McCarthy reelected House majority leader

When House Republicans elected new leadership last week, Rep. Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield was selected by his peers to continue as majority leader. John Boehner will also serve a third term as speaker, and Rep. Steve Scalise will continue as the whip. “I am honored . . . Read Full Story >>

Officials brace for impact of Prop 47

Rebecca Neipp

The passage of a proposition that would purportedly keep communities safe will have the opposite effect, according to local law enforcement officials. Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood said that he was disappointed, but not completely surprised, to see Californians approve the measure by 59.3 percent. . . . Read Full Story >>

Voters select new city council majority

Rebecca Neipp

The most dramatic local changes in last week’s Genera Election were the three new faces voted into the Ridgecrest City Council. Local entrepreneur and community activist Peggy Breeden soundly defeated the challengers for the two-year mayor seat with a commanding 44.7 percent. She was followed . . . Read Full Story >>

Republicans win House, Senate majority

Rebecca Neipp

Years of gridlock born out of bitter partisanship in our nation’s capitol is believed to have fueled the Republican Party’s first seizure of the U.S. Senate in eight years. The results of the November General Election showed a net gain of seven seats to gain . . . Read Full Story >>

Dems win California, lose supermajority

Rebecca Neipp

While results of the 2014 General Election saw much of the country turn red, the California Democratic Party held onto its majority in both houses of the state legislature, while also retaining Democrats in all state offices. “In the rest of the country, they’re going . . . Read Full Story >>

Republicans win House, Senate majority

Rebecca Neipp

Years of gridlock born out of bitter partisanship in our nation’s capitol is believed to have fueled the Republican Party’s first seizure of the U.S. Senate in eight years. The results of the November General Election showed a net gain of seven seats to gain . . . Read Full Story >>

District looks at groundwater sustainability

Rebecca Neipp

The first collaborative discussion of state regulations for groundwater management was hosted at a recent workshop by the Indian Wells Valley Water District. Gov. Jerry Brown, with support from the majority of California legislators, enacted a plan this budget cycle to address groundwater sustainability. Although . . . Read Full Story >>

Supervisors scrap ag freeze

Rebecca Neipp

After revisiting an urgency interim ordinance that would have put a hold on all agricultural developments in the Indian Wells Valley, the Kern County Board of Super-visors voted at last week’s meeting to abandon that measure and focus instead on the county’s land-use management plan. . . . Read Full Story >>

Governor signs Grove charter school bill

SACRAMENTO – Last week, Gov. Jerry Brown signed AB 2007, a bill authored by Assemblywoman Shannon Grove to allow virtual charter school students to remain enrolled in their classes, even if they move to another part of the state in the middle of the school . . . Read Full Story >>

Candidate blasts Kern County assessor’s office

Rebecca Neipp

A correction to property values that resulted in a loss of revenue in the Kern County general fund prompted a candidate for the seat of Assessor-Recorder to call out the county office for “dysfunctional management.” Last week, Bakersfield City Councilman Russell Johnson sent a press . . . Read Full Story >>

Supervisors table ag freeze

Rebecca Neipp

An urgency ordinance that would impose restrictions on current and future agricultural operations in the Indian Wells Valley was deemed unfair by the Kern County Board of Supervisors at last week’s meeting. 1st District Supervisor Mick Gleason directed staff on Sept. 16 to bring forward . . . Read Full Story >>

Gov. signs Fuller’s utility rate bill

State Sen. Jean Fuller released a statement last week that California Gov. Jerry Brown has signed SB 1090, which she wrote to protect utility consumers in hot climates. “Reducing utility rates for inland, hot-climate areas of the state is one of my top priorities. Our . . . Read Full Story >>

Ag moratorium sparks outcry

Rebecca Neipp

An urgency ordinance introduced at yesterday’s afternoon session of the Kern County Board of Supervisors has sparked outcry from agricultural and realtor communities, which have decried the draconian measure as a threat to private property rights in the Indian Wells Valley. Although the results of . . . Read Full Story >>

Safety, elected officials oppose Proposition 47

Rebecca Neipp

A proposition that claims to divert state funding from the justice system to schools has serious risks of further hamstringing California law enforcement, according to local officials. Proposition 47 will appear before California voters on the November General Election Ballot, urging voters to “stop wasting . . . Read Full Story >>

Fuller opposes groundwater ‘power grab’

Last week, state Sen. Jean Fuller released a statement in opposition to Assembly Bill 1739, which is one of two bills floating through the state legislature that will have a significant impact on California’s existing water policies. “New layers of bureaucracy, additional fees, and the . . . Read Full Story >>

Grove gives views on Sacramento

Rebecca Neipp

At a recent meeting of the Ridgecrest Republican Women Federated, Assemblywoman Shan-non Grove shared with local listeners the challenges of being a conservative legislator in a liberal state. “My first year in Sacramento, I was upset with everyone who elected me. My second year, I . . . Read Full Story >>

Grove helps defeat bill to ban plastic bags

SACRAMENTO – Assemblywoman Shannon Grove comments on the state legislature’s recent attempt to ban plastic shopping bags. “The California Assembly finally resisted the temptation to pass another law that does more harm than good. The proposed law would have required Californians to either bring their . . . Read Full Story >>

Fuller pushes for hearing on budget reserves

SACRAMENTO — State Sen. Jean Fuller (R-Bakersfield) brought a motion to the Senate floor that would allow a public hearing on Assembly Bill 146 (Olsen and principal coauthor Fuller) in the Senate Education Committee. Fuller and several other concerned senators cited the integrity of the process . . . Read Full Story >>

Local legislators comment on water bond

Local representatives in the California legislature weighed in on recent actions to address the state’s drought crisis. State Sen. Jean Fuller said she supported the Water Quality Supply and Infrastructure Improve-ment Act, passed by the legislature and signed by the governor last week, because it . . . Read Full Story >>

Ballot shapes up for November

Rebecca Neipp

By REBECCA NEIPP News Review Staff Writer County and city clerks have announced the final list of candidates for local offices on the November 2014 ballot. The most crowded races involve the six candidates seeking the two-year mayor seat on the Ridgecrest City Council and . . . Read Full Story >>