Valley Public Radio News

Hear local reports on the economy, government, education, health and the environment on Valley Public Radio during All Things Considered, Morning Edition and Valley Edition. 

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Health organizations in Fresno County today announced a new initiative to reduce premature births. 

Right now, 11.1 percent of births in the county occur earlier than 37 weeks—that‘s far more than the state average of 8.3 percent. The new initiative, a collaboration between Fresno State, UC San Francisco, Fresno County and other groups and agencies, endeavors to reduce that to only 7 percent by the year 2025.

Sandra Flores of Fresno State is the director of the initiative.

Pollsters Mark Baldassare with the Public Policy Institute of California and Mark DiCamillo with Field Research Corporation address the Sacramento Press Club on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2016.
Ben Adler / Capital Public Radio

Pollsters Mark Baldassare with the Public Policy Institute of California and Mark DiCamillo with Field Research Corporation address the Sacramento Press Club on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2016.

Ben Adler / Capital Public Radio

It’s often said that “as California goes, so goes the nation.” But that’s rarely been less true than in last week’s election.

Two of California’s most highly respected pollsters say the results underscore just how different the Golden State is.

AP Photo / Rich Pedroncelli

California voters added to what are considered the nation’s strongest gun control laws on Election Day by approving Proposition 63.

The measure imposes background checks on ammunition sales; bans possession of large-capacity ammunition magazines; and forces owners to give up their weapons as soon as they can no longer legally possess them.

Jeffrey Hess/KVPR

The impact of a Donald Trump presidency on the Central Valley is still a great mystery. However, modern American presidents have broad powers that they can put into effect quickly. There are more than a few very specific actions Trump could take that would directly affect Central California.

Some of the bigger promises made by president-elect Trump will require the cooperation of the Republican-controlled Congress. Promises like a border wall, mass deportations, and repealing Obamacare will take some time.

A Central Valley Congressman is being named to an important part of the incoming Donald Trump presidential administration.

Congressman Devin Nunes is now part of president-elect Donald Trump’s transition team.

Nunes has served seven terms and is currently the chair of the house intelligence committee.

He is from Tulare and his district includes much of western Tulare and eastern Fresno Counties.

The transition team plays a critical role in smoothing over the transfer of presidential power between administrations.

Kerry Klein/KVPR

If you look at the nutrition label on a loaf of bread, you may come across folic acid or folate. It’s a vitamin that, in pregnant women, has been shown to reduce debilitating and sometimes fatal birth defects. For decades, folic acid has been added to some foods, but not others. Now, a new FDA decision to expand those foods could bring the vitamin to more people in the San Joaquin Valley.

U.S. Senator-elect Kamala Harris, flanked by Long Beach Mayor Richard Garcia, holds her first post-election press conference at the headquarters of the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles.
Kyle Stokes/KPCC

U.S. Senator-elect Kamala Harris, flanked by Long Beach Mayor Richard Garcia, holds her first post-election press conference at the headquarters of the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles. Kyle Stokes/KPCC

U.S. Senator-elect Kamala Harris said it was no accident she decided to hold her first post-election press conference at the headquarters of a Los Angeles-based immigrant rights group, surrounded by sign-waving community members singing, "No nos moveran!": we will not be moved.

Ezra David Romero

Scientists and researchers from across California are gathering in Three Rivers this week to discuss the effects of climate change in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. FM89's Ezra David Romero reports.

Climate change is a big deal in the Sierra Nevada. Think dying pine trees and dwindling numbers of species like the yellow-legged frog.

For a political party that was portrayed as a chaotic mess, supposedly feeling the tightening grip of inhospitable demographics, Republicans sure are doing pretty well.

Indoor cannabis cultivation in Calaveras County pictured on October 20, 2016.
Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

Indoor cannabis cultivation in Calaveras County pictured on October 20, 2016.

Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

Californians legalized recreational marijuana, raised the tobacco tax and implemented tighter gun and ammunition control measures, while rejecting a bid to abolish capital punishment.

A handful of measures are currently too close to call, including a statewide ban on single-use plastic bags.

The marijuana initiative was projected to win almost as soon as polls closed.

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