

     San Francisco judge suspends Trump administration's decision to end protected status for hundreds of thousands of immigrants Los Angeles Times

     SF judge cites crude Trump remark in blocking plan to deport immigrants San Francisco Chronicle


Trump administration transfers hundreds of migrant children to border tent camp

Los Angeles Times

The Trump administration has transferred hundreds of children who entered the U.S. illegally to a temporary tent shelter on the border in Texas that immigrant advocates have condemned as “substandard.”


Truck drivers with temporary immigration status rally for permanent solution

Los Angeles Times

Under gray skies, a convoy of six tractor-trailers pulled up to the Metropolitan Detention Center in Los Angeles on Wednesday morning, kicking off a protest to call attention to the plight of hundreds of thousands of legal immigrants — some of them truck drivers — who face deportation when their temporary protected status runs out in the coming months.




Land Use:


Shopping-Mall Vacancies Are Highest in Seven Years After Big-Box Closings


Retailers are anticipating a strong holiday season, boosted by a healthy economy and burgeoning consumer confidence, but an intensifying slump among shopping mall operators shows not all are benefiting from the recovery.




Federal program spends $5.3 million to help homeless veterans in Bay Area, Central Valley get housing

San Francisco Chronicle

More than 300 veterans experiencing homelessness in the Bay Area and Central Valley will soon move into permanent housing with the help of a joint federal program, officials announced Wednesday.


Two measures would raise $6B for affordable housing

San Francisco Chronicle

Two years after voters approved billions of dollars to fund low-income homes around California, affordable housing advocates are upping the ante bigtime — with two statewide bond measures on the Nov. 6 ballot to raise a record-breaking $6 billion for housing for struggling families, veterans and severely mentally ill people.


Proposition 10: What to know about the rent control measure, in under a minute


On the November ballot, Californians will vote on Proposition 10, a measure that would allow localities to adopt or expand rent control.

See also:

       It's expensive to be a tenant in California. Will Prop 10's rent control expansion help? Los Angeles Times




Tax Cuts Provide Limited Boost to Workers’ Wages


U.S. companies are putting savings from the corporate tax cut to use, but only a fraction of it is flowing to employees’ wallets, new data show.

See also:

     Fed Chairman Jerome Powell Says Tax Cuts, Spending Increases Could Hobble Response to a Downturn WSJ

     House Passes Extension of Individual Tax Cuts WSJ


A Tax Credit Encourages Work. But What Is That Worth?


An experiment shows, predictably, that expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit brings marginalized populations into the workforce.


Trump’s Tax Returns in the Spotlight if Democrats Capture the House


Democrats will seek a firsthand look at President Trump’s tax returns if they take control of the House or Senate after next month’s election, according to the key lawmakers who would gain the authority to get the documents.


IRS Moves to Ease Tax Rules for Spinoffs


The IRS is considering a shift that would make it easier for pharmaceutical, technology and other companies to spin off high-risk units without tax consequences—and raising the prospect of further changes to the tax rules governing spinoff deals.




Google Maps rolls out new features to help ease your commute


Google Maps is rolling out some new features to help ease your commute.


Visalia to Fresno bus line gets boost from federal money

Visalia Times-Delta

For the 2018-2019 fiscal year, the Federal Transit Administration awarded the city of Visalia $569,595 for the purchase of two new Compressed Natural Gas replacement buses.


Volkswagen Proposal To Boost Electric Vehicle Use In California Calls For More Charging Stations

Valley Public Radio

This most recent proposal is the second phase of a four-part settlement with Volkswagen over the automaker's emissions cheating scandal.


GOP put gas-tax repeal on ballot: Now it's walking away

San Francisco Chronicle

GOP leaders who pumped more than $1 million into the effort to get a gas tax repeal measure on the ballot have closed their wallets, leaving the Proposition 6 campaign underfunded.




Denham is desperate to stop a California water plan. Nothing has worked – yet

Fresno Bee

Rep. Jeff Denham, one of the nation’s most vulnerable Republicans, is trying desperately to shut down a state water plan that’s widely disliked in his district. But nothing has worked so far.


Rain has hit the Valley. National Weather Service warns of potential floods for these areas

Fresno Bee

Residents who live in the Sierra Nevada Mountains be on the look out. Flash flooding could be coming to your area following Wednesday’s rain. The Oakhurst area that was briefly ravaged by the Oak Fire in September could be hit with floods.

See also:

     Flood warning in Mariposa closes down schools, road Fresno Bee

     Flooding near Coalinga Fresno Bee

     Strong storm moving through Central California ABC30

     3 Mariposa County schools closed, Highway 140 to Yosemite closed in preparation for storm ABC30

     One highway into Yosemite closes as first storm of autumn bears down Modesto Bee

     Storm builds over Modesto area. ‘Small stream flood advisory’ goes out Modesto Bee

     Season’s first storm packs a punch Stockton Record


Of course some well permits should require impact studies, others not so much

Modesto Bee

The common assumption that you can pump all the water you want from beneath your property ignores hydrologic reality and has allowed a legal theft of groundwater from many neighbors.


How A Law On Lead In School Drinking Water May Not Go Far Enough


In January of this year, a state law went into effect that requires public schools throughout California to test their drinking water for lead by July of 2019, but it may not be enough.




Big Fresno Fair launches with cloudy skies, bright smiles

Fresno Bee

The Big Fresno Fair opened its 12-day run Wednesday with a bit of rain but a lot of smiles from the children who got there early.

See also:

     Big games, big food and big fun at the Big Fresno Fair Fresno Bee

     Big times are back. Big Fresno Fair opens ABC30


Free tacos and discount tequila: National Taco Day in Fresno means freebies and deals

Fresno Bee

The words “free tacos” are music to the ears, right? National Taco Day is Thursday and there are plenty of freebies and deals around. Nobody does tacos like Fresno does tacos.


Et tu, Bakersfield? Kern Shakespeare Festival opens with timely productions

Bakersfield Californian

Friends, Bakersfieldians, country folk, lend me your ears. I come not to bury "Caesar," but to promote it — and the Kern Shakespeare Festival, which is running now at Bakersfield College.


Loukoumades who's back? St. George Greek Food Festival coming this weekend

The Bakersfield Californian

It’s that time of year again to go Greek in Bakersfield. The annual festival, which draws thousands downtown to St. George Greek Orthodox Church over its three-day run, is ready to take advantage of the (finally) great fall weather.


California's cringeworthy city flags

California Sun

Many Californians are unaware that at least 160 cities across the state have official flags. That could be because most appear to have been the product of bureaucratic afterthought — epitomized by a style known derisively as a "seal on a bedsheet