• Richard Chapman

The Kern County Board of Supervisors last week approved a new and innovative economic development incentive program that will position Kern County to compete globally for new business investment and to retain and grow existing businesses.

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What a tangled web we weave. The Sabrina Limon/Jonathan Hearn case is yet one more cautionary tale about how when you step over well-set guard rails and other boundaries and venture into purely pleasure-seeking everything-goes territory, life can get hopelessly wrecked. Robert Limon is dead,…

  • Ryan Kalmbach

Over the last few weeks, the citizens of Bakersfield have come face-to-face with a challenge currently confronting city and state governments across America: declining sales tax revenues. California cities are experiencing persistent budget shortfalls and deficits. One of the main culprits o…

  • Louis Medina and Jan Hefner

Exactly six years since its 11/11/11 inauguration in response to the death of Seth Walsh, a Tehachapi teen who killed himself in 2010 after suffering bullying in school for being gay, the Gay & Lesbian Center of Bakersfield officially announced that it is changing its name to The Center …

It’s not surprising that a president who based his celebrity on a television reality show named “The Apprentice” would be supportive of apprenticeships. But it is encouraging President Trump is calling attention to a tried-and-true worker training program that is helping close the nation’s c…

  • Barry Rosenfeld

On Veterans Day we are given the opportunity to recognize those soldiers that have sacrificed so much in order to protect our freedom. In the past, I have shared the story of my uncle, Carl B. Rosenfeld, who died aboard a B-24 in April 1944. But today I want to share the story of my wife Pat…

  • BY NORM HAUGHNESS

So this week it’s a small Texas church, with 26 people shot dead, 14 of them children, and 20 wounded. A few weeks earlier, in Las Vegas, it was 59 dead, about 500 wounded. Next week, maybe more, maybe fewer; but get ready, it’s bound to happen. America knows this, and simply waits for the n…

  • BY JENNIFER SELF

She was a chef, manicurist, bookkeeper, wife, mother and gifted church organist, but it was her later-in-life decision to become a physician that got to the heart of what Mary Ann Erickson was all about: a warm and tireless healer who knew that listening and empathy were every bit as importa…

  • Sonya Christian

One year ago, today the community voted Yes on Measure J. A yes vote meant sharing in a renewed vision of what moved the community to start Bakersfield College 104 years ago, and 61 years ago to start building the beautiful campus on Panorama Drive. Thank you for your support and thank you f…

  • Bob Clifford

As the debate rages over gun control in America, there's little solace new gun laws can bring to the victims of the senseless tragedy that occurred Oct. 1 in Las Vegas, including Jack Beaton and Melissa Ramirez, both of Bakersfield; Bailey Schweitzer, 20, of the Bakersfield area; and Kelsey …

  • By David J. Whalen

President Trump was reported in July to have suggested that the United States needed to increase its nuclear arsenal tenfold. Earlier in the year, Prime Minister Putin told Trump he was willing to extend New START (the most recent Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty); Trump refused. Both of thes…

  • John Nilon

I hope you fellow community members can join me in the near universal excitement for the approval of a music festival site here in Kern County. Like most of us, I am concerned about the ongoing safety and quality of life in our community. As I study our future, I see innovative economic deve…

A while ago I decided to unplug from my social feeds and mainstream media. I was so fatigued with watching our federal representatives slow-play every issue, the unprecedented amount of filibusters from the minority agenda, and the constant political memes of the president with the inaccurat…

There’s a reason homeownership is still considered the “American Dream.” A home is a place to create memories, a means for building wealth, and a pathway to strength and stability in the communities we all call home.

My dad was a great hunter and he taught me how to survive off the land in rural Minnesota. He believed there was no reason I shouldn’t capture, kill and prepare any form of edible animal. I have killed and prepared many animals. (Perhaps that has something to do with why I am a vegetarian to…

  • Gerald Cantu

The Dolores Huerta Foundation and Dignity in Schools Campaign California  joined forces this past week to call on schools across the nation to end the pushout of students of color. This year’s theme was “Education is a human right! We will not give up the fight!”

Imagine. Pre-electricity, no moon. It's late October, and the people whisper: This is the season for witchery, the night the spirits of the dead rise from their graves.

California’s Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation reports its three-year recidivism rate has gone down to around 50 percent. Sounds good, doesn’t it? But a close look at the changes in the criminal codes and laws affecting recidivism over the last several years helps us to more clear…

  • By Lisa Green and Kristin Barnard

In recent years the topic of domestic violence has received increased attention in the media. News outlets have put a spotlight on high profile cases, from the murder of Nicole Brown-Simpson and Ron Goldman in the early 1990s, singer Rhianna’s assault by then-boyfriend Chris Brown in 2009, N…

  • By Lyle Martin

The community and the Bakersfield Police Department lost a good man this summer. Sgt. Dennis Moore, a colleague and friend, passed away suddenly and unexpectedly on Aug. 9. He understood the inherent dangers of the profession and faithfully served the citizens of Bakersfield for more than 20 years.

  • James Burns

In the land of Mythiopia, each day an artist painted a colorful rainbow on a new canvas delivered that morning. The artist sold each painting at day’s end, donating part of the proceeds for the purchase of tickets so that Mythiopians might attend that night’s concert. In turn, their talented…

  • Kerry McGill

There has been a lot of news about the bad behavior of a few fraternities on a few campuses in the last several months. The examples set by those few are tarnishing the reputations of the many good men and fraternities. I would like to share my experiences to illustrate the positive side.

  • Gabriel Thompson

In August of 1936, a young writer named John Steinbeck set out in an old bakery truck to capture the lives of California’s migrant farmworkers. With a notebook in hand, he toured the San Joaquin Valley, spending much of his time in the Bakersfield area, which would lead to his classic 1939 n…

This year, we learned that Kern County residents continue to suffer more from diabetes, heart disease and obesity than many other citizens in the state. That’s cause for alarm — and for taking action. Fortunately, our citizens — when challenged — have demonstrated that they can muster soluti…

  • By JOCK O'CONNELL

Unlike American seaports along the East and Gulf Coasts, California’s maritime gateways are very seldom visited by violent weather. They just have other existential threats to deal with, like the burden of finding the billions of dollars it will take to adhere to draconian air-quality standa…

Every day, everybody goes home alive and well. Those are the words of Aera Energy proclaiming their commitment to a safe workplace. Simple, yet powerful, and there are hundreds of safety professionals across Kern County who feel the same way about their workplaces. Gone are the days Upton Si…

During the Planning Commission hearing on Oct. 12, the marijuana users were out in force. While many individuals spoke for Option A, which is a ban on all marijuana in the County proper, there appeared to be even more present that supported Option B, which allows sales of marijuana in limite…

  • William Bezdek, M.D.

President Trump has just made it easier for employers to deny women insurance coverage for contraceptives. Stated another way, employers can limit important preventive medicines, thus limiting the rational ability of their employees to control their reproductive life by simply claiming these…

  • By Matt Constantine and Tom Corson

Kern County lost 117 children in 2016. Too many of these deaths were tragedies that may have been prevented. No matter the circumstance, precious lives were taken from our community too soon. Each child represents immense pain and loss for many family members, friends and neighbors.