Fresno

Ezra Romero/KVPR

Residents in a valley community with one of the highest concentrations of dry wells will soon be getting some relief.  For years, residents in East Porterville have watched their wells dry up in the drought forcing them to rely on water delivery and tanks.

Now, the state of California is offering to pay to hook up the tiny unincorporated community to the much larger city of Porterville.

Eric Lamoureux with the Office of Emergency Services says the state will make an initial $10 million dollar investment to begin hooking up the roughly 1,800 homes in East Porterville.

President Barack Obama and the first family visited Yosemite national park over the weekend to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service.

The Obamas took in the sights of the popular park as part of a two-day stay, including hiking to Glacier Point.

Obama himself gave a short speech in front of the Yosemite Falls saying preserving the national parks for future generations is a huge task.

 

Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

New salary numbers are out today for top City of Fresno administrators. Last year the city’s highest paid employee was retiring pension fund manager Stanley McDivitt, who was paid  $345,000, including a $150,000 leave payout, nearly equal to his entire annual salary. Former Chief Information Officer Carolyn Hogg earned $279,000, including a $100,000 severance package.

The disclosures were released this week by city officials as required by Fresno's Transparency Act.

California High-Speed Rail Authority

Work is progressing on the high-speed rail project’s most visible landmark in downtown Fresno, the new Tuolumne Street Bridge. Workers today began lifting the first of 42 massive steel and concrete girders into place.

The beams are 149 feet long and each weighs 83 tons. They will one day carry vehicle traffic from both Highway 99 and downtown Fresno over the Union Pacific and high speed rail tracks. Officials with the California High-Speed Rail Authority say that construction on the bridge is ahead of schedule.

CMAC

Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin delivered a message about long term changes in the city's direction Wednesday in what will be her last State of the City speech.

It was something of a victory lap for Swearengin who is nearing the end of her second and final term in office. Before a crowd at the Convention Center, she touted improvements over the last seven-and-a-half years in a number of areas, from the city’s financial health to Fresno’s shrinking homeless population. 

http://www.ncclf.org/new-grocer-in-central-fresno/

A new partnership between two California groups is making it a little bit easier for residents of one older Fresno neighborhood to get fresh healthy food. FM89’s Ezra David Romero reports. 

For the first time in more than 15 years a new grocery store is set to open in an underserved Central Fresno neighborhood.

Kerry Klein/KVPR

Fresno police say they have made an arrest in the case of a hit and run that seriously injured a prominent local doctor. It appears a police lapel video camera helped solve the case.

Dr. William Dominic was hit and badly injured while riding his bike back home from his job at Community Regional Medical Center in February.

The case went cold until a tip came in this week pointing toward 22-year old Brianna Sandoval, who had previously been stopped by a traffic cop for an unrelated reason in April.

Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

For the first time in nearly a decade, Fresno is not one of the top ten cities in the nation for auto theft. 

The study released this month from the National Insurance Crime Bureau shows that at least when compared with other cities, Fresno is faring better when it comes to vehicle theft. As recently as 2011, Fresno led the nation in stolen cars. Last year it dropped to number nine, and this year all the way to 13.

Fresno police are forming a dedicated unit to go after domestic violence offenders because domestic violence calls and charges are up.

Domestic violence crimes are up more than thirty percent in 2016 compared to the same time last year.

That is on top of three years of increasing reports of domestic violence in the City of Fresno.

Police Chief Jerry Dyer has formed a domestic violence task force to go after offenders, 83 of which have currently have outstanding arrest warrants.

Joe Moore/KVPR

Residents of the Central Valley are continuing to react to the murder of more than 50 people in a shooting at an LGBTQ club in Orlando. The mass murder has created waves of outrage across the country.

Sunday night, hundreds of people marched in the Fresno’s Tower District for a candlelight vigil remembering the victims of the worst mass shooting in American history.

Jason Scott with the advocacy group Gay Fresno says the attack is causing great sadness and anger but also resolve.

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