Bakersfield’s Kevin McCarthy in line to replace Boehner as House Speaker — House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield now seems likely to step into the vacancy left by the departing House Speaker John Boehner. Fifteen years younger than Boehner, and seated right below him in House leadership, McCarthy has been the presumptive heir apparent ever since he took the job. With Boehner’s surprise resignation announcement Friday, McCarthy’s promotion could now happen sooner than anyone expected. McClatchy Newspapers article; McCarthy statement on resignation of Speaker Boehner; San Jose Mercury News article; Washington Post article; New York Times article
Boehner’s out and Kevin McCarthy may lead the House – to the dismay of California Democrats — Unlike Nancy Pelosi, the San Francisco Democrat who held the Speaker’s job until 2011 and was aligned with leaders in Sacramento, McCarthy’s political agenda runs counter to much of what the Brown administration is trying to achieve, and he has not been shy about using his power in Washington to try to roll back some of the state’s landmark liberal policies. LA Times article; San Francisco Chronicle article
Could John Boehner’s resignation help the drought, California agriculture? — The resignation of House Speaker John A. Boehner could bring a strong proponent of California agriculture to the speaker position. Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield), who as House majority leader is the leading candidate to replace Boehner, has pushed back at environmental regulations governing the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, and favored more water transfers to Central Valley growers hit by cutbacks from federal water projects. LA Times article
Locals weigh in on the possibility of Speaker McCarthy – It appears that Kevin McCarthy’s local-boy-makes-good story is about to start another epic chapter. And his supporters, peers and mentor are watching that story play out on the national stage with deep interest. Perhaps no one is more interested than former Congressman Bill Thomas, the 28-year veteran of Congress who mentored the small businessman as he rose from a school board member to California legislator and saw McCarthy succeed him in the House. In Thomas’ opinion, McCarthy is right for the job. Bakersfield Californian article
In Porterville, McCarthy is well liked, if he is known at all — News that Bakersfield’s Kevin McCarthy might ascend to speaker of the House was welcomed by many in Porterville’s political establishment on Friday, but for the man on the street, the general reaction was a shrug. Fresno Bee article
SD5: Hesselein: Passion will help in bid for seat — Tracy resident Derrick Hesselein admits he is a passionate person who is tenacious in everything he does, from lobbying Sacramento legislators for more funding for law enforcement to protecting his professional and personal communities. Now, Hesselein would like to use that passion to make a difference for state Senate District 5 and is gearing up to run against incumbent Sen. Cathleen Galgiani, D-Stockton. Stockton Record article
Statewide politics/Ballot Measures
Former San Jose mayor to reward statewide pension initiative — Former San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed and former San Diego Councilman Carl DeMaio plan to revise and resubmit their proposed statewide initiative aimed at requiring voter approval for new government pension plans in response to a summary by the attorney general that they consider unfair. San Jose Mercury News article
California issues half a million immigrant driver licenses — California has issued more than half a million driver’s licenses to immigrants in the country illegally under a program that began this year. AP article
Foon Rhee: The Numbers Crunch: Refugee crisis will ripple across California — As we all learned in school, the inscription on the Statue of Liberty implores: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” We have a special responsibility to give refuge to those fleeing wars we started, like Afghanistan and Iraq, or have failed to end, like Syria. In times like these, it’s worth remembering that America is a beacon to the rest of the world – and how precious that is. Rhee in Sacramento Bee
Final tally of lawmakers’ votes: ayes, nays and taking a pass in 2015 – Whatever the explanation, California lawmakers missed hundreds of votes during the legislative year that ended Sept. 12, final legislative voting records show. This year’s average nonvoting rate of about 4 percent – 3.7 percent on the floor and 5 percent in committee – compares to an overall nonvoting rate of 5.2 percent in 2013, the first half of the last two-year session. Sacramento Bee article
Sacramento Bee: Another GOP voice of reason lost – Longer-term, John Boehner’s resignation is a loss, for Republicans and the nation. It will take a 25-year veteran out of the process, and eliminate one of the dwindling number of reasonable voices remaining in the party. Sacramento Bee editorial
San Jose mayor endorses Khanna in Silicon Valley House race — Striking a blow to embattled eight-term Rep. Mike Honda, who’s now under the shadow of a House ethics investigation, Democratic challenger Ro Khanna Friday announced endorsements from three prominent South Bay officials in his bid for the 17th Congressional District seat. San Francisco Chronicle article
Marshall D. Moushigian: Turkey should follow Japan’s route to apologies – The Fresno attorney and financial adviser writes, “When we were children we all learned that when you do something wrong, you apologize – that is what big boys and girls do. Unfortunately, Turkey has a lot of growing up to do, and until then the world will continue wringing its hands in disbelief.” Moushigian op-ed in Fresno Bee
California regulators readopt fuel standard to fight climate change – California air quality officials on Friday approved updates to a key climate change rule that will force reductions in carbon pollution from gasoline and diesel fuel over the next five years. LA Times article; AP article
Hot Bay Area economy props up California – The technology-heavy San Francisco Bay Area almost single-handedly propped up California’s otherwise lethargic economic performance in 2014, a new report from the federal Bureau of Economic Analysis indicates. Sacramento Bee article
Jobs and the Economy
Stockton conference to focus on north San Joaquin Valley economy – The three counties of the north San Joaquin Valley — San Joaquin, Stanislaus and Merced — share growing economic ties and as a region are increasingly tied to the Bay Area. A conference scheduled for Oct. 13 in Stockton will focus on the region’s potential for economic growth and sustainability; transportation and land development; changing demographics, migration and commuting; and central city revitalization. Stockton Record article
Negotiations ongoing between Merced County and deputy sheriff’s association – Negotiations between the Merced County Deputy Sheriff’s Association and the county have yet to produce an agreement after five months, but both sides said they are optimistic that a deal will be reached without having to go into mediation. Merced Sun-Star article
Smart & Final Extra opens, filling dire need for central Fresno grocery store – Around 50 people – each with newly painted black shopping carts primed and at the ready – lined up just after dawn Friday for the grand opening of a Smart & Final Extra grocery store in central Fresno. Fresno Bee article; The Business Journal article
Questions arise over Bay Area events possibly linked to Modesto Beer and Bites Festival — A fake beer and crab festival promoted to take place in downtown Modesto on Saturday appears to be tied to at least three other questionable events promoted in the Bay Area. Modesto Bee article
David Lazarus: California now allows firms to tell consumers a ‘Made in the USA’ lie — California long required that any manufacturer wanting to say that a product is made in America must, in fact, have a product that’s made in America. A new state law changes that — and makes it practically impossible for consumers to know whether a made-in-America product contains foreign parts. Lazarus in LA Times
Environmental group opposes Hanford 12th Avenue project – A Bay-Area law firm is appealing a recently approved 124,000-square-foot Hanford shopping center, claiming the city skirted state environmental laws. Hanford Sentinel article
Airbnb spending more than $3.5 million to fight new rental rules – As election day nears, contributions are flooding into the campaigns for and against San Francisco’s November ballot initiatives, with Airbnb putting up more than $3.5 million to fight tougher restrictions on short-term rentals. San Francisco Chronicle article
Residents want LA to do more to enforce short-term rental regulations – As Airbnb and other platforms make it easier to rent out rooms or whole homes for short stays, the debate over regulating such rentals has revolved around what kinds of rules Los Angeles should enshrine. But for many Angelenos, the bigger question is whether the rules will have any teeth. LA Times article
Feds urge California wildfire victims to register for help – Federal authorities vowed Friday to help residents recover from one of the most destructive wildfires in memory in California, and fire officials called again for improved evacuation planning in preparation for future fires. AP article
Effort to boot SEIU Local 1000 gets new life – Ken Hamidi has been trying to break the grip of SEIU Local 1000 since 2007. Along the way, the Iranian-born Franchise Tax Board employee has won some admirers for his never-say-die spirit and for winning a landmark California Supreme Court case a dozen years ago. He’s also drawn the ire and the ridicule of SEIU officials, who dismiss him as a self-aggrandizing blowhard and a buffoon. Now he has renewed efforts to replace the union’s exclusive representation of half of California state government’s organized workforce with an association that he would head. Sacramento Bee article
San Francisco’s last remaining gun shop to lay down its arms – The Oni, a mythological troll that came to be a symbol and guardian of San Francisco’s last gun shop, is apparently no match for the city’s enduring distaste for what is sold inside. The owner of High Bridge Arms, Japan-born Masashi Takahashi, is shutting down the 63-year-old store, employees said Friday, as city leaders consider yet again whether to toughen restrictions on gun sales. San Francisco Chronicle article
Indian prime minister seeks to connect in Silicon Valley visit — Silicon Valley, a favorite stop for American politicians, especially those with their hands out, is hosting India’s prime minister, Narendra Modi, this weekend. It’s the first visit to California by an Indian head of state in 33 years. San Francisco Chronicle article
Fresno fruit fly could threaten Valley crops – The discovery of a single fly in Fresno County is raising concerns for the safety of peaches, citrus and other crops in the South Valley. Visalia Times-Delta article
Almond growers could get carbon credits — The U.S. Department of Agriculture is starting an experimental program that could allow Valley almond growers to sell carbon credits in California’s cap-and-trade market. A recent University of California, Davis, study found that almonds contribute little to carbon emissions. Hanford Sentinel article
Livingston flying solo with Sweet Potato Festival this year — The Livingston Sweet Potato Festival kicks off next week, but the city will put it on without the backing of a coalition of growers. The festival is in its fourth year, and the California Sweetpotato Council had been a partner with the city during the last two celebrations. Jason Tucker, the council’s president, said Thursday the council weighed its options and decided to sit this one out. Merced Sun-Star article
Two events will benefit Modesto Junior College ag students; Gallo winemaking chief with get UC Davis honor — Ag students at Modesto Junior College will benefit from two events next month. One features eggs, a most delicate farm product. Another involves really loud trucks. Also, Tom Smith, vice president for winegrowing at E.&J. Gallo Winery in Modesto, will be honored Oct. 2 at the UC Davis College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. Modesto Bee article
After bloody summer in LA, Garcetti defends crime-fighting policies – Days after a drive-by shooting left three children wounded and nerves in South Los Angeles freshly rattled, Mayor Eric Garcetti appealed for patience with a police strategy intended to suppress spiking violence, saying it would take time to show full results. LA Times article
Gun discounts for LAPD unit may have violated ethics rules — Los Angeles police officers in a unit that evaluated Smith & Wesson handguns for a new department contract used their relationship with the gun company to privately purchase discounted pistols for members of their unit, a possible violation of city ethics rules, according to a report by the LAPD’s watchdog that was made public Friday. LA Times article
Richmond youths sound off to U.S. attorney general about bad cops — Cops who treat city kids with respect instead of an iron hand are too few and far between, a handful of Richmond youths told the U.S. attorney general on Friday. And Attorney General Loretta Lynch, who said she had come to Richmond to listen, sat quietly and listened. San Francisco Chronicle article
CHP officers’ hearing in Turlock murder case delayed — The preliminary hearing scheduled to begin Monday for two California Highway Patrol officers accused of obstructing justice in connection with a Turlock man’s slaying has been postponed to Oct. 13. Modesto Bee article
Modesto Bee: UC Merced: A dream realized – Ten years ago, UC Merced was little more than a mirage rising from the fields of Merced County; only a few were capable of seeing its potential. The more who see it, invest in it, partner with it, the greater it becomes for all of us. Modesto Bee editorial
On the front line of campus sexual misconduct – Helping teenagers make the transition from high schoolers in their parents’ homes to college students balancing the freedoms of an unchaperoned social life with the load of academic expectations has always been a big job for R. A.s, most of whom are no older than 21 themselves. But in recent years, the job has become much more intense. New York Times article
LA Unified to get $6.4 million in settlement over iPad software — The Los Angeles Unified School District has reached a tentative $6.4-million settlement over Pearson educational software that it purchased but barely used. The deal is the latest fallout from an aborted plan to provide an iPad to every student, teacher and campus administrator in the nation’s second-largest school district. LA Times article
Test scores complicate the debate over expanding LA charter schools – As the battle to greatly expand charter schools in Los Angeles begins, both sides are touting statistics they claim make their case. LA Times article
Students talk about barriers to success at summit — Community leaders in Sacramento have gathered three times in the last year to talk about improving the future of boys and young men of color. Friday it was the youths’ turn to weigh in. Sacramento Bee article
Diesel emissions tests to change in California – The California Air Resources Board is notifying car manufacturers that it will enhance its testing of diesel engine emissions. The move comes as a result of Volkswagen’s admission that it manipulated diesel emission tests in the US. Regulators say current testing techniques don’t always indicate how a car will perform on the road. Capital Public Radio report; Sacramento Bee article
Air-quality scientist David Lighthall, 61, dies — Scientist David Lighthall investigated damaging effects of wood smoke on humans and detailed health risks among farmworkers in the San Joaquin Valley. He was known among researchers, air quality leaders and the medical community for his curiosity and gentle spirit. Mr. Lighthall, 61, died this week of cancer. Fresno Bee article
Citizens group appeals San Onofre ruling – The San Diego consumer group suing to reverse the San Onofre settlement that charges ratepayers billions of dollars for the failed nuclear plant has taken its case to the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. San Diego Union-Tribune article
UC Davis veterinarians treating dozens of pets badly burned in California wildfires — Beyond the human toll and massive property losses, dozens of animals were left homeless and injured, wandering amid the soot and ash in Calaveras and Lake counties before being rescued. UC Davis has stepped in to treat some of the most critically injured. Sacramento Bee article
Demand for fire academy graduates grows as California wildfires multiply – Graduates of the Rio Hondo College Wildland Fire Academy got off a bus last month at the college’s training facility in Norwalk after a 16-day assignment for the U.S. Forest Service. The fledgling firefighters battled several forest fires in Southern and Central California, areas which have seen some of the worst fires of the drought-driven wildfire season. Just six months ago, the graduates sat in the classroom learning the fundamentals of firefighting. KPCC report
Hyacinth hunter on the Delta — Gary Rogers was cruising the San Joaquin River near St. Francis Yacht Club one recent afternoon when his cellphone rang. He cut back the engine. After a few terse words on the phone, he set it down and turned a grim face toward the rear of the 18-foot boat. Stockton Record article
Proposed center in Modesto would bring veterans groups together, consolidate services — Local veterans were given expanded access to health care with the opening of a new Veterans Affairs clinic in Modesto in 2013. Now, a proposed veterans center for Stanislaus County will give higher visibility to veterans groups and consolidate services for those who sacrificed for their country. Modesto Bee article
Ana Ibarra: Anxiety grows among smokers in public housing with new tobacco-free rule – Health advocates are cheering a new policy that will ban smoking in public housing in Merced County next year, but for longtime smokers who’ve made their homes in the subsidized facilities, the news is a nightmare. Merced Sun-Star article
Merced’s homeless get services at annual event — Hundreds of Merced’s most in-need residents got to use services Friday they might otherwise go without. The Homeless Connect gathered about 45 nonprofits, public agencies and homeless advocates together at the American Legion Hall in Merced. Some hall visitors signed up to get a birth certificate or public assistance, and many sat down for a haircut and a meal. Merced Sun-Star article
Valley fire triggers memories of Vietnam trauma for evacuated veteran – Vietnam veteran Jack Reece writes, “I was up there on that hillside watching that fire come off of Cobb [in Lake County] and then down and into the valley. It was like a unit moving forward with tanks and everything, and those canisters, those propane canisters going off, they make a ‘whooooo… boom!’ It all flashed back. Reece in KQED
Carmen George: Healing garden grows in Fresno for those affected by cancer — More than 80 works of art created by cancer survivors will be on display Sunday afternoon during a festival to celebrate a new healing garden for those affected by cancer in Fresno’s Woodward Park. George in Fresno Bee
Vance Kennedy: Measure I gives us a chance to save best recharge areas – The retired U.S. Geological Survey scientist writes, “Measure I, the Stamp Out Sprawl initiative, is intended to allow Modesto’s voting population to debate and decide the wisdom of expansion over farmland. I endorse it, but for reasons concerning what is beneath that land.” Kennedy op-ed in Modesto Bee
Tiny home movement growing in Sacramento — While there is little consensus on what a tiny home is, there is no questioning the spike in interest in housing that seeks to maximize efficiency and minimize size. Most are around 400 square feet and built on wheels, offering portability. For some, the houses are a sized-down primary residence; for others, it’s their summer getaway or guest cottage. Sacramento Bee article
Hanford police to tackle bicycle safety — The Hanford Police Department is preparing to ramp up efforts to combat an apparent increase in unsafe bicycle riders in the city. Police Chief Parker Sever said police have seen an increased number of complaints about bicycle related violations over the past few weeks. The most common complaints involve cyclists darting across roadways, riding against traffic or failing to acknowledge stop signs. Hanford Sentinel article
Replacing Bestolarides on San Joaquin County board of supervisors could take months – Nearly a month after the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors’ District 3 seat was vacated, Gov. Jerry Brown has yet to appoint a replacement. Deborah Hoffman, a spokeswoman for Brown’s office, said the governor’s office does not release the names of applicants for supervisorial seats, and there is no set timeline as to when a replacement for Steve Bestolarides will be named. Stockton Record article
Preliminary report on crash that claimed DeGroot — A preliminary accident report says a floatplane that crashed in Alaska struck the surface of a lake after takeoff before going down, killing three of the 10 people on board. Killed in the crash were tourists, 80-year-old Tony W. DeGroot of Hanford, California; 70-year-old James P. Fletcher of Clovis, California; and 69-year-old James Specter of Shavertown, Pennsylvania. AP article
Woman speaks publicly about her Phoenix molestation allegations against Kevin Johnson — The woman who accused Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson of molesting her when she was a teenager nearly two decades ago in Phoenix has come forward, telling the sports website Deadspin she has now decided “to say what I want” after previously declining comment. Sacramento Bee article
Group gets judge’s OK to parade nude in San Francisco — It’s illegal to go naked in public in San Francisco, unless you’re part of an event with a city permit, like a parade. And that’s what 50 to 100 nudists plan to do on city streets Saturday, with an assist from a federal judge. San Francisco Chronicle article
Community Medical Centers CEO accused of domestic violence on girlfriend — Tim Joslin, president and chief executive officer of Community Medical Centers, was arrested for allegedly hitting his girlfriend on the back of the head with an iPhone. He has not been charged with a crime. Fresno Bee article
Valley Editorial Roundup
Fresno Bee – Thumbs up, thumbs down.
Merced Sun-Star – A GOP voice of reason is lost as John Boehner resigns.
Modesto Bee – A voice of reason is lost as John Boehner resigns; Ten years ago, UC Merced was little more than a mirage rising from the fields of Merced County; only a few were capable of seeing its potential. The more who see it, invest in it, partner with it, the greater it becomes for all of us.
Sacramento Bee – Longer-term, John Boehner’s resignation is a loss, for Republicans and the nation. It will take a 25-year veteran out of the process, and eliminate one of the dwindling number of reasonable voices remaining in the party.
Sunday, Sept. 27, at 10 a.m. on Fresno ABC30 – Maddy Report: “Medi-Cal Providers: Is the Doctor In?” – Guest: California State Auditor Elaine Howle. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director Mark Keppler.
Sunday, Sept. 27, at 10 a.m. on KMJ (580AM and 105.9FM Radio/podcast) – Maddy Report – Valley Views Edition: “Medi-Cal Programs in the Valley: Too Many Patients, Too Few Doctors?” — Guests: David Pomaville, director of the Fresno County Department of Public Health; Oralia Gomez, Fresno County program manager for Medi-Cal; Pam Holiwell, assistant director of the Kern County Department of Human Services; Robyn Gonzales, associate administrator for Community Medical Centers; and Stephen Schilling, CEO of Clinica Sierra Vista. Host: Maddy Institute Executive Director Mark Keppler.
Sunday, Sept. 27, at 7 a.m. on Univision 21 (KFTV) and UniMas 61 (KTFF) – El Informe Maddy: “Medi-Cal Providers” – Guest: Margarita Fernandez, chief of public affairs in the Office of the California State Auditor. Host: Maddy Institute Deputy Director Ana Melendez.
The Maddy Report airs throughout California on The Cal Channel. Check http://www.calchannel.com to find the Cal Channel and schedule in your area. You also can view previous Maddy Report programs in their entirety at http://www.maddyinstitute.org/policy-analysis/the-maddy-report-tv.
- CA Fwd will hold an event on “Money, Schools, Jobs and You – A Bipartisan Conversation in Clovis” at the Center for Advanced Research Technology on Tuesday, Sept. 29, from 6-8 p.m. Speakers are Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin; former San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed; Pete Peterson, executive director of Davenport Institute for Public Engagement and Civic Leadership; and Marshall Tuck, Educator in Residence, New Teacher Center. Event is free but registration is required. More information: www.CAFWD.org.
- IAP2NorCal and the Institute for Local Government will hold an event, “Public Participation for 21stCentury Democracy,” in San Jose on Thursday, Oct. 1, from 12:30-2:30 p.m. More information is available here.
- West Hills Community College District will hold an event, “Shifting Ground — Adapting the San Joaquin Valley Economy to a Changing Climate,” on Oct. 8 at Harris Ranch in Coalinga. Senior leaders from business, agriculture, government agencies and nonprofits will gather to launch immediate actions and provide near-term guidance to create next generation jobs in a region battered by drought and struggling with multiple challenges. Visit www.essentialelementsseries.comfor details of this no-fee policy series.
- Zocalo Public Square will hold an event, “Can Fresno Win the War on Poverty?,” at Frank’s Place at Warnors Center for the Performing Arts in Fresno on Tuesday, Oct. 13, at 7 p.m. More information: www.ZocaloPublicSquare.org.
- The fourth annual San Joaquin Valley Affordable Housing Summit will be held at the Bakersfield Marriott at the Convention Center on Tuesday, Nov. 3, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Registration and additional information is available here.
- The 34thannual Agribusiness Management Conference will be held at the DoubleTree Hotel and Conference Center in Fresno on Wednesday, Nov. 4. The event will feature presentation on the economic outlook for agriculture, trade, water, and immigration. More information: 559.278.4405 or www.csufcab.com.
- The 2015 California Economic Summit will be held in Ontario on Nov. 12-13. Since its inception in 2012, the Summit has brought together hundreds of private, public and civic leaders from the state’s diverse regions in an effort to advance the triple bottom line: promoting a prosperous economy that respects environment and equity concerns. More information and registration is available here.
Next 10: UPDATED California budget challenge – For the first time in a decade, California’s budget is largely in balance. However, the state has outstanding debts of $28 million, not counting long-term pension and retiree health care costs. Budget choices affect us all. Take the Challenge and decide how much should be spent on programs and where the money should come from. Next 10 California Budget Challenge
Next 10: Federal budget challenge — The Federal Budget Challenge is based on The Concord Coalition’s Principles and Priorities budget exercise, which has been used in numerous town hall meetings across the country by members of Congress from both parties, as well as in hundreds of high school and college classrooms. Next 10 Federal Budget challenge at www.federalbudgetchallenge.org.
Next 10: California Water Challenge – As our state faces some of the most severe drought conditions in its history, Next 10 wants to issue a new challenge to Californians: can you create a plan to make sure there’s enough water for everyone? Next 10 California Water Challenge
LEGISLATORS’ VOTING RECORDS: How often has a California legislator broken party ranks, abstained or switched sides? The Sacramento Bee has a database of the voting records of every member of the state Senate and Assembly. Enter a lawmaker’s last and first names to see how he or she voted, or enter a bill number to see how every legislator voted on it. Check it out at this link. http://www.sacbee.com/votingrecord/
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Maddy Institute Updates List of San Joaquin Valley Elected Officials – The Maddy Institute has updated its list of San Joaquin Valley elected officials. The list is available here.
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The Kenneth L. Maddy Institute at California State University, Fresno was established to honor the legacy of one of California’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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