Fong introduces transparency package

Assemblyman Vince Fong, on the first day of the new legislative session, introduced a legislative packaged aimed at empowering Californians to hold government agencies accountable, while also ensuring transparency to taxpayers. Fong’s staff described the package as a common-sense approach to bringing the state government . . . Read Full Story >>

Groundwater board hears SGMA brief

By BRIAN COSNER News Review Staff Writer The Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority heard an update on the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act from state representatives earlier this months. While the Authority is on track to meet state deadlines, State Water Resources Control Board representatives discussed . . . Read Full Story >>

High-speed rail panned by state auditor

Rebecca Neipp

The concerns long expressed by local conservative leaders were validated last week with the release of California State Auditor Elaine Howle’s report that heavily criticizes contracting and cost-control practices with Gov. Jerry Brown’s high-speed rail project. In the introduction to the 90-page report, Howle notes . . . Read Full Story >>

Sheriff reflects on  failure of Measure I

Sheriff reflects on failure of Measure I

Rebecca Neipp

With the voter rejection of Measure I, which proposed a 1-cent sales tax on unincorporated areas of Kern County that would generate an estimated $20 million annually for public safety, Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood discussed funding options moving forward. “Yeah, I’d love to hear . . . Read Full Story >>

Republican women to host Gleason

Ridgecrest Republican Women, Federated, will host Kern County 1st District Supervisor Mick Gleason at the Friday, Nov. 16, luncheon from noon to 1:30 p.m. in the banquet room of Casey’s Steaks and Barbecue. The public is invited to come and hear an update on county . . . Read Full Story >>

Democrats host Breeden, Burnell

The Democratic Club of the High Desert will meet Saturday, Nov. 17, at 11:30 a.m. in the Patio Room of Homestead Family Restaurant. “We are pleased to include two guest speakers,” said a club spokesperson. “Mayor Breeden will share her goals and objectives for the . . . Read Full Story >>

Republican women to host Gleason

Ridgecrest Republican Women, Federated, will host Kern County 1st District Supervisor Mick Gleason at the Friday, Nov. 16, luncheon from noon to 1:30 p.m. in the banquet room of Casey’s Steaks and Barbecue. The public is invited to come and hear an update on county . . . Read Full Story >>

Democrats take House, state supermajority

Rebecca Neipp

Outcomes in federal and state elections saw the Democrats gaining control in the House of Representatives, and capture what most believe will be a supermajority in both upper and lower levels of the state legislature. Democratic U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein captured 54.3 percent of the . . . Read Full Story >>

Elections yield shift in local seats, status quo in county

Elections yield shift in local seats, status quo in county

Rebecca Neipp

Voters pack the Inyokern Baptist Church polling place on Tuesday evening — Photo by Laura Austin ------ An observed peak in turnout for a mid-term November General Election saw shakeups in local elections, a sweeping victory for incumbents in the county, and at least one . . . Read Full Story >>

McCarthy staffer on hand Nov. 28

A staff member of House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy will hold “Mobile Office Hours” in Ridgecrest on Wednesday, Nov. 28, from 11 a.m. to noon in the city clerk’s office at City Hall. McCarthy sends a staffer to host mobile office hours each month at . . . Read Full Story >>

President signs legislation addressing opioid crisis

Last week, President Donald Trump signed the Patients and Communities Act (House Resolution 6), a comprehensive legislation package focused on combatting America’s opioid epidemic. “[This] marks another monumental step in the fight to end the deadliest drug epidemic in world history, which claims over 100 . . . Read Full Story >>

Mystery PAC weighs in on local race

UPDATE: As of Saturday, residents have received as many as five different mailers from the "Honesty PAC." One more endorsing Hogg and Mower and another depicting Councilmember Wallace Martin as Hayman's "puppet master." On the reverse side are excerpts of a Daily Independent article. However, . . . Read Full Story >>

Candidates come clean on finances

Candidates come clean on finances

By BRIAN COSNER, News Review Staff Writer In light of of some heated discussions about campaign spending – both in public forums and on social media – the News Review reached out to mayoral and city council candidates to clear the air about their contributions . . . Read Full Story >>

Fong calls for resignation of heads of DMV, technology dept.

After months of massive Department of Motor Vehicles system failures amounting to tens of thousands of individuals who were incorrectly added to voter rolls statewide, Assemblyman Vince Fong (R-Kern County), vice chair of the Assembly Transportation Committee, called for the resignation of Jean Shiomoto, who . . . Read Full Story >>

What’s on the November ballot?

Rebecca Neipp

Dozens of local, county, state and federal representatives will be chosen, judges selected and initiatives decided following the Nov. 6 General Election. Ridgecrest voters have an opportunity to elect incumbent Peggy Breeden or challenger Tom Wiknich to the two-year seat for Mayor. Two four-year seats . . . Read Full Story >>

More election forums scheduled

• Democrats to host ballot discussion The Democratic Club of the High Desert will host a ballot proposition workshop Saturday, Oct. 20, at 11:30 a.m. in the patio room of Homestead Family Restaurant. “If you are confused about any of these measures, you are not . . . Read Full Story >>

Four contenders seek two Water Board seats

Four contenders seek two Water Board seats

By BRIAN COSNER News Review Staff Writer Four contenders are vying for two positions on the Indian Wells Valley Water District Board of Directors. Incumbents Peter Brown and Vice President Chuck Griffin are seeking another two years and are facing newcomers Stan Rajtora and David . . . Read Full Story >>

Mayor candidate Peggy Breeden

Mayor candidate Peggy Breeden

“There is a perception that there is a huge divide in the community. I don’t think it exists, but the fact that there is even a perception of that concerns me. I would like to find a way to unite the community,” said Peggy Breeden, . . . Read Full Story >>

Mayor candidate Tom Wiknich

Mayor candidate Tom Wiknich

“I think my background is what makes me stand out as a candidate,” said Tom Wiknich. “I bring city government experience, federal government experience, business experience, nonprofit experience, volunteer experience and military experience — that’s a very diverse perspective.” He is a U.S. Army veteran, . . . Read Full Story >>

City Council candidate Scott Hayman

City Council candidate Scott Hayman

“I’m a husband, father, veteran and a strong fiscal conservative. My family has been here for 30 years, and I plan to stay,” said Scott Hayman, who is running for council. “I want to make sure Ridgecrest remains a great place to live, work and . . . Read Full Story >>