Richard Gonzales en Senate's Immigration Reform Bill Is Declared Dead At One Year Old Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>A year-long effort to push a comprehensive immigration reform bill through the House was officially declared dead yesterday. Prospects for the bill were always dicey and the debate became more complicated by the recent wave of unaccompanied children seeking entry into the United States. NPR's Richard Gonzales has more.<p>RICHARD GONZALES, BYLINE: A key feature of the immigration reform bill was a path to citizenship for many of the 11 million people residing here illegally. Thu, 26 Jun 2014 20:20:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 43503 at Never Tell Them The Odds: Cities Vie To Host 'Star Wars' Collection A short time ago, in a city not far away, <em>Star Wars</em> creator George Lucas decided to build a museum to house his movie memorabilia and his art collection.<p>There's just one looming question: Where should it go?<p>Lucas says he'll spend $300 million of his own money to build the proposed Lucas Cultural Arts Museum and will provide a $400 million endowment after his death. In addition to holding Skywalker artifacts galore, the museum would also host Lucas' private art collection, featuring works by Norman Rockwell and N.C. Thu, 19 Jun 2014 21:42:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 43040 at Never Tell Them The Odds: Cities Vie To Host 'Star Wars' Collection Fight Over Calif. Oyster Company Splits Chefs And Land Defenders Drive just an hour and a half north of San Francisco, and you're in Drakes Estero, named for the first English explorer to lay claim to California.<p>This near-pristine, wind-whipped marine wilderness is a federally protected home for large beds of eelgrass, the base of the marine food chain. Thu, 12 Jun 2014 07:09:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 42503 at Fight Over Calif. Oyster Company Splits Chefs And Land Defenders Shooting Of Sikh Army Veteran Divides Community In late January, a mentally ill man was shot and killed by two police officers in Lodi, Calif., south of Sacramento. Tragedy often follows a confrontation between the police and a mentally ill person, but the facts of this case are in dispute.<p>The victim was a Sikh Army veteran, and his death has roiled the Sikh community and the city. On a recent Saturday evening, more than 100 people gathered at the Sikh temple in the largely agricultural community of Lodi, to remember Parminder Shergill.<p>Shergill was a 43-year-old Gulf War veteran who had served in Germany and Iraq. Thu, 29 May 2014 07:06:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 41613 at Shooting Of Sikh Army Veteran Divides Community Memories, And Mended Reputation, Reclaimed From Century-Old Wreckage Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>Ocean scientists in California have solved the mystery of the San Francisco Bay. More than a century ago, two ships collided, 16 people were killed. One ship sank and it remained on the bottom of the bay. It's exact location was unknown until now. And as NPR's Richard Gonzales reports, it was an accident that reignited racial divisions of that era.<p>RICHARD GONZALES, BYLINE: The waters were calm, not far from where the Golden Gate Bridge is today. But on the morning of August 22, 1888, a dense fog blanketed the strait. Fri, 25 Apr 2014 20:22:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 39441 at Teen Stowaway Somehow Survives Flight To Hawaii In Wheel Well The FBI is saying that a 16-year-old boy is lucky to be alive after he hid in the wheel well of a flight from San Jose to Maui. Severe temperatures and low oxygen would make survival difficult. Investigators are examining the case. Mon, 21 Apr 2014 20:05:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 39111 at San Francisco's Chinatown Hurt By Yee Scandal Transcript <p>DAVID GREENE, HOST: <p>Now, these charges against Leland Yee have been rippling through San Francisco's large Asian community. NPR's Richard Gonzales has been listening to reaction in the city's storied Chinatown.<p>RICHARD GONZALES, BYLINE: On a busy San Francisco street in Chinatown, elderly Chinese shoppers compete with curious tourists for sidewalk space. School kids run past the bright red doorways of old fraternal organizations founded back in the mid-1800s. Tue, 08 Apr 2014 09:08:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 38221 at Activists: We Want An Emancipator, Not A 'Deporter In Chief' Activists who support an overhaul of the immigration system are <a href="">angry and frustrated</a>. The immigration bill that passed in the Senate in June is stalled out. Sat, 29 Mar 2014 21:02:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 37651 at Activists: We Want An Emancipator, Not A 'Deporter In Chief' The Story Of Calif. Senator's Arrest Reads Like Pulp Fiction It's a case that has stunned California's political community: A prominent Democratic lawmaker has been accused in a federal complaint of participating in an elaborate conspiracy involving guns, gangs, drugs and bribery.<p>State Sen. Leland Yee was known as a champion of open government and gun control, but not any more. A 137-page federal affidavit accuses the lawmaker of soliciting and taking bribes from an undercover FBI agent in exchange for political favors.<p>He's also accused of gun trafficking. Not just any guns, but automatic weapons and shoulder-fired missiles. Sat, 29 Mar 2014 17:28:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 37644 at The Story Of Calif. Senator's Arrest Reads Like Pulp Fiction What A Long, Strange Trip: Salmon Are Trucking To The Pacific Ocean In California, severe drought has imperiled millions of juvenile salmon who now face waters too dry to let them make their usual spawning trip to the ocean. Wed, 26 Mar 2014 07:21:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 37386 at What A Long, Strange Trip: Salmon Are Trucking To The Pacific Ocean Businesses Help Guide Workers Down Path To Citizenship Silicon Valley companies have launched a drive to provide citizenship services on-site to employees holding green cards. The belief is that such employees become more valuable workers. Tue, 18 Mar 2014 09:24:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 36870 at Ruling On Gay Juror May Cause Ripples In Same-Sex Marriage Cases There was a small development in a case before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals this month that could have a major impact on the legal battle over same-sex marriage. The case involves a dispute between two pharmaceutical companies, a gay juror and the level of legal scrutiny directed by the appellate court.<p>The two big pharmaceutical companies, SmithKline Beecham and Abbott Laboratories, were in court over the marketing and pricing of some HIV drugs. A lawyer for Abbott wanted to keep one prospective juror off the jury because he is gay. Wed, 12 Mar 2014 20:21:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 36533 at Ruling On Gay Juror May Cause Ripples In Same-Sex Marriage Cases Gays And Lesbians Seeking Asylum In U.S. May Find A Hard Road Even through a long-distance line from Uganda, you can hear the fear and anxiety in the young man's voice. Nathan, 19, is gay. NPR is not using his surname because he fears arrest.<p>"Right now we are not safe," he says. "Because we are hearing some people say ... 'If we get you, we will kill you. Wed, 26 Feb 2014 08:37:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 35523 at Gays And Lesbians Seeking Asylum In U.S. May Find A Hard Road Flood Of Gay Marriage Cases Releasing Stream Of Federal Rulings A federal judge in Virginia struck down that state's voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage this week. It's just the latest in a string of similar rulings in conservative states, and it indicates that the strategy for winning marriage equality in federal courts is moving faster than many had expected.<p>In her ruling, U.S. Sat, 15 Feb 2014 16:29:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 34886 at Flood Of Gay Marriage Cases Releasing Stream Of Federal Rulings AOL Blames Obamacare For Changes To Retirement Benefits Transcript <p>DAVID GREENE, HOST: <p>And let's hear now from the CEO who says Obamacare forced his hand when it comes to employee benefits. Fri, 07 Feb 2014 10:12:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 34328 at Small Cuts To Food Stamps Add Up To Big Pains For Many Recipients In a rare display of bipartisanship, the House of Representatives Wednesday approved a massive five-year farm bill that costs nearly half a trillion dollars.<p>The bill includes some reductions to food stamps, known as the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, to the tune of nearly $1 billion a year. It's far less than what many Republicans had wanted. Thu, 30 Jan 2014 23:32:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 33842 at Small Cuts To Food Stamps Add Up To Big Pains For Many Recipients Immigrants Won't Be Shackled At San Francisco Court Hearings Federal immigration officials in at least one jurisdiction — San Francisco — have agreed to limit the routine shackling of immigrants who appear in court proceedings.<p><a href="">That agreement,</a> which was made public on Thursday, comes in the settlement of a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of 16 immigrants who were forced to wear metal restraints on their wrists, ankles and waists for hours at a time, even though they were not accused of violent offenses and posed no appa Sat, 25 Jan 2014 00:07:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 33465 at Immigrants Won't Be Shackled At San Francisco Court Hearings Jerry Brown Declares A Drought Emergency In California Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>In California, Governor Jerry Brown has signed an emergency drought declaration, saying his state is seeing the driest weather in about a century. This is California's third consecutive dry year with no appreciable rain in sight. As NPR's Richard Gonzales reports, cities and counties across the state are taking drastic measures.<p>RICHARD GONZALES, BYLINE: January is usually a wet month in California but there's hardly been a hint of rain. Fri, 17 Jan 2014 22:28:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 33032 at In California, Alarm Grows Over Shrinking Water Levels Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>Last week, we were shivering in depths of the polar vortex. Now another sign that Mother Nature is in charge. This time it's California, where right now it should be rainy season. Instead, there's growing alarm over a persistent lack of rain. The state is suffering its third consecutive dry year.<p>And as NPR's Richard Gonzales reports, there are calls for the governor to officially declare a drought.<p>(SOUNDBITE OF FOOTSTEPS)<p>RICHARD GONZALES, BYLINE: So, how dry is it in California? Tue, 14 Jan 2014 22:12:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 32786 at Jerry Brown Proposes A New Budget For California Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.<p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>And I'm Robert Siegel.<p>Today, California Governor Jerry Brown announced that the state's healthier finances will mean billions of dollars of new spending. The winners in the governor's proposed record budget include schools and welfare. He also wants millions spent on maintaining roads and parks.<p>But after years of cuts, Governor Brown made clear that he's keeping the purse strings tight, warning that prudence should be the order of the day. Thu, 09 Jan 2014 22:35:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 32483 at California Still Owes U.S. Billions For Unemployment Transcript <p>STEVE INSKEEP, HOST: <p>California, according to recent budget numbers, is slowly recovering from its years of multi-billion dollar budget deficits. The state is on track to turn a $2.5 billion budget surplus at the end of the current fiscal year. But that's general fund money. It does not address another gaping deficit. The state owes almost $10 billion to the federal government for money spent on unemployment benefits.<p>NPR's Richard Gonzales reports.<p>RICHARD GONZALES, BYLINE: So how did California wind up owing the federal government $9.7 billion? Thu, 12 Dec 2013 11:42:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 30732 at As Rent Soars, Longtime San Francisco Tenants Fight To Stay San Francisco has long been a desirable place to live — and that's even more true today as the city is basking in the glow of another tech boom. But the influx of new money and new residents is putting a strain on the city's housing market.<p>The city has the highest median rent in the nation, and evictions of longtime residents are skyrocketing.<p>Ground zero for San Francisco's eviction crisis is the Inner Mission District. Tue, 03 Dec 2013 08:17:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 30102 at With Robberies Up, Oakland Residents Turn To Private Cops The city of Oakland, Calif., is in the middle of a robbery epidemic. In response, some residents in several Oakland neighborhoods are taking matters into their own hands, hiring private security companies to patrol their neighborhoods.<p>Overall, robberies in Oakland are up 24 percent over the past year, with armed robberies up 45 percent. Fri, 15 Nov 2013 08:03:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 29074 at With Robberies Up, Oakland Residents Turn To Private Cops How A Free Bus Shuttle Helped Make A Small Town Take Off <em>This story is part of an ongoing project on commuting in America.</em><p>What's known as the "last mile" of a commute<strong> </strong>can be the Holy Grail for many city transportation planners. How do you get people from their major mode of transportation – like a train station – to their final destination?<p>Perhaps your last mile is a drive home from a subway or train station — but these days, many cities and towns are trying to eliminate cars as much as possible. Some are planning for streetcars to take commuters on that last leg. Others rely on buses. Wed, 13 Nov 2013 08:23:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 28896 at How A Free Bus Shuttle Helped Make A Small Town Take Off San Franciscans Nix Waterfront Development Plans Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>The subject of affordability in American cities came up in a referendum yesterday in San Francisco. Voters rejected measures that would have given a green light to a major luxury condo development. The city is enjoying a construction boom. And some San Franciscans saw this vote as a fight over the kind of city they want.<p>Here's NPR's Richard Gonzales.<p>RICHARD GONZALES, BYLINE: I'm standing at the corner of Washington Street and Embarcadero. Wed, 06 Nov 2013 22:01:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 28516 at Police, Community Relations Strained After Teen's Death Sonoma County, Calif., is probably best known for its good wine, green sensibilities and otherwise healthy and peaceful living. But that peace was shattered last week when a county sheriff's deputy shot and killed a young teenager carrying a toy gun.<p>Thirteen-year-old Andy Lopez was walking through an open field near his home in semi-rural southwest Santa Rosa on Oct. 22 when he was spotted by two sheriff's deputies. Lopez was carrying a plastic pellet gun, a toy replica of an AK-47. Wed, 30 Oct 2013 21:07:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 28040 at Police, Community Relations Strained After Teen's Death How A County Clerk Ignited The Gay Marriage Debate In N.M. New Mexico law doesn't explicitly ban or approve same-sex marriage. There were a spate of lawsuits seeking to clarify the issue, but they were tied up in the courts. Tue, 22 Oct 2013 21:15:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 27551 at How A County Clerk Ignited The Gay Marriage Debate In N.M. California Won't Wait For Congress On Immigration Reform Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>In other immigration news, California Governor Jerry Brown has signed into law a measure that makes it harder for federal immigration officials to detain people believed to be in this country illegally. The new state law, called the Trust Act, restricts local police from holding undocumented immigrants without serious criminal records and turning them over to immigration authorities. NPR's Richard Gonzales reports.<p>RICHARD GONZALES, BYLINE: Governor Brown's action is a repudiation of a federal program called Secure Communities. Mon, 07 Oct 2013 20:20:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 26541 at Oracle Team USA Defeats New Zealand To Win America's Cup Oracle Team USA completed a remarkable comeback to win the America's Cup regatta, winning eight straight races. The American team, backed by Silicon Valley billionaire Larry Ellison, beat Emirates Team New Zealand. Just a few days ago, the American team trailed the Kiwis, and were on the brink of being eliminated from the competition. Thu, 26 Sep 2013 09:06:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 25801 at In Comeback, Oracle Team USA Wins America's Cup Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>In San Francisco today, a dramatic winner-take-all finish to the America's Cup race. Oracle Team USA, the defending champion, completed a remarkable comeback to win the regatta, 9-8. The American team is led by Silicon Valley billionaire and Oracle CEO Larry Ellison. They were on the verge of elimination to their opponent, Emirates Team New Zealand. Trailing 8-1, the Oracle team then won eight straight races, concluding this afternoon in the high winds of San Francisco Bay. Wed, 25 Sep 2013 22:03:00 +0000 Richard Gonzales 25786 at