San Joaquin County Local News: Local Governments

All Local Local Governments News articles contributed by our local media allies and other local newsrooms.

Image caption: The California mental health crisis is tied to both homelessness and rising crime.
UPDATE: California’s Mental Health Crisis: How We Got Here

How the California mental health crisis emerged out of the state’s history of deinstitutionalization and laws designed to protect the mentally ill, as well as the communities around them.

Image caption: California has a goal of 6 million heat pumps cooling and heating buildings by 2030.
6 Million New Heat Pumps: Essential to California's Climate Future

Heat pumps, an energy-efficient way to both heat and cool homes, are a necessary element of California's climate goal of net zero carbon emissions. Here's what they are, how they work, and how to get one.

Image caption: The 1965 law known as the Williamson Act has been responsible for keeping about half of California's farmland out of the hands of developers.
The Williamson Act: How the Law That Protects California’s Farmland Works

The Williamson Act, passed in 1965, now keeps more than 16 million acres of farmland out of the hands of developers. Here's how the law puts the brakes on the development of California agricultural properties.

Image caption: Does California’s signature environmental law protect the state’s scenic beauty, or cause more problems than it solves?
CEQA: The Surprising Story of CA’s Key Environmental Law

The California Environmental Quality Act, CEQA, is both the state’s signature environmental legislation, and is also often named as the villain in the state’s housing shortage. But the story may not be that simple.

Image caption: The Baldwin Hills area in South Los Angeles is one region where a state conservancy would keep open land accessible to the public.
California’s 10 State Conservancies: How They Protect Parks and Open Land

How California’s 10 state conservancies buy up open land and shield it from developers to preserve the natural environment for public use.

Image caption: Long-duration energy storage, such as this thermal energy storage facility, allows renewable energy sources to operate at full capacity without overloading the power grid.
How California Leads the Race For Long Duration Energy Storage

Long-duration energy storage is essential if renewables are to become the basis for a future, carbon-neutral power grid. Here's how California is leading the race to store energy from solar, wind, and other clean sources for use whenever it's needed.

Image caption: Translated from the Greek, “Democracy” means “people power.” How much power do the people have in California?
People Power! What Is Democracy, and How Does It Work in California?

Democracy is a 2,500-year-old system of government still looked on today as the best system, because under a democratic system, the people govern themselves. But is that all there is to it? What is democracy? And how does it work …

Image caption: Since 1972, the California Coastal Commission has ruled over the state’s shoreline.
California Coastal Commission: Where It Comes From, What It Does

What is the California Coastal Commission? How one of the state’s most powerful agency protects public access to the state’s scenic coast from Mexico to Oregon.

Image caption: The Pajaro River levee broke during the 2023 atmospheric river storms, flooding the town of Pajaro.
Is California Ready for More Extreme Weather Driven by Climate Change?

This year, a series of extreme events in California and around the country have wreaked havoc, driven by climate change. How prepared are we for things to get worse?

Image caption: Since the Gold Rush era, land reclamation has cost California 90 percent of its wetlands.
How Land Reclamation Hurts California’s Environment

Since the Gold Rush era, land reclamation projects have helped to build California, but they are also damaging the state’s environment for people, plants and animals by eliminating essential wetlands.

Image caption: How California reclamation districts turned millions of acres of wetlands into fertile agricultural land, starting in the earliest days of the Gold Rush.
Reclamation Districts: Turning ‘Swamps’ Into Farmland

California has used reclamation districts to turn millions of acres of unusable swamps into fertile agricultural land, starting in the earliest days of the Gold Rush. Here’s how it happened.

Image caption: Zoning laws tell you what you can and can't build on the property you own. How does government get away with that?
How Zoning Laws Shape California and Society

Zoning laws determine what can be built and where. These laws have shaped California, but are they really just tools for social engineering? The history of zoning is closely tied to racial segregation, as well as the state's shortage of …

Image caption: The California Supreme Court has defined the state’s legal and political agenda for more than 170 years.
How the California Supreme Court Blazes Legal Trails

The California Supreme Court has kept the state at the forefront of legal issues surrounding abortion, the death penalty and same-sex marriage, starting in its earliest days in the Gold Rush era.

Image caption: Owning homes is the primary way the middle class builds wealth, and an option no longer available to most Californians.
Is California’s Housing Crisis Making Inequality Worse?

California has some of the worst economic inequality in the United States. Is the housing crisis a cause?

Image caption: Moss Landing in Monterey Bay is the world’s largest battery storage facility for solar and other renewable energy.
Solar Power and California’s Clean Energy Goals

Solar power, and a network of giant battery storage facilities, are playing an essential role in moving California toward its goal of exclusive reliance on renewable energy sources.

Image caption: California transportation history runs from railroads to today’s car culture.
California’s History of Transportation: From Railroads to Highways

The history of transportation in California has shaped the state, from the railroads to today’s highways, making the need for planning increasingly urgent. Here’s how it all happened, and where we stand today.

Image caption: Over two weekends last October, residents of Santa Cruz and Watsonville  participated in demonstration rides aboard an electric streetcar on rails.
The ‘Rail Trail’ Movement, Explained

Thousands of miles of railroad track, including some in Santa Cruz County, now sit idle. The fate of those largely abandoned tracks has become a burning controversy.

Image caption: California continues to work on legislation that would make voting easier.
Voting Rites

California keeps on taking legislative steps that will keep it ranked in the top 10 of voter-friendly states.

Image caption: There are more than 300 community service districts in California.
Community Services Districts, Explained

Community service districts can do most anything a city government can do. Here’s how they work and how to start one.

Image caption: Mosquitos kill about 725,000 people every year, worldwide.
Taking a Bite Out of the Mosquito Population

The pesky mosquito can be deadly as well as annoying. Here’s how local governments in California have been waging war on mosquitoes for more than a century.

Image caption: RCDs look after the land, whether it’s used for grazing, growing, or getting out into nature.
California Dirt

What do resource conservation districts protect? Pretty much everything that’s worth saving.

Image caption: Water is a human right under California law, but it doesn’t always work out that way.
Agriculture and Water Shortages in the State’s Breadbasket, Explained

Residential wells are drying up in the state’s main agricultural region at the same time that agricultural businesses consume almost 90 percent of the water there.

Image caption: States have expansive powers to protect the health of the general public.
The State’s Broad Power to Protect Public Health, Explained

Since long before the COVID-19 pandemic, states have possessed broad authority to protect public health, even to suspend laws and commandeer private property. Here’s why, and how it works.

Image caption: California's sprawling public education system encompasses approximately 10,500 schools.
California’s Education System: How the Bureaucracy Works

How California's extensive public school system is organized and managed, explained.

California Local Pin Marker From Manteca Bulletin...

The Manteca City Council is moving forward to increase maximum member compensation from the current $600 per month to a maximum of $1900 per month, to take effect in December.

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California voters narrowly passed Proposition 1, Gov. Gavin Newsom’s measure to fund mental health housing. He’s prodding counties to use the money quickly.

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Residents and supporters of self-governing homeless "Camp Resolution" marched to Sacramento city hall on May 15 in opposition of city plans to close the camp.

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In its May 14 meeting, the Sacramento City Council unanimously approved a plan to encourage residents and businesses to replace gas appliances with electric.

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Image for display with article titled Manteca Proposes 1% Sales Tax Increase to Pay for Emergency Services and Road Repairs

Manteca voters may be asked to raise the city’s sales tax rate to 9.25 percent to improve police and fire services and street repairs, City Manager Toni Lundgren said.

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In their May 14 meeting, the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors approved $1.1 million in increased funding to be distributed across 19 fire districts in the county.

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Mosquito vector control agencies are preparing for mosquito season in San Joaquin and Sacramento counties.

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The City of Manteca has deployed additional license plate readers and red light cameras to fight crime and reduce traffic incidents.

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The Elk Grove City Council voted to approve the move of the Sacramento Zoo to a 100 acre lot at Kammerer Road and Lotz Parkway.

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Sacramento is seeking public comment on its "Urban Forrest Plan" to increase the trees in the city with priority given to areas in North and South Sacramento.

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Image for display with article titled McKinley Park’s $15.6M Facelift Also Restoring Hope for a Neglected Stockton Neighborhood

BRENDA HUGGINS HAS lived a few blocks from McKinley Park in South Stockton for all of her life. And she’s thrilled her childhood playground is about to get a much-needed facelift.

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Monthly water use in Manteca is almost 90 million gallons less than in 2013, despite a population growth of 17,000 since.

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More than 6,000 residents live outside the targeted 5-minute accident, fire and police response-time zone in southwest Manteca.

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Two bicycle rodeos hosted by the Ripon Police Department will take place at the Ripon Community Center in May.

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Development of hundreds of homes is being proposed for North Tully Road.

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The Ripon City Council approved funding to repair the foot bridge over the Stanislaus River, closed to use since being damaged by a falling tree in October 2023.

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The City Council of Lodi unanimously approved the appointment of Scott Carney as City Manager.

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Statements by two Tracy City Councilmembers have been issued announcing their candidacy for mayor.

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There are questions over the arrest of Stockton Unified trustee AngelAnn Flores.

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Sacramento City Manager Howard Chan on Tuesday released a budget proposal outlining a plan to close the $66 million deficit staff warned of a couple months ago by increasing fees and cutting services. 
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