Greta Mart

News Director

Greta Mart is a seasoned radio, digital and print journalist. Besides serving as reporter/newscaster/producer and helming the newsroom, Greta's work regularly airs on NPR and KQED’s The California Report.

Prior to joining KCBX in early November 2016, she worked as a Bay Area-based public radio reporter and earned a master's degree from the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. During the two-year program, Greta transitioned from print to broadcast radio news reporting, and spent the summers of 2014 and 2015 working at public radio stations in Sitka and Haines, Alaska, respectively. She also spent a year as acting news director/reporter at KUCB in Unalaska, Alaska, covering the Aleutian Islands.

From 2005 to 2012, Greta was a staff reporter at community newspapers in Washington and California, and her freelance print work has appeared in magazines around the world. Greta earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Massachusetts at Boston, studied history at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland and when visiting the Bay Area, stays aboard her 30’ sailboat berthed at the Berkeley Marina.

Ways to Connect

David Middlecamp, San Luis Obispo Tribune

Tucked into an otherwise quiet bend south of Pismo Beach, Oceano Dunes may be California’s most dangerous state park. Towns near the park, which draws more than a million trucks and dirt bikes a year, are besieged with air pollution, crime and accidents — even a mass shooting last year.

SpaceX

In a blow to the future of a post-Diablo Canyon Central Coast economy, Vandenberg Air Force Base (VAFB) appears to have lost a bid to become the new headquarters for American military growth into space. But regional economic planners aren’t giving up on making the case for Vandenberg just yet.

CHHS

The Central Coast is headed for a statewide curfew, due to increasing COVID-19 cases. The state health department issued a stay-at-home order Thursday that applies to nightime nonessential activities, as of November 21.

Issues & Ideas: local campaign contributions, the purple tier and SLO CO downtowns

Nov 18, 2020

We’ll learn about an election-related matter now before the SLO County board of supervisors, regarding campaign contribution limits for county offices. We travel to Fort Hunter Liggett for Veterans Day insights and an update on COVID-19 preventative measures at the base. Monterey County is stuck in the state's most restrictive COVID-19 category—purple—and we’ll learn how the tier system works. Both San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties are now in the purple tier as well. You'll hear a conversation between KCBX contributor Consuelo Meux and Shannon McOuat of Hospice of San Luis Obispo County on 'The Nonprofit Story.' Finally, KCBX contributor and Downtown SLO CEO Bettina Swigger has a conversation with Paso Robles city manager Tom Frutchey, about the challenges and opportunities facing these two Central Coast cities.

Businesses across San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties are being asked to close once again after California’s governor "pulled the emergency brake" on COVID-19 reopening plans.

Courtest of SLO Co

Many in San Luis Obispo County are more than ready to forget about elections for now and focus on other matters. But there is sizable public opposition to an election-related matter now before the county board of supervisors. District 1 supervisor John Peschong is spearheading a move to allow people to donate up to $25,000 to candidates for county offices like sheriff, district attorney and the five supervisorial seats.

Angel Russell/KCBX

The outlook for San Luis Obispo County in terms of reopening during the COVID-19 pandemic has taken a turn for the worse. SLO County is currently in the red tier, but health officials warn the current case count indicates a purple tier is looming. 

Flickr/Tracey Adams

In San Luis Obispo County, Pacific Gas & Electric says it still can’t say when Diablo Canyon will restart sending electricity to California’s grid. The nuclear power plant has been completely offline since mid-October, generating no electricity while workers do maintenance and do repairs.

Issues & Ideas: SLO city council candidates, the changing media and the Elfin Forest

Nov 7, 2020

Six San Luis Obispo city council candidates answer questions posed by the KCBX newsroom, Pismo Beach residents decide their next mayor and a bed tax. We hear from Kim Bisheff of the Cal Poly Journalism Department, speaking about the changes in today’s media. And finally, we learn about the Elfin Forest Natural Area in Los Osos.

Courtesy of the candidates

As of Sunday night, 63 percent of SLO County voters have already cast their votes in the current election. 

But of those still filling out their ballot—or planning to head to the polls Tuesday—some will be weighing in on who will fill two open seats on the San Luis Obispo city council. Just under 31,000 people in San Luis Obispo are voting on that race. 

Courtesy of the Waage/Shadwell campaigns

Like in several Central Coast cities this election, Pismo Beach residents are deciding on the next mayor, two or more city council seats and a tax measure.

We hear from candidates running to represent the Central Coast in state and federal government; including California Assembly incumbent Jordan Cunningham and California’s 20th congressional district Congressman Jimmy Panetta. We also speak to the three mayoral candidates in Santa Maria. This is Media Literacy Week, and we speak with the executive director of a nonprofit organization that hosts a week-long event to highlight media literacy education. The KCBX Arts Beat reports on the local performing arts industry, which is taking a huge hit during the COVID-19 crisis without much direction for an eventual reopening. Finally, pumpkin spice season is here and KCBX contributor Father Ian explores some local holiday treats.

Continuing KCBX's election coverage, we hear from challenger Dawn Addis and incumbent Jordan Cunningham, the two candidates vying to represent the Central Coast in the California state Assembly. 

Issues & Ideas: Local election coverage, SLO real estate and Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes

Oct 21, 2020

Continuing KCBX's election coverage, we hear from Dawn Addis, one of the candidates hoping to represent the Central Coast in the state Assembly. And learn more about the two men running to represent the Central Coast in the U.S. House of Representatives. Reporter Harry Lawton of KCSB spoke to Santa Barbara County's election official. The U.S. Census Bureau has finished counting for the 2020 Census, and you’ll hear two experts weigh in on what happens next and why some people are concerned if the Census Bureau will produce an accurate count. Researchers at UC Santa Barbara have developed a whale alert system for transiting vessels, hoping to keep whales from being struck by cargo vessels. On this week’s “Working Lunch” we have a conversation about the local real estate market. And finally, on “The Nonprofit Story,” we learn about the Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes Center.

NTSB/J. Dingham

Over a year after 34 people died in a fiery boat disaster in the Channel Islands, an official federal investigation is now complete. But the probe didn’t pinpoint definitively what started the fire aboard the Conception dive boat.

Tonight at midnight is the deadline to be counted in the 2020 U.S. Census. That deadline was moved up two weeks after a U.S. Supreme Court decision this week.

The California governor’s office says there’s still no word on who Gavin Newsom will pick to replace the late Adam Hill on the San Luis Obispo County board of supervisors.

By now, Central Coast voters should have received their November 2020 general election ballots in the mail—and this election is going to be like no other. Between the pandemic, new machinery, possible power shutoffs and operational changes, county election officials face a daunting job this year. KCBX's Greta Mart spoke with San Luis Obispo County's top election official, Tommy Gong, about what voters need to know. Click on the above listen button to hear their conversation.

A majority of Paso Robles city council members gave the green light this week to one of the largest housing developments ever planned in the city. The project—the Beechwood Specific Plan—has been on the city's radar for the past 17 years.

KCBX's Greta Mart speaks with San Luis Obispo County top election official Tommy Gong about what is different in this November 3, 2020 election: the pandemic, new machinery, operational changes and possible power shutoffs. Scott Yoo, music director of Festival Mozaic and host of the newest installment of the PBS series "Now Here This," talks about  filming an episode in San Luis Obispo during the pandemic. The San Luis Obispo Legal Assistance Foundation helps people on the Central Coast who cannot afford to pay for legal services, and you’ll hear from the organization's executive director. Finally, on this month's Playing With Food, Father Ian Delinger joins a quest through poison oak to collect local wild yeast for brewing beer.

California’s public television stations have joined with the state’s county school superintendents to launch a new online service for educators and parents. The collaboration comes at a time in which teachers and families are grappling with the ongoing challenges of virtual learning.

SLOCOSO

The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office alleges the man killed Thursday by deputies in a shootout in Templeton was a member of a “white supremacist gang.”

More businesses can reopen effective immediately in San Luis Obispo County. On Tuesday the county’s public health officer said the county has qualified to move into the less-restrictive ‘red tier,’ according to the state’s framework for reducing the number of coronavirus cases.

After nearly two weeks of widespread calls for action, the San Luis Obispo Police Department (SLOPD) announced Wednesday it was recommending a criminal charge for a motorcyclist who drove into protestors during a September 2 march in downtown San Luis Obispo. 

Mike Eliason/SBC Fire

Military fire crews, with help from Santa Barbara County Fire, are fighting a brush fire that has sparked at Vandenberg Air Force Base. As of Wednesday afternoon, it’s burned between five and ten acres and is moving at a slow-to-moderate speed. 

In response to the pandemic shutdown, some Central Coast cities are focused on providing financial support to small businesses. Other cities are directing support to residents. September 4 is the deadline to apply for an emergency rental assistance program in Santa Maria and Goleta.

Greta Mart

King City is a town with just under 15,000 residents at the southern end of the Salinas Valley in Monterey County. It’s an agricultural-focused community, with the Salinas River winding through and adjacent vast stretches of wine grapes and fields of celery and lettuces. But tucked away just south of King City is a 55-acre piece of property that’s an island of exuberant wildness amid so much cultivation.

Nurses across the Central Coast demonstrated this week, taking part in a national day of action. The healthcare workers aim to bring attention to the ongoing lack of personal protective equipment, or PPE.

San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Adam Hill is dead at age 54. He was found unresponsive Thursday afternoon, and as of Thursday evening, a heavy police presence remained at his home. A Pismo Beach police officer confirmed Hill had died, but said he could not confirm a cause of death at this time. 

Courtesy of Cayucos Elementary

Some elementary schools in San Luis Obispo County are now filing paperwork trying to get permission to reopen for in-person classes in the fall. It involves asking for a waiver from the county public health department.

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