pandemic

Courtesy of motel6.com

A Motel 6 in Paso Robles will be converted to provide over a hundred rooms for emergency and permanent housing for homeless individuals,  a project expected to be complete by the end of this year.

Angel Russell

The state off-roading park at Oceano Dunes in San Luis Obispo County will partially reopen next week as part of a three-phase plan. The dunes have been closed to vehicles and camping access since mid-March.

Urban Institute, "Housing and Land-Use Implications of Split-Roll Property Tax Reform in California," October 2020

When Californians approved Proposition 13 in 1978, critics of the landmark ballot measure say voters did not foresee many of the unintended consequences of capping property taxes on both residential and commercial land: lower school funding, cash-strapped cities, major corporate tax benefits.

Angel Russell

The city of San Luis Obispo is clearing a homeless encampment along the Bob Jones Trail. This comes a week after SLOPD found the body of a man inside one of the tents, who they say died from unknown causes weeks earlier.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness month, and organizations that help survivors of domestic violence on the Central Coast report an uptick in calls, believed to be directly related to the pandemic.

David Rodriguez, The Salinas Californian

A CalMatters analysis shows that Cal/OSHA dispatches inspectors in just 5% of COVID complaint cases. Non-COVID complaints were more than twice as likely to result in on-site inspections — but that’s still far below the pre-pandemic share.

Thomas Wilmer

Correspondent Tom Wilmer reports from the San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport. County airport director Kevin Bumen shares information about COVID-19 sanitation initiatives within airport terminals and aboard aircraft. Bumen also talks about dealing with reduced daily flights (down fifty percent from 2019), a marked reduction of income from ancillary revenue streams such as long-term parking, and Bumen's new position as the first chief commercial officer at San Francisco International Airport (SFO), with his last day at San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport set on October 9.

Angel Russell

San Luis Obispo County advanced to a less-restrictive phase in California’s COVID-19 blueprint Tuesday, and businesses are yet again adjusting to the new changes. 

Downtown SLO

After 44 years, the organization Downtown SLO is canceling the city’s annual holiday parade due to COVID-19 concerns. But the group has some other ideas on keeping the holiday spirit alive.

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.

Angel Russell

In Paso Robles, some students with disabilities returned to campus Monday, and the school district is hoping to serve more students with in-person learning assistance this school year. 

Undocumented workers in California are now eligible for certain tax credits under a bill Governor Gavin Newsom signed Friday

There have been record-setting hurricanes, floods and a pandemic. And this year in California six of the 20 largest wildfires in the state’s history have occurred, many of which are still burning.  News of mass evacuations are heard daily, often with little or no time at all to prepare. These hardships clearly illustrate the importance of emergency preparedness. If a disaster hits, will you be prepared? Would you be ready to go? Join host Fred Munroe as he speaks with Paul Deis, Red Cross disaster volunteer, and Dan McGauley, retired firefighter and paramedic with the city of Atascadero, as they discuss the importance of being disaster ready.

Angel Russell

Since the start of the pandemic, a Central Coast nonprofit animal services organization is seeing a huge increase in demand for its services. With more people adopting from shelters, C.A.R.E. 4 Paws is working to make sure animals don’t end up back there.

Angel Russell

Despite an ongoing pandemic and wildfires causing smoky skies, people are still visiting the Central Coast—but overall tourism is sharply down compared to years' past.

photo courtesy of James Scoolis

With music venues closed and COVID-19 restrictions in place, musicians have been out of work for months. Now local musicians are circulating a petition, advocating for an end to the prohibition of live music events.

The company that makes Dr. Pepper has announced its products are currently harder to find on shelves, and it is the latest major brand to announce a shortage during the pandemic. But it’s not just soda companies, Central Coast beer companies are also facing a shortage struggle.

UCSB SRC

Archivists at UC Santa Barbara are documenting the pandemic’s effect on the university’s community. To do so, they’ve asked students, staff, faculty and alumni to send in submissions, without any guidance on form or content.

And so far, UCSB’s Special Research Collections have received nearly 100 submissions.

Angel Russell/KCBX

The fitness industry has taken a huge hit as the state is trying to mitigate the spread of Covid-19.

For two-and-a-half months, Central Coast gyms were closed due to state mandates. Then fitness centers got the green light to open in some counties again in mid-June, only to be told to reclose just a few weeks later.

Greta Mart/KCBX

After three days on the state’s watchlist for COVID-19 cases, San Luis Obispo County is now back under the kind of closure orders experienced in March, April and May. All bars are closed. Starting Thursday, gyms, churches, most offices, salons and malls are ordered to close down all indoor operations.

Since mid-June, Santa Barbara’s tourism marketing branch has been advertising the city as “Open for Travel,” an action which has brought some criticism.

SMPD

As thundering fireworks shows have been canceled throughout the Central Coast due to the pandemic, police are warning people not to get tempted into lighting their own shows using illegal fireworks.

Issues & Ideas: Flying at SBP, job losses for undocumented workers and GALA pride

Jun 26, 2020

On this episdoe of Issues & Ideas, San Luis Obispo author Nicholas Belardes talks about growing up in Bakersfield and going to a high school steeped in Confederate symbolism. A new report from UC Merced shows undocumented workers have been hit hard when it comes to job loss during the pandemic, especially women in non-essential jobs. SLO County Regional Airport director Kevin Bumen discusses the current protocol of transiting through the airport, in-flight COVID-19 precautions and the state of the airline industry as people are beginning to think about traveling again. Michelle Call of  the Central Coast's Gay and Lesbian Alliance, or GALA, gives us an update on local happenings during Pride Month. And finally, we learn how sea otters may be keeping our estuaries’ underwater plants healthy.

Angel Russell/KCBX

Retail, hair salons and in-restaurant dining services are reopening in San Luis Obispo County after weeks of closure, but the pandemic has changed the landscape of business as usual.

Greta Mart/KCBX

The news many have been looking forward to finally came Monday: California’s governor announced it is now up to individual counties to proceed on reopening after the two-month pandemic shutdown. San Luis Obispo County officials say the county is ready to go.

Nursing homes have been ravaged by coronavirus throughout the nation. Data shows that people who reside or work in long-term care facilities have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19, and a new report shows that as of April 23, 2020 there have been over 10,000 reported deaths due to COVID-19 in long-term care facilities (including residents and staff), in the 23 states that publicly report death data, representing 27% of deaths due to COVID-19 in those states.  So how is the Central Coast responding to the threat of COVID-19 in local long-term care facilities? What is being done to protect both residents and employees? And what is the future of nursing homes?

Courtesy Laura Foxx/Kevin Harris

The Central Coast is known for its many gifted artists—across the spectrum of mediums and disciplines—who choose to live and create here. Via Zoom, we checked in with two local performance artists to learn how they are adapting during the pandemic shutdown, and the shuttering of their livelihoods.

Elizabeth Barrett explores ways we can deal with the current isolation caused by the pandemic and stay at home orders. Learn about Acceptance Commitment Therapy in this conversation with the Reluctant Therapist.

Courtesy of Festival Mozaic

A popular, summertime Central Coast festival announced Thursday it is postponing until 2021. The management of another major SLO County event is taking a more wait-and-see approach on whether to go ahead as usual. Stay-at-home orders have laid waste to all planned concerts, festivals and events this spring, and now summertime ones are falling like dominoes—all triggered by the pandemic.

JM Jaffe

LGBTQ+ rights pioneer Phyllis Lyon died on April 9 at the age of 95. Lyon and her longterm partner Del Martin were the first California couple to get married after same-sex marriage become legal in the state in 2008, due to a ruling by the California Supreme Court.

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