Hector Amezcua / CalMatters

As Pandemic Aid Ends, California Families Face Brutal New Year

In late 2017, a house fell on Jacques Gene. The construction foreman in Cool, east of Sacramento, was inside a half-finished home when the rolling trusses that make up the underside of the roof fell, collapsing the whole house. Gene, 46, suffered broken ribs, a punctured lung and a concussion. When his coworkers sorted through the rubble, he says, they didn’t expect to find him alive.

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As Pandemic Aid Ends, California Families Face Brutal New Year

9 hours ago
Hector Amezcua / CalMatters

In late 2017, a house fell on Jacques Gene.

The construction foreman in Cool, east of Sacramento, was inside a half-finished home when the rolling trusses that make up the underside of the roof fell, collapsing the whole house. Gene, 46, suffered broken ribs, a punctured lung and a concussion. When his coworkers sorted through the rubble, he says, they didn’t expect to find him alive.

Rich Pedroncelli / AP Photo

A state audit released the day before Thanksgiving shows that California oil regulators didn’t follow their own rules and in 2019 issued hundreds of inappropriate permits for new wells.

Environmental advocates like Hollin Kretzmann say making the announcement before a major holiday was an attempt to bury the audit. He’s an attorney with the Center for Biological Diversity’s Climate Law Institute.

Arif Riyanto / Unsplash

For those who are grieving, estranged from their families or already living with a mental health issue, November and December can be a difficult time of year.

People with a mental health condition may be more prone to the so-called “holiday blues,” which are often tied to financial strain, loneliness, colder weather and other factors. Sixty-four percent of people with a mental illness report the holidays make their conditions worse, according to the National Alliance Mental Illness.

A Letter From NSPR's General Manager

Nov 27, 2020

How would you characterize 2020 in one word - unprecedented, chaotic, panic-stricken, historic, hopeful? That’s how strange 2020 has been – one word doesn't do it justice. Through it all, North State Public Radio reporters and show hosts have produced remarkable content, while NSPR listeners and members have supported our journalism. In due course, our commitment to the North State and the station's public service mission has stayed strong - unwaveringly. We've not only stuck the landing but expanded, as we implemented our partnership with Sacramento's NPR station, CapRadio.

Sloan Science & Film

Dave talks to one of his favorite people on the planet, Ann Druyan. As the wife of the late Carl Sagan, Ann has worked tirelessly since his passing in 1996 to foster and carry on his legacy. In 2014, Druyan teamed with Seth McFarlane to produce the sequel to Sagan's classic Cosmos: a Personal Voyage. Cosmos: a Spacetime Odyssey, received critical acclaim and 4 emmys and spurred the production for a second series Cosmos: Possible Worlds, which airs on FOX TV beginning September 22.

Vivien Sansour

Join us this week on Cultivating Place for our final episode in the Seed Change series. We are in conversation with Vivien Sansour, heart and head behind The Palestine Heirloom Seed Library aiming to revive and share forward Palestinian seed heritage and culture of care and gratitude.

Vivien was born in Palestine and grew up in Bethlehem and then North Carolina.

How California Reached Historic Voter Turnout Despite Pandemic, Distrust

Nov 26, 2020
Anne Wernikoff / CalMatters

Californians faced the naysayers and voted by mail in record numbers this election, potentially avoiding a pandemic super spreader event and showing the nation it could be done.

CalMatters interviewed voting officials in most of the state’s 58 counties and their verdict is in: The experiment with voting by mail saw few glitches, little drama and, instead, might well provide a blueprint for future elections across the country.

Indeed, state officials are already talking about plans to make voting by mail permanent for the biggest state in the union and its 22 million registered voters.

Sharon Mollerus

The Great California Road Trip heads west this week, to the edge of the continent.

California’s isolated, sometimes isolationist human history has been shaped by the land itself. That even early European explorers imagined the territory as an island is a fitting irony, because in many ways— geographically, yes, but also in the evolution of plants and animals—California was, and still is, an island in both space and time. With small islands within the larger one, such as the North Coast. The redwood coast.

Artist Michelle Ott grew up in Minnesota and holds a Master of Fine Arts for UC Berkely. A team member at The Bookstore in Chico, Calif., she is also the artist and resident at the Gateway Science Museum.

Ott creates Illustrations and handcut photographs that focus on the observations of our physical and social world. Her work has been shown nationally and internationally.

Andrew Nixon / CapRadio

Updated 8:18 p.m.

In a year in which California's unemployment department saw massive failures in its system while inundated with claims from those impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, it's now facing more backlash after sending money to people incarcerated for rape, murder and other crimes.

Prosecutors say prison and jail inmates requested and received hundreds of millions of dollars in unemployment funds from the California Employment Development Department (EDD), in what could be the biggest taxpayer fraud scheme in state history.

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