Valley Public Radio - Live Audio

Joe Moore

Director of Program Content & Interim President

Joe Moore is the Director of Program Content and the Interim President of Valley Public Radio. He supervises the station's news and music programming, website and radio operations, and is the host of the weekly program "Valley Edition." He is a native of Fresno and a graduate of California State University, Fresno. He has over 15 years of experience in all aspects of radio production, operations and management. Prior to joining Valley Public Radio in 2010 as the Director of Program Content, he spent six years as the station manager of KFSR, and taught audio production at Fresno State. In 2008 he was named one of Fresno's "40 Under 40" by the publication Business Street. Prior to joining Valley Public Radio, he was also active on the boards of several local non-profit organizations. His hobbies include photography, hiking and travel. Joe has a strong interest in local history and architecture, and is an avid baseball fan.

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Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

It’s the second week of March which means burning restrictions are no longer in effect throughout the San Joaquin Valley. But though the smoggy days of winter are hopefully behind us, there’s still a lot to talk about. Later this week we’ll be hosting a panel event on the future of our air quality. That's happening Wednesday at Valley Public Radio’s broadcast center.

California High-Speed Rail Authority

Last week news broke that California’s High-Speed Rail Authority is facing another setback - increased costs and a delayed timeline as indicated in the authority's new 2018 Draft Business Plan. The effort to connect Los Angeles and San Francisco with bullet train running through the Central Valley will now cost over $77 billion. On top of that, phase one of the project will not be fully operational until the year 2033.

Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

A new bill in the California Senate would ban so-called "willful defiance" suspensions in k-12 schools throughout the state. The legislation (SB 607) comes amid a recent push from social justice organizations for schools to adopt "restorative justice" or PBIS approaches to school discipline issues, as well as a looming sunset for an existing law that bans "willful defiance" suspensions in grades K-3. While many youth advocacy organizations support the move, some teachers fear it could result in further problems.

Harper Collins

A new biography of billionaire investor Kirk Kerkorian tells the story of how a young boy from Fresno went on to become one of the richest businessmen in America. From airlines to film studios to the auto industry and casinos, Kerkorian was the consummate dealmaker, but he was also a quiet philanthropist, supporting Armenian causes through his Lincy Foundation. We recently spoke with journalist William C.

Rollin Pickford

A new exhibit at the San Joaquin River Parkway's Coke Hallowell Center For River Studies showcases the works of famed local artist Rollin Pickford. For much of the 20th century, Pickford was acclaimed for his paintings of the landscape of Central California. The new exhibit "Rolling Pickford: California Light" showcases works exclusively depicting the San Joaquin Valley. On display now through April 29th at the River Center at 11605 Old Friant Road in Fresno.

Google Street View

In 2010, architect Julia Morgan became the first woman to win the prestigious Gold Medal from the American Institute of Architects. It was a landmark achievement for the native Californian, who is most famous for designing Hearst Castle for newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst. It’s the institute’s highest honor, and one shared by icons of the industry like Frank Lloyd Wright, Mies van der Rohe, and Frank Ghery. Even more remarkable – Morgan was awarded the honor 57 years after her death. The award was an attempt in part to correct a longstanding omission by the male-dominated AIA.

Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

A new bill in the assembly would grant the California State Parks Department authority over land along the San Joaquin River Parkway. The bill by Fresno Assemblymember Joaquin Arambula would expand the existing Millerton Lake State Recreation Area along the 22-mile stretch of public and private riverbottom land between Friant Dam and Highway 99. State management could help solve an operational and financial problem for public land along the river, such as the 500 acre River West open space area.

This week on Valley Edition, a decade after the housing crash, things in Merced are looking up, in part thanks to the campus expansion now underway at nearby UC Merced. We also learn how this landlocked community hopes to become an "inland port" to help the county's economy. We also explore the controversy over voting rights in Kern County. We talk to the plaintiffs who recently scored a big victory in federal court over Kern County's drawing of supervisorial districts in 2011.

Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

In February a U.S. District Court Judge ruled in favor of a Latino civil rights group in a suit challenging the way the county drew supervisorial district lines in 2011. In the suit, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund argued that by splitting eastern Kern County cities between two districts, the county unfairly also broke up Latino communities in the San Joaquin Valley, instead of allowing for a second Latino-majority district, in addition to the current District 5.

James Burger, reporter for the Bakersfield Californian (file photo)

Despite the passage of Proposition 64, commercial marijuana dispensaries are technically illegal in Kern County after a vote last year by the Board of Supervisors. While the board may consider making changes to that policy for some medical cannabis dispensaries, the issue has led to a political firestorm. Rival camps have accused supervisors of unethical conduct, in one case including accusations of bribes. With so much turmoil, we spoke with reporter James Burger of The Bakersfield Californian, who recently wrote a series of reports on the allegations.

Creative Commons user Pmk58

California has a new water problem, but it's not drought, and it's not endangered fish. Instead it's a roughly 20-pound creature that's described as an "invasive swamp rodent" called the nutria. It's already causing problems in Merced County wetlands and state officials worry the pesky and prolific rodent could further destroy already fragile ecosystems in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River delta and threaten the state's network of canals and levees.

This week on Valley Edition we learn how computer gamers are helping scientists solve a problem for valley farmers, and we put Fresno’s new bus rapid transit system to the test. We also talk with Woodlake native Amanda Renteria on her surprise bid to be California’s next governor, and with reporter James Burger of the Bakersfield Californian about controversy over Kern County’s regulation of cannabis dispensaries. Plus a look at the “invasive swamp rodent” threatening the valley’s water supply and native species.

Courtesy Amanda Renteria For Congress

Residents in the San Joaquin Valley already know the name Amanda Renteria. Now the rest of the state is about to get acquainted with the Woodlake native and former national political director for the Hillary Clinton campaign in 2016. Last week she formally launched her campaign for California governor in a move that puzzled many political observers. After all the June primary is just a few months away, and Renteria needs to build an organization, raise funds, and most importantly get name recognition statewide in a very short timeframe.

Juergen Frank / Courtesy Jennifer Koh

This Sunday the Fresno Philharmonic pays tribute to the centennial birthday of American composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein, with a concert at the Saroyan Theater. Maestro Rei Hotoda will lead the orchestra in a performance of Bernstein's Serenade for Violin and Orchestra with special guest Jennifer Koh. The concert also includes John Adams' Short Ride in a Fast Machine and Aaron Copland's Symphony No. 3.

Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

Fresno audiences will get a special taste of the classical world of art songs this weekend at Fresno State. The university's music department will host its first "Art Song Festival" Friday and Saturday at the music building, featuring performances by students, faculty and guest artists. Poet laureate Juan Felipe Herrera will also participate in the event. Professor Maria Briggs joined us on Valley Edition to talk about the event.  

This week on Valley Edition, we talk with NPR’s White House correspondent Tamara Keith about growing up in Hanford and her experience covering the Trump administration. Columnist Joe Mathews also joins us to explain why he thinks Fresno, Clovis and Madera could one day rival Austin, Texas as a major inland regional hub, but only if local governments cooperate. FM89’s Kern County correspondent Christina Lopez brings us the story of a Bakersfield-area protest following last week’s Florida school shooting.

Emma Newburger/NPR

Before Tamara Keith was a household name among NPR listeners, she was a household name among Valley Public Radio listeners. For several years Keith worked as the Central Valley correspondent for KQED’s The California Report, based at the KVPR studios in Fresno. Before that she was a public radio listener herself – growing up in Hanford and listening to this station. Now she’s NPR’s White House correspondent and host of the NPR Politics Podcast. She’s also coming back to the valley for a special event hosted by Valley Public Radio February 24th at Clovis Community College.

This week on Valley Edition, we talk with Assemblymember Jim Patterson about the upcoming audit of the California High-Speed Rail Authority. We also get an update on a story from last week about the ICE facility in downtown Fresno, and we review smartphone apps that claim to provide important data about air quality. Plus a profile of nuevo mariachi musician Omar Nare, and a talk with the organizers of the Yonsei Project.

Brittany Greeson/GroundTruth

Critics across the globe are starting to pay attention to the music of one young valley artist – Omar Nare. The Sanger native was recently profiled on Public Radio International and the New York Times for his fresh take on mariachi traditions. He’s taking traditional songs and re-inventing them with hints of jazz, soul and funk.

Kelly Mizue Aoki / Yonsei Memory Project

A new project organized by fourth-generation Japanese Americans is seeking to preserve memories and create art. Called the Yonsei Memory Project, the effort is a project of Nikiko Masumoto and Brynn Saito. The two will hold events in Fresno on Saturday Febaury 17th and Monday February 19th, including memory tours and an event of poetry and art at the Fresno Assembly Center, the site where local Japanese Americans were processed before they were sent to concentration campus during the Second World War.

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