Government & Politics

News about government and politics

High-Speed Rail Authority

A new report from California's non-partisan Legislative Analyst's Office raises questions about the California High-Speed Rail Authority's latest plan to end the project's first operating section near Shafter in rural Kern County. 

State Analyst Questions New High Speed Rail Plan

Mar 17, 2016
California High-Speed Rail Authority

California’s high speed rail project has received fresh scrutiny on its latest proposed business plan. The Legislature's non-partisan budget analyst released a new report today that questions how the project will be funded. Ben Bradford reports from Sacramento.

Jeffrey Hess/KVPR

Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin is flatly rejecting the concept of city-sanctioned homeless encampments. 

The mayor is responding to that suggestion from a candidate seeking to replace her.

Earlier this week on Valley Public Radio, Fresno County Supervisor and mayoral candidate Henry Perea suggested that if elected, he would be open to the concept of city-sanctioned homeless encampments.

Proposed Ballot Initiative Would Divert High Speed Rail and Water Bond Money

Mar 16, 2016
Ezra David Romero / Valley Public Radio

A proposed California ballot initiative would reallocate more than $10 billion from the High Speed Rail project and the 2014 water bond to instead fund water storage projects. As Capital Public Radio’s Amy Quinton reports, the measure would do much more than that.

Opponents of the proposed initiative would seem to be strange bedfellows, some Republican lawmakers who have long fought for water storage projects, environmentalists, and some farmers. Jay Ziegler with the Nature Conservancy says the measure is an attempt to misguide voters.

Yellowfeather Noriega / http://survivingfresno.blogspot.com/

Fresno mayoral candidate and current Fresno County Supervisor Henry R. Perea supports the idea of city sanctioned encampments for Fresno’s homeless population. 

Speaking on Valley Public Radio’s Valley Edition, Perea says city and county officials have been making progress in getting many homeless people into housing. But he adds the problem of people living on the streets has become more visible since the city closed down several illegal downtown encampments in 2013. Perea says legalized encampments should be an option. 

Henry R. Perea - Facebook

Henry Perea is no stranger to Fresno politics. The current member of the Fresno County Board of Supervisors served on the Fresno City Council from 1996-2004, and his son, Henry T. Perea ran for mayor in 2008.

Now the elder Perea wants a chance to be the leader of California’s fifth largest city. He recently joined us on Valley Edition to talk about everything from homelessness to building a streetcar line that would link downtown to the Tower District. 

To listen to the interview click play above.

Tobacco Industry's Threats: Provocative, But Legal

Mar 15, 2016
Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

The campaign for a November ballot measure to raise California’s tobacco tax is criticizing reported threats it says came from industry lobbyists. The targets are six anti-tobacco bills passed by the Legislature last week. As Ben Adler reports from Sacramento, the threats may be provocative – but they’re also legal.

High-Speed Rail Project Wins Crucial Legal Battle - For Now

Mar 8, 2016
California High-Speed Rail Authority

California high-speed rail supporters have dodged yet another legal bullet. As Ben Adler reports from Sacramento, the state has won a lawsuit that threatened to derail the embattled project.

When California voters approved a high-speed rail bond measure in 2008, they included several conditions. Among them, trains must speed passengers from San Francisco to Los Angeles in two hours, 40 minutes.

Opponents sued, arguing the state can’t meet all the conditions. Now, a Sacramento County judge has essentially ruled: maybe so, but it’s too soon to say.

City of Fresno

Most people in Fresno known Lee Brand as the city council's resident policy guru. The rental property developer and manager has authored or co-authored over a dozen pieces of legislation during his seven year tenure at city hall, covering everything from negotiations with labor unions to city financial safeguards. 

Now Brand hopes to shift gears, from legislator to chief executive of California's fifth largest city. Brand says he's up for the challenge, both on both the policy and leadership sides of the job. 

H. Spees campaign

The race to become Fresno's next mayor is starting to heat up. One of the three candidates vying for the seat is a relative political outsider, Fresno pastor and community activist H. Spees. After years of work with local non-profit groups, Spees says he now wants to lead California's fifth largest city. In this interview on Valley Public Radio's Valley Edition, Spees says he hopes to reduce crime and homelessness, while ensuring that the city re-invests in older parts of town. Join us in future weeks for similar conversations with fellow candidates Henry R.

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