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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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Our overview page for Yolo County is updated daily with the latest state and local news, weather alerts, local government announcements and local blog posts and news snippets from community groups and individuals.
Direct your browser to to catch up on the latest news in California and Yolo County. Bookmark the link and visit often, there's a lot happening in your community!

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Big Brother Big Sisters provides children facing adversity with strong, enduring, professionally supported mentorship. The chapter serves Sacramento and Yolo counties, as well as southern Placer County.

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From Our Media Allies

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West Sacramento News Ledger logo Rio Linda Resident Named Director of Impact at Local United Way

Sia Magadan has joined United Way California Capital Region as director of its Impact department, which runs programs focused on ending poverty for local families starting in school.

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Recent Local News

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• Social Services Commission and City Potentially Looking at Tenant Protections Again

Periodically the city of Davis has looked into renter protections. A presentation to the Social Services commission by a subcommittee laid out some of what these could look like.

(01/22/2024) → Davis Vanguard

• Pioneer Baseball League Forms New Professional Team

The Pioneer Baseball League has announced Yolo County’s first professional baseball team, the High Wheelers. “We’re excited to be stewards of the Pioneer League’s second California team,” said team cofounder Paul Freedman.

(01/22/2024) → Daily Democrat

• Teacher and Union Leader Victor Lagunes enters District 2 Race in Davis

History teacher Victor Lagunes recently announced his candidacy for the District 2 seat on the Davis City Council, currently held by Will Arnold.

(01/22/2024) → The California Aggie

• Study: Long COVID Creates Changes in the Blood, Aiding Detection

An international team of scientists has found distinct changes in the blood of people with long COVID, suggesting a potential strategy to diagnose and perhaps treat the mysterious condition.

(01/19/2024) → Daily Democrat

• Woodland City Council Discuss Police Department’s Plan for Next Two Years

The Woodland Police Department's 2024-2026 strategic plan addressed city and community concerns regarding public safety and quality of life.

(01/19/2024) → Daily Democrat

• Smokey Bear—and Californians’ Relationship With Fire—Gets an Update in UC Davis Art Exhibition

If you’re driving on Interstate 80, you might spot a billboard displaying an animal wildfire mascot. But it isn’t Smokey Bear. It’s Burnie the Bobcat, with a new slogan: Only you can decide our fiery future.

(01/18/2024) → CapPublicRadio

• Feedback Sought on Plans for Climate-Ready Landscapes in Robert Arneson Park

Climate-ready landscapes are spaces that are visually vibrant, drought tolerant, and support local nature. At Robert Arneson Park, these spaces will be pollinator gardens and mini-forests.

(01/16/2024) → Davis Vanguard
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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 State of California seal. State of California   (01/19/2024)

Bill Dodd CA Senate 03:
Sen. Dodd: Data Privacy Week Begins Jan. 22

Friday, January 19, 2024SACRAMENTO Recognizing the increasing role of technology in consumers lives, the large volume of personal information collected by businesses and the damage caused by unwanted disclosure and data breaches, Sen. Bill Dodd, D-Napa, announced today hes designating the fourth week in January in California as Data Privacy Week. There is an enormous amount of our personal data …
Image of State of California seal. State of California   (01/18/2024)

Bill Dodd CA Senate 03:
Sen. Dodd Introduces Berryessa Snow Mountain Expansion Bill

Thursday, January 18, 2024SACRAMENTO Sen. Bill Dodd, D-Napa, in partnership with Senate President Designee Mike McGuire, D-North Coast and Assembly Majority Leader Cecilia Aguiar-Curry, D-Winters, has introduced legislation urging the White House to expand Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument and to rename the new portion to reflect its cultural significance to the regions Native American tribes. Berryessa Snow Mountain is …
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 State of California seal. State of California   (01/17/2024)

Bill Dodd CA Senate 03:
Sen. Dodd Comments on California Forever Initiative

Wednesday, January 17, 2024SACRAMENTO Sen. Bill Dodd, D-Napa, issued the following statement today regarding the announcement from developers of the proposed California Forever community in Solano County that they would soon begin collecting signatures for a ballot initiative to get their project built: Theyve certainly put plenty of money and time into their proposal but there are still huge, unresolved …
Image of United States seal. United States   (01/16/2024)

Brightfarms Recalls Spinach and Salad Kits Because of Possible Health Risk as a Result of Supplier Element Farms Recall

BrightFarms has issued a voluntary recall of spinach grown by its supplier Element Farms in their Pompton Plains, New Jersey farm and distributed under the BrightFarms brand because the spinach has the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. Due to potential cross-contamination, Br
Image of City of Woodland seal. City of Woodland   (01/16/2024)

Successful MLK Day of Service at East Beamer Neighborhood Campus

Roughly 100 volunteers helped honor Dr. King's legacy of service
Image of State of California seal. State of California   (01/16/2024)

Bill Dodd CA Senate 03:
El Senador Dodd Responde al Presupuesto 2024 del Gobernador Newsom

Wednesday, January 10, 2024SACRAMENTO El Senador Bill Dodd, D-Napa, emitio hoy la siguiente declaracion tras la publicacion del presupuesto propuesto para 2024-25 del Gobernador Gavin Newsom, que invierte en servicios esenciales como escuelas, seguridad publica y produccion de viviendas economicas al tiempo que aborda un deficit esperado. "Es mucho menos divertido lidiar con un deficit que con un superavit, pero …