Latest News

By Vicky Boyd

Calling its move “right sizing,” the Sites Reservoir Authority recently decided to decrease the size of an off-stream water-storage project west of Maxwell after receiving input from stakeholders.

Although Farm Bureau leaders say they don’t agree with shrinking the size of the project, they nonetheless remain supportive of new water storage facilities.

By Craig W. Anderson

Demand for cheese, cream, butter and other dairy products has declined due to the Coronavirus and San Joaquin County dairy farmers are impacted by the lower demand and lower prices.Photo by Vicky Boyd

What would have been good news in any other year for San Joaquin County dairy farmers in March became less of a blessing and more of a curse as the COVID-19 pandemic arrived just as too much milk and too much cream remained on the market and dairy farmers were being asked to slow production. The contradiction wasn’t lost on veteran dairy farmer and past SJFB President Jack Hamm.

By Vicky Boyd

For the past several months, San Joaquin Farm Bureau leaders had been discussing possibly offering a suite of health and life insurance products as membership benefits. When the coronavirus pandemic struck, they knew they had to move quickly to help those in need.

“When the coronavirus epidemic came about and we started seeing layoffs, we knew it was something that was desperately needed by our members,” said SJFB President David Strecker. “We realized it was something that members might need rather than being a nice option.”

By Vicky Boyd

State regulations adopted in 2018 prohibit application of certain pesticides within 1/4 mile of a school or daycare between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. weekdays or when activities are present. But the requirements never considered the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic, which forced classroom learning to transition to home schooling.

By Craig W. Anderson

Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order allowing employees to apply for workers’ compensation if they contract the coronavirus with a presumption that it was work-related unless employers can prove otherwise.

The order notes that “any COVID-19 related illness of an employee shall be presumed to arise out of and in the course of employment for purposes of awarding workers’ compensation benefits” if the employee tests positive or is diagnosed with the disease within 14 days after being employed, following the governor’s statewide stay-at-home order of March 19.

By Vicky Boyd

For much of the week before the May 17-19 rain forecast, Linden cherry producer Ken Vogel anxiously watched weather reports and weather radar because he planned to start harvesting his Bings the week of May 18.

If it had to rain, he said, the best scenario would be light showers followed by cool weather and breezes to dry the fruit quickly.

Vogel, San Joaquin Farm Bureau first vice president, got his wish as the original 60% chance of rain evolved into a forecast of scattered showers amounting to only a few tenths of an inch.