KCBX News

Monday through Friday during Morning Edition and All Things Considered

The award-winning KCBX Newsroom works to bring you local stories that represent our Central Coast listeners and supporters.

KCBX News began covering stories in February, 2014. The first on-air newscast happened during All Things Considered on March 3, 2014. KCBX added local news content to Morning Edition in September, 2014.

In the years since, KCBX News has had local stories featured on NPR and The California Report.

Algae bloom suspected of sickening sea lions

18 hours ago
Jon Sullivan/Wikimedia Commons

A Central Coast marine mammal center is currently treating over 20 ailing sea lions that have washed up on San Luis Obispo County beaches this week.

Brush fire ignites on Nipomo Mesa

21 hours ago
Courtesy of CalFire SLO

A vegetation fire broke out Thursday afternoon on the Nipomo Mesa in San Luis Obispo County. 

Whittier Fire Update: 83 percent containment

22 hours ago
Whittier Fire Incident Command

The wildfire that ignited July 8 near Lake Cachuma has burned 29 square miles as of Friday. Fire officials report the Whittier Fire is now 83 percent contained, but it may be the end of the month before the forest blaze is totally extinguished.

Update: Alamo Fire 100% contained

Jul 20, 2017
Courtesy of CalFire

The Alamo Fire burned for two weeks near the Twitchell Dam east of Santa Maria. On Thursday, CalFire reported firefighters have totally contained the blaze and will spend the next few weeks mopping up. The fire destroyed 45 square miles of oak woodland and one home.

Cambria brush fire forces evacuations

Jul 19, 2017
Megan Schellong/KCBX

UPDATE 7/19/17 8 A.M.: Firefighters extinguished the fire Tuesday night, with three acres burned. All streets are open. 

UPDATE 7/18/17 5 P.M.: Just before 5 p.m., evacuation orders were lifted and CalFire reported good progress made towards containment. 

A fire ignited early Tuesday afternoon in downtown Cambria, prompting San Luis Obispo County to issue evacuation orders for residences and businesses along Main Street and Bridge Street.

Green light for San Luis Ranch housing development

Jul 18, 2017
Greta Mart/KCBX

On Tuesday evening, city officials in San Luis Obispo approved the proposed San Luis Ranch housing development.

Vegetation fire ignites on Foxen Canyon Road

Jul 18, 2017
David Zaniboni/Santa Barbara County Fire

UPDATE 7/18/17 11 A.M.: As of Tuesday morning, 40 percent of the wildfire is contained, as firefighters held back the flames from burning more than 40 acres. Foxen Canyon Road is open.

UPDATE 7/17/17 6 P.M.: Forward motion on the fire stopped at 35 acres. 

Another vegetation fire ignites on Cuesta Grade

Jul 15, 2017

UPDATE 7/15/17 3:37 p.m.: CHP San Luis Obispo reports as of 2:50 p.m., all lanes of Hwy. 101 northbound are open and the fire is extinguished.

UPDATE 7/15/17 9:37 a.m.: Cal Fire says the forward progress of what's being called the Grade Fire has stopped. "Fire is holding to retardant lines and mid slope road. Crews working on hot spots and containment," the agency says in a tweet.

Current San Luis Ranch development proposal gains support

Jul 13, 2017
Greta Mart/KCBX

San Luis Obispo is such a desirable city in which to live, it makes affordability nearly impossible - and building affordable housing will always involve compromises. That was the overarching theme during the most recent public hearing and discussion about the proposed San Luis Ranch development.

While the San Luis Obispo City Council didn’t take an official action on the project at the meeting, a majority of council members indicated they were in favor of the project.

Officer-involved shooting in Grover Beach

Jul 13, 2017

Grover Beach police shot and killed a man on Wednesday night in an altercation on Brighton Avenue.

In a statement issued Thursday morning by Grover Beach police chief John Peters, the identities of the man and the officers involved is not being released during an internal investigation.

According to the department’s account, around 10:15 p.m., a 9-1-1 call reported a man was outside a home in the 1000 block making a “disturbance.” The man didn’t live at the home, and when a police team arrived, they say he was armed with a “large blunt object,” and charged them.

Bree Zender

Firefighters have stopped the Stone Fire that erupted in a rural area east of Santa Margarita. As of Tuesday evening, they had 100 containment and kept the area burned to 340 acres.

Sophia Mathews/@MsPhias

On the same afternoon the Whittier Fire ignited near a summer camp in Santa Barbara County, another fire broke out east of San Miguel, on the border of rural eastern Monterey and San Luis Obispo counties.

Brush fire closes Hwy. 101 lanes at Cuesta Grade

Jul 7, 2017
Courtesy of CalFire SLO

The Tower Fire that burned 58 acres near the Cuesta Grade is 100 percent contained, CalFire announced at 5:30 p.m. Saturday. 

KCBX Two-Way: Brent Rose's 27 Monuments mission

Jul 6, 2017
Courtesy of 27monuments.org

On June 30, KCBX News invited an out-of-town guest to the studio - journalist and filmmaker Brent Rose. Rose is the creator of the 27 Monuments Project, his effort to bring attention to the federal government’s current designation review of 27 national monuments around the country. The deadline for the American public to submit comments on the Trump Administration's national monument review is July 10, 2017.

New law prevents out-of-network surprise billing

Jul 5, 2017

Patients who go to a hospital covered under their health insurance plan don’t have to worry about receiving surprise bills anymore, thanks to a California law that took effect July 1.

4th fireworks

Jul 4, 2017

Looking for some Fourth of July pyrotechnics? Once the sun goes down Tuesday evening, municipal firework shows will kick off in the following Central Coast locales: Santa Barbara, Solvang, Lompoc, Pismo Beach, San Luis Obispo and Cambria.

Bree Zender

Congressman Salud Carbajal and former Congresswoman Lois Capps attended a rally in San Luis Obispo on Saturday to protect the status of the Carrizo Plain National Monument. Carrizo is one of 27 national monuments that may be restricted in size or eliminated entirely after President Trump issued an Executive Order in late April for a review of the monuments. 

Celebrating Monterey County non-profit's musical mission

Jul 1, 2017
Fred Arellano/courtesy of Guitars Not Guns Monterey County

This week the Monterey County chapter of the organization Guitars Not Guns was named “Non-profit of the Year” by California Senator Bill Monning. The all-volunteer group provides free guitars and weeks of lessons to children and teens to encourage development of positive pastimes. Since 2009, the group has worked with just under 1500 kids in Monterey County cities and towns. 

Greta Mart/KCBX

On Saturday - July 1 - in San Luis Obispo, a rally is planned calling for the protection of the Carrizo Plain National Monument. Former Central Coast congresswoman Lois Capps, current congressman Salud Carbajal and several community leaders say they will gather to bring attention to the Trump administration’s current effort to revoke protective status for 27 national monuments around the U.S. 

Greta Mart/KCBX

Three San Luis Obispo County libraries are serving up free lunches and snacks for kids over the next month. Children up to age 18 are welcome to the meals - with no ID, income verification or payment required. 

Veterans find an affordable home at new SLO complex

Jun 28, 2017
Megan Schelllong/KCBX

This week San Luis Obispo’s public housing department celebrated the opening of a new apartment complex for veterans. The affordable housing consists of 20 brand new apartments, half of which are reserved for homeless veterans. 

Residents fleeing Hill Fire find refuge at Red Cross evacuation center

Jun 27, 2017
Megan Schelllong/KCBX

As of Tuesday evening, the Hill Fire burning east of Santa Margarita, in San Luis Obispo County, is 60 percent contained. Since the fire started Monday afternoon around 3:30 p.m., it has burned approximately 1600 acres and at least one home in a rural area of the county. Mandatory evacuation orders were issued Monday evening - that order is lifted as of 7 p.m. June 27. KCBX News visited the evacuation center set up by the American Red Cross and there we met resident Marie Burd, who was forced to flee the home she shares with her husband, a Cal Poly professor, on Monday night.

CalFire

UPDATE 6-27-17 AT 1:00 P.M.: The Hill Fire is 40 to 45 percent contained, with an estimated 1500 acres burned since Monday afternoon. 

Greta Mart/KCBX

An investigation continues this week into a suspected June 22 insecticide poisoning of 18 farmworkers in Salinas.

The Monterey County Agricultural Commissioner’s Office is conducting the investigation. The county’s assistant AG commissioner, Bob Roach, said Monday afternoon that all but one of the sickened workers returned to the job the following day.

Greta Mart

The Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors is encouraging those who have six or more cannabis plants for non-personal use to register the plants online.

The county says it would use the information to collect data for future studies. The registry program asks people to provide information on the scale of their past cannabis growth and plans for the future. 

Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America


The US Geological Survey sent out an alert Wednesday afternoon that a 6.8-magnitude earthquake had struck off the coast near Isla Vista--except the earthquake actually occurred in June of 1925.

The journey of dying with Central Coast Hospice

Jun 21, 2017
Courtesy

 

Donna Borello is small, with rosy cheeks. We sat in the living room of her house in Cayucos, where her husband George spent his final few days.

Wikimedia Commons/Ixitixel

The commercial strawberry crops grown in Santa Barbara County were worth almost a half a billion dollars last year alone. That’s according to the 2016 Crop Report, released Monday by the Santa Barbara County Agricultural Commissioner’s Office. The report lists the acreage, yield and gross dollar value of each of the county's crops.

City of San Luis Obispo/Avila Ranch Development Project Final EIR

Avila Ranch is a proposed new neighborhood in south San Luis Obispo, a 150-acre project site - now agricultural fields - cornered by Vachell Lane and Buckley Road. It’s a development that’s been in the works for a few years, and this week city planning staff announced the completion of the project’s final environmental documents. 

Monterey Pop: remembered, celebrated but never duplicated

Jun 16, 2017
Tom Gundelfinger O'Neal

It’s hard to imagine a time when no one really knew Jimi Hendrix. But the 1967 Monterey International Pop Festival was that time. When Hendrix took the stage that summer, he hadn’t made his mark on the American music scene. 

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