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Image caption: There's too much information these days. But explanatory reporting can help.
What Makes a News Article an ‘Explainer,’ Anyway?
In an era of information overload, here’s how a rising form of journalism helps explain it all for you, and why California Local publishes ‘explanatory’ reporting.

Image caption: The El Dorado County D.A. and P.D. are at the heart of the criminal justice system.
El Dorado County's D.A.and Public Defender, Explained
At the center of El Dorado County's criminal justice system, the district attorney and public defender are the two lawyers who make it all work.

Image caption: RCDs look after the land, whether it’s used for grazing, growing, or getting out into nature.
California Dirt
What do resource conservation districts protect? Pretty much everything that’s worth saving.

Image caption: There are still 27 oil platforms off the California coastline.
Offshore Oil Drilling in California Waters, Explained
Why is California still experiencing offshore oil spills half-a-century after the catastrophic Santa Barbara disaster? The answer is found in the state’s longtime, close relationship with the oil business.

Image caption: Local cities and counties struggle to regulate the exploding short-term rental industry.
Short-Term Losses
The short-term or ‘vacation’ rental industry spawns hundreds of horror stories and damages the housing market, but governments struggle with how to bring it under control.

Image caption: Cargo ship traffic has reached record levels at California’s ports in 2021.
Link Between Port Traffic Jams and Oil Spill, Explained
Here’s why cargo ship traffic has been dangerously heavy at California’s ports in 2021, and how the backup may have caused a disaster.

Image caption: The state's economic recovery from the pandemic has been slower than expected.
Why California Jobs Have Been Slow to Come Back, Explained
Extended unemployment benefits, the state's eviction moratorium and other COVID relief measures have ended. But people are still out of work and hurting in California as the recovery remains slow.

Image caption: Gov. Gavin News signed a broad new set of police reform laws Sept. 30.
California’s Sweeping New Police Reform Laws, Explained
Gov. Gavin Newsom and California’s Democratic legislators have enacted a sweeping new package of police reform legislation. Here’s what the new laws will accomplish, and why.

Image caption: A firefighter battles the Dixie Fighter, a massive blaze started by PG&E equipment.
PG&E’s Record of Causing Fires, and What the Company Is Doing About It
The state’s largest power utility faced new criminal charges Sept. 24, but PG&E has a long and disturbing history of causing wildfires. Why? And how can the company change?

Image caption: Water is a human right under California law, but it doesn’t always work out that way.
Agriculture and Water Shortages in the State’s Breadbasket, Explained
Residential wells are drying up in the state’s main agricultural region at the same time that agricultural businesses consume almost 90 percent of the water there.

Image caption: California’s increasingly dangerous wildfire outbreak has led to another crisis, this one in fire insurance.
California’s Fire Insurance Crisis, Explained
Even as California’s wildfires grow more intense seemingly every year, insurers are cancelling policies for homeowners in the path of the fires.

Image caption: California will soon be getting a new hotline number as an alternative to 911 for mental health crises.
988, the New Mental Health Emergency Number, Explained
California will soon add a new emergency hotline service with the number 988. Here’s the story behind that new service, and the original 911 number.

Image caption: El Dorado County’s grand jury fulfills a civil watchdog role. Here’s how.
El Dorado County’s Grand Jury System, Explained
El Dorado County government agencies and elected officials all come under the watchful eye of the county’s grand jury. Heres how the grand jury fulfills its watchdog role.

Image caption: California’s three-year-old legal cannabis industry is already struggling. Here’s why.
The Crisis in California’s Legal Cannabis Industry, Explained
Cumbersome state bureaucracy and competition from their illegal counterparts has made life perilous for California’s nascent legal cannabis businesses.

Image caption: States have expansive powers to protect the health of the general public.
The State’s Broad Power to Protect Public Health, Explained
Since long before the COVID-19 pandemic, states have possessed broad authority to protect public health, even to suspend laws and commandeer private property. Here's why, and how it works.

Image caption: A Pyrocumulus cloud generated by the Dixie Fire in July, 2021.
What is Fire 'Containment?' That and Other Terms, Explained
What does it mean when firefighters call a fire "contained?" Here's a brief guide to commonly used fire prevention terminology.

EXPLAINER

Long form articles which explain how something works, or provide context or background information about a current issue or topic.

Upcoming Civic Events

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Cameron Park Design Review Committee Meeting
Monday October 25 2021   6:30 PM

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Placerville City Council Meeting
Tuesday October 26 2021   6:00 PM

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Planning Commission Meeting
Thursday October 28 2021   8:30 AM