Arroyo Grande

Rachel Showalter

In a press briefing Tuesday, April 13, San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Ian Parkinson announced Paul Flores has been arrested for the murder of Kristin Smart, a former Cal Poly student who disappeared nearly 25 years ago.

Paul Flores’ father, Ruben Flores, has been arrested as an accessory to her murder.

The Mask Map is a website where people can post their opinions and experiences on whether a store or other business is following pandemic-related mask mandates. But some business owners caution the website may not accurately reflect a businesses' position or enforcement of social distancing rules and mask wearing. 

County of San Luis Obispo Public Libraries

As SLO County COVID-19 cases rise and the demand for testing is increasing, three more county libraries are closing because librarians and other staff are answering the call to help the county in its COVID19 response.

Camp Fire Central Coast of California

Since mid-March, parents say leaders of Camp Fire Central Coast went radio silent. Then came evictions on the organization’s properties for unpaid utilities and lack of communication, and questions over what happens not only to the youth programs, but to the nonprofit’s reserve funding.

Angel Russell/KCBX

Choosing not to–or forgetting to–wear a mask in parts of California could cost you. The city of Monterey is now citing people not wearing masks, and the city of Arroyo Grande is eyeing a similar ordinance.

All bars across San Luis Obispo County are now ordered to close for the weekend, to "avoid large congregations of individuals in close proximity within a confined space."

Courtesy Ryan Joiner

California is giving the green light for movie theaters and gyms to reopen as of June 12, but not all businesses will be ready. KCBX News spoke to local gym and movie theater owners to find out what the hold up is and what it’ll be like for customers once doors reopen.

Wikimedia commons

The widely-respected former Central Coast politician and community leader Katcho Achadjian died Thursday.

Five Cities Fire Authority

The future of San Luis Obispo County’s Five Cities Fire Authority will be in the hands of a select group of voters in the upcoming election. The fire department that serves Arroyo Grande, Grover Beach and Oceano faced uncertainty in 2019 as the communities grappled with how to fund it. On March 3, Oceano voters will weigh if a tax hike is worth the cost of continued shared fire services.

Wikimedia commons

The San Luis Obispo County board of supervisors may soon introduce an ordinance to ban the sale of electronic smoking devices in the unincorporated areas of the county. According to the Dec. 10 board meeting agenda, a public hearing on the issue could be slated for January 14. The issue comes before county officials as a bipartisan group of national lawmakers—including seven from California—sent a letter to President Trump this week urging a ban on all flavored e-cigarettes.

Meanwhile, two Central Coast cities—Morro Bay and Arroyo Grande—have already begun the process of banning the sale of all vaping products in their jurisdictions. But not all city leaders are in favor of complete bans, and some business owners say the move will slash half their business and fortify the black market.

City of Arroyo Grande Facebook Page

Arroyo Grande city officials kicked off discussions this week on how to generate more revenue, agreeing an estimated $3.5 million dollars is needed to fix the city's aging infrastructure. But the city's councilmembers don't agree on how to accomplish that. 

Highway 101 median closure project resumes Tuesday

May 20, 2019
Greta Mart/KCBX

Work will resume this week on closing the El Campo Road and three other median crossings on Highway 101 in San Luis Obispo County. The project will permanently block four openings connecting the northbound and southbound lanes; motorists will no longer be able to make left-hand turns on to and off the highway via those medians.

SLO County asks Caltrans to close deadly Highway 101 median openings

Apr 24, 2019
Greta Mart/KCBX

This week San Luis Obispo County officials voted to ask the state transportation agency to close middle sections of Highway 101 south of Arroyo Grande to prevent further collisions and deaths.

Courtesy of SLO Wine Country

Anne Steinhauer recently took the helm of the San Luis Obispo Wine Association. We speak with her about member wineries and marketing wines made in the Edna Valley and Arroyo Grande to other parts of the country, and the world.

On this week's episode of Issues & Ideas, major newspapers and public radio stations across California—including KCBX—are collaborating on a statewide project to look at personnel records from local enforcement agencies. 

Courtesy of Five Cities Fire Authority

At the end of February, when Arroyo Grande city staff floated the idea of leaving the Five Cities Fire Authority (FCFA) in San Luis Obispo County, it threatened the future of fire services for the city, as well as Oceano and Grover Beach. This week, the Arroyo Grande city council decided the fire department shouldn’t disband yet. And now all three communities served by the FCFA—Arroyo Grande, Oceano and Grover Beach—have six months to come up with funding plan all agree on.

Five Cities Fire Authority's uncertain future

Feb 28, 2019
Five Cities Fire Authority

Arroyo Grande city officials and community members met for over four hours this week to consider if Arroyo Grande should stay in the Five Cities Fire Authority (FCFA), which isn’t actually comprised of five cities, it’s three—including Oceano and Grover Beach. The meeting came after city staff recommended Arroyo Grande leave the fire department, essentially dissolving it. Now San Luis Obispo County officials may be stepping in to help save it.

Anita Ritenour/Flickr

With a heat wave on the horizon, public safety officials along the Central Coast are reminding residents and visitors celebrating Independence Day that all fireworks are completely illegal to use or even possess. Except where they are legal.

What happens when a community comes together to hear what their neighbors have to say about their shared hometown? Tune in for a follow-up conversation with Ashlin Hatch and Kyle Berlin about their project, "Nice Town, Normal People." They will be sharing how their recent performances were received, what they learned from the 100 interviews they conducted with residents, and what they see as the next step for Arroyo Grande, and other towns around the country, grappling with change, growth and competing visions for the future.

City of Arroyo Grande

A months-long investigation into Arroyo Grande Mayor Jim Hill found misconduct. The inquiry was paid for by the city of Arroyo Grande and the South San Luis Obispo County Sanitation District. Besides serving as mayor, Hill is the city's representative on the sanitation district's board of directors. 

Brush fire ignites on Nipomo Mesa

Jul 23, 2017
Courtesy of CalFire SLO

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

First United Methodist Church of Arroyo Grande

If you go less than a mile away from Camp Arroyo Grande, it’s like you’re in a different world.

It’s right near the Arroyo Grande Village and Highway 101. There’s lots of local businesses, gas stations. A busy street. 

City of Arroyo Grande Facebook Page

Residents of Arroyo Grande are facing major water cuts after the City Council unanimously declared a Stage I Water Shortage Emergency Tuesday night.

Low water levels at Lopez Lake, the city's primary source of water, is a big reason for the emergency declaration. Currently about 95 percent of the city's supply comes from Lopez, in an effort to protect the city's groundwater source from saltwater intrusion.

Members of the Lucia Mar Unified Teachers Association (LMUTA) voted to ratify a tentative agreement reached earlier this month with the Lucia Mar Unified School District.

Bargaining between LMUTA and the District had come down to the wire, with teachers threatening to strike within days.

"This is welcome news and the District congratulates LMUTA and its members for bringing our lengthy negotiations process to conclusion," the District said in a statement.

City of Arroyo Grande Facebook Page

The City of Arroyo Grande will soon consider moving into Stage I drought conservation status according to Mayor Pro Tem Kristen Barneich. She said Wednesday night that staff is working on a proposal for the council to consider at an upcoming meeting.

Barneich said she believes the report will be recieved by council either at the next meeting on April 28, or the following meeting on May 12.

Tuesday night, the council approved new measures to help meet the governor's water reduction demands of 25 percent.

The man named Arroyo Grande's Citizen of the Year for 2014 by the local Chamber of Commerce is facing charges of kidnapping and child molestation.

The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office says 63-year-old Lawrence Jones—known as Lenny Jones—was arrested Monday following an investigation.

The department says two girls under the age of 14 were sexually molested while attending a birthday party at Jones' home in rural Arroyo Grande.

Deputies are asking for the public's help in identifying any other potential victims.

Courtney Winters, City of Pismo Beach

Organizers from the Amgen Tour of California are planning to work with residents of Avila Beach, who will host the end of Stage 4 this coming May.

Stage 4 starts in Pismo Beach and ends in Avila Beach, two neighboring communities about six miles apart. But, the race will tack on an addition 100 miles to the route, taking riders into northern Santa Barbara County and through Arroyo Grande on the return trip.

Google Maps - Street View

The group that built and maintained Arroyo Grande's Elm St. Dog Park says it no longer wants to be a part of that project.

The Five Cities Dog Park Association (FCDPA) says a long history of poor city relations, as well as troubles with some park users, simply became too much for the group to handle.

Jerry Bunin is a long-time FCDPA board member and says these troubles included occasions where people put shards of glass in a comment box at the park—glass those same people said they found mixed in with the wood chips that had been delivered by the city.

Cal Fire SLO Twitter feed

A horse that got trapped in a hole Tuesday morning east of Arroyo Grande was eventually freed with the help of Cal Fire crews, a veterinarian and a neighbor.

Cal Fire San Luis Obispo says the distress call came in around 10:30 a.m. While the hole was initially described as a sink hole, Battalion Chief  Paul Lee says he believes it was manmade. 

"In and around that hole was a lot of lumber," said Lee, adding that the horse was entangled in the two-by-fours and plywood. The animal was upset and was calmed down with the help of a veterinarian.

With close races in SLO Co., some ballots still need to be counted

Nov 11, 2014
Flickr member Vox Efx

Ballot counters are taking a break Tuesday to observe Veteran's Day according to Julie Rodewald, the San Luis Obispo County Clerk-Recorder.

  Although, midterm elections ended a week ago, determining new measures and elected officials, some races are still unsettled in San Luis Obispo County. 

Rodewald said provisional and mail-in ballots will determine tight races in Arroyo Grande, Grover Beach Pismo Beach and Paso Robles.

The county will have reportable numbers Wednesday at 5 p.m.

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