Jul 15, 2019

Afraid of the Big One? Consider Sacramento, which avoids the worst California quakes

From the LAT's GEORGE SKELTON: "Want to be safe from earthquakes in California? You’d need to endure summer scorchers, winter flood threats and full-time politicians. But temblors don’t threaten people living in Sacramento."


"In the state capital — River City, Sacratomato, City of Trees — earthquakes are seen only on TV. Here, you’ll escape the Big One. Sacramento is one of the safer places,” acting State Geologist Tim McCrink says. “We don’t have that many active faults in the area.”


"In fact, Sacramento — based on historical records and fault maps — is unquestionably the safest earthquake refuge among all of California’s major metropolitan areas."


Chevron ordered to halt oil spill into California canyon


AP: "California regulators say Chevron has not done enough to stop a massive oil spill that dumped about 800,000 gallons of crude oil and water into a Kern County canyon, and they want the company to take further action to halt the flow."


"The seep out of the ground where Chevron injects steam to extract underground crude oil has been happening on and off since May."


"The state has issued Chevron a notice of violation ordering it to stop steam injections around the area where the seep was occurring in the large Cymric Oil Field about 35 miles (56 kilometers) west of Bakersfield. This week Chevron said no new fluid had come to the surface since Tuesday and that 90 percent of the released material has been recovered."


READ MORE related to Energy, Environment & Wildfires: How will the new wildfire insurance fund affect you ? Here are some answers -- The Chronicle's KATHLEEN PENDER; PG&E made big plans to reduce wildfire risk. Here's its progress so far -- The Chronicle's JD MORRIS;' Huge California ranch on sale at $72M --  The Chronicle's ROLAND LI; Afraid of the Big One? Consider Sacramento, which avoids the worst California quakes -- LA Times's GEORGE SKELTON


Nepotism at California state agency leads to discipline for public employee


Sacramento Bee's WES VENTEICHER: "The Department of Industrial Relations has begun dispensing discipline over findings that its former director and her subordinates violated nepotism rules to promote the director’s daughter and a friend, according to a letter the department sent to the State Personnel Board."


"In April, the personnel board ordered the department to review an investigation that concluded former director Christine Baker had inappropriately swayed hiring decisions, and to take any appropriate disciplinary action."


"Baker has left the department, as has her daughter and some of the other employees involved."


ICE says it doesn't conduct 'raids' but fearful Valley immigrants remain 'on high alert'


Sacramento Bee's ASHLEIGH PANOO: "Even as U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement operations failed to take form on a grand scale nationally Sunday, immigrant advocates in the Central Valley were not ready to breath easy."


"There’s no relief, even if something was to not happen,” said Ariana Martinez, a coordinator with Faith in the Valley’s Valley Watch Network. “We have to be continuously on high alert."


"Although Fresno was not on the list of cities expected to be targeted, undocumented residents still remain fearful of deportation, Martinez said. The New York Times reported that only a few arrests took place Sunday across a limited number of cities, but more sweeps would take place over the week at a smaller scale than originally planned."


READ MORE related to Immigration: Trump moves to end asylum protections for Central  Americans -- APFew ICE raids, but much hyped plans stoke fears in immigrant communities -- The Chronicle's GWENDOLYN WU/DOMINIC FRACASSA/JK DINEEN/EDUARDO MEDINA; Threatened ICE raids create more political noise than police action -- LA Times's CINDY CARCAMO/ANDREA CASTILLO/MOLLY HENNESSY-FISKE/LOUIS SAHAGUN/GIULIA MCDONNELL NIETO DEL RIO


For Harris and Warren, black women are key to their momentum


LA Times's MELANIE MASON/TYRONE BEASON: "Regina Banks’ favorite presidential candidate is Kamala Harris, followed closely by Elizabeth Warren."


"Except when she prefers Warren, followed closely by Harris."


“It depends on what time of the day you ask me who I’m feeling,” said Banks, 40, a policy analyst who lives outside Sacramento."


The 'missing' moon tapes expected to fetch $2M? NASA says, not so fast


Sacramento Bee's SCOTT LEBAR: "The moon race of the ‘60s has transformed into a race to the auction block, with Sotheby’s currently touting videotapes of Neil Armstrong’s and Buzz Aldrin’s 1969 walk in the Sea of Tranquility, saying they are so unusual they could fetch $2 million."


"NASA, though, has responded with, slow your roll. These are not the tapes it was looking for."


The former intern who bought a batch of tapes for $218, according to various news reports, has claimed to have “missing” tapes of the historic first steps on lunar soil, and Sotheby’s is pitching Saturday’s auction, on the 50th anniversary of the moon landing, as the “earliest, sharpest and most accurate surviving video images of man’s first steps.” And: “The significance of the videotapes was recognized during NASA’s fruitless search at the time of the 40th anniversary of the lunar landing for its original SSTV recordings.”


Does California need a math tutor? Report finds students aren't so great with numbers


Sacramento Bee's HANNAH WILEY: "California students might know their A-B-Cs, but they’re struggling with their 1-2-3s."


"A July report from the Public Policy Institute of California found students throughout the state are making “significant progress” on English assessments, but experiencing “stalled gains” in mathematics."


"The institute found that third graders improved their English test scores by 10 percent since 2015 on the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium, and improved another 10 percent in their scores by sixth grade. The same students performed near the national average on the National Assessment of Educational Progress test."


Healthy living can counteract a high genetic risk of Alzheimer's, study suggests


LA Times's MARILYNN MARCHIONE: "A healthy lifestyle can reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer's or other forms of dementia even for those with a higher genetic risk of developing these mind-destroying diseases, according to new research."


"People with a high genetic risk and poor health habits were about three times more likely to develop dementia than were people with a low genetic risk and good habits, researchers reported this week at the Alzheimer's Assn. International Conference in Los Angeles."


"Regardless of how much genetic risk someone had, a good diet, adequate exercise, limiting alcohol and not smoking made dementia less likely, the study authors found."


Joe Biden unveils his alternative to 'Medicare for all'


LA Times's EVAN HALPER/NOAM N LEVEY: "Joe Biden unveiled a robust plan to expand Obamacare by adding a public program that all Americans could choose, as the former vice president argued Monday that medical insurance can be made universally accessible without scrapping the nation’s current model of delivering healthcare."


"The Biden plan would provide tens of billions of dollars in new healthcare spending in a bid to lower the out-of-pocket costs that families face for healthcare, make Medicare-style coverage available to any American who wants it and significantly expand tax credits to help people pay for insurance."


"He would pay for that primarily by raising capital gains taxes on those earning more than $1 million, according to a summary Biden’s campaign provided to reporters in advance."


Leave the US, Trump tells liberal congresswomen of color


AP's JONATHAN LEMIRE/CALVIN WOODWARD: "Starkly injecting race into his criticism of liberal Democrats, President Donald Trump said Sunday that four congresswomen of color should go back to the "broken and crime infested" countries they came from, ignoring the fact that all of the women are American citizens and three were born in the U.S. His attack drew a searing condemnation from Democrats who labeled the remarks racist and breathtakingly divisive."


"Following a familiar script, Republicans remained largely silent after Trump's morning broadsides against the four women. But the president's nativist tweets caused Democrats to set aside their internal rifts to rise up in a united chorus against the president."


"House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Trump wants to "make America white again." Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, after jousting for days with Pelosi, said Trump "can't conceive of an America that includes us."

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