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By Sharan Street
Published Jan 22, 2024

Highway 1 near Elk stays scenic partly due to the efforts of the California Coastal Conservancy. Highway 1 near Elk stays scenic partly due to the efforts of the California Coastal Conservancy. Image credit: Sharan Street   California Local

Reasons to Take a Road Trip

There are some California experiences that shouldn’t be missed. Big Sur. Yosemite Valley. The serene blue expanse of Lake Tahoe. The Eastern Sierra’s craggy escarpments. Such sights are among the natural wonders that make California a top destination for road-tripping tourists.

But just as important for those who live in California is the protection of land near to where they live and work. And that’s why state legislators have created 10 conservancies for different parts of the state—including urban areas. As Jonathan Vankin writes in a story just posted over the weekend, the main function of these government agencies is to “protect land for public recreational use, making sure Californians have access to the state’s undeveloped, natural environment.”

From the Low Desert to the High Sierra

The first to come into being was the California Coastal Conservancy, established in 1976, which helps all residents of the state access our scenic beaches—not just those who own homes on the sand. Next came the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy, which ensures that residents of heavily urbanized Los Angeles have natural places to enjoy near their homes. The eight other agencies are spread across the state, from the Coachella Valley to Lake Tahoe.

California’s 10 State Conservancies: How They Protect Parks and Open Land

The Baldwin Hills area in South Los Angeles is one region where a state conservancy would keep open land accessible to the public.
How California’s 10 state conservancies buy up open land and shield it from developers to preserve the natural environment for public use.

More Roadside Attractions

Other landmarks that make California attractive to tourists can be harder to protect. Despite the best work of historic preservationists, our human-made environment is vulnerable to the ravages of time. This month, the Central Coast lost a beloved roadside attraction when Pea Soup Andersen’s closed its doors with no notice, just months shy of its 100th anniversary. We mourned the loss—and set out to create a bucket list of other classic California eateries that have already celebrated their centennial and are still serving tourists and locals alike.

At California Local, we love exploring our state—not only its policies and politics, but also its cultural treasures—and we put local newspapers into that category. Meet Hanna Nakano, who is a couple weeks away from marking her first year as publisher of The Dirt. Her monthly newspaper covers the city of Davis that has more than 66,850 residents—more than 38,000 of them students at UC Davis. Veronica Yoo interviews Nakano, who talks about how she uses her publication to give voice to a creative, well-educated readership.

Century Club: A Tour of Classic California Eateries

Though Pea Soup Anderson’s signs may be a bit worn, the restaurant exterior retains its homey charm.
Pea Soup Anderson’s closed before its 100th birthday. Here are 24 restaurants 100 years or older that you can still visit.

Publisher Q&A: Digging Into ‘The Dirt’ in Davis

Next month marks one year since Hanna Nakano took over as publisher of The Dirt, a monthly in the city of Davis.
Hanna Nakano says her monthly newspaper raises the voices of local residents through “the power of documentation and the power of publishing.”

Updates to Government Announcements

We’ve been importing and publishing government announcements and press releases for some time now. They’re displayed on the county overviews and in the Announcement & Press Releases page linked in the dropdown Government Menu on the California Local website, and also in this newsletter, towards the bottom,

But you knew all that already.

The big news is that we’ve started importing U.S. Government food recall announcements (who knew there were so many?) and announcements and press releases from your elected representatives in the California state Assembly and Senate.

Local, state and federal entities publish a lot of useful and important information. These new additions will help keep you safer and more informed.

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From Our Media Allies

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Monterey County Weekly logo CSU chancellor opens the door for a last-minute solution ahead of a faculty strike, says campuses will remain open.

Monday morning, Jan. 22, faculty members at all 23 California State University campuses are expected to form picket lines, striking for one week with a demand of a pay increase, among other issues. Two-and-a-half days ahead of that strike, CSU…

Salinas Valley Tribune logo Soledad Students Help Tripp the Tumbleweed Navigate Pinnacles National Park in New Book

Authors Christy and Ed Bray visited with students at Rose Ferrero Elementary School.

King City Rustler logo City of King, Waste Management Propose Special Process for Delinquent Accounts

Waste Management has experienced a large number of unpaid accounts for its services in King City, according to City Manager Steve Adams.

Monterey County Weekly logo EcoFarm Conference Kicks Off With Talk About Soil

Farm-to-table sounds like it has the gloss of a restaurant marketing professional when compared to some of the conversations at EcoFarm.

Monterey County Weekly logo Monterey County Tries Again to Create Short-term Rental Regulations

For more than 10 years, the county has been working to create new regulations around short-term rentals in places visitors desire. So far nothing has stuck.

Monterey County Weekly logo The Whole Enchilada to Close as Longtime Chef, Operator Retires

For many people, an outing to Moss Landing has been less about kayaking and more about dining. But one destination relocated and another is closing.

Monterey County Weekly logo Cristina Medina Dirksen to Leave Marina Council

When the Marina City Council meets Jan. 17, Councilmember Cristina Medina Dirksen plans to announce her resignation, effective Jan. 28, with almost a year remaining on her term.

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Recent Local News

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• Cal State Faculty Strike Ends With Tentative Contract Agreement

A Cal State systemwide strike secured what more than half a year of negotiations and partial strikes couldn’t: a deal.

(01/22/2024) → CalMatters

• Huge San Jose Ranch May be Preserved as Parklands and Nature Habitat

Richmond Ranch in south San Jose may be preserved as open space if multiple government entities succeed in a quest to buy its thousands of acres, public documents show.

(01/22/2024) → Monterey Herald

• Leon Panetta to Be Inducted Into California Hall of Fame

Former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta will be inducted into the California Hall of Fame in a Feb. 6 ceremony. He will be part of the 17th class of leaders.

(01/20/2024) → Monterey Herald

• 2024 Primary Election: 18th Congressional District

Five candidates are running for the 18th Congressional District, which consists of San Benito County and parts of Santa Clara, Monterey and Santa Cruz counties. Members of Congress serve a two-year term.

(01/20/2024) → Benito Link

• Students Make Waves to Protect Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary

Students throughout the nation have been engaging in environmental stewardship projects, as part of NOAA’s Ocean Guardian School program.

(01/19/2024) → Santa Cruz Sentinel

• Ian Brand Expands Into Dorcich Facility

Ian Brand, who owns the I. Brand custom crush facility in Salinas, was looking for room to grow. So he has leased the Dorcich winery in a major expansion.

(01/18/2024) → Edible Monterey Bay
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Recent Statewide News

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• Key Takeaways From U.S. Senate Debate

The four leading U.S. Senate contenders in California tried to use 90 minutes of free air time to solidify their pitches to voters—and also to set themselves apart from their opponents.

(01/22/2024) → CalMatters

• Will $20 Minimum Wage Crush Fast Food in California?

Fast food lives in a consumer sweet spot: demand, convenience and relative affordability. And this pay hike—equal to minimum wage increases during the past five years—will create grand economic unknowns.

(01/22/2024) → Daily Democrat

• How California Budget Rules Can Prevent Saving for a Rainy Day—and Why Newsom Wants to Change That

The swing from a $100 billion surplus to a deficit somewhere between $38 and $68 billion in just two years illustrates the volatility of California’s tax system.

(01/21/2024) → CapPublicRadio

• California Picks Its Next Governor in More Than 1,000 Days. Why the Race Is Already So Crowded

More than two years until the first votes are cast, Senate leader Toni Atkins becomes the fourth big-name Democrat to jump into the governor’s race. She is seeking to become the first female and openly gay chief executive.

(01/19/2024) → CalMatters

• California Court Ruling Could Threaten Key Source of Funding for Disputed Delta Water Tunnel Project

A California judge says a nearly 65-year-old law does not give the state permission to borrow the billions of dollars it would need to build a large water project.

(01/19/2024) → CapPublicRadio

• California Panel Holds Up Studies on Psychedelics. Some Researchers Want It Gone

At the Pacific Neuroscience Institute in Santa Monica, scientists are eager to explore whether a psychedelic chemical found in a toad could help people with depression. But research has been put on hold by the state.

(01/19/2024) → Santa Cruz Sentinel

• Where Do the Major Senate Candidates Stand on the Economy, Crime and the Border?

The five major contenders have different track records and proposals on some of California’s biggest issues. They’re trying to position themselves to appeal to sizable voting blocs.

(01/17/2024) → CalMatters

• Homelessness Is on the California Ballot This March. Will Conditions Change?

Prop. 1 would funnel more money into housing and treatment for homeless Californians struggling with mental illness and addiction. But it’s far from a one-stop solution.

(01/17/2024) → CalMatters
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Government Announcements

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Image of United States seal. United States   (01/20/2024)

Al Amir Fresh Foods Issues Allergy Alert on Undeclared Sesame in Hummus Dip Products and Undeclared Milk in Tzatziki Cucumber Yogurt

Al Amir Fresh Foods of Milwaukie, Oregon is recalling Al Amir brand hummus dip products due to undeclared sesame and Tzatziki Cucumber Yogurt due to undeclared milk.
Image of City of Monterey seal. City of Monterey   (01/19/2024)

Residential Structure Fire in Monterey

Image of City of Seaside seal. City of Seaside   (01/18/2024)

Seaside City News | 1.18.24

Check out upcoming events!! Seaside City News premiered at the January 18, 2024 City Council meeting.
Image of United States seal. United States   (01/18/2024)

FSIS Issues Public Health Alert for Raw Frozen Pork Dumpling Products Produced without Benefit of Inspection

WASHINGTON, Jan. 18, 2024 - The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is issuing a public health alert because Dim Sum Factory Inc., a Flushing, N.Y...
Image of United States seal. United States   (01/17/2024)

Hans Kissle Issues Allergy Alert on Undeclared Soy & Egg in "Hans Kissle Mexican Style Quinoa Salad"

Hans Kissle of Haverhill, MA, is recalling its 7-ounce packages of MEXICAN STYLE QUINOA SALAD, deli salad, because the product contains undeclared egg and soy. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to egg and/or soy run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they con
Image of United States seal. United States   (01/17/2024)

Whitley's Peanut Factory Issues an Allergy Alert on Undeclared Peanuts, Milk, Soy, Wheat, and Sesame for Limited Units of Deluxe Nut Mix 12oz (340g)

Whitley's Peanut Factory of Hayes, Virginia is recalling 12oz Deluxe Nut Mix with specific code dates because they may contain undeclared peanuts, milk, soy, wheat, and sesame. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to these ingredients run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic
Image of City of Del Rey Oaks seal. City of Del Rey Oaks   (01/17/2024)

CalAm's project closes Frog Pond Wetland Preserve until end of January

California-American Water has revised their project schedule and is going to continue their water line realignment project under Highway 218 adjacent to the Frog Pond Wetland Preserve.  The Frog Pond will be closed Monday thru Friday for the next few weeks, effective immediately.  Cal-Am and their subcontractor (Coastal Paving & Excavating) will be opening and closing the FPWP parking turnout …
Image of County of Monterey seal. County of Monterey   (01/17/2024)

Restaurants and Retailers Advised to Not to Serve or Sell Certain Oysters from Bahia Salina in Sonora, Mexico Potentially Contaminated with Norovirus
Image of City of Monterey seal. City of Monterey   (01/17/2024)

Automated License Plate Readers (ALPR) Town Hall Meetings

Image of City of Monterey seal. City of Monterey   (01/17/2024)

Firearm Arrest