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Latest News in Selma, CA
EXCLUSIVE: CA state senator Caballero, who represents Selma, will call for time credit audit of CDCR for suspected cop killer
California state senator Anna Caballero, whose district includes the city of Selma, will call for a time credit audit of the suspected Selma cop killer. Caballero joined Alexan Balekian on Sunday Morning Matters after Fresno county DA Lisa Smittcamp questioned the California Corrections Department and Rehabilitation of giving the suspect, Nathaniel Dixon undeserved time credit. Caballero also touched on the troubling trend of rural hospitals in jeopardy of closing down and is critical of the governor’s water allocation to the Central V...
California state senator Anna Caballero, whose district includes the city of Selma, will call for a time credit audit of the suspected Selma cop killer. Caballero joined Alexan Balekian on Sunday Morning Matters after Fresno county DA Lisa Smittcamp questioned the California Corrections Department and Rehabilitation of giving the suspect, Nathaniel Dixon undeserved time credit. Caballero also touched on the troubling trend of rural hospitals in jeopardy of closing down and is critical of the governor’s water allocation to the Central Valley.
Upon our request of the time credit signed off by the CDCR secretary at the time of Dixon’s release, a spokesperson from the CDCR offered this statement:
First off, we send our condolences to Officer Carrasco’s family, friends, colleagues, community and loved ones. His loss is tragic. We strongly condemn the actions of this individual, and he should be held accountable for this deplorable act.
In terms of his credits, I can’t speak as to which credits the DA is referring to, but per your question below, the majority of them came from the court that sentenced Dixon in the form of pre-sentencing credits—the department does not have any role in this. The pre-sentencing credits were well over four years. He also was eligible for conduct credits that have been in existence for many decades in California. See summary below.
Nathaniel Michael Dixon, 23, was sentenced to state prison to serve 5 years, 4 months from Fresno County in March 2022 following plea deals with the district attorney’s office, with the court sentencing him only for possession of a controlled substance while armed with a loaded firearm and being a felon in possession of a firearm. He received 1,612 days in pre-sentencing credits from the sentencing court for time served in county jail while awaiting trial. He was also eligible for day-for-day good conduct credits pursuant to his crimes. He was released to Fresno County Probation for post-release community supervision (PRCS) in September 2022 after completing his term as defined by law.
Vicky Waters, CDCR
It should be noted that the CDCR secretary, appointed by Newsom, who signed off on Dixon’s release was Kathleen Allison, but she retired back in December of 2022.
Fight brewing: Teachers say Fresno County school district owes them thousands of dollars
The Fresno Beehttps://www.fresnobee.com/news/local/education-lab/article271292657.html
When is an independent-study class overcrowded?That’s the gist of an ongoing dispute in Selma, where the teachers association is accusing the school district of exceeding class-size maximums — up to 50 students in one independent-study class at one time. Selma Unified says it has adhered to its contract and looks forward to “vigorously” defending itself.An arbitration judge will soon settle the matter.The case stems from two educators each regularly having up to 47 students who were taking ...
When is an independent-study class overcrowded?
That’s the gist of an ongoing dispute in Selma, where the teachers association is accusing the school district of exceeding class-size maximums — up to 50 students in one independent-study class at one time. Selma Unified says it has adhered to its contract and looks forward to “vigorously” defending itself.
An arbitration judge will soon settle the matter.
The case stems from two educators each regularly having up to 47 students who were taking independent-study courses last school year; once, a teacher had 50 students, the teachers association alleges.
In lieu of hiring another educator, the school district saves money by “placing students in overcrowded conditions that limit teachers’ effectiveness,” the teachers association claims. It’s demanding over $25,000 in unpaid compensation for the teachers.
In a phone interview with The Bee’s Education Lab, the district’s chief human resources officer denied the claims that the school district violated class-size rules and didn’t pay teachers for their work. “We assert that Selma Unified School District has followed the collective bargaining agreement without a violation,” Wayne Dixon said.
Independent study is an optional alternative to traditional classroom instruction that often requires little or no educator supervision. Independent-study classes are aligned with state standards and school district course requirements just as regular classes.
Based on the collective bargaining contract in Selma Unified, the class-size cap is 32 students for middle and high school. The contract doesn’t differentiate class maximums for independent study.
By law, independent study education should be “substantially equivalent” to classroom instruction, according to the California Department of Education. The state education department advises districts to keep the student-teacher ratio for independent-study classes the same as the ratio for traditional classes. In fact, the CDE recommends a 25:1 ratio so that teachers have enough time to meet students’ individual needs through direction, resources and support.
If a class size will be over the max, the Selma contract instructs the district to obtain a waiver, saying the teacher agrees to have additional students. Depending on students’ grade levels, there are formulas outlined in the contract to calculate the extra pay for the added work of having more students.
The additional pay formula considers the number of students who are over the class-size maximum and the number of days the teacher had those extra students.
One teacher submitted timesheets for $15,303 but was compensated $3,060, the teachers association said, and the other teacher submitted $16,996 but was paid $3,399, leaving a difference of $25,839.
“Both teachers used the same formula for compensation that the district had approved earlier in the year and in prior years,” association president Roxanne Garrigus-Case said. “Our position is based on what has been done in the past.”
SUSD has compensated the teachers, provided supplemental pay and followed the contractual formula based on the agreement, Dixon said.
The teachers association, according to Dixon, is inaccurately using the elementary school formula for extra pay whereas the district used the formula for secondary grade teachers.
The elementary class caps range from 27 to 32 students, depending on the grade level and if a class has students from different grade levels.
“If we used a different formula, that would be a contract violation,” Dixon said.
The teachers association contends that the district saves money with large classes. By not hiring another teacher, Selma Unified saved at least $65,000, an educator’s estimated salary and benefits, the association alleges.
Since the arbitration is pending, Dixon said he was unable to respond to the claim that Selma Unified could’ve hired more staff.
“It’s an ongoing issue that our contract and that past practice on class size and compensation is not being honored,” Garrigus-Case said about the school district, which has nearly 6,000 students and just over 300 teachers.
Going to court is the latest action the teachers association has taken in trying to resolve the issue since last year, she said.
Dixon said the school district followed the grievance procedures of the collective bargaining agreement.
Arbitration is the final grievance level, following an informal complaint, written grievance, an appeal and mediation.
“Selma Unified Teachers Association is disappointed that Selma Unified School District is willing to spend district funds fighting a legal battle,” Garrigus-Case said, “instead of compensating teachers who prioritized their students and provided the services to the district.”
This story was originally published January 23, 2023, 5:30 AM.
Selma Blair Receives Standing Ovation After Making Surprise 2022 Emmys Appearance
The 2022 Emmys truly saves the best for last.During the live telecast on Sept. 12, event organizers surprised audience members when Selma Blair graced the stage inside the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles to present the final award of the night."I am so, so honored. Thank you," Selma shared while holding back tears after receiving a sta...
The 2022 Emmys truly saves the best for last.
During the live telecast on Sept. 12, event organizers surprised audience members when Selma Blair graced the stage inside the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles to present the final award of the night.
"I am so, so honored. Thank you," Selma shared while holding back tears after receiving a standing ovation from the star-studded audience. "I am honored to be here this evening to present the final award for Outstanding Drama Series."
While the cast and crew of Succession deserves a congratulations for taking home the final award of the evening, Selma's unexpected appearance was certainly a moment for viewers both at home and in person.
The Legally Blonde star was previously diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2018. But as she continues to raise awareness about a disease that impacts the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves, Selma has also used her platform to inspire.
On Sept. 10, Selma announced she will be competing on season 31 of Dancing With the Stars this fall, alongside partner Sasha Farber.
Chris Haston/NBC via Getty Images
"I'm so happy, so invigorated by this," she told E! News. "This is a new chapter of growing my stamina and really healing. Not just healing, but finding strength and support."
Selma also said she joined the show to inspire others with disabilities and prove that you can accomplish your dreams and goals.
"Kindness and visibility is so important, to explore, be curious and expose people to differences of speech or movement," she explained. "It's for everyone at home that it resonates with."
Spoiler alert: It's going to be hard not to root for this talented contestant.
To see more 2022 Emmys red carpet moments, keep scrolling. And mark your calendars for a new season of Dancing With the Stars, airing Sept. 19 on Disney+.
Cockroach infestation among red flags that closed Fresno County food places in December
The Fresno Beehttps://www.fresnobee.com/news/local/article270858027.html
A banquet and catering kitchen, a grocery store’s food counter and a community center’s kitchen all were temporarily closed last month after Fresno County inspectors discovered various health violations.A Dec. 6 inspection at Amigos Food Market at Church and Cedar avenues in southeast Fresno revealed a lack of hot water at a handwash sink and at a three-compartment sink at the store’s hot-food counter. The food area was ordered closed, but allowed to reopen the next day after the problem was fixed.A lack of ho...
A banquet and catering kitchen, a grocery store’s food counter and a community center’s kitchen all were temporarily closed last month after Fresno County inspectors discovered various health violations.
A Dec. 6 inspection at Amigos Food Market at Church and Cedar avenues in southeast Fresno revealed a lack of hot water at a handwash sink and at a three-compartment sink at the store’s hot-food counter. The food area was ordered closed, but allowed to reopen the next day after the problem was fixed.
A lack of hot water is one of the most common violations inspectors from the Fresno County Department of Public Health find when they make their routine visits to restaurants. But different problems were found when inspectors visited two other kitchens later in the month.
At the North Point Event Center on West Avenue near Ashlan Avenue in northwest Fresno, a cockroach infestation prompted the closure of the catering company and banquet hall after an inspection on Dec. 8. The banquet hall, which shares its building with the Curry House Indian Bistro & Bar, was closed for almost two weeks before it was allowed to reopen on Dec. 20.
In Selma, a Dec. 21 inspection at the Selma SMART Center revealed a vermin infestation. The center at the Sal M. Salazar Park at the city’s southern edge was closed to allow for the problem to be solved, and it was allowed to reopen the next day.
The Fresno County Department of Public Health has about two dozen environmental health specialists who monitor more than 5,300 restaurants, snack bars, grocery stores, commissaries, delicatessens and food vendors across the county, making unannounced visits several times a year.
Restaurants also are inspected in response to complaints or other concerns from the public, including when people see what they believe are health or sanitation issues at restaurants.
Some of the county’s inspectors also are responsible for checking other facilities such as tattoo or body art parlors, public swimming pools and other sites.
Inspectors run through a checklist of more than 50 issues when they visit a restaurant or food-service site.
Usually, if an inspector finds a problem, it’s the kind of thing that can be quickly remedied without a closure order – things such as having enough bleach in the water used to wipe down food-preparation counters, replacing lids on food containers in the walk-in refrigerator, resupplying paper towels in the restrooms or reminding employees to wear gloves or hairnets and to wash their hands.
But other things that represent an immediate danger to health and safety will trigger a closure until the problem can be solved. Those can include a lack of hot water for washing dishes or hands; infestations of rodents, cockroaches or other insects; refrigerators that don’t keep cold food cold enough and steam tables that don’t keep food hot enough to inhibit bacteria; or plumbing problems including backed-up drains and toilets.
Fresno County makes its restaurant inspection reports publicly available at fresnohealthinspections.org, but some of the more recent inspection reports have yet to appear on the site.
This story was originally published January 12, 2023, 11:19 AM.
The smell of pizza and nostalgia hang in the air at Pizza Planet; Selma restaurant, arcade up for sale
Pizza Planet/Video World has been a staple for Valley residents looking for a night of fun since the mid-‘90s, but it may soon be game over.Owner Gary Marshall is looking to retire, and is selling the iconic restaurant and arcade, located at 1900 Floral Ave. in Selma.“It’s been a good run and I’ve always enjoyed it,” Marshall said. “It’s been a good experience for me, I’ve got to meet a lot of good people and we have great customers, but I’m almost 70, and the wife has been ...
Pizza Planet/Video World has been a staple for Valley residents looking for a night of fun since the mid-‘90s, but it may soon be game over.
Owner Gary Marshall is looking to retire, and is selling the iconic restaurant and arcade, located at 1900 Floral Ave. in Selma.
“It’s been a good run and I’ve always enjoyed it,” Marshall said. “It’s been a good experience for me, I’ve got to meet a lot of good people and we have great customers, but I’m almost 70, and the wife has been saying, ‘When are we going to retire?’ and she’s right. It’s time.”
Marshall said that the community has always supported his establishment and it’s been a popular place for local sports teams to celebrate after a game. Dozens of Pop Warner football trophies and photos decorate the walls.
“The kids that I’ve seen grow up and come up through the ranks, they’ll come in and say, ‘I used to come in here when I was a kid,’ and they come in and play the same games,” Marshall said.
“And now they have kids that are playing,” said Marshall’s wife, Anita.
Marshall owned a small Selma video rental store in the early ‘90s, but looked to expand to better compete with a new corporate chain that would soon be coming to town.
“I knew Blockbuster was coming in so I decided to go big or get out,” he said, adding jokingly, “I kind of wish I had gotten out.”
The expansion of Blockbuster Video in the ‘90s steamrolled over most independent, mom and pop video stores before ultimately closing most if its own locations in 2014. Despite the fact that the video rental side of Pizza Planet has been discontinued, Marshall is satisfied with the knowledge that Pizza Planet outlasted the mega corporation.
“That was my intention. I’m just hard-headed enough to say, ‘I’m going to outlast the big boy,’” he said.
Pizza Planet (aka Video World) opened in its current location in 1996. Originally, solely a video store with a handful of pinball machines, Marshall eventually added a kitchen to serve pizza and expanded the pinball, arcade and billiards games. For about a decade, the video rentals were the business’ claim to fame and top earner, Marshall said.
The video side of the business closed up in 2015 amid a sea change that saw video rentals move to streaming and on-demand services.
“We donated thousands and thousands [of VHS tapes and DVDs] to AMVETS,” Anita said.
The business now focuses on its pizza and of course, the pinball, which has seen renewed popularity thanks to interest in ‘80s pop culture nostalgia brought about, in part, by shows like “Stranger Things.”
“The pins are actually making a strong comeback. They’re more popular than ever now,” he said, adding that he regularly sees pinball enthusiasts from all over the Valley. “I’ve got the biggest selection of pins in a 150-mile radius.”
Pizza Planet has about two dozen pinball machines, including Gilligan’s Island, Phantom of the Opera, South Park, Austin Powers, The Twilight Zone and many others, including one that many connoisseurs say is the best of all time.
“The newest one I have is Medieval Madness. That one is probably the No. 1 pin ever built. I was lucky enough to track one down about four years ago and buy it. It’s a hard-to-find item, but is well-documented as being the best pin ever built,” Marshall said.
The restaurant is also lined with classic ‘80s and ‘90s arcade games like “Mortal Kombat,” “The Simpsons,” “Marvel vs. Streetfighter,” “Ms. Pac-Man” and more.
Now Marshall is looking to sell the business and retire. He hopes that the buyers also have a love for pinball, pool and pizza that matches his own, but accepts that a buyer may have other plans.
“When you sell something, you don’t decide what they do with it, they decide that. But I would love to see them keep it with this format,” Marshall said.
Marshall, who bought his first arcade cabinet at an auction in Hanford, said that any buyer who chooses to keep the format alive will get some extra benefits.
“I talked to one guy who might want to buy who said, ‘I used to come in here all the time and eat your pizza and play your games’ and I said, ‘well, if you buy the place, you can eat the pizza all you want.’”
Pizza Planet is open from noon to 8 p.m. weekdays and noon to 9 p.m. on weekends. It is closed on Monday.