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How The White House Got 2 Pharma Rivals To Work Together On COVID-19 Vaccine

President Biden said on Tuesday that a key milestone in the fight against COVID-19 could be reached two months faster than earlier projected. By the end of May, there should be enough vaccine doses for every adult in America, he said — a dramatic improvement to his initial timetable for late July. A turning point in speeding up that pledge came a few weeks ago, on a Sunday afternoon in early February, during a phone call with Johnson & Johnson executives that had been planned for 15 minutes...

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Clay River

Yosemite and the Sierra Nevada foothills are home to the Southern Sierra Miwuk Nation, but the tribe has been enmeshed in a decades-long battle for recognition by the Bureau of Indian Affairs. To learn more about the current status of that fight, and how it’s been shaped by COVID-19, Valley Edition Host Kathleen Schock spoke with Clay Muwin River, managing director of the Miwumati Family Healing Center.

Arthur Moye and Chantel Wapner

Restrictions on businesses designed to slow the spread of COVID-19 have been devastating for some entrepreneurs. But some Black-owned businesses say the power of community has helped them to adapt, and even thrive, in these uncertain times. To learn more, Valley Edition Host Kathleen Schock spoke to Nick Hill, president and CEO of the Kern County Black Chamber of Commerce, Dee Slade, President of the African American Network of Kern County, Arthur Moye, CEO of Full Circle Brewery in Fresno, and Chanel Wapner, owner of Just My Essentials in Old Town Clovis.

 

The Fresno City Council will vote Thursday on a plan to suspend bus fares throughout the city. Councilmembers Tyler Maxwell, Esmeralda Soria and Nelson Esparza are sponsoring the Zero Fare Clean Up Act. Maxwell says it addresses equity issues in Fresno, when it comes to reliable transportation. He believes the city is already way behind.

StoryCorps

In this StoryCorps San Joaquin segment, 53-year-old Joan Yamate Taketa talks with her lifelong friend Celeste Johnston, 54, about what she has learned of her paternal family history. The two also talk about their decades-long close friendship. Joan calls Celeste the “repository of a lot of her memories” and shares a story about her father. When Joan’s father was a young boy in the United States, he travelled with his mother to Japan to retrieve his older sister, who had been going to school near Hiroshima. And then Pearl Harbor was bombed. Joan tells Celeste the rest of the story.

When Governor Gavin Newsom stopped in Fresno earlier this week, he was widely anticipated to announce that Fresno would be the site of the state’s newest mass COVID-19 vaccination clinic. The clinic, which he had alluded to earlier in the week, is expected to be run in partnership between the state and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and it would bring in thousands of vaccine doses each day beyond what the county already receives from the state.

Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

After hearing more than 100 public comments, the Kern County Planning Commission voted Friday to pass the recommendation for a proposed oil and gas ordinance that would allow the permitting of up to 40,000 new oil and gas wells over the next 20 years.

 

Representatives from the Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the League of United Latin American Citizens spoke in favor of the ordinance citing jobs for Latinx community members as a top reason. 

 

But the majority of the comments voiced concern over the new ordinance. 

 

Kristy Noble

Next week marks the one year anniversary of the fire in Porterville that destroyed the city’s public library and took the lives of firefighter Patrick Jones and Fire Captain Raymond Figueroa. It was a tragedy that shook the community and left its residents without the many resources a library provides. But a group of community members have launched a project to fill part of that void.

Two electric lifts move alongside a freshly painted mural on 7th street in downtown Sanger.  

Painters are doing touch-ups on the piece created by Valley artist Omar “Super” Huerta. 

In the center of the mural is Tom Flores. On either side of him, two football players in Raider colors. 

 

“I think it’s because of him I became a Raider fan. Because I knew from my family telling me, ‘hey that guy is from Sanger.’ And it’s like ‘OK, I’m a Raider fan now,’” says former Sanger Mayor, Frank Gonzalez. 

Jeanne Logan

When Black Americans fled the oppression of Jim Crow as part of the Great Migration, some came to the Central Valley to establish settlements like Fairmead and Allensworth. Among the largest of those communities was Cookseyville. It was founded by Sid and Olevia Cooksey, who purchased several acres of farmland in Atwater and invited family members to help them establish their own, self-sufficient community. Valley Edition Host Kathleen Schock spoke with Sid and Olevia’s granddaughter Jeanne Logan, about her memories of growing up in Cookseyville.

On this week's Valley Edition: A small initiative in Fresno County to help a few elderly women stay safe during the pandemic keeps expanding. Now, Save Las Senioras delivers groceries to over 60 recipients in rural areas.

Plus, we remember Cookseyville, one of the Valley’s most celebrated Black settlements. 

 

And one year after fire destroyed Porterville’s library, a handful of tiny libraries are springing up in its place. 

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Tracking California's Coronavirus Cases

Valley Public Radio is monitoring cases in seven counties in the San Joaquin Valley and foothills. Check back each afternoon for updates to this snapshot, and scroll down further for more detailed information. And for a statewide perspective, a team of public media reporters are gathering information from California health departments every day to keep you updated on the latest confirmed cases and deaths due to COVID-19. This dashboard also provides a localized look at COVID-19-related cases...

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