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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.

Insurance claims from NorCal fires top $1 billion

Oct 20, 2017
Lesley McClurg/KQED

Total damage estimates for the most destructive week of fires in California history are now topping a billion dollars. The state released preliminary numbers Thursday based on insurance claims. 

Skinned sea otter found dead in San Simeon

Oct 19, 2017
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services

Officials from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service are asking the public for any information related to the death and illegal skinning of a southern sea otter found on a beach in San Simeon.

Women in California politics describe culture of harassment

Oct 17, 2017
Andrew Nixon/Capital Public Radio

From Capital Public Radio: An outcry against pervasive sexual harassment and assault that has gone viral on social media under the hashtag #metoo has also reached the California state Capitol. 

Local government roundup: 10/16/17

Oct 16, 2017

This week in Central Coast county government: the Santa Barbara County board of supervisors is expected to vote on medical cannabis regulations.

Greta Mart/KCBX

This week, the California Department of Education released truancy rates for the state’s public schools, organized by county. Truancy is defined as three or more days out of school without a valid excuse. The numbers show Santa Barbara County’s rate was nearly 10 percent lower than the state average, for the fourth year in a row.

Buzzing around town, Salinas plans to use drones

Oct 12, 2017
Erika Mahoney/KAZU

From KAZU News: Drones are increasingly being used by city governments for things like land surveying and storm damage assessments. Locally, Salinas plans to be an early adopter of the technology. But first the city wants to get the community on board. 

KCBX Two-Way: The faces of DACA in SLO County

Oct 11, 2017
Anjalie Tandon/KCBX

The final extension deadline for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program passed on October 5. Approximately 2,000 recipients of this program in San Luis Obispo County stand to lose their legal residency status and work permit received through DACA. 

Solar farm under construction to power Cal Poly campus

Oct 10, 2017
REC Solar

San Luis Obispo's California Polytechnic University is installing a 4.5 megawatt solar farm. The farm is being constructed on 18 acres of agricultural land just northwest of the Cal Poly campus. Upon completion, the farm will generate nearly 25 percent of the university's total energy needs. 

Transformation coming to Salinas' Chinatown

Oct 10, 2017
courtesy of MidPen and KAZU

A transformation is coming to Salinas’ Chinatown. A new affordable housing development will soon break ground. 

Glean SLO harvests to allay hunger

Oct 9, 2017
Greta Mart/KCBX

In San Luis Obispo County, one in six people go to bed hungry most nights, according to the county’s Food Bank Coalition. That equates to over 46,000 people that are considered food insecure. 

Timothy Tsui/Flikr

Santa Barbara County District Attorney Joyce Dudley said Friday 20 people have contacted her office for help after being affected by the mass shooting October 1 in Las Vegas.

Anthem’s exit leaves thousands on Central Coast with one health plan option

Oct 5, 2017

For about 60,000 Covered California customers, choosing a health plan next year will be easier, and possibly more painful, than ever: There will be only one insurer left in their communities after Anthem Blue Cross of California pulls out of much of the state’s individual market. 

Greta Mart/KCBX

After a three-and-a-half hour hearing Tuesday on cannabis regulations, San Luis Obispo county officials voted to continue the conversation to Oct. 17. Dozens of county residents attended the meeting to provide input on the regulations now before the board of supervisors. 

Greta Mart/KCBX

San Luis Obispo County’s 911 emergency system is getting tech upgrade--you can now text 911 for emergencies.

KCBX's Bree Zender speaks with Linda Wilson and Mara Purl about their involvement in the production of the play 'Becoming Julia Morgan.'

James Gathany, CDC

San Luis Obispo County has confirmed one case of West Nile virus, detected in the body of a dead bird in Atascadero.

wikimedia commons

As the hours pass since the shooting Sunday night in Las Vegas, we're focusing on stories of Central Coast residents who were there at the scene. One of these stories comes from California's 35th District Assemblyman Jordan Cunningham.

Greta Mart

Morro Bay officials recently decided upon a location for the city's new wastewater treatment plant. The city council opted for the inland South Bay Boulevard site, which will cost approximately $25 million more than if the city challenges a host of state agencies and insists on rebuilding in the current, beachside location. 

Central Coast AVA: The legend of Richard Sauret

Oct 2, 2017
Jason Lopez

Richard Sauret died Saturday night, September 30, 2017, in an automobile accident on Highway 101 and Wellsona Road. He was 82.  Sauret had been in the process of retiring from grape growing.

Greta Mart/KCBX

Globules of decades-old bunker oil washed up on Morro Rock Beach and the southern end of Morro Strand State Beach Saturday, after a contractor working on an offshore pipeline accidentally released “a solid ball of oil” trapped inside the pipe and it broke up in whitecap waves. 

Brown brings housing bills home

Sep 29, 2017
California Senate Democrats/You Tube

Governor Jerry Brown has signed a package of 15 bills intended to drive down California’s high housing costs, but not without throwing a little shade at the people who worked to get the measures to his desk. 

Greta Mart

The owner of the shuttered power plant in Morro Bay says it has resumed work on a long-term pipeline removal project. The Texas-based company Dynegy owns the Morro Bay Power Plant, which created electricity from natural gas until it was decommissioned in 2014. In fall of 2015, the company hired a contractor to conduct underwater surveys of the pipelines in preparation for the current work. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

New data released Tuesday from the California Department of Public Health reveals cases of sexually transmitted diseases (STD) and infections are on the rise on the Central Coast. The number of gonorrhea cases have doubled and syphilis cases quadrupled in Santa Barbara County since 2011. 

Bree Zender

KPRL is a small AM radio station in Paso Robles. They pride themselves in broadcasting news, talk and sports across the northern part of San Luis Obispo County. And for about 50 years, KPRL broadcast football games for the Paso Robles High School Bearcats.

Wildfire prompts evacuations on Cal Poly campus

Sep 27, 2017
Andy Zink

An intense vegetation fire ignited Tuesday afternoon on the hills above the Cal Poly campus in San Luis Obispo. Two residence halls - Sierra Madre and Yosemite - were evacuated, and officials directed students to the campus's Mott Gym. Cal Poly president Jeffrey Armstrong said all students are safe.

Google Earth

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) said one inmate died and nine others wounded in what's being described as a 'large-scale' riot at the California Men's Colony (CMC) in San Luis Obispo County.

Steep terrain hindering Huasna fire fight

Sep 21, 2017
Courtesy of CalFire SLO.

UPDATE 09/21/17: As of 6 p.m., CalFire reports the fire has grown to 244 acres and is 75 percent contained. 

Firefighters continue to battle what is currently a 70-acre vegetation fire northeast of Nipomo, in San Luis Obispo County.

Cal Fire says the Huasna Fire started at about 1:45 on Wednesday afternoon. It’s burning near Huasna Townsite Road and Huasna Road. As of 5 p.m. one cabin was threatened and crews were working to save it.

Anjalie Tandon/KCBX

This week Central Coast politicians and organizations are responding to President Trump’s plans to phase out the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA. 

Crews near final phase of Big Sur bridge rebuild

Sep 20, 2017
Erika Mahoney/KAZU

The downed bridge that split Big Sur in two is getting closer to completion. It’s been seven months since winter storms damaged it beyond repair and left part of the community stranded. 

New effort underway to enroll more California students tuition-free

Sep 19, 2017
Courtesy of Cuesta College

California's community college system wants to boost the number of low-income students taking advantage of the state's free tuition option. To get the word out, the state is re-branding the program as the "Promise Grant."