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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.

It’s been more than 100 years since the 1906 earthquake that caused severe damage to San Francisco. Since then, Californians have long-anticipated another ‘Big One’ to hit along the San Andreas Fault. 

Angel Russell

As COVID testing sites are seeing a spike in patients, a new requirement is now in effect for California state workers to show proof of vaccination — or they will soon be mandated to get tested for the virus weekly.

Courtesy: City of Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara residents can expect to find information in their mailboxes this week about their new energy options as the city prepares to transition to its new community choice program.

San Luis Obispo County health officials held a briefing July 29 to urge community members to get vaccinated against COVID-19 as the county is seeing a spike in cases among unvaccinated individuals.

SLO County Health Officer Dr. Penny Borenstein said since June 15, the county has seen a jump from 50 active cases to 274 active cases as of Monday. Four additional COVID-19 related deaths have been recorded since that date.

Courtesy of Serrano Photography

When you think of ballet, you probably think of a major company like the Bolshoi Ballet or the New York City Ballet Company — but one dancer from King City in Monterey County is proving you can start in a small town if you have the dedication.

California Department of Fish and Wildlife

Pismo clams are starting to show up in numbers not seen in decades on their namesake beach, Pismo Beach. While the California Department of Fish & Wildlife (CDFW) is optimistic about the potential bright future of recreational fishery, they warn we aren’t there yet.

Courtesy of Sol Treasures

South Monterey County art center Sol Treasures is putting on a summer camp this year themed around Japanese culture. Staff say their goal is to mold kids into “samurais of peace” to create a positive impact in their King City community.

Courtesy: French Hospital Medical Center

Insurance provider Anthem Blue Cross dropped Dignity Health hospitals and medical groups after the groups failed to reach an agreement in their contract negotiations, leaving thousands of people racing to find services.

The contract between the insurance entity and medical care provider expired July 15, so members of certain Anthem health insurance plans are no longer covered at Dignity Health medical facilities.

Courtesy of Sol Treasures

South Monterey County art center Sol Treasures is putting on a summer camp this year themed around Japanese culture. Staff say their goal is to mold kids into “samurais of peace” to create a positive impact in their King City community.

KCBX News, Randol White

As the seat for SLO County’s clerk-recorder remains open since Tommy Gong resigned, the county’s clerk-recorder office is busy preparing for the Governor’s recall election.

Marcus Cocova

Many in the Paso Robles area live a life of farming and agriculture, like resident Jo Capaldi.

“I just live here — [and] take care of the horses and what have you,” Capaldi said.

Credit: Rachel Showalter

Wild beavers play a critical role in the fight against climate change by creating wetlands that combat drought and wildfire.

Santa Barbara County Public Health Department

Santa Barbara County health officials are reporting a significant shift in pandemic numbers, seeing positive infection rates they haven’t seen since the start of the pandemic in March 2020.

Courtesy of Kylee Sullivan | ARIEL Theatrical

When you look at a performing arts program, there are some things you can expect to learn such as singing, dancing or acting – but at ARIEL Theatrical, kids learn so much more.

Courtesy of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

More than a month since the state's reopening, health officials say they are beginning to notice cases of COVID-19 rising, with an uptick in patients returning to hospitals seeking care from the virus.

While the surge of COVID-19 cases throughout the nation is overwhelming some hospitals, on the Central Coast, patient numbers are still relatively low but increasing.

Robert Cook, Chief Nursing Officer for Twin Cities Community Hospital, said the Delta variant of the virus is partially fueling the upswing. 

Courtesy: NAACP SLO County

The local San Luis Obispo County branch of the NAACP is hosting a virtual series aimed at helping people know their rights during encounters with law enforcement.

The City of San Luis Obispo

As cities across the country grapple with the issue of police responding to mental health and substance abuse crisis related calls, the city of San Luis Obispo is expanding on one program — and creating another — to help shift intervention away from law enforcement, and into the hands of health-related experts.

Hayley Crowell

Now, in the heat of summer, warmer temperatures on the Central may not be comfortable for everyone.

But, a new study by a team of Cal Poly researchers found that Pacific rattlesnakes actually enjoy warmer temperatures and are more suited to conditions brought on by climate change.


The Land Conservancy of San Luis Obispo County is in the beginning stages of assessing usage potential for the Santa Rita Ranch along Highway 46.

San Luis Obispo Symphony

The pandemic shut down live musical performances last year, and the San Luis Obispo Symphony was no exception.

Infinite Music

The coronavirus pandemic was devastating to many arts organizations that had to cancel in-person events, workshops and classes. But Central Coast nonprofit Infinite Music found that pivoting to online instruction had a silver lining.

SLO County Office of Education

With COVID19 cases back on the rise, and kids returning to school in a few weeks, health officials are urging parents to get children 12 and older vaccinated. But not every pediatric office has the ability to give the vaccine.

The Santa Barbara City Council voted unanimously July 20 to prohibit natural gas in all new construction in the city.

Angel Russell

After being canceled last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the California Mid-State Fair returns Wednesday — bringing back crowds, rides, and live musical performances.

Usually, planning for a fair takes several months. But this year, with the uncertainty of when things would re-open, fair organizers only had a few weeks to pull it off. 


Festival Mozaic, the popular Central Coast music festival, is back. After having their 2020 season cancelled because of the pandemic, the festival is putting on a smaller set of concerts this year, with a focus on chamber music and women composers.

$12 million in funding is coming to the Central Coast over the next two years to incentivize the building of electric vehicle chargers in San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties.

The money is coming from the California Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Project, or CALeVIP’s, South Central Coast Incentive Project. The goal is to provide rebates for the purchase and installation of chargers.

Court Appointed Special Advocates

Child abuse cases in San Luis Obispo County saw a drop during the pandemic, but with in-person schooling starting back up, SLO County child advocacy group C.A.S.A. — Court Appointed Special Advocates — said they are preparing for an influx of child abuse cases.

C.A.S.A. of San Luis Obispo County is made up of volunteers designated by a judge to work in the best interests of children who have been victimized by abuse or neglect.

Teresa Tardiff, executive director of C.A.S.A. SLO County, said during the pandemic, child abuse cases took a plunge.

Courtesy of Bureau of Land Management California

With temperatures rising around the Central Coast, fire experts say it’s important to be prepared for wildfires and have a plan in place in case you need to evacuate.

The City of Pismo Beach

In the past two weeks, the San Luis Obispo Regional Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team has been called in to assist in two separate barricaded suspects situations. One in Pismo Beach resulted in a peaceful arrest of the suspect, while the other in Paso Robles ended in a fatal shooting of the suspect while police were attempting arrest.

The U.S. Department of Justice recognizes mental illness as a major issue among inmates. In 2015, the Stepping Up Initiative was formed to help reduce the number of people with mental illnesses in jail, instead connecting them with resources and treatment.

Santa Barbara County joined the Stepping Up Initiative in 2016 and local leaders meet every two months to report on relevant projects and collaborate about how to move forward.

Kevin Huddle is a Commander with the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office and the Department Coordinator for the Stepping Up Initiative.