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Investigative Reports

Expert says drought did not cause Napa quake

August 27th, 2014 By Wayne Lusvardi.   Natural disasters predictably bring up speculation about causes. On radio shows, callers have been wondering whether the ongoing drought or fracking caused the 6.0 Richter scale South Napa Earthquake on Aug. 24. It's true that, just before the quake, scientists reported that a loss of 63 trillion gallons (with a "t") of water due to drought had lifted the earth’s crust...

Covered CA premiums set to spike

August 19th, 2014 By Troy Anderson.   For some time, Obamacare critics have warned that health insurance premiums would skyrocket once the Affordable Care Act went into effect. Now they say the leap in premiums, as calculated by state Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones, is just the beginning of hefty annual hikes in the years ahead. Jones recently released an analysis – conducted in response to complaints re...

Switch to almond farming hits water policy

August 12th, 2014 By Wayne Lusvardi.   Got almonds? California rice farmers are shifting to growing higher-priced almonds, whose acreage jumped by more than 50 percent last year, to offset the high price of water during the drought. But there will be many unforeseen consequences, especially as rice harvests decline. Although the data are not in yet, the shift to almonds could be so lucrative it could bring a...

Summary details high-speed rail problems

August 6th, 2014 By Kathy Hamilton.   As construction is going forward, now would be a good time to clear the air a little and summarize California’s high-speed rail project. And why not with a little humor? This month the Santa Clarita Valley Signal published a tongue-in-cheek editorial on the project. It referenced the mandate in Proposition 1A, the 2008 bond initiative voters approved that launched the pr...
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