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Stockton has "cut off an arm to save the body" — stopped bond payments, slashed employee benefits and adopted a "survival budget." It's now officially the largest American city to go bankrupt. Will others follow? What's the impact on the statewide economy? Also, a measure to ban hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, by oil companies in California has passed another legislative committee. Are the fears of environmentalists and others justified? Why doesn't the state demand more transparency? On our rebroadcast of today's To the Point, Mexico's drug war and Sunday's presidential election.

Banner image: Stockton's city center and waterfront. Photo by Montyofarabia/flickr

Main Topic Stockton Files for Bankruptcy: Who's Next? 13 MIN, 20 SEC

Earlier this week, we heard that the City of Stockton was into mediation with creditors and public unions, but no agreement was reached in time to avoid bankruptcy. Last night, the City Council adopted what it called "a survival budget," making Stockton the largest American city to seek protection from creditors and unions in US bankruptcy court.

Susan Eggman, Stockton City Council (@SusanEggman)
Jeffrey Michael, University of the Pacific

Reporter's Notebook California Fracking Moratorium Moves Forward 10 MIN, 36 SEC

Despite widespread concern by environmental groups and residents from Ventura to Culver City, the legislature has refused to require oil companies to disclose where they're conducting hydraulic fracturing – fracking -- or to reveal what chemicals they use in the process. The State Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources is conducting workshops to educate residents and get put input on proposed regulations. In the meantime, a proposed moratorium has passed the Assembly and was approved yesterday by a Senate Committee.

Damon Nagami, National Resources Defense Council (@NRDC)
Rock Zierman, California Independent Petroleum Association

Main Topic Mexico: the Drug War and Sunday's Presidential Election 27 MIN, 21 SEC

Image-for-WWLA.jpgMexico is in the throes of a war against drug cartels that's killed more than 50,000 people.  Four days before Sunday's presidential election in Mexico, the return of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) is widely predicted. That's the party that governed for 71 years until it was rejected 12 years ago. What's happened to the promises of real democracy and the end of corruption? With 43 percent of the voting population under 30, will a growing youth movement that began on college campuses and that's spreading on social media make a difference?

We begin our program with something different. Before our panel discussion, we hear a production from Sonic Trace, a project at KCRW which is telling the stories of immigrants from Mexico and Central America. This is the story of Luis, a 17-year-old, Mexican-born junior at a Los Angeles high school.



Sonic Trace is produced by Anayansi Diaz-Cortes and Eric Pearse-Chavez. It is part of Localore, an initiative of the Association of Independents in Radio (AIR) and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. It's home is KCRW's Independent Producer Project. The project is co-produced by Zeega, a non-profit inventing new forms of interactive storytelling.

Thanks to Jacob Conrad, who edited the story, audio engineer Mario Diaz, and to Marco Morales. Follow Sonic Trace on Facebook and Twitter.

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