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North State fire updates | Limited abortion access | Chico’s changing of the guard


The latest North State and California news on our airwaves for Friday, July 1

Containment increases on Rices Fire; forward spread stopped on Sandra, Nelson fires

The Rices Fire burning in Nevada County, near Yuba County, is 22% contained and remains 904 acres in size, according to Cal Fire’s update this morning. About 250 structures remain threatened.

Evacuation warnings remain in place for parts of northeastern Yuba County south of Dobbins.

The Associated Press reported cooler weather and an increase in humidity has helped firefighters stop the spread of the fire. Thirteen firefighters and a civilian have been hurt, with the injured suffering heat-related illnesses such as dehydration.

Separately, firefighters responded to multiple fires Thursday in Butte County.

Cal Fire-Butte County said firefighters have stopped forward spread of the Sandra Fire burning in the Forbestown and Robinson Mill area. The fire was listed at 40 acres and is 30% contained. At 8:05 a.m. today, the Butte County Sheriff’s Office lifted the last evacuation warning that was placed for Zone 685 in the area of Forbestown and lower Black Bart roads. All other evacuation orders and warnings were lifted Thursday.

Firefighters also stopped the forward spread of the Nelson Fire near the Thermalito Forebay, according to Cal Fire-Butte County. That fire was listed at 250 acres and is 60% contained this morning. All evacuation orders and warnings have been lifted.

Andre Byik, NSPR

Interview: Many North State counties don’t have abortion clinics

California may soon become a haven for those seeking abortions from out of state, but access to care is not distributed equally.

For example, seven North State counties don’t have any abortion clinics. Susie Neilson, a reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle, mapped where California’s clinics are located using data from UC San Francisco.

You can listen to an interview with Neilson in today’s Headlines. 

Adia White, NSPR

Chico City Council selects city manager; police chief announces retirement

Chico has a new city manager — former mayor Mark Sorensen. According to the Chico Enterprise-Record, Sorensen was selected by the City Council Thursday and will be officially approved by vote at next week's council meeting.

According to the paper, Sorensen held two terms on the council and was mayor prior to Sean Morgan in 2016. He’s also been the city manager for Biggs in Butte County. He replaces interim City Manager Paul Hahn, who has been in the position since mid-April.

Additionally, Chico Police Chief Matt Madden has announced his retirement. According to a press release from the Police Department, Madden will be stepping down after 25 years with the department. The release states he will continue to work alongside the department and city management during the transitional period.

Alec Stutson, NSPR

Supreme Court ruling limits EPA’s oversight of power plant pollution 

On the final day of its term Thursday, the U.S. Supreme Court announced a ruling that would limit the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) decision-making power.

The ruling was a blow to the agency’s ability to regulate carbon emissions. In essence, the court says that agencies can’t make major decisions impacting the American economy without congressional approval. Environmental groups fear this will significantly delay action to curb greenhouse gasses.

Dan Farber, director of UC Berkeley’s Center for Law, Energy and the Environment, said this decision didn’t surprise him, as “everyone expected EPA to lose the case.”

Farber said the ruling limits the EPA’s ability to regulate emissions, but it doesn’t strip the agency of that power entirely and future congressional action could strengthen it.

CapRadio Staff

Stories from NPR partner stations are edited by NSPR Staff for digital presentation and credited as requested.

In other news

  • Decolonizing California’s wildfire zone: “Today, in an agreement with the city of Chico, the Mechoopda tribe manages Verbena Fields. It’s an emerging model of what decolonizing land can look like, supported by partnerships between Native and non-Native communities.” — Shasta Scout
  • Plumas residents exempt from food recycling – for now: “California has a new food recycling law that goes into effect July 1: SB 1383 requires every jurisdiction to provide organic waste collection services to all residents and businesses. However, Plumas County has requested and received an exemption for the time being.” — Plumas News
  • LaMalfa urges FEMA to stop seeking repayment of aid From Dixie Fire victims: “The Federal Emergency Management Agency announced it would be sending notices to individuals in Lassen, Plumas, Tehama, Shasta, and Butte counties who registered for federal disaster assistance for losses incurred by the Dixie Fire, to inform them that claims made to the PG&E settlement for the Dixie Fire could be considered duplication of benefits." — Lassen County Times

In case you missed it

Headlines is published every weekday morning at 8:30 a.m. Subscribe on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and NPR One. Theme song Borough is courtesy of Blue Dot Sessions

Sarah is an award-winning reporter, producer and editor. She’s worked at North State Public Radio for six years and was previously the station’s News Director before leaving to study at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism.
A graduate of California State University, Chico, Andre Byik is an award-winning journalist who has reported in Northern California since 2012. He joined North State Public Radio in 2020, following roles at the Chico Enterprise-Record and Chico News & Review.
Angel Huracha has been a part of the journalism field since 2006 and has covered a range of topics. He is a graduate of Chico State with a Bachelor's degree in news-editorial and public relations with a minor in English.