Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

As next June's primary approaches, candidates are lining up to become Fresno's next mayor. Two have already announced their attention to run, including current Fresno City Council Member Lee Brand and pastor/community activist H. Spees. Now the community is abuzz about whether Chief Jerry Dyer will enter the race. And what about the Perea family? Both Henry R. Perea, a currently a Fresno County Supervisor, and his son Assemblyman Henry T. Perea have been mentioned as potential candidates.

Valley Public Radio

This week on Valley Edition Reporter Jeffrey Hess takes a look at a health care showdown between two Valley medical giants. We are also joined by Frédéric Martin, President of Alliance Francaise de Fresno, to speak about the region's response to the attacks in Paris.

At one time there were over 10,000 grizzly bears in California, but people’s fear of the enormous animal drove the bears to extinction. The last California grizzly bear was shot in Tulare County in 1924. One group would like to see the bears thrive again. But as Valley Public Radio’s Ezra David Romero reports not everyone thinks the idea is a good one..

Alex Honnold is a real life Spiderman. He’s climbed heights like El Capitan and Half Dome in Yosemite National Park. But what sets him apart from other climbers is that he leaves ropes and carabiners behind. In this interview FM89’s Ezra David Romero speaks with Honnold about his new book Alone on the Wall detailing 20 years of climbing history.  

If there’s one word that epitomizes the state of health care today, it’s change. Nowhere is that more clear than in the San Joaquin Valley’s hospital landscape, where longtime friends have turned into bitter rivals.

But what’s behind the shifting alliances that have divided much of the Fresno health care market in recent years? The answer could be one word, networks.

Earlier this year, Craig Wagoner the CEO of Fresno’s Community Regional Medical Center made an announcement that might have puzzled a lot of people.

Fresno leaders are moving forward on plans to award a construction contract for the reconstruction of the Fulton Mall even though is best bid is still more than 2-million dollars over budget.

City staff want the council to select a bid from American Paving for the project despite the fact the company overshot the projects's $20-million target.

Mayor Ashley Swearengin said they are taking the bid to the council anyway and will continue to work to reduce the cost.

Diana Aguilera / Valley Public Radio

A new state law means some California farmworkers are now entitled to back pay. FM89’s Diana Aguilera reports a local union is working to spread the word among workers.  

The law says workers who weren’t paid accurately from July 2012 to December 2015 have the right to back pay for rest periods and unproductive time. This includes time for training, traveling, and moving from and to fields.

The United Farm Workers union is currently reaching out to farm laborers to let them know about the law before it goes into effect January 1st.

Jeffrey Hess/KVPR

Two Fresno City Council members are taking a stand against what they consider to be secretive bonuses to top administration officials.

Several high-ranking city leaders were given more than $200,000 in bonuses and deferred compensation over the past two years. The issue raised the ire of the City Council because they say Mayor Ashley Swearengin did not follow city law and disclose their total compensation. Disclosure of public employee pay is required by the city’s 2010 Transparency Act.

Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

The Kern County Board of Supervisors has approved new rules that supporters say will streamline oil and gas production.

The unanimous vote by the board Monday endorses a new environmental report that will make most surface production activities go through a process similar to the one to get a building permit.

The state will still regulate subsurface operations.

Fresno Filmworks

The historic Tower Theatre will come alive with films from across the globe as the 2015 Fresno Film Festival opens November 13. The festival put together by Fresno Filmworks will feature eight programs with 21 short and feature-length movies from 21 different countries. There will also be special filmmaker appearances, Q&A panels and more.