October 9, 2020



North SJ Valley:

Why did Merced County move to red tier sooner than expected? New ‘equity metric’ helped

Merced Sun-Star

Merced County’s increased reopening took place one week earlier than initially projected by county officials due to a recently implemented equity metric that is taken into account by the state, County Public Health confirmed to the Sun-Star in an email.

See Also:

●     Many Merced businesses reopen with move to COVID-19 red tier — but hardships continue Merced Sun-Star

Coronavirus update: Stanislaus caseload grows faster. Fitness chains struggle

Modesto Bee

Stanislaus County added 37 cases of the virus Wednesday, a day after its best performance on this measure since early June. The county Health Services Agency also announced two more deaths to COVID-19, bringing the total to 379.

Ex-mayor, City Councilman, quality assurance manager seek Patterson mayoral office

Modesto Bee

Patterson will elect a new mayor in the November election, choosing among two candidates who have served multiple terms on the City Council and a political newcomer.

Fire district billing for calls is an issue in Stanislaus County supervisors race

Modesto Bee

The person elected to represent the Oakdale-Riverbank area on Stanislaus County’s Board of Supervisors will spend time dealing with the coronavirus outbreak.

Coronavirus update: New Stanislaus cases at four-week high. Latest on TK-6

Modesto Bee

Stanislaus County had 82 new cases of the coronavirus Thursday, the most in four weeks, and its death toll rose by two to 381.

EDITORIAL: Experience gives these candidates a leg up in Ceres and Patterson

Modesto Bee

The Modesto Bee’s endorsements for mayor in both Ceres and Patterson have one thing in common: recent, valuable City Council experience.

Central SJ Valley:

City of Fresno stands with Armenian community, holds ceremony of support

Fresno Bee

Fresno civic leaders held a private flag raising ceremony and to observe a moment of silence at Fresno City Hall on Wednesday, October 7, 2020, to show solidarity with the nation of Armenia amid ongoing warfare in that region.

‘We are all living through history,’ Wash Post reporter says as election day looms

Fresno Bee

Costa, a national political journalist who also moderates PBS’s “Washington Week,” is a four-time guest for the President’s Lecture Series at Fresno State and served as the featured speaker Thursday during the event’s first-ever virtual rendition.

Latinos hold almost half of all elected positions in Fresno County. Here’s how they made gains

Fresno Bee

Esther Padilla stood out on the Fresno City Council in the early 1990s, when she was the first and only Latina to win a seat leading what was then an increasingly diverse city.

Fresno County businesses to suffer if county slides back into ‘purple tier’


Just as businesses like gyms and restaurants are beginning to flourish again, the numbers show that Fresno County is in danger of falling back into the more restrictive tier, meaning things would be forced to shut down, and restrict seating.

Will Devin Nunes agree to a debate? He hasn’t accepted one since 2002

Fresno Bee

Rep. Devin Nunes has not responded to an invitation to debate his Democratic challenger, Phil Arballo, continuing his longstanding practice of not engaging with his opponents in forums.

UPS opens long-awaited Visalia hub — and you can apply now

Visalia Times Delta

After years of construction, Visalia’s massive UPS shipping and distribution hub opened Friday in the midst of a global pandemic that has sent the shipping company’s business into overdrive.

South SJ Valley:

COVID-19 update: Case rate down, Pleasant View cleared to open K-6

Porterville Recorder

Despite an increase in active cases, Tulare County’s case rate per 100,000 residents over a 7-day period continued to decrease on Thursday.

Special permits will allow churches, youth sports to take place in city parks

Bakersfield Californian

Bakersfield will allow religious services, fitness classes and youth sports to temporarily take place in city parks under a new program similar to one that allows restaurants to expand dining onto sidewalks and parking lots due to COVID-19 restrictions on indoor seating.


Calif Democrat in Congress tests positive for COVID-19

Fresno Bee

Rep. Salud Carbajal of Calif has tested positive for the coronavirus after coming into passing contact with Sen. Mike Lee, a Utah Republican who is among a growing number of lawmakers and White House staff now confirmed to have the virus, his office said.

Exclusive: How a days-old company pressured Calif into $450 million deal on COVID-19 gear

Sac Bee

Executives at a newly formed company called Blue Flame began aggressively pressuring state officials to buy 100 million masks and wire nearly half a billion dollars in prepayment, text messages and emails obtained by The Sac Bee show.

Calif Legislature Essentially Eliminates Public Works “De Minimis” Exception


On September 30, 2020, Governor Newsom signed into law AB 2231, which limits the “de minimis” exception to Calif prevailing wage laws to all but the smallest projects.


Stimulus talks: Nancy Pelosi ‘at the table’ even after Pres. Trump scrapped COVID-19 relief plans


House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday she’s “at the table” and ready to negotiate a coronavirus aid package even after President Donald Trump halted talks abruptly.

See Also:

●     ‘Altered state’: Pelosi says 25th Amendment, outlining presidential line of succession will be discussed Stockton Record

●     Stimulus Talks Resume, but a Deal Remains Elusive WSJ

●     White House Preparing New $1.8 Trillion Stimulus Proposal WSJ

For 3rd time, groups seek end to Trump order on House seats

Bakersfield Californian

For the third time in 2 months, civil rights groups and state and local governments on Thurs. asked judges to strike down a directive from President Trump that would exclude people living in the U.S. illegally from being counted.

Barrett confirmation hearing may pressure Feinstein, Harris to subdue their political instincts

LA Times

Calif’s Democratic senators forged their political brands during high-profile Supreme Court confirmation hearings like the one to be held next week with Judge Amy Coney Barrett.

Biden, teaming with Harris in Arizona after her debate, sidesteps court-packing question

LA Times

Joe Biden refused Thursday to say whether he supported increasing the size of the Supreme Court, staying mum on an idea gaining currency among Democrats who believe court vacancies have been unfairly filled by President Trump to solidify a conservative majority.

Before Trump Tested Positive for Coronavirus, Republicans’ Attention to Pandemic Had Sharply Declined


6 months into a pandemic that has claimed more than 200,000 lives in the U.S. and profoundly impacted daily life, 6-in-10 Americans say the country hasn’t controlled the COVID outbreak as much as it could.

‘It’s too little, too late.’ Trump’s push to give federal aid to crucial 2020 voting blocs undermined by uneven execution

Wash Post

Randy Messelt thought little of President Trump’s recent trip to central Wisconsin to announce tens of billions of dollars in additional federal aid for farmers.

Isolated in the White House, Trump struggles to project a sense of normalcy after canceled debate

Wash Post

Trailing in the polls, stricken with the novel coronavirus and stuck in isolation at the White House, President Trump has tried to project an image of strength and normalcy that belies his troubled circumstances.

White House Doctor Says Trump Has Completed Therapy for Covid-19


President Trump’s recovery continued to progress on Thursday as he completed his therapy for the coronavirus infection, White House physician Sean Conley said in a memo.

See Also:

●     White House Physician Expects Trump’s ‘Safe Return To Public Engagements’ Saturday VPR

●     Despite bout with coronavirus, Trump says he’s ready for rallies; doctor says therapy is done LA Times

Election experts implore Congress to extend ‘arbitrary’ vote-tallying deadlines


While the presidential election will be held on Nov. 3, there are two other dates that campaign officials from both campaigns have circled on their calendars that could be just as important to the fate of the 2020 race.

Ask PolitiFact: Are you sure Donald Trump didn’t call the coronavirus a hoax?


We called her statement False, pointing to our rating of a similar statement from a Joe Biden ad in March. Because so many of you have wondered, we thought we’d go into a bit more detail on our analysis in this case.

Opinion: The Judiciary Grabs the Census


Though buried by other news, a Census case is moving through the courts with significant implications for executive authority and the separation of powers. Progressive plaintiffs and the courts are trying to hijack Congressional reapportionment.

Opinion: The Trump Treatment for Covid Is Coming Soon


But man-made antibodies like those Mr. Trump received may soon be rolled out for broader public use. Such treatments may be a bridge to a vaccine.

Opinion: Biden, Pence and the Wish for Normalcy


They are wondering if Nov. 3 won’t be a win for Joe Biden but a blowout, a landslide in a polarized country that doesn’t produce landslides anymore.

Opinion: Joe Biden Is the Shutdown Candidate


I take that to mean Mr. Biden’s coronavirus policy would be to support reviving shutdowns if the virus-case metric goes up, and support governors who push back against openings.

Coronavirus Trackers:

Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Calif


COVID-19 is a new illness that can affect your lungs and airways. It’s caused by a virus called coronavirus.

See also:

●     Calif Department of Public Health

●     Coronavirus (COVID-19) CDC

●     Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Pandemic  WHO

●     John Hopkins University & Medicine John Hopkins University

●     Tracking coronavirus in Calif LA Times

●     Coronavirus Tracker SF Chronicle

●     Coronavirus in the U.S.: Latest Map and Case Count NY Times

●     How many coronavirus cases have been reported in each U.S. state? Politico

●     Coronavirus Daily NPR

●     Coronavirus tracked: the latest figures as the pandemic spreads Financial Times

●     Coronavirus in Calif by the numbers CalMatters

Elections 2020:

●     Register to vote

●     Check voter registration status

●     Online Voter Guide and Printable Voter Guide

●     List of county elections offices

●     “Where’s My Ballot?” tool

Calif braces for potential disruption, threats at polls

Fresno Bee

With a divided nation on edge as Election Day approaches, Calif is warning local officials to prepare for disruption at polling places and potential cases of voters being intimidated or blocked from casting ballots.

See Also:

●     What vote by mail ballot rejection data tells us about voter fraud, dead people voting abc30

●     Calif braces for potential disruption, threats at polls Bakersfield Californian

●     Mail-in ballot rejection rate could cast doubt over election results The Hill

●     Despite Trump’s claims, officials in vote-by-mail states insist process can be secure abcNews

●     Election Officials Are Preparing for Potential Unrest at the Polls NY Times

Mail-in or in-person? Here are tips for voting in Fresno County during COVID-19 pandemic

Fresno Bee

Make a plan and vote early. That’s the election advice from Fresno County Registrar of Voters Brandi Orth, who noted ballots began going out on Friday and should be in the hands of voters soon if not already delivered in the mail on Tuesday.

See Also:

●     Early voting begins in Fresno County Fox26

●     Your Calif mail ballot is coming. 5 things to do to make sure it gets counted Sac Bee

●     San Joaquin County winery home to ballot box where people can drop off their ballot to vote KXTV

●     How One Tribe Is Fighting to Vote Early PEW

‘I’m not going to waste my time’: Trump backs out of next week’s virtual presidential debate, Biden to hold ABC News town hall


After President Donald Trump said he’s backing out of the next presidential debate for going “virtual,” both candidates announced that they will host separate events the day it was scheduled.

See Also:

●     The Debate Over Debates: Trump Campaign Pushes For In-Person Debate Next Week VPR

●     Trump, Biden clash over format, timing of next presidential debates LA Times

●     Trump Says He Won’t Participate in Virtual Presidential Debate WSJ

Vice presidential debate: Mike Pence, Kamala Harris clash over COVID-19 in more civil fight


In normal times, vp debates don’t matter much. But in an election year as wild as 2020, everything is magnified. VP Pence on Wed. faced considerable pressure to boost COVID-stricken President Trump’s flagging reelection hopes as he trails in polls.

See Also:

●     Can You Handle The Truth?: PolitiFact Calif Fact Checks The Vice Presidential Debate Capital Public Radio

●     4 Takeaways From The Mike Pence-Kamala Harris Vice Presidential Debate Capital Public Radio

●     Fact Check: Harris and Pence’s first and only debate LA Times

●     Kamala Harris vs. Mike Pence takeaways: Coronavirus, ‘I’m speaking’ and Calif’s cameo SF Chronicle

●     Vice presidential debate draws 57.9 million viewers, the second largest audience ever for the event LA Times

●     Commentary: Did the vice presidential debate matter? It did, and it wasn’t good for Trump. Brookings

Trump wants his supporters to watch polling locations. Is that allowed in Calif?

Sac Bee

President Donald Trump last week again brought into question the integrity of the upcoming election by suggesting, without evidence, that voters could engage in fraud at polling places.

Privacy Puzzle: Consumer Advocates Divided Over Calif’s Prop. 24

Capital Public Radio

It’s one of the most confounding fights on Calif’s November ballot: While tech companies lie low, advocates for consumer privacy are fighting among themselves over a measure that would give people new rights to control how companies use their digital data.

‘I just don’t want Trump for another four years.’ Are working-class white women going to elect Biden?

LA Times

Nicole Peyton sat out the 2016 election because she didn’t like President Trump’s behavior and believed Hillary Clinton was “tarnished.” But this year, the “conservative-leaning” homemaker plans to cast a ballot for Democrat Joe Biden.

Nursing home residents want to vote, but amid a pandemic, it is harder than ever

LA Times

The convergence of the COVID-19 pandemic and election season has complicated this year’s voting for residents of nursing homes, assisted living facilities and other long-term care centers.

Here’s a look at some of the key measures Newsom signed into law and what they mean for Californians.


Gov. Gavin Newsom has just three days left to sign or veto some of the most high-profile and controversial bills of the legislative session — including a spate of proposals to police the police, a bill that would establish a state reparations committee, and a bill that would mandate the racial makeup of corporate boards.

See Also:

●     If voters raise taxes on corporate landlords, will small biz foot the bill? CalMatters

●     Creating a Homelessness Czar CalMatters

●     Creating a Student Loan Bill of Rights CalMatters

●     Expanding Mental Health Parity CalMatters

●     SB-132 Corrections. Calif Legislative Information

The Trump-Biden presidential contest


Less than a month until Election Day, Biden maintains his lead over Trump in the presidential race. Today, 52% of registered voters say that if the election were today, they would cast their vote for Biden; a smaller share of registered voters say they would vote for Trump (42%).

See also:

·        America has never faced an election like this LA Times

Californians and the November 2020 Election


We would like to offer context from some key findings in the latest PPIC Statewide Survey as we reflect on the state and national election landscape.

Did COVID-19 Disrupt Calif’s Voter Registration Surge?


Voter registration has surged in Calif. The Calif Secretary of State reports 85% of eligible Californians are on the voter rolls, an unprecedented 11% increase from the same point in 2016.

Let’s make voting a party

The Hill

As the election hurtles toward us, even more eligible Americans than usual may choose not to vote – enlarging a gaping hole in American democracy.

Biden, Harris won’t say whether they would ‘pack’ the court, drawing Republican criticism

Wash Post

Democratic nominee Joe Biden and running mate Kamala D. Harris are facing growing pressure to say whether they would “pack” the Supreme Court if the Republican-led Senate names Amy Coney Barrett to the bench.

6 Reasons Not to Panic About the Election


In his bilious debate performance last week, President Donald Trump called for vigilantes to invade polling places and “watch very carefully,” and suggested he might reject a “fraudulent election” if many vote by mail.

In Rare Step, Esteemed Medical Journal Urges Voters To Oust Trump


The Trump administration has “taken a crisis and turned it into a tragedy” in its response to the COVID-19 pandemic, The New England Journal of Medicine says in a scathing editorial that essentially calls on American voters to throw the president out of office.

Calif school districts spurn ‘back-patting’ Trump food box letter


The superintendent of the nation’s second largest school district on Wednesday accused President Donald Trump’s administration of possibly violating the Hatch Act by inserting a letter in food boxes for distribution at schools and pantries just weeks before Election Day.

With Election Day looming, Twitter imposes new limits on U.S. politicians — and ordinary users, too

Wash Post

Twitter will impose new warnings on politicians’ lies, restrict premature declarations of victory and block calls for polling violence or other disruptions

Column: Pete Wilson discusses endorsing Trump and his own views on illegal immigration

San Diego Union-Tribune

Some 70 former elected officials, policymakers and diplomats last week released a letter endorsing President Donald Trump for re-election. None of them received more attention than Pete Wilson, former Calif governor, U.S. senator and mayor of San Diego.

Commentary: Voting in a pandemic


AEI resident scholar Kevin Kosar and Dartmouth Professor Brendan Nyhan discuss how the pandemic is impacting voting patterns in the 2020 election. Particularly, they consider how in-person voting and mail-in voting laws and behavior have adapted during covid-19.


Facebook removes fake accounts linked to conservative group

Bakersfield Californian

Facebook has removed 276 accounts that used fake profiles to pose as right-leaning Americans and comment on news articles, often in favor of President Donald Trump, the company announced Thursday.

See Also:

●     Facebook Takes Down Network Tied to Conservative Group, Citing Fake Accounts WSJ

Valley Public Radio To Participate In New Microsoft-Funded Journalism Collaborative


Valley Public Radio will participate in a new pilot program announced today by Microsoft that will help support local journalism in the Fresno area.

AB 992 Clarifies Permissible Communications via Social Media Platforms


On September 18, 2020, Governor Newsom signed Assembly Bill 992 (“AB 992”), which clarifies how public officials may communicate on internet-based social media platforms through a new exception to the Brown Act’s prohibition against “serial meetings.”

Still waiting for a cruise refund? Some help may be on the way

LA Times

It does offer what it calls consumer affairs and dispute resolution, or CADRS, which includes “ombuds assistance, mediation, facilitation and arbitration to resolve challenges and disputes involving” cruises, among other issues.


Sunday, October 11, at 10 a.m. on ABC30 – Maddy Report: “Telemedicine: Path to Better and More Affordable Health Care?” – Guests: Dr. Casey Gray, Kaiser; Laurence Du Sault, Mercury News/CalMatters; Assemblymember Joaquin Arambula; Barb Yellowlees, CETF. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.

Sunday, October 11, at 10 a.m. on Newstalk 580AM/105.9FM (KMJ) – Maddy Report – Valley Views Edition: “Will Telemedicine Cure the Valley’s Doctor Shortage?” – Guests: Dr. John Kinnison, Medical Director of Telemedicine at Valley Children’s Medical Center; Dr. Syed Ali, Family Medicine Physician with Gould Medical Group; Dr. Judi Binderman, Vice President, Chief Medical Informatics Officer at Community Medical Centers. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director, Mark Keppler.


Farmers see hope in Newsom’s latest climate order

Bakersfield Californian

Farm groups reacted with skepticism but no great consternation to Gov. Newsom’s latest climate change executive order —his second in as many weeks— calling for concerted action to promote biodiversity, enhance resiliency and conserve CA agricultural and other lands.

Canada surprises Salinas Valley with tough rules on romaine to prevent new E. coli outbreak

Sac Bee

Growers in Calif’s Salinas Valley have long called it “The Salad Bowl of the World” but one major customer is now pushing away from the table.



SJ DA’s Office receives $5 million state restorative justice grant

Stockton Record

The San Joaquin County District Attorney’s Office received millions of dollars from the state this week to expand its youth incarceration alternative program.

Public Safety:

Changing Views of Police and Race Relations


Californians’ perceptions of police treatment and race relations have shifted—dramatically, in some cases—in the wake of nationwide protests over police brutality and systemic racism. But these changes are far from uniform and reflect deep cleavages in public opinion today.


Creek Fire updates: Heavy resources at Florence Lake; wildfire moves into Mammoth Lakes area

Fresno Bee

Fire crews remain in an active fight against the Creek Fire as the wildfire burned into the Mammoth Lakes area. The fire’s footprint grew by just over 2,000 acres on Wednesday. As of Thursday morning, it had burned 330,899 total acres. Containment remained at 49%.

See Also:

●     Creek Fire updates: Boats must be removed from Huntington Lake; no weekend rain forecast Fresno Bee

More evacuations lifted for Glass Fire, Calif’s 10th-most destructive wildfire

Fresno Bee

After several days of more intense conditions, crews reported a calm night at the destructive Glass Fire in Calif’s North Bay area, which is now about two-thirds contained.

Sequoia Complex still at 65 % contained

Porterville Recorder

The Sequoia Complex which now consists solely of the Castle Fire that began in the Golden Trout Wilderness remained at 65 % contained as of Thursday morning.

Gusty wind prompts fire weather watch for the Greater Lake Tahoe area this weekend

Sac Bee

The National Weather Service in Reno has issued a fire weather watch alert across the Lake Tahoe Basin and Northern Sierra for gusty wind Saturday afternoon and dry vegetation that could allow a wildfire to rapidly grow in size and intensity.

4 Million Acres Have Burned In Calif. Why That’s The Wrong Number To Focus On

Capital Public Radio

Wildfires in the West are producing a parade of chilling statistics. More than 4 million acres have burned in Calif, the most in recorded history.

How Calif’s Wildfires Are Changing


This year’s fire season has already set records in number of acres burned, with months left to go. We asked fire scientist Crystal Kolden of UC Merced how Calif’s “firescape” is changing, and what we can do about it.

Fund Launched For Fire-plagued Sierra Communities

Business Journal

The Central Sierra Historical Society and Museum, Inc. has announced the formation of a new fund to help revitalize communities in the mountains that have been impacted by the Creek Fire.



Stocks climb again on Wall Street with hopes for stimulus

LA Times

Stocks rose for the second day in a row Thursday, reflecting hope on Wall Street that Washington can approve more aid for the economy and encouragement from a report that suggests the pace of layoffs is slowing a bit, even though it remains incredibly high.

See Also:

●     Stocks Climb to Highest Level Since Early September WSJ

●     Stocks Climb, on Course for Best Week in Three Months WSJ

Blueprint for a Safer Economy: Equity Focus

Calif Department of Public Health

As announced on August 28, 2020, the Blueprint for a Safer Economy includes a health equity metric which will be used (along with other metrics) to determine a county’s tier.

Economists, business leaders warn of ‘huge’ consequences to halting stimulus talks


Economists and business leaders warn there could be dire consequences if another round of coronavirus stimulus aid isn’t approved shortly — a plausible scenario after President Donald Trump abruptly called off negotiations until after the election.

Bethany Clough: Two new Chicken Shack restaurants are open in Fresno area. Here’s what you need to know

Fresno Bee

The Chicken Shack, the quick-service restaurant known for its indulgent fried chicken and more than 30 sauces, has opened two new locations. The Clovis location opened Oct. 7 in Sierra Vista Mall. It’s in the former Dickey’s Barbecue Pit near the theater.

Commentary: The impact of COVID-19 on emerging markets economies’ financial conditions


The emerging market economies (EMEs) – and the lower-income developing economies to an even greater extent – generally are extremely vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Commentary: Republicans endanger the economy by forgetting their successes


President Donald Trump dealt his re-election prospects a damaging blow on Tuesday by abruptly ending talks between his administration and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on additional legislation to support the weak economy.


Many unemployed Calif workers are about to get a $300 payment — but it won’t continue

Fresno Bee

Hundreds of thousands of Californians who were out of work at the start of last month will be getting another week of supplemental $300 payments from the federal government, the state’s Employment Development Department said Thursday.

Here’s what new Calif workplace laws mean for pay, wage theft and family leave

Sac Bee

Gov. Gavin Newsom signed several new laws last month aimed at providing workers more rights and protections to help them navigate the coronavirus pandemic, rejecting appeals from business interests who said the bills will burden employers.

Calif Latinas earn less and are laid off first. A new initiative wants to change that

Sac Bee

Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, D-San Diego, announced a new initiative Friday with a “laser focus” to address economic and educational disparities impacting Latinas, who represent one in every five Californians.

US layoffs remain elevated as 840,000 seek jobless aid


The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits fell slightly last week to a still-high 840,000, evidence that job cuts remain elevated seven months into the pandemic recession.

See Also:

●     More than 800,000 Americans file for unemployment as stimulus talks remain stalled Fresno Bee

●     U.S. layoffs remain elevated as 840,000 seek unemployment aid LA Times

●     U.S. economy ‘still in a pretty concerning state’ as Calif jobless numbers still unclear SF Chronicle

1.57 million Calif claims for unemployment insurance unresolved


Lawmakers ripped into the besieged agency in a Wednesday oversight hearing, exposing the breadth of challenges facing the Employment Development Department as it resumes accepting claims after a two-week reset period that ended Monday.

See Also:

●     Calif’s unemployment backlog shrinks to 1.3 million AP News

●     Freeze First, Verify Second: Unemployed Californians Get A Fright From EDD Capital Public Radio

Updates to Calif’s Restrictions on Using Criminal Records in Employment Decisions


The Calif Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), as amended in 2018, restricts a covered employer’s ability to make hiring decisions based on an individual’s criminal history, including but not limited to court records disclosed in a criminal background check.

Commentary: Small businesses in Calif need financial relief now


This is why we call on Gov. Gavin Newsom and the Legislature immediately to develop a large-scale small-business relief program to support those businesses that need the most help.



Declaring Fresno schools anti-racist sparks backlash. Why one trustee says he voted ‘no’

Fresno Bee

Fresno Unified Trustee Terry Slatic cast the lone ”no” vote on a resolution declaring the school district an anti-racism institution, setting off a clash with most of the other trustees, who are women of color.

Will Fresno Unified Spend More on Mental Health, Less On Police?

Fresno Bee

Calif parents and activists want Fresno schools to cut funding for police on campus. They want the money to go toward mental health services for students.

See Also:

●     Fresno schools were supposed to vote on nearly $1 million for police. Here’s why they postponed Fresno Bee

These Fresno-area schools could still reopen if coronavirus cases get worse again

Fresno Bee

More Fresno County elementary schools have been approved by the state health department to reopen despite the recent uptick in positive coronavirus cases.

See also:

·        Some Clovis schools could be weeks away from partial reopening. Here’s how it’ll work Fresno Bee

·        Clovis Unified wants more input from parents on in-person learning model abc30

·        It’s complicated: School reopenings, hybrid learning look different across Calif CalMatters

·        List: Here’s where individual Stanislaus County school districts stand on reopening Modesto Bee

·        Commentary: Should we be sending K–12 students back to school in person? AEI

Enrollment Is Dropping In Public Schools Around the Country


Comprehensive national data aren’t available yet, but reporting by NPR and our member stations, along with media reports from around the country, shows enrollment declines in dozens of school districts across 20 states.

Funding Calif Schools When Budgets Fall Short


State and district policymakers have difficult decisions ahead in their efforts to balance budgets, maintain school services, and prioritize safety amid the COVID-19 recession.

How the 2020 State Elections Could Shape Education Systems


The impact these races can have on states’ education systems is not something to be skipped, so we’re tracking these races closely to keep you informed.

Supporting English Learners During the COVID-19 Pandemic


As state, district and school leaders transition back into learning this fall — whether in-person, distanced or both — they are working to ensure that instruction is accessible and meaningful for all students.

EDITORIAL: They want to help lead Fresno Unified schools. Who should voters choose to be trustees?

Fresno Bee

The contenders look to help lead the third-largest school district in Calif that has a host of challenges, not the least of which is trying to bring up test scores and academic performance overall.

Higher Ed:

Fresno City College Breaks Ground On New Campus

Business Journal

Members of the State Center Community College District (SCCCD), the community and City of Fresno gathered to celebrate the groundbreaking of the newest community college campus.

New state law will finally allow UC Davis to sell wine made in classes by students

Sac Bee

UC Davis’ viticulture and enology department produces thousands of gallons of wine per year. Virtually all of it goes down the drain.

Report: More than 100,000 low-income Calif college students lack internet access


Pierce College theater student Sonny Lira was in the middle of rehearsing a script when his phone overheated and shut off, abruptly cutting off his performance.

Increasing Community College Transfers: Progress and Barriers


Calif enrolls a much larger share of students in community college than other states; ensuring more of these students transfer to four-year institutions can strengthen the economic security of Calif workers.

COVID-19 Further Disrupts Testing for College Admissions and Placement


Standardized tests are widely used in education for accountability, college admissions, and student placement, but COVID-19 changed the assessment landscape in a matter of months.

Big Sacramento Democratic family woos Trump-loving college to build campus

Sac Bee

Now, as a foundation led by the family tries to revive a 20-year-old plan to build a college campus in Placer County, it’s turned to a potential partner from the other end of the political spectrum.




Northern Calif’s weekend forecast is drying up. Here’s where light rain may fall

Modesto Bee

A once-promising outlook for rain throughout Northern Calif this coming weekend has shriveled up, with the latest forecasts predicting scant showers that will miss the capital and the Bay Area.

Newsom’s New Climate Plan: Protect Land and Oceans, Sequester Carbon

Capital Public Radio

In an ambitious plan to protect biodiversity and avoid furthering catastrophic climate change, Calif Governor Gavin Newsom announced Wednesday that the state will use a major resource it already has to curb greenhouse gas emissions: millions of acres of land.

See Also:

●     Newsom calls for Calif to conserve land, coasts to capture carbon and fight climate change SF Chronicle

Newsom orders ban of new gas-powered cars by 2035


On the hood of an all-electric red Ford Mustang Mach-E, he signed a new executive order that aims to eliminate new models of traditional cars and put more vehicles powered by clean technologies such as fuel cells and batteries on Calif’s roads.


Environmental groups launch campaign against Kern oil permitting plan

Bakersfield Californian

Opponents of Kern’s efforts to streamline local oil and gas permitting launched a campaign Thursday intended to persuade the county Board of Supervisors to back off the initiative.

PG&E power shut-offs possible Sunday and Monday in northern Calif

SF Chronicle

Pacific Gas & Electric Co. said Thursday that fire-prevention power outages were possible on Sunday and Monday in northeastern Calif and parts of the Sierra foothills.

What Is Fracking? Where Trump and Biden Fall on This Campaign Issue


Fracking is a central element in the broader conversation on climate change and a constant source of friction between the oil-and-gas industry and environmentalists.



Total coronavirus cases in Fresno County have gone down. Here’s the latest data

Fresno Bee

The Calif Department of Public Health on Wednesday reported a reduction in total cases of coronavirus in Fresno County.

See Also:

●     Fresno County COVID-19 cases slow down, but officials warn public to keep guard up Fresno Bee

●     67 new COVID-19 cases reported in Kern on Wednesday Bakersfield Californian

●     Coronavirus updates: Calif’s COVID-19 rates plateauing, but a few counties regress Sac Bee

●     Covid-19 death rates are lower worldwide, but no one is sure whether that’s a blip or a trend Wash Post

How long can coronavirus stay infectious on your skin? Much longer than flu, study says

Fresno Bee

New research out of Japan reveals that the novel coronavirus can survive on human skin for up to nine hours, suggesting that hand washing remains a vital tool in the fight against the pandemic.

Smoky Skies Are The New Normal. Are They Making Us Sick?


Ariel Kinzinger had a headache. Clark Brinkman coughed and wheezed. LaNesha Collins, feeling physically fine, was frustrated by another day mostly trapped inside looking out at a sepia sun, in Portland, Ore.

Ironic Twist: In Spring, Trump Halted Research Key To COVID-19 Drug He’s Now Taken


President Trump has credited the apparent improvement of his coronavirus infection to, as he put it in one tweet, “some really great drugs” that were “developed, under the Trump Administration.”  The assertion carries special irony for researcher Peter Daszak.

See also:

·        Commentary: The Trump treatment for Covid is coming soon AEI

‘This is a public health crisis’: New push to allow safe drug use sites in S.F. and Oakland

SF Chronicle

State Sen. Scott Wiener said Thursday he plans to reintroduce controversial legislation next year that would allow for safe drug-use sites in San Francisco and Oakland.

Daily U.S. Coronavirus Cases Hit Highest Level Since Mid-August


New coronavirus cases in the U.S. continued to climb, driven by renewed outbreaks in several states, as the nation’s total number of cases topped 7.6 million.

See also:

·        Coronavirus Hit the U.S. Long Before We Knew WSJ

·        Group Most Likely to Get Covid-19 Is Least Likely to Die From It WSJ

·        Pregnant in a pandemic: Fresno woman talks challenges of having a baby during COVID-19 Fresno Bee

Human Services:

Free COVID-19 testing site to be held Friday at Heritage Park

Bakersfield Californian

Kern County Public Health Services will host a free COVID-19 mobile test site at Heritage Park from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. The park is located at 8636 Bernard Street. Pre-registration is required with a limited amount of walk-ups accepted.

Roughly 800 nurses picket San Joaquin County hospital over PPE, alleged staffing issues

Sac Bee

Registered nurses picketed San Joaquin General Hospital in French Camp on Thursday amid a five-day strike, saying county leaders are not addressing their concerns over patient care, staffing, and protections against the new coronavirus.

See Also:

●     Why 800 nurses at San Joaquin General Hospital launched five-day strike Sac Bee

Low-Income Californians Are Stressed, But Avoiding Medical Care. Experts Say Telehealth Could Help

Capital Public Radio

Regardless of income level, Californians across the board have been avoiding medical care during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new survey from the Calif Health Care Foundation and the University of Chicago.

COVID-19 ‘Long-Haulers’ Worry About Coverage, Costs


Andréa Ceresa has been through three gastroenterologists already and now is moving onto her fourth. She’s seen an infectious disease specialist, a hematologist, a cardiologist, an ear, nose and throat specialist, a physiatrist and an integrative doctor.

Do Schools Have Enough Nurses to Fight the Pandemic?


As some Calif schools return to in-person instruction, school nurses can play a vital role in helping keep students and staff healthy.

How Obamacare became Democrats’ most powerful political weapon


The Affordable Care Act became popular as it began delivering benefits. A majority of Americans now support it in most polls, and as Republican attacks intensify, so too does public support.


ICE carries out week-long operation in Calif despite sanctuary law limiting arrests

Fresno Bee

More than 125 immigrants across Calif were arrested by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement during a week-long operation targeting individuals who the agency says couldn’t be arrested before due to the state’s sanctuary law.

Activists Demand Mass Clemency At Mesa Verde Detention Center Following Covid-19 Outbreak


Activists across Calif rallied Tuesday to bring attention to the widespread COVID-19 outbreaks and related deaths at 30 different prisons, jails and detention centers including the Mesa Verde ICE Processing Facility in Bakersfield.


Land Use:

Fresno golf course undergoes $2 million modernization facelift

Business Journal

A plan 30 years in the making to revitalize a local golf course was made possible in the year of a pandemic and completed just as golfers have not only been itching to get out on the course, but are also allowed to do so.


Free temporary housing available for Merced County ag workers exposed to COVID-19


Merced County is now offering free temporary housing to help farmworkers and food processors who’ve contracted or been exposed to COVID-19 self-isolate.

Report: Fresno Buyers Snapping Up Homes Like It Was Still Summer

Business Journal

According to a report from Realtor.com, the U.S. median home price was up 12.9% — showing no signs of the usual fall cool down. The number of homes on the market was down 38% in that period. Homes were selling 13 days faster than this time last year.

Revolt of the landlords: How big real estate crushed a rent control law

Visalia Times Delta

Calif’s housing crisis walloped 75-year-old Perry Angle and his wife in 2014, when the monthly rent for their one-bedroom apartment in a Santa Rosa senior citizen complex began to shoot up from $925 a month to $1,435 two years later.

Airbnb requires hosts to commit to enhanced cleaning

Bakersfield Californian

Airbnb said Thursday it will require hosts to comply with enhanced cleaning procedures as part of its effort to reassure guests and local officials during the coronavirus pandemic.

Column: Newsom should continue working with the Legislature on the housing crisis. Prop. 21 isn’t the answer

LA Times

Proposition 21 on the Nov. 3 ballot asks voters to decide how far government should interfere in the private marketplace to control residential rents. It’s not about whether there should be government rent control in Calif. There is and has been for decades.

See Also:

●     ‘Gimme Shelter’: What you need to know about Proposition 21, the rent control ballot initiative LA Times

●     Opinion: Prop. 21 will make Calif’s housing crisis even worse CalMatters

●     Opinion: Prop. 21 modernizes rent control while incentivizing new housing construction CalMatters

●     Report: Does state tax policy discourage housing production? CAFwd

Commentary: Current Housing Dispute Magnifies Local Mess

Fox & Hounds

Despite the mandate prohibition disagreements remain.  Locals feel put-upon.  They fear lawmakers have ignored the curb on state directives or worry that some may have slipped by.  Or pre-dated the constitutional arrangement.


He’s Part Of The 1%. And He Thinks His Taxes Aren’t High Enough


With an apartment on glitzy Park Avenue and a hefty portfolio of stocks, retired investment manager Morris Pearl seems comfortably ensconced in the 1%. And one thing helps him stay there: the taxes he pays are lower than those of the average elementary school teacher.

U.S. Budget Gap Tripled in Fiscal 2020 as Government Battled Pandemic


The U.S. budget deficit tripled in the fiscal year ended Sept. 30, the Congressional Budget Office estimated Thursday, as the government battled a global pandemic that plunged the country into a recession.


2020 Transportation Needs Survey

Fresno Council of Governments

Have a say in how future transportation dollars are spent.  The Fresno Council of Governments (Fresno COG) is looking for transportation project suggestions that could become part of its 20-year Regional Transportation Plan or RTP.

Can Calif force emission-free cars on everyone? Don’t bet on it, U.S. automakers say

Fresno Bee

Calif was imposing tough new air-pollution restrictions — rules that would force automakers selling cars in the state to drastically reduce tailpipe emissions.

See Also:

●     With new zero-emissions mandate, these are top-selling used electric cars in Sacramento Fresno Bee

Fresno, Porterville receive over $1M to improve transit for underserved communities


Two Central Valley cities will receive hundreds of thousands of dollars in funding to improve public transportation for underserved communities.

Climate explained: does building and expanding motorways really reduce congestion and emissions?

The Conversation

Historically, building more and wider roads, including motorways, was seen as a way of reducing congestion. This in turn is supposed to lower emissions.


District Completes New Pipeline to March Air Reserve Base

Calif Water News Daily

Western Municipal Water District recently announced the completion of a new $4 million pipeline along Graeber Street in Riverside providing more reliable water service to March Air Reserve Base.


Despite COVID, Christmas Tree Lane in Fresno is happening. Here’s how it’s different

Fresno Bee

Christmas Tree Lane will happen this December, but without its usual walk-night crowds due to the coronavirus pandemic.

See Also:

●     Christmas Tree Lane to open on December 1, no walk nights this year abc30

Calif bar exam takers say facial recognition software rejected them

SF Chronicle

Calif’s first remote bar exam did not go off without a hitch — especially for test takers of color. Thousands of rising lawyers took the exam Monday and Tuesday over the web because of the ongoing pandemic.

Want to get Halloween pumpkins and help first responders? Here’s where to go

Modesto Bee

“The real sheriff?” 8-year-old George Bogetti exclaimed Wednesday morning when he learned Stanislaus County Sheriff Jeff Dirkse would be visiting the pumpkin stand he and his family put together to help first responders.

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The Kenneth L. Maddy Institute was established to honor the legacy of one of Calif’s most principled and effective legislative leaders of the last half of the 20th Century by engaging, preparing and inspiring a new generation of governmental leaders for the 21st Century. Its mission is to inspire citizen participation, elevate government performance, provide non-partisan analysis and assist in providing solutions for public policy issues important to the region, state and nation.

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