Three hours after that big ball drops in New York City on Saturday – weather permitting, of course – more than 700 new laws will take effect in the State of California, changing penalties for marijuana possession, extending benefits for foster children, and banning trans-fat oil from bakeries, among hundreds of other changes. For more information, read on:
The Journal asked Stanislaus County Supervisor Vito Chiesa to look back at 2010 and ahead for 2011. The following is his perspectives on the county's past and future.
The USDA's Organic Initiative will enter its third year of helping organic producers and those looking to transition into organic production in 2011 with up to $50 million in funding.
"Increasing consumer demand for organically grown foods is providing new opportunities for small and mid-size farmers to prosper and stay competitive in today's economy," Agriculture Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan said. "The 2008 Farm Bill calls for this assistance, and we want to help these farmers protect the natural resources on their land and create conditions that help foster organic production."
The Journal asked Turlock Mayor John Lazar to look back at 2010 and ahead for 2011. The following is his perspectives on the city's past and future.
The population in the United States grew by 9.7 percent over the last decade, marking one of the slowest growth rates since the Great Depression, according to figures released Tuesday by the Census Bureau.
Community members have spoken and they want Turlock Federal Housing and Urban Development money to be spent on anti-poverty, human services and public safety rather than housing, infrastructure and public facilities. This is what city staff found after sending out a survey through local utility bills to 18,607 customers in the spring of 2010.
As new council members Bill DeHart and Forest White took their oath of office at Tuesday's Turlock City Council meeting, a striking controversy bowled into City Hall before the council voted in favor of a 51,828 sq. foot family entertainment center, which includes bowling lanes, a laser tag arena and bocce ball courts.
A once chaotic small Central Valley town has begun planning for a better and more positive future. Even as three new council members take office and a new city manager comes on board, the City of Hughson continues to strive for a stronger community - the first step, creating a strategic plan.
The California Legislature gaveled in a new two-year session on Monday, welcoming 28 new legislators. They will have little time to get settled as the state is facing a $25.4 billion budget deficit expected over the next year and a half and a state-wide unemployment rate of 12.4 percent.
In a 4-to-1 split the Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors voted to approve another round of budgetary reductions at the Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department that will force the layoffs of an additional 23 employees, including 14 patrol deputies.
Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco) has not given up hope on his Public University Transparency Bill. Despite being vetoed twice by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Yee plans on presenting it again, this time to the governor-elect on Monday.
While the City of Turlock prepares to seat a new council following the Nov. 2 election, the investigation into the party or parties responsible for the illegal "robocalls" placed during the 2008 City Council election continues. The repercussions of the investigation also continue to sow discord between council members.
Any plans to bring a Target Supercenter or a Super Wal-Mart to the area likely were dealt a fatal and final blow as Turlock's Planning Commission voted 5-2 to recommend the City Council maintain the status quo when it comes to the ban on discount superstores.
Civility was the watchword of the 2010 Turlock City Council campaign.
The Turlock City Council on Tuesday unanimously voted to assess $13,113.32 in municipal code enforcement fees against a property located at 433 S. Laurel where city-required work was not completed, despite a 90-day extension.
In a sign of recovering economic times, the City of Turlock will be hiring an Administrative Services Director, a position that has not been filled since 2009.
There are approximately 100 boards and commissions to which the Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors appoints community members and with several current vacancies for various unspecified boards as well as those unique to District 2 residents, locals interested in serving their community now have ample opportunity to do so.
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