4:01 pm
Tue April 7, 2015

New Documentary Explores Homelessness In Fresno

Credit Brittani Fanciullo

There's a new documentary about homelessness in Fresno. "Our Lives: Surviving the Streets of Fresno" not only tells the stories of 10 people directly affected by homelessness, it was shot by them. 

Lisa Lindsay joined Valley Edition host Joe Moore for an interview  about the documentary. She directed the film and also is a supervising librarian for the Fresno County Public Library.

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Valley Edition
12:17 pm
Tue April 7, 2015

Valley Edition: April 7 - High Speed Rail; Almonds And Drought; Fresno Homelessness Documentary

Valley Edition April 7, 2015
Credit Ezra David Romero / Valley Public Radio

This week on Valley Edition we discuss drought, almonds and much more. The program begins with a piece by KVPR Reporter Jeffrey Hess on how the implementation of high speed rail in California is affecting businesses and homeowners in Central California. 

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4:28 pm
Wed April 1, 2015

California, Is It Time To Wave Goodbye To Your Front Lawn?

Photo submitted by Hannah_75 to the Valley Public Radio series Voices of the Drought.

While agriculture is California’s largest consumer of water, Governor Jerry Brown wants to increase the focus on commercial and resident users. Jeffrey Hess with Valley Public Radio reports they are a big focus of Brown’s new mandatory water restrictions.

Golf course, cemeteries and other large plots of land will soon be required to reduce their usage under the new rules.

Governor Brown also wants to remove 50-million square feet of lawn around the state and replace it with drought resistant landscaping.

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4:22 pm
Wed April 1, 2015

California Farmers React To The 25 Percent Mandatory Statewide Water Reduction

A field in Hanford. Submitted to the Valley Public Radio series Voices of the Drought by Brant Oliviera who runs Oliviera Hay in Hanford.

Governor Jerry Brown announced Wednesday the first mandatory water restrictions in the Golden State’s history. Valley Public Radio’s Ezra David Romero reports on how farmers in the Central Valley are reacting to the plan.

With the lowest snow pack in history Governor Jerry Brown says the drought demands unprecedented action. He’s mandating new conservation methods including new agricultural water use reporting guidelines.

Cannon Michael farms 10,000 acres of tomatoes and corn in Central California. He says the impacts on agriculture from the edict are limited.

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Valley Edition
2:50 pm
Tue March 31, 2015

Valley Edition: End Of Life Care; Fresno PD; Catacomb Party; Almond Milk

Valley Edition March 31, 2014
Credit Ezra David Romero / Valley Public Radio

This week on Valley Edition we take a look at several issues surrounding a difficult topic, death and dying. We’ll learn about a movement to help spur conversations about end of life decisions, a new report on palliative care in California, and a new bill that would bring physician assisted suicide to the Golden State.

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Government & Politics
7:11 pm
Thu March 26, 2015

Fresno Deputy Police Chief Arrested For Dealing Drugs

Fresno Deputy Police Chief Keith Foster (file photo)
Credit Fresno Police Department

One of Fresno's highest ranking law enforcement officers was arrested Thursday on drug charges. Fresno Deputy Police Chief Keith Foster is charged with conspiracy to distribute heroin, marijuana and oxycodone.

Five other Fresno residents were also charged in the case, including two men the FBI believes are related to Foster. 

Foster has been placed on administrative leave by the department. The arrests are part of an on-going, year-long investigation by the FBI and ATF.

Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin says the arrest is totally unexpected...

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Government & Politics
6:58 pm
Thu March 26, 2015

Fresno City Council Votes To Loosen Tough Marijuana Law

Credit Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

The Fresno City Council is moving forward with a plan to modify the city's medical marijuana law. But as FM89's Joe Moore reports, the change could be short lived. 

The new law would amend another passed last year by the council that banned all marijuana cultivation in the city. If the new proposal becomes law, residents would be allowed to grow up to four marijuana plants indoors, for their personal medicinal use.

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Government & Politics
12:27 pm
Thu March 26, 2015

Fresno City Council Hears Call For "ShotSpotter" System, Says Yes

Fresno City Hall (file photo)
Credit Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

The Fresno City Council has approved a request by Police  Chief Jerry Dyer for funding to install gunshot detecting microphones in a three square mile section of the city.

The system, called ShotSpotter, uses the microphones to triangulate the location of gunshots so police can respond. 

Company CEO  Ralph Clark says the system greatly improves a department’s ability to respond to gunshots.

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Valley Edition
1:35 pm
Wed March 25, 2015

On Valley Edition: New Fresno Art Museum Director Michele Ellis Pracy

Fresno Art Museum (file photo)
Joe Moore Valley Public Radio

The Fresno Art Museum is one of the valley's cultural gems, with exhibits and educational programs at its facility in Fresno's Radio Park. For the past year however, the museum was without an executive director. The museum also has faced hard times in recent years with a declining economy and an aging facility. 

Now the museum has a new executive director, Michele Ellis Pracy, who joined us on Valley Edition to talk about her background in museums, and her vision for one of Fresno's most vital cultural institutions. 

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2:39 pm
Tue March 24, 2015

WATCH: Omar Nare Fuses Mariachi And Flamenco

Omar Nare
Credit Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

This weekend a new project aims to blend art forms and genres in Fresno. The brainchild of Fresno-based multi-instrumentalist and vocalist Omar Nare, Dos Mundos mixes sounds of traditional mariachi with flamenco rhythms and dance.

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Government & Politics
6:55 am
Tue March 24, 2015

Fulton Mall Project To Become Reality?

Craig Scharton, owner of Peeves

After years of delays, and ongoing lawsuits, officials with the city of Fresno say they are finally going to turn the Fulton mall back into a street. The question of what to do with the aging pedestrian walking area in the center of downtown Fresno has been a sore spot in the city for years. City and business leaders say all signs point to the project breaking ground as soon as this fall.

A piano player picks out a tune on the piano in the corner of the popular downtown bar Peeve’s.

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12:33 pm
Tue March 17, 2015

Valley Edition: James Fallows On Why He Thinks Fresno Could Be The Next Tech Hub

Could Fresno be the next tech hub? James Fallows thinks so. For the last five years a competition called #59DaysOfCode has been held in Fresno.
Credit Ezra David Romero / Valley Public Radio

When you think of California’s major technology centers, you probably think of Silicon Valley, or maybe even San Diego, but Fresno probably isn’t at the top of your list.  

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Government & Politics
2:20 pm
Thu March 12, 2015

Fresno Leaders Expect Fulton Mall Work Soon, Despite Delay

Credit Valley Public Radio

Fresno City leaders say construction could start on the project to turn the Fulton Mall into a street as early as this summer. Opponents of the project say they are not giving up the fight.

The city had expected to break ground on the project this month.

City Manager Bruce Rudd says they won’t make that goal, but they will begin work soon.

“We are hoping to have this go out to bid within the next 60-to-90 days. It will probably be on the street for sixty days. And hopefully back before the council in August to award a contract,” Rudd said.

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11:11 am
Tue March 10, 2015

With Legal Hurdle Cleared, Fresno Trails Leader Hails Progress On Canals Project

The Coalition for Community Trails (CCT) is working with the Cities of Fresno and Clovis, Fresno County, the Fresno Metropolitan Flood Control District (FMFCD), the Fresno Irrigation District (FID) and Tree Fresno to develop a multi-purpose Parkway Plan for the Fresno-Clovis Metropolitan Area (modeled after the Clovis Old Town Trail).

Among the defining physical features of San Joaquin Valley cities are their irrigation canals. Some are just small ditches, while others are massive channels, but they all carry vital water to cities and farms throughout the region and have helped to make the valley bloom, and our modern economy possible.

Their banks are also un-official recreation spots for many, but a number of people want to change that, making their meandering paths part of a new network of community trails -  linear urban parks for walking, running and cycling. 

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Valley Edition
12:02 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Valley Edition: March 3 - Quay Valley, California: The Tempest, Rogue Festival, Fresno Unified

Valley Edition March 3, 2015
Credit Ezra David Romero

This week on Valley Edition FM89's Diana Aguilera reports on one Fresno group's vision to tackle homelessness by creating eco-friendly shelters. John Lindt, with, joins the program for a conversation about the possibility of a new Central California town called Quay Valley that may have a hyper loop. 

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6:01 pm
Thu February 26, 2015

One Group's Vision To Tackle Homelessness: Creating Eco-Friendly Shelters

he Dakota Eco Garden has created an eco shelter for the homeless. The tiny unit generates its own heat and air conditioning.
Diana Aguilera Valley Public Radio

Fresno’s homeless problem has been at the forefront of many debates. But there’s one group in town that’s created a new model for homeless housing. FM89’s Diana Aguilera reports on the expansion of a housing project on Dakota Avenue.

Over a year ago Nancy Holmes had nowhere to go after she was evicted from a homeless encampment in downtown Fresno. Holmes ended up on a dusty piece of land on the west side of the city.

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Valley Edition
11:10 am
Tue February 24, 2015

Valley Edition: February 24 - McFarland; Hmong Bus Tour; Fresno Water Rates; Photographer Matt Black

Valley Edition February 24, 2014
Credit Ezra David Romero / Valley Public Radio

This week on Valley Edition reporter Jennifer Burger attends the Central Valley opening of the feature film McFarland, USA.  Reporter Ezra David Romero goes on a bus tour with 4o East Asian farmers to the Bay to discover new markets. 

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4:52 pm
Fri February 20, 2015

'Workshop On Wheels' Gives Valley Hmong Farmers Insight Into Bay Area Markets

The group of Hmong farmers stopped at four different sites in the Bay area.
Ezra David Romero Valley Public Radio

Many small farmers have success selling their produce at farmers markets, but selling to larger food distributors can be difficult. FM89’s Ezra David Romero reports on a new project that hopes to connect one group of Southeast Asian growers with Bay Area buyers.


Small Hmong farms dot Fresno County growing specialty crops like the red date jujube, lemon grass and bitter melon. But more often than not, these farmers lack the resources and the know how to get their produce to larger markets.  

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Government & Politics
4:14 pm
Thu February 19, 2015

Fresno To Get $195 Million Loan For Water Project

Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin announces her plan to decrease her proposed water rate hike by 12 percent.
Credit Ezra David Romero / Valley Public Radio

A new state loan could help make the City of Fresno’s proposed water rate increase more palatable for local rate payers. 

Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin announced the city’s revised water plan Thursday, which now includes a $186 million loan from the state. She says while rates would still go up, the new cash means the average monthly increase would be around $3 a month less than originally proposed.

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Valley Edition
10:40 am
Tue February 17, 2015

Valley Edition: Feb. 17 - Politics With Jeff Cummins; Philip Levine, Jerry Tarkanian; Allensworth

Valley Edition February 17, 2014
Credit Ezra David Romero / Valley Public Radio

This week on Valley Edition we speak with Fresno State Political Science Professor Jeff Cummins about California politics and his new book "Boom and Bust: The Politics of the California Budget."

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