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Congressman Tom McClintock’s Sham Town Hall Meetings

Congressman Tom McClintock is notorious for being absent from his district. Modesto residents who enjoyed the regular presence of Congressman Josh Harder before redistricting moved him north have been especially disgruntled by McClintock’s absenteeism. His Modesto office is often unstaffed. Below, former Modesto City Councilmember Bruce Frohman expresses his frustration with McClintock’s remote town hall […]

Learn 100 Common Valley Birds: Species #68/100

Few things on earth fill us with as much delight as birds, and knowing them by name only adds to our pleasure. In California’s Central Valley, with only a little bit of effort, anyone can learn 100 local bird species. Valley residents almost daily come in contact with at least a dozen species that most […]

Dos Rios State Park: “A new era of water management.”

Julie Rentner and Patrick Koepele have spent decades of their lives dedicated to healing nature through the restoration of rivers, Rentner with River Partners and Koepele with the Tuolmne River Trust. Wednesday, June 12, the entire state of California celebrated one of the greatest outcomes of their labors with the opening of Dos Rios State […]

Will Water Districts Fail to Deliver on Historic Contract?

Earlier this year, Louis Brichetto was having breakfast with a local cattleman who mentioned having seen the Brichetto name on a historical water contract he had been reviewing along with some of his own old contracts. The casual remark got Brichetto’s immediate attention. Brichetto’s roots in Stanislaus County’s Oakdale region go back well over 150 […]

Gender Harassment at MID? You be the Judge

In a suit filed on May 14, Modesto Irrigation District (MID) Board Member Janice Keating has accused the district and Board Member Robert Frobose of harassment based on her status as a woman. Keating claims that Frobose tried to intimidate her last year, during a January 17 visit to La Grange Dam: “While on the […]

Modesto Councilmember Kicks Hornets’ Nest on Homelessness

Modesto City Councilmember Nick Bavaro raised a lot of hackles during the May 7 meeting of the Modesto City Council. The item in question was what appeared to be a routine funding approval for the Salvation Army to continue operating a day center at the Berberian Shelter, which includes a traditional Salvation Army shelter and […]

Homeless in Modesto: A Tale of Two Cities

The last week of April in Modesto featured two of the city’s biggest public events, the State of the County report and, “Love Modesto,” the annual rite where volunteers display their civic pride with a citywide cleanup of trash and grafitti, while planting gardens, handing out hygiene kits and donating food packages, among other charitable […]

Super Rare Visitor Wows Valley Birders

It was only fitting that Stanislaus Audubon Society Board member Jodi Smith found one the rarest birds ever to visit the San Joaquin Valley. Smith was enjoying the wetland and riparian habitat at the San Joaquin River National Wildlife Refuge last Saturday when she peered through her binoculars and saw a stunning pink bird in […]

Hope Amid the Homeless on Modesto’s Mean Streets

As I was waiting for a bus last Sunday at the downtown transit center, an elderly man, using a walker loaded with what looked like his belongings, was denied access to a bus. The man stood there on this grey windy afternoon, shouting furiously at the bus driver at the injustice of denying him service, […]

California Fails on Homelessness says Statewide Audit

It came as no surprise to people who’ve watched state and local authorities fail to manage homelessness that those same authorities don’t know where the money goes. Recent reports from a statewide audit of homeless programs and expenses concluded that, “the State must do more to assess the cost-effectiveness of its homelessness programs.” Reviews of […]