Lois Henry

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    LOIS HENRY: GET may have trouble justifying proposed facilities

    By Lois Henry
    Saturday, Jan 24 2015 10:03 PM

    Looks like high speed rail may have saved taxpayers a boatload of money. (Note: For those who don't know the definition of "ironic," this would be it.)

    You're probably wondering how the $68 billion project -- some say boondoggle -- is a tax saver. Well, it apparently put the brakes on a planned $40 million new compound for Golden Empire Transit (GET).

    Before we get in to how the bus agency, which dragged this community through a bruising five-week strike last summer, saying it didn't have enough money to give its employees a 12 percent raise over three years, has $40 million for new buildings, let's talk about high speed rail.

    To settle a lawsuit brought by the City of Bakersfield recently, the High Speed Rail Authority agreed to...

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    LOIS HENRY: Got a political agenda? At least be honest about it

    Sometimes I don't know what to make of my media brethren. They approach the oil industry with a great deal of skepticism and scrutiny. That's exactly as it should be. Meanwhile, however, environmental groups are given a pass. Even when...

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    LOIS HENRY: Another study points to Judicial Council wrongs

    The Legislature needs to get off its duff and take back spending authority from the Judicial Council. Those guys might be really smart about legal stuff but, frankly, they don’t know the pointy end of a pencil when it comes to keeping...

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    LOIS HENRY: It's good to be a water lawyer, especially now

    I thought it'd be interesting to study up on groundwater rights. Yes, I know how weird that sounds. But I had a reason. The groundwater legislation passed last year says repeatedly that nothing in the law would change existing...

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    LOIS HENRY: Fallowing used to be a dirty word, but not anymore

    A few years ago, no one in the ag or water worlds would dare utter the "f" word, even amongst themselves. Yesterday, I heard it used openly. On the radio, no less. I'm talking about "fallowing," or purposely retiring productive farmland....

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    LOIS HENRY: I actually have something nice to say about Facebook

    The first Facebook post went up on Friday Sept. 13, 2013, but I didn't see it right away. Someone called me about it, and when I checked Facebook the following Monday, sure enough, it was true: Steve Swenson had pancreatic cancer. From...

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    LOIS HENRY: Creating a new generation of scholars starts here

    Pondering your New Year's resolutions? Here's one: Improve the community. How, you ask? Help a child learn to read better. I promise, this is a resolution you can stick with, it works, and you will love it. Yes, I'm beating the drum,...

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    LOIS HENRY: She's a Christmas gift to our entire community

    I'm not taking a swing at anyone today. Hey, it's Christmas Eve. Even I have a heart ... sometimes. Instead, I wanted to update you on one of my newest favorite charities, Em's Treat 'Em Sweet. Mostly, it's my newest favorite because of...

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    LOIS HENRY: Is county shelter really worth an extra $2 million?

    Only in government would your workload be cut by half but not your budget or number of employees. Specifically, I'm talking about the shelter operations of the Kern County Animal Services Department. I got to looking at -- and puzzling...

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    LOIS HENRY: Oliver jurors weren't offered a middle ground

    As we were waiting for a verdict in the Bryan Oliver case, a co-worker asked if others felt the jury -- which ultimately hung on both counts -- was inept. I said no. They were just regular people asked to make a terrible decision in an...


    LOIS HENRY: 7 things this storm won't do for the drought

    The recent storms (and more to come) are definitely a salve on our collectively parched psyches. But they aren't drought busters. Not by a long shot. Sorry to be a Debbie Downer, but even 50 more such storms can't make California's water...

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    LOIS HENRY: Hey, kids: More proof that water is big indeed

    In the world of water, money is always big. I’m talking capital “M” kinda money. So, Kern County’s $230,000 to hire two water consultants and a deputy County Administrative Officer to focus on the new groundwater law is on the seriously...


    New hearing on old molest case postponed

    Gerardo Gonzales' quest to undo his plea deal from nearly 30 years ago will have to wait another two months. His motion to withdraw his plea from 1987 will be heard Feb. 23. Gonzales pled no contest in 1987 to one count of felony lewd...

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