Fuller gives sobering capitol update

Fuller gives sobering capitol update

Rebecca Neipp

While our polarized state legislature continues to seek solutions to the drought crisis, high unemployment and a too-slowly recovering economy, state Sen. Jean Fuller reported to members and guests of the Ridgecrest Republican Women Federated last week what she is doing in Sacramento to fight . . . Read Full Story >>

KMC plan makes painful progress

By JAMES SIMMONS News Review Correspondent Kern County’s effort to place its county hospital and primary trauma center into a new independent authority is encountering a difficult birthing process. The county board of supervisors sees that the best chance for the money-hemorrhaging Kern Medical Center . . . Read Full Story >>

McCarthy is new Majority Leader

Rebecca Neipp

The meteoric political ascent of Bakersfield Congressman Kevin McCarthy continued last week when House Republicans chose their former whip as the new Majority Leader. McCarthy replaces Rep. Eric Cantor of Virginia, whose loss to an obscure candidate in the June primary sent shockwaves through the . . . Read Full Story >>

McCarthy praises VA bill

Rep. Kevin McCarthy released the following statement after the House of Representatives recently passed the Veterans Access to Care Act by a vote of 426-0. “For years, the House has been pushing for cultural and structural reform within the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) since . . . Read Full Story >>

California legislators pass budget

Rebecca Neipp

Both houses of the California legislature passed a $156.4-billion state budget — at the 11th hour — that has been hailed by state leaders as a compromise for the economically recovering state. The lack of support from Republican legislators, and outright criticism from local leaders, . . . Read Full Story >>

McCarthy the next Majority Leader?

Rebecca Neipp

The shifting political landscape that resulted from Virginia Republican Eric Cantor’s shocking loss in the primary election has left Kern County’s own Kevin McCarthy — currently serving as the Republican Whip — as the favorite to replace Cantor as majority leader in the House of . . . Read Full Story >>

Brown dominates in primary

Rebecca Neipp

Despite garnering a majority of votes in the open primary for California Governor, Democratic incumbent Jerry Brown will face Republican challenger Neel Kash-kari in the November general election. Some 54 percent of voters in the June 3 election cast their ballots in favor of Brown . . . Read Full Story >>

Lifquist, Johnson to face off in November

Rebecca Neipp

With no local seats or measures at stake, Ridgecrest election volunteers reported one of the lowest voter turnouts in recent memory for last week’s primary election. The last statement of votes cast (not yet released for this election) indicated that more and more voters are . . . Read Full Story >>

McCarthy lauds Shinseki resignation

Rebecca Neipp

After weeks of pressure and calls for reform following an alleged attempt to conceal dysfunction in the Department of Veterans Affairs — which critics say led to unnecessary deaths — Secretary Eric Shinseki has resigned as director. Rep. Kevin McCarthy, who has been vocal in . . . Read Full Story >>

Russell Johnson addresses Democratic Club

Russell Johnson addresses Democratic Club

Russell Johnson, candidate for Assessor-Recorder, addresses the Democratic Club of the High Desert on May 17. He pointed out flaws in the current system, as well as his proposal to fix it by adding staff and technology. While he admits there is no current funding . . . Read Full Story >>

Claims of ‘dysfunction’ challenged in assessor race

Rebecca Neipp

With some challenging the “$281 billion dollars [that] hangs over the county finances” in the election over Kern County Assessor, elected officials have weighed in that the misunderstanding of that figure is precisely why the county needs a technically qualified person to perform the duties . . . Read Full Story >>

Race for Kern tax assessor heats up

Rebecca Neipp

A race for a county position that has barely garnered a mention in the Indian Wells Valley for decades has stirred up discussion even in the outlying areas of Kern County as two appraisers and a Bakersfield city councilman vie in the June 3 primary . . . Read Full Story >>

Vice mayor advocates for cities in state capitol

Rebecca Neipp

Ridgecrest Vice Mayor Chip Holloway recently returned from an opportunity to meet with Gov. Jerry Brown and California legislators in Sacramento, where city leaders from across the state gathered to advocate for local control and other issues that face municipalities. Nearly 200 city officials participated . . . Read Full Story >>

New hire, senate bill action on council agenda

Rebecca Neipp

An official response to senate bills, discussion of sole-sourcing principles and a contract to hire a new employee are among the items up for discussion at tonight’s meeting of the Ridgecrest City Council. Items for discussion include an official response, proposed by Vice Mayor Chip . . . Read Full Story >>

Council to discuss budget, fire services

By JESSICA WESTON News Review Correspondent Updated budget projections for FY 2013-14 and a resolution approving a service agreement for fire services are on tonight’s agenda for the Ridgecrest City Council meeting, 6 p.m. in City Council Chambers. Finance Director Rachelle McQuiston will present updated . . . Read Full Story >>

Patin selected for parks and rec position

By JESSICA WESTON News Review Correspondent City Manager Dennis Speer has confirmed the selection of Jason Patin as recreation supervisor for the city of Ridgecrest. Although Patin was already acting as interim supervisor, his selection for the permanent position was not a foregone conclusion, according . . . Read Full Story >>

Council OKs company for utility audit

By Jessica Weston News Review Correspondent The Ridgecrest City Council voted last Wednesday to approve the selection of Utility Cost Management LLC to conduct a one-time utility usage and billings audit. City utility costs top $400,000 annually according to a staff report, and the audit . . . Read Full Story >>

Historic vote suspends three state senators

Rebecca Neipp

With last week’s arrest of California state Sen. Leland Yee, who faces federal charges of corruption and arms trafficking, the state Senate voted last Friday to suspend Yee and two other members accused of criminal activity. “It’s unfortunate the Senate was forced to take the . . . Read Full Story >>

Supes accept water plan plan for IWV water

By JAMES SIMMONS News Review Correspondent Kern County supervisors voted 5-0 on March 4 to receive the Kern County Planning Department’s “Resource Opportunity Plan: Water Availability and Conservation” and adopt the document’s recommendations for action. This plan was produced from a yearlong effort by Kern . . . Read Full Story >>

Supes accept water plan plan for IWV water

By JAMES SIMMONS News Review Correspondent Kern County supervisors voted 5-0 on March 4 to receive the Kern County Planning Department’s “Resource Opportunity Plan: Water Availability and Conservation” and adopt the document’s recommendations for action. This plan was produced from a yearlong effort by Kern . . . Read Full Story >>