COVID-19

As of today, the COVID-19 pandemic has killed over 400,000 people in the U.S. and while hope is on the arisen, with two vaccines currently being distributed, the virus is still considered to be “widespread” on the Central Coast, with hundreds of new infections reported daily. So, what should you do if you come down with the virus? Is it okay to go to the doctor? The hospital? How safe is the vaccine? And, how can you make an appointment to get vaccinated? 

Novo San Luis Obispo

A sweeping motion by California’s governor lifting regional stay-home-orders now puts the state back into a four-tier system, with Central Coast counties returning to the most restrictive purple tier. 

Courtesy of the City of Paso Robles

As restrictions continue due to state COVID-19 orders, the city of Paso Robles has started a program to help businesses stay afloat, while giving customers a discount.

Angel Russell/KCBX

Appointments are filling up as San Luis Obispo County made the first round of COVID-19 vaccinations available to more of the community.

Figueroa Mountain Brewing

Over the past decade, people around the world have started to observe 'Dry January,' abstaining from alcohol for the month for a healthier start to the new year. But one Central Coast brewery is hoping people place that goal on hold this year.

Courtesy of SBUSD

The Santa Barbara Unified School District has adopted a new grading policy for secondary students—grades 7-12—as they continue with distance learning.

By a unanimous vote, the school board passed a grading policy that now includes an option for a grade of 'No Credit' in lieu of an F.

High school students in Santa Barbara County have not had on-campus classes in almost a year. Aiming to change that, some students started a unique competition. 

Across the globe, businesses of all sizes are recognizing that supportive policies and practices increase organizational productivity, while also boosting the physical and emotional health of employees and their families. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the overlapping lines between work and life, and provides a unique opportunity to consider how family-friendly options may be incorporated at businesses everywhere. Join host Kris Kington-Barker as she speaks with Wendy Wendt, executive director of First 5 San Luis Obispo County; Maggie Payne, program director with Atascadero Children’s Center; and Molly Kern, director of governmental affairs with San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce. In the second part of the program, Kris will be talking with Kelly Boss, HR director with IFixit; Zihad Naccascha, partner and cofounder of Carmel & Naccascha LLP; and Angela Toomey, HR director with Morris and Garritano.  They will explore the many benefits of family-friendly workplace policies, and identify opportunities for change.

Angel Russell

After closing once again in December due to concerns about visitors not following COVID-19 public health guidelines, SLO County's Pismo Preserve is now reopened, but with limited hours.

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. 

Randy Vazquez/Bay Area News Group

The record $89.5 billion education budget Gov. Gavin Newsom unveiled Friday includes $2 billion in grants aimed at nudging schools to reopen classrooms for its youngest students by mid-February and $4.6 billion for summer school to address students’ learning.

Courtesy of SLO County

San Luis Obispo County officials have voted in favor of exploring a lawsuit against the state to challenge the governor’s stay-at-home order.

Courtesy of Cottage Hospital

Intensive care unit bed capacity is reaching a limit in Santa Barbara County, and health officials warn it may get worse.

In this episode of Issues & Ideas, we learn about a project aimed at addressing climate change by planting trees in Stockton and renewing urban forests. A new law could help many musicians and performers in California once venues reopen. You’ll hear about a local company called Comevo that experienced success during the pandemic and stepped up to help others. The San Luis Obispo County Library system has faced challenges this past year, but continues to move forward with innovations and a lot of hard work. And finally, a local resident has been planting lots of fig trees from cuttings, and we’ll share some ideas about gardening, cooking and eating figs.

Angel Russell

The Cal Poly  campus in San Luis Obispo is buzzing once again, with Monday's start to the winter quarter, and students are adjusting to the increased COVID-19 testing. 

Angel Russell

While many are waiting to see when they'll get the new stimulus check, an estimated 9,000 undocumented residents of SLO County may be excluded. That's where SLO County UndocuSupport is helping out.

City of Lompoc

A rapid COVID-19 testing location has opened in Lompoc, which can provide results to patients within minutes. But health officials warn not to rely solely on the rapid test if the result is negative. 

Issues & Ideas: US fishing industry floundering, debris flow risk and the Channel Islands

Dec 28, 2020

On the December 21 edition of Issues & Ideas, we'll hear a report on how some GOP lawmakers in California oppose business shutdowns because they say there’s no evidence they reduce COVID-19 cases or spikes. And, you’ll hear about how the pandemic is impacting the fishing industry on the entral Coast and beyond, as KCBX speaks with a Central Coast fishing industry official and two academic researchers. Lake Tahoe has finally received a measurable amount of snow, and more is forecasted, but the pandemic has buried the tourist economy there. The rainy season is upon Monterey County and because of this summer’s major wildfires, the season brings a significant risk of debris flows. We have a report on how COVID-19 has affected one Central Valley family. We’ll also hear from a San Luis Obispo business owner about current challenges and opportunities—and the risks her family took during the pandemic to help their business stay afloat. Finally, we’ll learn about a new "un-textbook" written about the Channel Islands.

Luna Red

SLO County has released updated guidelines for restaurants, once again allowing outdoor dining—but there’s a catch.

Healthcare workers across the Central Coast have stepped up and cared for COVID-19 patients under diffi­cult circum­stances. Those we spoke to say with a vaccine now here, hope is on the horizon.

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.

Courtesy of SBP

With a regional stay at home orders in effect, restrictions call for people to only travel for essential reasons. But airports have not been slowing down as the holiday approaches.

Thomas Wilmer

  

Join correspondent Tom Wilmer on the island of Bora Bora in French Polynesia for a conversation with Christophe Maudet, assistant general manager at the 5-star Intercontinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasso Spa.  Maudet talks about engaging and empowering island youth and the nuances of life in Tahiti in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Antoine Torricella, assistant food and beverage manager at the resort shares cool insights about a unique Tahitian winery.

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.

SLOCalFire

Firefighters across San Luis Obispo County are getting infected with COVID-19, or have been ordered to stay home in quarantine due to possible exposure. Fire officials are urging extra vigilance to ensure departments can respond to emergencies. 

Downtown SLO

With new state-mandated economic restrictions in place due to a surge in COVID-19 cases, the cities of San Luis Obispo and Grover Beach are pumping more money into helping local businesses stay afloat.

Courtesy of Shannon Galvin

As some students struggle with remote learning, Central Coast parents have started a group urging the reopening of schools for all grade levels. 

COVID-19 is currently surging across the United States, including the Central Coast. As cases explode, communities are grappling with another lockdown and the economic and psychological impacts of the pandemic. While hope is on the horizon, with vaccines looking to be out soon, what can the community and individuals do in the meantime to protect ourselves and others from this deadly disease? Join Fred Munroe as he speaks with San Luis Obispo County public health officer Dr. Penny Borenstein, as she provides an update on the COVID-19 pandemic response in the county, including information on new and expanded testing opportunities, and why testing is so important to fighting the pandemic. And we hear from local COVID-19 survivor John Porter, who will share his story and concerns as cases continue to rise throughout the Central Coast.

Courtesy photo

Businesses defying state-mandated COVID-19 closures are speaking out, after SLO County's district attorney issued a statement Tuesday saying he will not press criminal charges against those who choose to keep their doors open.

A western snowy plover at Oceano Dunes.
BRITTNEY APP FOR CALMATTERS

Despite December's stay-at-home orders in San Luis Obispo County, Oceano Dunes state park hasn't closed to day-use off-roading. That’s as California’s state park agencies face a lawsuit for alleged unlawful killing of threatened wildlife.

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