San Joaquin County- The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) will work to widen bridges, repair the pavement, stripe the roadway and replace slabs on Interstate 5 (I-5) from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard/Charter Way to the San Joaquin/Sacramento County line. No two consecutive ramps will be closed at the same time. Work will occur at the following locations:
Motorists should expect 20 minute delays. Alternate routes should be taken whenever possible.
This work is scheduled to begin as listed, but is subject to change.
Information provided by Caltrans
SACRAMENTO – State Controller John Chiang today announced that since taking office in 2007, his audit findings through State and local investigations now total more than $3 billion, more than any other Controller in recorded State history.
“Unchecked spending is an invitation for misspending,” said Chiang. “My audits offer an inside-look at state and local checkbooks, and show us where fiscal practices need serious improvement. These findings can lead to real taxpayer savings, and every dollar rescued is one that we don’t have to take away from education, public safety, or other essential services.”
The Controller’s office typically has 200 to 300 different audits under way at any given time during the year. A sampling of investigations initiated by Controller Chiang include:
· Misspent and poorly-managed bond funds at LA Community College District
· Massive losses from uncollected fines at State agencies
· Inappropriate spending on gifts at the State Lottery
· No-bid contracts and lax spending controls in the City of Montebello
· Millions in overpayments to a State healthcare contractor
His office is currently in the process of auditing the City of Hercules, and investigating claims of pension-spiking at the California State Teachers’ Retirement System.
After completing his work in the City of Bell last year, the Controller’s office was flooded with requests audits of more than 200 local governments across California. In order to meet those demands and better protect taxpayer dollars at the local level, the Controller introduced legislation to broaden his office’s auditing abilities.
While those bills stalled in the last legislation session, the Controller will continue to push to expand his office’s ability to protect taxpayer dollars through financial audits.
For more information on the Controller’s audit programs, visit his website at www.sco.ca.gov.
CALIFORNIA, USA – California wins $52.6 million federal grant to support early learning and care. Other states to receive the grant include Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, North Carolina, Ohio, Rhode Island and Washington.
The purpose of the Race to the Top-Early Learning Challenge (RTT-ELC) grant is to help support the continued improvement of early learning programs.
Decades of research underscore the importance of high-quality early education in closing the achievement gap for low-income children. This funding will help California increas the effectiveness and efficiency of its early learning programs that serve over 400,000 low-income children.
California plans to use the federal grant money to align promising local efforts leading the way in developing a Quality Rating and Information System (QRIS) with statewide elements; coordinate and optimize current state investments in school readiness initiatives to connect early education with the early elementary years; and support development of the early childhood workforce.
State President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg declares, “Today’s news that California was awarded the Race to the Top-Early Learning Challenge grant is an important step in the long road ahead to rebuilding our education system so that it prepares our children for college and career success. In 2008, I authored legislation that laid the groundwork for this successful application by creating a plan for improving the quality of preschool and other early learning programs, giving children the early learning experiences they need to be ready for school. The grant also provides an opportunity to support schools in implementing the new and very important transitional kindergarten program.”
“This is a historic opportunity for California,” Catherine Atkin, President, Preschool California, states. “These funds are an important step in improving the quality of programs that serve our most vulnerable youngest learners.”
SACRAMENTO–Senator Lois Wolk (D-Davis) announced today that two participants in the Senate’s fellowship program, Megan Baier of Vacaville and Hai-Vu Phan of El Monte, have joined her staff.
Baier and Phan are two of 18 college graduates selected to participate in the California Senate Fellows program, which offers the opportunity to work as a fully-fledged member of a senate or policy committee office analyzing and staffing legislation, researching and developing public policy, and meeting with constituents.
Baier, 22, interned last year for the California Health Report researching issues including the causes for the closure of state’s breast cancer-screening program. She will work with Wolk’s Capitol staff on health and other issues.
“I’m excited to be working with my own Senate representative, and hope to learn as much as I can about the Senate and public policy this year,” said Baier, a UC Santa Cruz graduate. “I’ve seen good ideas fall flat because of poorly executed policy, and want to focus on creating stronger policies that better serve the people of this state.”
Phan will work with the Senate Governance and Finance Committee, which Wolk chairs, on issues relating to government and budget reform, local government, and taxes.
“I am very grateful to work with the committee and Senator Wolk’s office,” said Phan, a 22-year-old Yale graduate. “In the coming year, I look forward to learning about the internal workings of the Capitol and the many important issues that will come before the committee.”
“I look forward to working with Megan and Hai-Vu this year,” said Wolk. “Megan’s perspective as a resident of the 5th Senate District, coupled with her experience with health policy, will be valuable in the coming year as the Legislature works to address the many challenges facing my constituents and the people of California. Additionally, Hai-Vu’ssolid analytical skills and the ability to see things from various perspectives are two vital skills for committee work.”
Participants are full-time Senate staff members at the state Capitol for 11 months. They also participate in academic seminars with Senators, senior staff, journalists, lobbyists, and state government officials. The fellowship program is jointly operated by the California Senate and the Center for California Studies at Sacramento State.
information provided by the Office of Senator Lois Wolk
The Rondalla Presencia de Amor of Stockton formed by a male choir delighted the audience with a variety of romantic boleros.
Traditional Mexican Posadas in San Joaquin
By Mayra Barrios
Las posadas (the shelters) in Spanish are an important part of the Christmas festivities in Mexico. These celebrations are held on each of the nine nights leading up to Christmas, from December 16 to 24th.
In a press release the U.S Department of Defense announced the conclusion Iraq Mission on Thursday, December, 15.
After close to a decade of U.S military operations in Iraq, the U.S defense secretary, Leon Panetta concluded the costly war with a flag ceremony in Baghdad.
In October President Obama announced that all U.S troops would be out of Iraq by the end of this year, a date agreed by former President George W Bush in 2008.
The rest of the troops are expected to come home in the next weeks.
A new study, Our American Immigrant Entrepreneurs: The Women, shows that in the last 10 years the number of American Immigrant woman entrepreneurs has almost doubled.
There were 575,750 immigrant woman who were self employed in their own business in the year 2000 and in 2010, that number jumped to 980,575.
The report was written by Susan Pearce, Elizabeth Clifford and Reena Tandon and was adapted from the book, “Immigration and Woman: Understanding the American Experience,” according to New American Media news report from December 9, 2011.
New America Media, News Report, Elena Shore, Posted: Dec 12, 2011
Izamar is asking Congress for one holiday wish: to keep her family together.
The18-year-old from Waukegan, Ill., is facing a daughter’s worst nightmare: the prospect of losing a parent to deportation. Her father was arrested in February for driving without a license and is now in deportation proceedings.
“Sometimes I can’t sleep, I can’t eat, I can’t do anything,” she writes. “I don’t know if I will be OK without him.”
New America Media, News Feature, Rasa Gustaitis, Posted: Dec 13, 2011
SAN FRANCISCO — The No. 24 bus stops a block and a half from my house, and I ride it regularly en route to points north or downtown. But never until today, Saturday December 5, never in the 40-plus years I have lived in San Francisco, have I taken this bus in the opposite direction, south and east into the Bayview Hunters Point district. That’s where most of San Francisco’s African-Americans live, their number dwindled to just four percent of the city’s population. About 1,300 homeowners in the Bayview are now facing foreclosure.
Jessica González-Rojas is the executive director of National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health, which works to secure access to reproductive health and justice for Latinas, their families and their communities through public education, community mobilization and policy advocacy.
New America Media, Commentary, Jessica González-Rojas, Posted: Dec 09, 2011
(NAM) This week, politics interfered with healthcare when young women were again denied the ability to obtain over-the-counter emergency contraception (EC) despite recommendations from the nation’s leading health experts.
Spelling Bee champ left Vivek Vanga and runner-up right Jack Gobel
Competing for a slot in the State Spelling Bee Competition, students from across the county participated in the 15th Annual San Joaquin County Spelling Bee Championship held at the Wentworth Education Center, at the Office of Education, on Wednesday, December 7, 2010.
Washington, D.C. – Today, Congressman Jerry McNerney (CA-11) announced that the U.S. Postal Service processing and distribution facility in Stockton will not be slated for immediate closure. The closure of the facility would result in an estimated 187 jobs being lost in Stockton alone.
“I am glad that the Postal Service has recognized it needs more time to make a responsible decision about closing the Stockton facility. I know they have tough choices to make, and I am glad that they have listened to our concerns and are taking into more serious consideration how their decisions will affect American people and businesses,” said Rep. McNerney.
The announcement today indicated that the USPS would delay closure of any postal facility until at least May 15, 2012. The delay will allow for additional consideration of public commentary, further study of each site, and other solutions to be explored.
“In today’s economy, I am committed to finding ways to create jobs, not to eliminate jobs from our community,” said Rep. McNerney.
www.bilingualweekly.com | STOCKTON, CA — For Stockton drivers 2012 offers more than the New Year celebrations, they will have new mechanisms inside the present parking meter casings. On Tuesday, December 6th City Officials announced that the Central Parking District will upgrade parking meters — a decision some have difficulties understanding.
“Do we really need new machines out here, what is the point?” asked Joe Maldonado, while he waited near his car parked right outside the California State Building on Channel Street.
New America Media, News Report, Valeria Fernández, Posted: Dec 08, 2011
MESA, Ariz.–Now that the architect of Arizona’s harsh anti-immigrant bill (SB 1070) has been recalled by voters and no longer represents Mesa, a group of citizens wants to take the immigration issue up a notch. They propose that the city adopt guiding principles that focus on keeping immigrant families together and enforcing the law in a humanitarian way.
(bw) Today, if I want to buy postage stamps, mail a letter or drop off a package – there is a post office offering all those services within 16 minutes from where I work. But soon, it could disappear, due to a $5.1 billion dollar deficit and tight new legislative restrictions imposed on the U.S. Postal Service. Continue reading