Aug 6, 2020
Children's Hospital Los Angeles

Today we're hearing from Shasta County, where the first COVID-19 case was discovered in the North State. Despite a recent uptick in cases, Shasta County, with larger towns like Redding and Anderson, is fairing relatively well. It is one of the most populated Northern California Counties that is not on the State’s Watch list. We’re going to try to find out why. 


We’re also going to look into the status of COVID-19 testing, who gets tested, how to get the test, and how long it takes to get results, and problems when testing gets delayed too much. 


If you have questions or comments for us, leave them on our message line 433-9216 – or you can also head to


For Thursday, August 6, 2020. This is special coverage from North State Public Radio.


In some locations, it is hard to get a COVID-19 test. In others, supplies are an issue. And yet in others, it takes so long to get results, by the time they’re available, the person who was tested may have already spread the illness. 

To try to better understand what is going on with testing and why, NSPR’s Marc Albert spoke with Elisabeth Rosenthal, the editor-in-chief of Kaiser Health News, a nonprofit news service covering health care policy. 

Rich Pedroncelli / AP Photo

The day Greenville Junior/Senior High School switched to distance learning, no students were in the classroom. They’d been off for three snow days, which meant the school didn’t have time to prepare and most students had left their school-issued tablets behind. 

A challenge greater than finding and delivering those devices to students? Getting them online. 


Jul 30, 2020

This week we’re taking a closer look at COVID-19 outbreaks in a North State jail and prison. We'll hear from Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea and from an employee at the California Correctional Center in Lassen County. We’ll also take a trip to Downieville to learn more about the community’s classic bike race that won’t be happening there this year due to the pandemic.  


If you have questions or comments for us leave them on our message line 433-9216 – or you can also leave comments on our website,  


For Thursday July 30, 2020. This is special coverage from North State Public Radio.

Dozens of inmates at the Butte County Jail in Oroville have tested positive for COVID-19 since the pandemic began, with many of the cases detected in the last several weeks. 

NSPR's Andre Byik spoke with Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea by phone on Thursday about the outbreak there. Andre first asked the sheriff to explain the extent of the spread of the virus at the facility.

Here are highlights from their conversation. You can also listen at the top of the page.

Interview Highlights


We are in a moment where people all across the world are questioning and calling out systemic racism and police brutality. But for one particularly group in the North State, this conversation around police violence and demands for accountability have been taking place for years. It was March 17, 2017, when Desmond Phillips, a 25-year old black man who was suffering from a mental health episode was shot and killed by Chico Police. It was ruled by a federal judge that the officers’ actions in the shooting were justified, but new videos acquired through the discovery process in the Phillips family’s unsuccessful wrongful death case against the City of Chico raise questions about conflicting accounts of the shooting by the three officers who were involved. 

Photo courtesy of TyAnna Farmer

Downtown Downieville in Sierra County is usually packed with tourists in the middle of the summer. But the town is quiet this July, and so are the teenagers. High schoolers experienced prom and graduation cancelations in the first couple months of shelter-in-place and now they’re having to spend the summer inside. 

Mia Martinelli is 14 years old and figured she would be spending the summer after her freshman year of high school hanging with friends and shopping in Reno. But the pandemic has changed a lot of her plans.


Jul 23, 2020

This week we’ll be breaking down the North State’s case numbers for you, we’ll hear from Butte County’s public health director about the county being added to the state’s monitoring list and head to Plumas and Sierra counties to hear how teens there are coping during a summer pandemic.


If you have questions or comments for us, our message line is still up – give us a call at 433-9216 – or you can also leave comments at


For Thursday, July 23, 2020. This is special coverage from North State Public Radio.


Butte County has officially been placed on the state’s list of counties it’s monitoring due to an increase in COVID-19 cases.

If the county stays on the list until Friday, some local businesses will have to once again shut down indoor operations.

NSPR’s Andre Byik spoke with Butte County Public Health Director Danette York about what being on the list means and what businesses would be affected.

Here are highlights from their conversation. You can also listen at the top of the page.

Interview Highlights

California’s wildfire season has been growing longer, deadlier and more destructive every year. As residents worry about their area being hit next, there are steps that they can take to help protect themselves and their property when wildfire strikes.

Before A Fire

The first step to prepare yourself for a wildfire in your area is to sign up for emergency alerts with your county. Find your county in the list below with a link to the sign-up form. Email us at if there's an issue with one of these links, or if your county isn't listed.