Monterey County

Hefty jackhammer takes down Big Sur bridge

Mar 20, 2017
Courtesy of CalTrans

Work continues this week on the demolition of Monterey County’s Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge on Highway 1. On Saturday, a CalTrans crew succeeded at bringing down the whole middle section of the bridge in one spectacular crash.

CalTrans

CalTrans sent engineers out Wednesday to evaluate how to completely demolish the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge, after a wrecking ball failed to break through the bridge Monday. 

Local government roundup: 03/13/2017

Mar 13, 2017
Greta Mart/KCBX

On local government agendas this week, the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors will continue the hearing that began Monday morning on the Phillips 66 oil-by-rail project appeal. A handful of supporters spoke in favor of the oil company’s plan to build a rail spur to its Nipomo Mesa refinery; dozens of speakers stated their opposition to the project. The Board will resume hearing public comment on Tuesday morning.

City of Salinas to sue President Trump

Mar 7, 2017

On Wednesday, city officials in Salinas voted to sue the Trump administration in federal court over the president's executive order against sanctuary cities. 

Local government roundup: 03/06/2017

Mar 6, 2017
Greta Mart/KCBX

On Central Coast county government agendas this week, the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors will hold a hearing on the Phillips 66 Rail Spur project set to go before the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors on March 13, next Monday. Santa Barbara officials are urging their San Luis Obispo counterparts to reject a Phillips 66 appeal of the 2016 San Luis Obispo Planning Commission decision to deny the project. 

This week the city of Salinas is hosting a free public forum on immigration. The forum will be primarily held in Spanish with English translation. 

Courtesy of CalTrans

In Monterey County, a Caltrans crew spent Tuesday afternoon evaluating the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge, just north of Big Sur Pfeiffer State Park. The bridge was closed last week due to damage from the recent rains. Since then, the saturated, sliding land underneath has moved the bridge seven inches. 

UPDATE: WEDNESDAY, FEB. 22, 2017: Caltrans says the bridge is beyond repair and will have to be replaced entirely. 

Local government roundup: 02/20/2017

Feb 20, 2017
Greta Mart/KCBX

In this week's local government roundup, Tuesday is a day of strategic planning for the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors. It will consider adoption of the county’s five-year infrastructure and facilities capital improvement plan.

The board is also slated to consider appointing former KPRL conservative talk show host and former Thousand Oaks mayor and city council member Dan Del Campo to the San Luis Obispo County Planning Commission. 

Greta Mart/KCBX

A powerful storm brought heavy rains, gusty winds and pounding waves to the Central Coast Friday and early Saturday morning. Power outages across the region closed schools and businesses Friday morning in Monterey, San Luis Obispo and northern Santa Barbara counties, and as of Saturday morning, many customers remain without power. Weather forecasters say another storm system will arrive Monday, President's Day. Here's an update on Central Coast storm-related news:

Greta Mart/KCBX

Water advocacy leaders in California are calling for the state government to permanently invest in water infrastructure--noting that over 300 California communities are affected by unsafe drinking water. 

NOAA/www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/atmrivers/

Boulders slid onto Highway 1 near Ragged Point on Tuesday night after over 13 inches of rain in the Big Sur area. The road has been cleared, but forecasters say more rain expected this weekend may compound damage.

Greta Mart

Stormy weather continues to affect the Central Coast, with minor flooding in areas of San Luis Obispo and Monterey counties. KCBX spoke with PG&E meteorologist John Lindsey late Wednesday afternoon to find out more about what's in store. 

Courtesy of Dr. Ann Lippincott/Vocabulary Workshop presentation

In San Luis Obispo County, an estimated 30,000 adults have limited literacy skills in English. In Santa Barbara County, about 18 percent of adults lack basic English literacy skills, that’s 50,000 people. And in Monterey County, according to Panetta Institute for Public Policy, 28 percent of adults - or eighty to ninety thousand people - are unable to read or understand written English.

Aera Energy  and Chevron have filed separate lawsuits against Monterey County, alleging the passage of Measure Z will shut down oil production in the county. 

USDA

Hundreds of concerned parents, health workers and educators turned out Thursday evening in Salinas to urge state officials to increase restrictions on the use of agricultural pesticides near schools. Over a dozen growers also attended, concerned about a new proposal that limits the application of pesticides during school hours.

Randol White

Voter registration in San Luis Obispo, Monterey and Santa Barbara counties is at an all-time high. 

KCBX News, Randol White

Audio Pending...

It's no surprise that housing on the Central Coast is expensive making it hard for young people to afford to live here and for businesses to attract and retain a solid workforce. 

CDC - James Gathany

The first Zika virus case on the Central Coast was reported recently in Monterey County. 

Cal Fire Twitter: video credit - Keith Vandevere

UPDATE: July 26, 2016 at 12:43 p.m.

Air patterns over California's Central Coast are pushing smoke from Monterey County's Soberanes Fire south into San Luis Obispo County, initiating an Air Quality Alert on Tuesday.

Flickr member: Dylan's World

The City of Salinas is the latest Monterey County city to pass an ordinance on how marijuana can be grown and sold.

Monterey County Water Resources Agency

One of the biggest Central Coast water projects in decades is moving forward along the San Luis Obispo-Monterey County line.

Randol White, KCBX News

Home prices are on the rise along the Central Coast according to the latest numbers reflecting the local real estate market. 

King City's former police chief accepted a plea deal Wednesday, pleading no contest to embezzlement and obstructing a peace officer by lying to investigators—both misdemeanor counts.

A Monterey County Jury was unable to reach a unanimous verdict on felony charges against 50-year-old Dominic Baldiviez, so the deal was offered to avoid a re-trial, according to Monterey County District Attorney Dean D. Flippo.

California Flats Solar Project to meet new wildlife guidelines

Jul 28, 2015
Pacific Southwest Region USFWS

A large solar farm proposed for agriculture land near the line between Monterey and San Luis Obispo counties can now move forward following a deal over environmental issues. Construction on the California Flats Solar Project is set to break ground later this year.

King City appoints new police chief with community input

Jun 22, 2015
City of King - KingCity.com

King City named new Chief of Police on Monday. The city has been looking for a new police chief since a corruption scandal surfaced in February of last year.

The police department is in the middle of rebuilding it's strained relationship with the community.

Flickr member Betsssssy

Officials recently announced Lake San Antonio will be closed this summer.

The Monterey County Board of Supervisors approved a budget Tuesday that included the hard closure of Lake San Antonio's south and north shores.

Mark Mariscal is the Director of Parks and Recreation for Monterey County and said when the budget was compiled, it was understood water levels at the lake would not increase. 

Salinas Police Department

The Food Bank for Monterey County is working to restore its services following last weekend's arson fire.

Officials say that they have seen a lot of community support in the wake of the incident.

Food Bank Executive Director Melissa Kendrick says her organization's programs should resume soon, and emergency food deliveries picked up again on Tuesday.

The organization's delivery truck fleet was destroyed and half of the facility's refrigeration storage was knocked out Saturday.

Flickr member Loco Steve

A temporary ban on fracking in Monterey County was not approved at Tuesday's Board of Supervisors meeting, following passionate public comment and split opinions from the board members themselves.

A majority of the board indicated there is no need for a moratorium sighting that there are currently no oil and gas operations in the county using hydraulic fracturing.

Much of the conversation at the meeting was also focused on the state's obligation to regulate the industry under SB-4.

Flickr member ptwo

A massive solar project planned near the Monterey- San Luis Obispo County line will be paid for in part by Apple Computer, and could be the largest solar deal of its kind in history.

Apple Computer says it's committing $848 million to help build the California Flats Solar Project. In exchange the company gets a 25-year power source, tapping nearly half of the farm's 280 megawatts.

That energy will run Apple Computer's Cupertino headquarters, a data center and some 52 Apple Stores throughout the state. 

Flickr member: Fried Dough

The latest annual report from the American Lung Association shows smoking on the Central Coast is still a problem in many communities.

The report gives mixed grades for Monterey, San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Counties. Not a single city got an "A" grade, but Carpinteria and San Luis Obispo got B grades, as did unincorporated Santa Barbara County.

Vanessa Marvin is a senior director with the Lung Association and says there's still a lot of work to be done by many of the other the area's other communities.

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