• By Kevin Burton

In her recent Community Voices article, Caroline Farrell of the Center for Race, Poverty and the Environment claimed that California legislators are not doing enough to address air quality and climate change in the Central Valley (“Salas puts Kern residents’ health on a back burner,” June 16).

If you're interested in submitting your Community Voice click here.

  • By Patsy Ouellette

I have long been of the opinion that cancer is, to a great extent, preventable. Where’s the evidence, you might wonder. In this time of internet conspiracy theories, hyperbolic statements and hacking scams, any clear thinking person is wise to pause and be skeptical.

  • manpreet kaur FOR THE CALIFORNIAN
  • Updated

Here’s a bit of trivia for our fellow Bakersfieldians: Did you know that Punjabi is the third most spoken language in our city? While most Sikhs and Punjabi speakers are tucked away in southwest Bakersfield, our population continues to expand and we continue to grow in all aspects of communi…

  • By Caroline Farrell

Kern County and Kings County are home to some of the most polluted air in the United States. Efforts to reduce greenhouse gases are of significant importance to communities here on the ground, but our representatives in Sacramento are not helping the fight. The current rules to curb pollutio…

  • By Terry Maxwell

Over the last nine months I have repeatedly heard Bakersfield City Manager Alan Tandy claim that Judge Kenneth Twisselman had determined that 24th Street was unsafe. The impression Mr. Tandy is creating is that the traffic conditions on 24th are putting drivers at peril. Well, 24th is not a …

  • The Bakersfield Californian

The Kern River is running at a dangerously high and fast rate, as are other western-slope rivers fat with surging spring runoff from the Sierra Nevada. Parts of the Kings and Tule rivers have been shut down in Kings, Tulare and Fresno counties, and now there’s discussion about doing the same…

  • By Dick Taylor

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is composed of three main elements: the Veterans Health Administration, the Veterans Benefits Administration and the National Cemetery Administration. The VHA handles medical centers, medical outpatient clinics and vet centers. The VBA handles claims f…

  • By Bob Schwartz

We hear a new tune nowadays coming out of Washington, the song “America, the First.” It’s to replace all the old sentimental nonsense like “Over There” and “It’s a Big Wide, Wonderful World We Live In.” And there is a new old flag flying: “Don’t Tread On Me.” America first! It’s the English …

  • By Glenn Porter

Kern County Supervisors and Bakersfield City Council members are considering the future of Property Assessed Clean Energy financing. Options in the PACE program include Ygrene and HERO loans, which are ostensibly used to make “energy saving” upgrades to homes.

  • By Christopher Meyers

Persons have the legal right to reveal themselves to be bigoted cretins, or so ruled the Supreme Court in the 1978 Skoki case. In a 5-4 decision, the majority determined that the white supremacist National Socialist Party of America could legally march through the predominantly Jewish commun…

  • By Bob Smith

The Bakersfield of the past could be described like this: A small city with filthy air, high crime rates, a deteriorating downtown, no civic amenities, a bone dry river running through the middle with community pride based on the fact that we were two hours from a lot of really nice places.

  • By Sandra Larson

San Luis Obispo County just reported another death caused by valley fever. That makes five since the start of the year, with 48 confirmed cases reported during the same time frame. For the year 2016, Kern County reported 1,905 confirmed cases and six deaths. It doesn’t take a mathematician t…

  • By Terri Richmond

This month Golden Valley High School 11th grade students are engaged in a public policy project based on the Project Citizen curriculum. This process involves an examination of local issues, identification of a problem with either a faulty existing policy or no policy, research of alternativ…

  • By Wade Eagleton

Kevin McCarthy’s three announced challengers are essentially repeating the same political “wisdom” of years past: They face an uphill battle, obstructed by the staunch conservative nature of Bakersfield. They concede that all McCarthy needs to do to win re-election is stay the course.

  • By Alvin G. Sandrini

I didn’t vote for Donald Trump, but, before my Republican friends go apoplectic on me, let me say I didn’t vote for Hillary Clinton either! For the first time in more than 50 years of voting, I wrote in the name of my vice president of choice, which I later discovered wasn’t counted since he…

  • By Sal Moretti

In his celebratory Sunday romp to the dump last month, The Californian’s Herb Benham admitted unabashedly that he’s “that guy” who didn’t cover his trash load. As he was driving to the landfill, as he humorously admitted, litter flew out the back of his truck (“Hitting a dump in the road,” A…

  • By Cynthia Sarratt

Often this school year I have heard my eighth grade students say they are not concerned about graduating from middle school. These students sit in my English and reading classes day after day doing little work despite my prodding, pleading and encouragement. They say they will go to high sch…

  • By John Pryor

Criticism of Lean Six Sigma as it’s applied to the management of Kern County government is always helpful, even if it’s misleading or misguided. Addressing those criticisms creates added opportunities to help Kern residents better understand what is actually intended.


House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy should reconsider actions by the Trump administration to gut the EPA and restore the EPA rule that would require the petroleum industry to control methane from fugitive emissions associated with gas and oil production.


“In order to live and thrive, culture needs a critical space, a forum for people to reach out to one another. ... University spaces are essential as places of reflection, research and critical thinking — the structures that we must establish to fight intolerance, lies, and violence.”

  • By Richard Kemp III

Another April has come and gone. Taxes paid and, hopefully, we met the deadline and we won’t be receiving an audit notice. For marijuana advocates, another 4-20 celebration can be chalked up in the history book.

  • By David Ewert

I read with interest Kern County Supervisor Zack Scrivner’s April 24 Community Voices article, “Turning to a new way to run county government,” and attorney Michael Lukehart’s April 26 response, “Another View: County govt, not a business, is resistant to metrics.”

  • By Julie Rabinovitz

California was recently ranked first among all states for the total number of cases for chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This public health epidemic particularly hits home here in Kern County where there has been the highest reported increa…

  • By Michael Lukehart

When I read Supervisor Zack Scrivner’s April 24 paean to Lean Six Sigma (“Turning to a new way to run county government”) as a management tool to help address the budgetary issues of Kern County, bells went off in the back of my head. A little history is in order.

  • By Zack Scrivner

The past few years have been challenging economically for the County of Kern. Due to the fall in the price of oil, the county has endured budget cuts and hiring freezes, and this past year, public safety was cut to balance the budget. Anything that can save the county money and allow us to o…

  • By Vince Fong

U.S. News recently released a report ranking all of the states on budget transparency. Where did California rank on that list? Dead last — 50 out of 50. The entire study was based on one simple and common sense metric: how easily the public can access the state’s spending data. This is deepl…

  • By Norm Haughness

Our U.S. Constitution’s 8th Amendment is pretty clear: “Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishment inflicted.” Nothing obscure, no beating about the bush here.

  • By Harold Hanson

A new trend is sweeping across Kern County, offering people upgrades to their homes with energy-efficient improvements. It goes by several names, but the most common in Bakersfield is HERO — Home Energy Renovation Opportunity.