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Quality of Life
12:50 pm
Tue April 19, 2011

On Quality of Life: School Health Programs; Fresno Unified

Segment 1: School Health Programs - When we hear about budget problems in California schools, we usually think of teachers losing their jobs. But school nurses are also worried about job security and cuts to student health services. On this edition of Quality of Life, correspondent Shellie Branco brings us a feature report on school health, and talks with school nurses and one Visalia family who relies on them.

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Valley Writers Read
6:47 pm
Wed April 13, 2011

Jean Ray Laury - Growing Up In Doon

Jean Ray Laury was one of Central California's most accomplished and acclaimed artists. She helped to revolutionize the world of quilting, taking it from the world of traditional arts and crafts and into the world of modern art. She died in March 2011, but shortly before her passing, she visited Valley Public Radio to record her story about life growing up in a small town in Iowa, Growing Up In Doon.

Quality of Life
6:43 pm
Tue April 12, 2011

On Quality of Life: Mark Arax; Tax Day

Segments 1 & 2: Mark Arax - Journalist and author Mark Arax has spent much of his career exposing the dark secrets of life in the Central Valley, from corrupt politicians to secretive land barons. A former senior writer with the LA Times, Arax joins us on this edition of Valley Public Radio’s Quality of Life, to talk about his books, the Valley, and the troubled Fresno Unified School District.

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Quality of Life
6:45 pm
Tue April 5, 2011

On Quality of Life: End of Drought; Honeybee Collapse

Last week, California Governor Jerry Brown declared that the wet winter has officially put an end to the state’s drought. But with the annual April 1 Sierra snowpack at 165 percent of average, does that mean California’s water woes are behind it, or are just getting started. This week on Quality of Life, UC Merced hydrologist Dr. Roger C. Bales tells us about the science of measuring snow, and what global warming might mean for the our water supply.

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Quality of Life
6:48 pm
Tue March 29, 2011

On Quality of Life: Earthquakes; Lake Isabella Dam

California is known worldwide as a state especially prone to earthquakes. The 1994 Northridge quake and the 1989 Loma Prieta quake are still fresh in the mind of many Californians. But deep in California's Central Valley, far from the San Andreas, and the state's major population centers, what are the risks to residents and our infrastructure? In our first segment we talk with Dr.

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Quality of Life
6:52 pm
Tue March 22, 2011

On Quality of Life: Small Cities Face Tough Times; Volunteers

California's cities have been hit hard in recent years. The housing bust, the economic downturn, and perennial state budget crises are just a few of the factors that have helped batter the balance sheets of municipalities up and down the Golden state. Valley cities are no exception, especially given the region’s perennially high levels of unemployment, even in so called "good" times. Many large cities, like Fresno have been forced to make drastic cuts to city services, and have been forced to lay off hundreds of employees.

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Government & Politics
6:36 pm
Tue March 22, 2011

Chowchilla Faces Financial Crisis

California's cities have been hit hard in recent years. The housing bust, the economic downturn, and perennial state budget crises are just a few of the factors that have helped batter the balance sheets of municipalities up and down the Golden state. Valley cities are no exception, especially given the region’s perennially high levels of unemployment, even in so called "good" times. Many large cities, like Fresno have been forced to make drastic cuts to city services, and have been forced to lay off hundreds of employees.

Quality of Life
6:55 pm
Tue March 15, 2011

On Quality of Life; Toxic Cities; Redevelopment

Segment 1: Last month, Forbes magazine released its ranking of the nation’s ten "most toxic" cities, and Bakersfield and Fresno were ranked #2 and #3. While concerns about the Valley's air and water quality are nothing new, this report brings new national attention to the efforts to deal with these problems. In this segment, we examine the efforts to clean up the air with Sayed Sadredin, Executive Director and Air Pollution Control Officer for the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District.

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Quality of Life
5:58 pm
Tue March 8, 2011

On Quality of Life: Health Care Reform; Brain Injuries in Youth Sports

Part 1: Health Care Reform, 1 Year Later - Last March, President Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act into law. This sweeping and controversial law aims to expand health coverage to millions of previously uninsured Americans, with the bulk of the new programs beginning in 2014. But many Valley residents, who currently lack coverage, or lost their insurance after losing a job in the recession, have yet to feel the impact of the legislation.

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Quality of Life
6:00 pm
Tue March 1, 2011

On Quality of Life: Prop 13; Future of Libraries

Part I: Prop 13 - Thirty three years ago, California voters overwhelmingly passed Proposition 13 into law, ushering in a new era of California politics and forever changing state and local government. Not only did the constitutional amendment cut property taxes nearly in half, its implementation also ushered in a major change in the way government services are provided, in the Golden State, centralizing more power in Sacramento.

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Government & Politics
5:45 pm
Tue March 1, 2011

Prop 13 casts a long shadow on state, local government

Thirty three years ago, California voters overwhelmingly passed Proposition 13 into law, ushering in a new era of California politics and forever changing state and local government. Not only did the constitutional amendment cut property taxes nearly in half, its implementation also ushered in a major change in the way government services are provided, in the Golden State, centralizing more power in Sacramento. It also helped spark a wave of so called "ballot box budgeting" with citizens taking control of the power of the purse, in both setting tax rates and spending priorities.

Quality of Life
6:05 pm
Tue February 22, 2011

On Quality of Life: Mass Transit; Judge James Ardaiz

Segment 1: There's no doubt that Californians love their cars, and the Central Valley is no exception. But with rising fuel prices, the struggling economy, and a desire to be more environmentally friendly, many Valley residents and leaders are looking at mass transit as an option. Last week, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced that President Obama’s proposed budget sets aside $18 million to help fund a new "bus rapid transit" system for Fresno. Called by many "light rail on rubber wheels," this new "BRT" system would be the first system of its kind in the Valley.

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Health
5:19 pm
Thu February 10, 2011

Budget Cuts Hit County Mental Health Program

As California’s counties face increasing budget pressures, programs that aid those with mental illness have been reduced or eliminated. In Fresno County, patients who used to be treated in the county’s Crisis Intervention Service program are now being sent to area hospital emergency rooms, with serious consequences for patients and the public. Correspondent Shellie Branco reports on the state of mental health services in the Valley.

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