All California Local Newsletters

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Explainers and guides from our team of journalists, a curated news digest from trusted local newsrooms, and local government announcements and upcoming meetings, delivered every Monday morning to your inbox.


Image caption: A group of  powerful, ambitious and confident people are hoping to ease California’s housing crisis by building an urban Utopia in the middle of nowhere.
01/29/2024: California Exodus and ‘California Forever’

While millions of Californians seek affordable housing elsewhere, an ambitious man backed by billionaires dreams of building an urban Utopia in Central Valley farm country.

Image caption: Highway 1 near Elk stays scenic partly due to the efforts of the California Coastal Conservancy.
Jan. 22, 2024: Reasons to Take a Road Trip

Ten state agencies are dedicated to keeping California scenic. And while you’re out exploring, check out some of our state’s most venerable eateries.

Image caption: Hey, Mickey—please pay attention to your driving!
Jan. 15, 2024: Killer Cars, Covid & Copyright

Two causes of unnecessary death: “traffic violence” and COVID-19. Plus: Mickey Mouse is finally free!

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Jan. 8, 2024: The Giving Season

In this week’s edition of The Newsletter, we celebrate local nonprofit community groups, and give appreciation to the individuals and businesses that support them.

Image caption: Family and friends are the best part of any year.
Jan. 2, 2024: The Best and Worst of 2023

It was a year of unprecedented conflict, from fights in the halls of Congress to war overseas. And in the midst of all of it, as you will see, there are reasons for hope.

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Dec. 26, 2023: The Meaning of Christmas

This season, some of us celebrate the birth of a man who preached a gospel of charity toward the poorest among us. We’re taking this opportunity to discuss poverty in California, and some efforts to alleviate it.

Image caption: JP Reese, a registered nurse, stands with a couple of Ukranian soldiers near the front lines of the war zone. The photo was taken by JP's bride, Dawn Davidson, two weeks after they were married in Sacramento.
Dec. 18, 2023: Californians Supporting Ukraine

Two Sacramento nurses travelled to the front lines of the war zone to deliver medical supplies to Ukrainian soldiers. Plus: A number of ways you can help the people of this embattled nation. And: Goodbye Kevin McCarthy.

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Dec. 11, 2023: California's Revolutionary Culture

50-plus documentaries about California music show off the state's vast cultural diversity; plus a very brief essay about what the film 'Monterey Pop' means; and a guide to Cali-crafted sustainable gifts.

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Building Democracy in California

Released on the day following the much-hyped "Red vs. Blue" debate, Jonathan Vankin's "How California Works" easily explains exactly how we are "Building Democracy in the Golden State."

Image caption: Rodin Farms Fruit Stand lies along one of the “stroads” in Stanislaus County, and a widening of the highway could drive the longtime landmark out of business.
Nov. 27, 2023: Season’s Eating

Holiday recipes from Sacramento Digs Gardening, a tour of agricultural tourist attractions—including Modesto’s imperiled Rodin Farms Fruit Stand—and a preview of the scenery-chewing Newsom-DeSantis debate.

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Nov. 20, 2023: Take It to the Bank

From now until the end of the year, ’tis the season of giving. Here are some suggestions for where to make a deposit.

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Nov. 13, 2023: Fighting & Working for Democracy

Veterans Day weekend reminds us to appreciate our fundamental democratic values, to thank those who fought to defend them, and to work together to preserve democracy here in California.

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Nov. 6, 2023: Are Facebook and Instagram Hurting Children?

For this week’s newsletter, Jonathan Vankin looks at the lawsuit that California Attorney General Rob Bonta and AGs across the country have filed against Facebook’s and Instagram’s parent company, Meta.

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Oct. 30, 2023: Truck or Treat! A Halloween Grab Bag

To celebrate Halloween, we bring you a guide to California’s most fascinating ghost towns. Plus a riveting explainer about the state’s second-biggest industry—logistics—which contains some downright scary facts.

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Oct. 23, 2023: Preserving Our Precious Coast

The California Coastal Commission has made the state a leader in two big ways. First, by protecting 800-plus miles of vulnerable coastline, and next by ensuring that it’s accessible to the public.

Image caption: Thanks to the work of Peninsula Open Space Trust, the Estrada Ranch in the Santa Cruz Mountains, overlooking Silicon Valley’s urban sprawl, has been preserved for future generations.
Oct. 16, 2023: This Land Is Our Land

This week we celebrate the value of land trusts, which preserve natural resources, agricultural land, and beloved community open spaces.

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Oct. 09, 2023: Our New Book & Goodbye, Columbus

On Indigenous Peoples’ Day, we’re making an announcement, and offering suggestions about commemorating some California heroes.

Image caption: Many regions in California were hit hard by the 2022-23 winter storms. In Sacramento, the losses came in the form of a thinning of the urban forest.
Oct. 2, 2023: Connectivity in a Crisis

When you’re getting your go kit together, don’t forget to make sure your phone is smart enough to handle any disaster.

Image caption: It's a long way to the top, if you wanna rock ’n’ roll (or do journalism).
Sept. 25, 2023: Progress Report

In this issue of The Newsletter, we ponder incremental progress as reflected in the journey of two newsrooms.

Image caption: What the hell happened to this sweet, smart kid?
Sept. 18, 2023: Problem Child

Big Social Media is abandoning the field of reliable information-distribution in some big ways. CALocal is helping to fill that hole—with maps.

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