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Valley Public Radio Staff
Quality of Life
Tue June 14, 2011
On Quality of Life: State Prisons & County Jails; Chaffee Zoo Expansion
Segment 1 – County Jails & State Prisons - Last month the US Supreme Court ruled that California must reduce its prison population by 33,000 inmates by 2013, to improve inmate health care. And a new state law plans to shift much of that burden to county jails. We talk about the future of the state's corrections system and what it means for the Valley, with Kern County Sheriff Joel Youngblood, Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims and prisoner rights advocate Rebecca Evenson of the Prison Law Office.
Segment 2 – Chaffee Zoo Expansion - Early in the last decade, the future of Fresno's Chaffee Zoo was in doubt. The longtime fixture of Roeding Park, owned and operated by the City of Fresno was in disrepair, facing accreditation issues, and lacking a stable funding source. In November 2004, Fresno County voters passed Measure Z, a sales tax increase of one tenth of one percent to fund capital improvements and operations at the zoo. After a long process of planning and environmental impact review, the zoo's $40 million expansion is set to go before the Fresno City Council for approval later this month. We talk about the Zoo's future with Executive Director Scott Barton, and also speak with Barry Falke, President and CEO of neighboring Rotary Storyland and Playland.