Longtime Inland Empire journalist and KVCR contributor Cassie MacDuff and KVCR's Ken Vincent review some of the Inland Empire's top news stories this week, including:

- The Inland Empire will be getting a new area code;

- the sales tax rate will go up in some Riverside County cities in April, and;

- legislation has been introduced to restore revenue to four Riverside County cities.

Call it the first debate in the race to be the next Governor of California. 

Three of the most prominent Democratic candidates running for the office in 2018 met at a California Charter Schools Association conference yesterday (Thursday). 

The talk focused on education, but as Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports, the candidates showed outlines of their larger platforms.

A California lawmaker wants to let bars stay open two hours longer.  The proposal from San Francisco Democratic state Senator Scott Wiener would push back the closing time for bars from 2 a.m. to 4.  Capital Public Radio's Daniel Potter reports.

After a Wednesday gathering of CSU Trustees this week, it looks like tuition for Cal State students is on the rise.  KVCR's Ken Vincent has more.

On a recent visit to the KVCR Studios, three ladies from the Baldy View Soroptimist Club explained the reason for and details about the film festival they will host in Rancho Cucamonga on April 2.  KVCR's Jhoann Acosta conducted the interview.

Dan Tuffs for KPCC

At the Jurupa Valley Unified School District's Stone Elementary School in Riverside, teacher Ron Morris leads his kindergarten students in bilingual song to help teach language, culture, and diversity. 

Reporter Deepa Fernandes prepared this report, broadcast nationwide on NPR's "Morning Edition" this morning.

Police confirmed yesterday (Tuesday) that two 15-year-old Banning High School students were taken into custody for allegedly plotting a campus shooting.  More from KVCR's Ken Vincent.

Gun Safety Bills Moving Through California Legislature

Mar 22, 2017

Two gun safety bills have gained initial approval in the California Senate.  As Capital Public RAdio's Ja'Nel Johnson reports, the measures passed their first committee votes yesterday (Tuesday).

A woman accused of abandoning her 2-year-old daughter at a Riverside supermarket pleaded not guilty yesterday (Tuesday) to felony and misdemeanor charges, but was not released from custody as she had anticipated.  KVCR"s Ken Vincent has more.

Inland Empire Economic Partnership

A couple of days before he delivers his 2017 Inland Empire Economic Forecast at an annual luncheon at the Doubletree Inn in Ontario on Thursday, Inland Empire Economic Partnership Chief Economist John Husing recounts to KVCR's Ken Vincent how his 2016 forecast panned out.

San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department

A Redlands man accused of shooting a San Bernardino sheriff's deputy and of murdering a motorist in Highland pleaded not guilty in court yesterday (Monday).  More from KVCR's Ken Vincent.

Screenshot from KTLA 5 TV, Los Angeles

A woman accused of abandoning her 2-year-old daughter at a Riverside supermarket may be released from jail on her own recognizance if her family agrees to let her stay with them.  More from KVCR's Ken Vincent.

Two Democratic lawmakers say it's time to change how California's criminal justice system handles children.  They've co-authored a bill that would keep children under 12 from prosecution in juvenile court.  Capital Public Radio's Julia Mitric reports.

flickr via Capital Public Radio

A $3-billion proposal making its way through the California Legislature would go toward improving local and state parks and coastal protection.  The proposed bond issue – written by an Inland Empire-area legislator - would give special attention to constructing and improving local parks in the IE and other underserved areas of the state.  If it makes it out of the Legislature, the giant parks bond would have to be approved by voters. The California Report’s John Sepulvado has more.


California's high-speed rail project will be back in court this week - with the return of a legal challenge that threatens a crucial funding source.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Adler has more.

After 3 years of reconstruction and a lot of last-minute preparation over the past weekend, the 91 Freeway between Riverside and Orange County through Corona opened all lanes to traffic this morning.  KVCR's Ken Vincent has more.

Governor Jerry Brown and the oil industry are both pushing to preserve California's struggling cap-and-trade program.  But that will require support from Democratic lawmakers who have doubts about the program.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Bradford reports.

Many members of Congress enjoy politically safe districts.  Former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger says their districts are too safe, adding that the average margin of victory in the U.S. House was 37 percentage points in last November's election.  Capital Public Radio's PolitiFact reporter Chris Nichols checked out whether Schwarzenegger pumped up this figure.

Longtime Inland Empire journalist and KVCR contributor Cassie MacDuff and KVCR's Ken Vincent review some of the Inland Empire's top news stories this week, including:

- Commuters onthe 91 Freeway will finally get some relief;

- last week we talked about the deficit Riverside County is facing; this week, supervisors gave raises to top health system executives, and;

- 1,500 endangered desert tortoises will be relocated off of the Twentynine Palms Marine base.


San Bernardino County authorities have captured a suspect in a rash of shootings - including one murder - around the IE this week.  Because of the severity of the danger he posed to the community, the suspect is being held on $25 million bail.  KVCR's Ken Vincent has more.

California officials have proposed spending more than $400 million over ten years to slow the shrinkage of the state's largest lake, the Salton Sea, southeast of the Coachella Valley.  More from KVCR's Ken Vincent.

President Trump has approved federal disaster assistance for California.  As Capital Public Radio's Amy Quinton reports, the move will help communities recover from major storms that hit the state in January.

The University of California's Board of Regents yesterday (Thursday) debated limiting the number of students who can enroll from out of state.  Such students bring in more tuition dollars, but state lawmakers want plenty of room left for students from California.  Capital Public Radio's Daniel Potter reports.

Several lanes of the 91 Freeway through Corona will be shut down intermittently from today through Sunday as crews make preparations for the opening of the newly-expanded corridor next week.  KVCR's Ken Vincent has more.

The Trump administration can expect a litigious confrontation with California after it announced a review of fuel efficiency rules for cars and trucks.  As Capital Public Radio's Amy Quinton reports, state officials have made clear California won't back down from pursuing its own course to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Ben Adler / Capital Public Radio

"Awkward" doesn't begin to describe the spot Democratic state Senate leader Kevin de Leon found himself in yesterday (Wednesday).  At a rally for his bill that seeks to protect California immigrants from federal deportations, advocates pressured de Leon not to weaken the measure.  But as Capital Public Radio's Ben Adler reports, he may have no choice if he wants it to pass.

Volunteer tax preparers are available to help lower-income taxpayers in the Inland Empire prepare their tax returns and get tax credits that they otherwise might not know they're entitled to... which could result in some some taxpayers getting money back from the government that they might have missed by filling out their forms without help.  KVCR's Rick Dulock has more.

Republican state Senator Pat Bates, from Laguna Niguel in Orange County, has been elected the new Minority Leader in the state Senate.  More from KVCR's Ken Vincent and Capital Public Radio's Ben Adler.

Southern California has a new acting top prosecutor, after the Justice Department asked U.S. Attorney Eileen Decker to resign.  Decker, an Obama appointee, directed the government's legal strategy following the Dec. 2, 2015 San Bernardino terrorist attack.  More from KVCR's Ken Vincent.